Whether you’ve just run a marathon or need to unwind after a long day, nothing beats a good foot massage. Thankfully, it’s possible to get the same benefits of a traditional foot massage without the masseuse: Portable foot massagers allow you to enjoy a relaxing massage from the comfort of your own home or office.
There are several considerations when purchasing foot massager, however. With different foot massagers having different massage intensities and styles, the sheer variety can be overwhelming. To help you choose the best foot massager, we’ve scoured the web to find the best on the market.
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Tips for Choosing a Foot Massager
With a large number of foot massagers available for purchase, it can be challenging to identify the standard features between them. We’ll compare the most consistent of these features so you can make the best decision possible.
Size and Weight
Perhaps the most apparent considerations when purchasing any appliance are size and weight. Depending on your preferences and lifestyle, you might want a simple, portable device which can easily fit inside your briefcase. On the other hand, you may have a particular medical condition requiring a more dedicated model.
Thankfully, with the full range of foot massagers on the market today, both extremes – and all points in between – are possible. There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing the size of your foot massager; consider your lifestyle and needs.
For example, if you only want the occasional massage, then a small handheld unit might be all you need. On the other hand, if you run short marathons after work and want a foot massage every night before bed, then a “floor unit” may be ideal for you.
The style of massage they provide often categorizes foot massagers. For example, some massagers use a gentle kneading motion (known as “shiatsu” in Japanese), while others provide a deeper “prodding” motion to stimulate hard-to-reach muscles. Some massagers even vibrate!
Thankfully, you often don’t need to choose, as many models on the market offer a wide range of massage styles and intensities. The only exceptions to this are manual foot massagers, but you’ll be doing the work yourself anyway!
Electric or Non-Electric?
We’ve mentioned it a few times so far, but one factor bears some importance: choosing whether you want an electric or non-electric foot massager. The difference here is noticeable, as non-electric massagers require you to do the massaging yourself. However, due to their portability and non-reliance on electricity, these models are perfect for those on the go.
Most non-electric massagers are either handheld or sit on the floor. If you have very particular massaging needs, being able to precisely target problem areas may be ideal. However, if you don’t need precision targeting or high intensity, then an electric massager is often ideal. Some electric massagers offer the best of both worlds, where some handheld units allow you to target specific areas without the elbow grease (or in this case, ankle grease) precisely.
The previous sections cover almost everything, but there are a few other factors that might affect your decision. For one, you may need to choose whether your massager covers the entire foot or leaves the foot exposed. Massagers covering the entire foot provide a complete massage while requiring more cleaning than basic units.
Style is also an important consideration, especially for larger units requiring a dedicated space somewhere in your home. Here, balancing function and aesthetics is a personal choice.
Tips for Choosing a Foot Massager
With so many foot massagers to choose from, it’s challenging to pick out only a small number of them for comparison. This dilemma is especially real when considering that there are, in fact, many different types of massages!
As a result, we’ll discuss the best of each type of massager, allowing you to find the best option for your needs and preferences immediately. Each of the massagers below was chosen based on comparing hundreds of models and reviews from across the web, also factoring in price and different user situations (such as sore arches). We also made sure to choose models that are readily available via Amazon.com.
Our Top 5 Foot Massagers
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The most basic and affordable foot massager on this list, TheraFlow’s Foot Massager Roller is the very definition of “simple but effective.” Consisting of only a studded wood cylinder, this massage focuses on your foot’s arches by gently rolling back and forth under your foot.
With over one thousand positive reviews and a price of under , the TheraFlow Foot Massager Roller is ideal for those with sore arches or plantar fasciitis, as well as those with a need for simplicity and portability. Even if you don’t have sore arches, this massager can still work wonders for the bottom of your foot.
A more robust version of the TheraFlow massager discussed above, the TheraFlow Dual Foot Massager Roller is a stationary floor massager capable of massaging both of your feet at the same time. Also ideal for those with sore arches or plantar fasciitis, this massager gently works sore muscles while you move your feet back and forth across its studded wood rollers.
This unit is perhaps the most popular massager from TheraFlow, with over two thousand positive reviews and a price of under. Also requiring no electricity and taking up very little space, this massager is uniquely portable and versatile. Plus, the simple wood construction is especially appealing for those with an eye for minimalist design.
Shiatsu Foot Massager Machine with Heat
The first electronic massager on our list also happens to be one of the most popular and affordable models we found. Unlike the TheraFlow units which specifically target the arches of your feet, the Shiatsu Foot Massager Machine with Heat completely covers the bottom of your foot using a gentle kneading motion known as shiatsu, an ancient Japanese massaging technique.
Our favorite feature of the Shiatsu Foot Massager is its heating abilities. Instead of having cold, mechanical kneaders massage your foot, Shiatsu specialized massaging mechanism gently heats your foot to provide an extra soothing massage.
The Shiatsu Foot Massager also features an adjustable height, 6 massaging heads and a total of 18 rotating massager nodes. This unit is extraordinarily popular, with over five hundred positive reviews and a price of under .
One of the most powerful massagers available without the need for a special license (yes, these exist!), the MedMassager MMF06 11-Speed Foot Massager is a favorite among both consumers and medical professionals alike.
The MedMassager MMF06 offers users eleven adjustable speeds between 1,000 and 3,700 revolutions per minute (RPM). Unlike other massagers which use rotating ball bearings to perform shiatsu, this model uses a full vibrating pad to provide both the feet and legs with deep stimulation, making it especially useful for those with circulation issues or diabetes.
The platform of the MMF06 can also adjust to various angles, allowing users to precisely control massage areas, intensity and comfort. The massager also comes with a lifetime replacement warranty and over five hundred positive reviews. The only potential drawback is its cost of over $200, but this could be a small price to pay for a lifetime of comfort.
The RENPHO Shiatsu Foot Massager offers its users a wide range of features. Unlike the models covered so far, the RENPHO massager entirely surrounds the foot with massaging motions, providing a massage for the entire foot—not just the bottom. This design not only relieves sore arches but can also relieve various forms of joint pain and circulation problems.
In addition to variable massage settings, this massager has a unique feature of pressure control. Where other massagers leave the foot exposed, this massager surrounds the foot with a pressurized chamber that the user can adjust as necessary. If that wasn’t enough, the inside is also heated!
Cleaning is often one of the primary concerns associated with full-foot massagers, but the RENPHO makes it easy: remove the inside liners and wash them as needed.
With over six hundred positive reviews, the RENPHO Shiatsu Foot Massager is a good option for those who want a more “holistic” massage experience. However, the broad range of features may come at the expense of less intensity in specific areas, as well as the actual expense of over .
When it comes to foot massagers, there’s truly something for everyone. That said, the best foot massager is the one that best fits your individual needs— if you only need relief for sore arches, then a wood roller might be more effective than the most expensive, state-of-the-art massager. Either way, you’re bound to find comfort in any one of the massagers on our list!
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