LAST UPDATED: March 22, 2019
Best Car Seat Massagers: Our Top Picks for Serious Relaxation
For a comfortable and low-stress car ride, check out these car seat massagers
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PUBLISHED ON March 22, 2019
If you spend a lot of time driving, you’re probably aware of the back and shoulder tension that can come along with the ride. Enter the car seat massager. A good massager can alleviate some of the pain, muscle tension, and discomfort you feel while you're driving. In this piece, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know to choose the best car seat massager for your needs.
Small, compact, and portable, this massage cushion is easy to take along on trips and powerful enough to relax overused and tired muscles.
This massage seat cushion uses 10 motors to provide a vibrating massage. You can customize the settings (e.g., neck, lower back, or a combination). The cushion is also heated and fits most car, truck, and SUV seats.
You can set up five different programs and choose from three massage intensity settings. Three heating pads provide therapy for hips, back, and thighs, as well as heat in winter. Unit has two heat levels and heats up fast.
The seat may be uncomfortable when you’re not using the massage function. There are some reports of the massager not working after a short time.
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Why Buy a Car Seat Massager?
- Make road trips more comfortable. If you’re a fan of long road trips, you know the aches and pains that can come with all of that sitting. A car seat massager can help keep your body limber, making your trip that much more enjoyable.
- Decrease stress levels. Managing stress is great for your overall health, and a seat massager can help you do just that. Massage helps your body relax, which, in turn, can lower your stress levels and even reduce the amount of cortisol in your bloodstream. That’s especially useful after a hard day’s work.
- Improve your circulation. A deep and invigorating massage can help get your blood moving. Better circulation has a positive impact on your overall health, helping tissue heal faster. Any improvement in blood circulation also helps keep your muscles healthier and reduces soreness.
- Mood enhancement. Besides making you feel relaxed and comfortable, regular massages trigger the secretion of endorphins that quite literally make you feel happier. They also help to quell the perception of pain and stress.
- Improve back pain. Using a massage cushion can help alleviate chronic back pain and tension. It does this through muscle stimulation, which helps calm them down.
Types of Car Seat Massagers
This type of massager looks like a seat and contains massage rollers, nodes, and motors throughout the neck, shoulder, and upper back areas. It offers the most thorough massage and typically includes bonus features like heating or an automatic shut-off. A convenient choice, full car seat massagers fit onto your regular car seat. Their size ensures that nothing slips out of place.
Massaging cushions are smaller than full seats and resemble a pillow in size and shape. They’re used mainly for a rolling massage on the lower back but can also be positioned to work on the shoulders. Many come with a heater and different massage modes.
The smallest of the three types, neck massagers wrap around the neck like a travel pillow, applying gentle pressure on the upper shoulders and spine, often with a vibrating massage. Mainly used to provide some relief from a stiff or sore neck, these massagers are the least expensive out there. As a result, they’re fairly limited in the types of massage they offer.
Top Brands for Car Seat Massagers
Snailax is a company located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It's focused on producing high-quality relaxing products such as massagers, cushions, and all kinds of accessories. We find Snailax Massage Car Seat Cushion is one of the company's best-rated and most favored products on the market.
Zyllion has been around for many years making an array of products designed to target fatigue, muscle pain, and soreness. Headquartered in Lake Forest, California, it continues to design a number of relaxing and therapeutic products, including its best-selling Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager.
Comfier was founded in 2007. It specializes in the design and manufacture of electronic massage products. Its ISO- and BSCI-certified plant is located in Xiamen, China. Comfier supplies its foot, neck, back, and full-body massagers to markets in North and South America and Western Europe. Top products include the Comfier Shiatsu Back Massager and Comfier Shiatsu Neck and Shoulder Massager.
Car Seat Massager Pricing
- Under $70: In this price range, you’ll find mostly massage cushions and a small number of seat massagers. Most have vibrating motors instead of rollers. Heating elements are rare here.
- $70-$150: At this price point, you’ll see a number of mid-range models that offer good durability and a variety of massage types and modes. Massagers in this range are more customizable and often have heating and auto shut-off features.
- Above $150: High-end massagers come with all of the bells and whistles. You’ll find models with a wide range of different settings and intensities packed into one unit in addition to high-quality materials and sleek.
Different massage types have different benefits. Shiatsu massages are invigorating and great for pain; vibration massages are good stress and tension relievers. When selecting a seat massager, pay attention to the type(s) of massage it offers. Many models on the market have multiple modes and a variety of intensity levels. Most cheaper models, however, lack this variation.
The design of the massager affects the overall feel and effectiveness of the massage. A good seat has to be comfortable to use, especially during long drives. The motors or rollers must line up with the areas that need the massage the most. Keep in mind, rollers tend to improve blood circulation and relieve tension; motors vibrate to relieve stress and potentially boost your energy.
A higher-end addition, a heater can help ease and relieve lower back pain, decrease stress levels, and promote blood flow. Combined with the massage, this is a very relaxing experience that can make long car rides more comfortable.
- Cushion style: If you’re mainly looking for pain and tension relief, check out massage cushions instead of full car seat massagers. These cushions offer a focused massage on the lower back and are lightweight, durable, and the most portable out there.
- Car seat size: To ensure a comfortable fit, you’ll want to know the exact size of your car seat. Measure both the length and width of the seat. When you’re shopping for a massager, try to match these measurements as much as possible.
- Foam depth: Soft or plush massager cushions offer the most comfort, especially if your existing car seats are hard and tough. Choose a massager with a thick, padded back for the most cushioning possible.
- Convenient use: When it comes to installing a car seat massager, the task should be quick and painless. A good massager straps onto the car seat plugs into the car and then is ready to go. Top models also have a couple of other convenience features like an auto shut-off function and remote controls for easier operation.
Best Car Seat Massager Reviews & Recommendations 2020
The Zyllion massage cushion is a powerful, deep-kneading Shiatsu massager that helps relax overused and tight muscles. This one is best for the mid or lower back, especially while driving since other positions can be dangerous.
Convenient straps help to adjust the cushion during the massage and offer a more secure fit. A good addition to its feature set, an advanced heater relaxes sore, tense muscles on long car rides and can be turned on and off with ease. The massager comes with overheating protection and is pre-programmed with a 20-minute auto shut-off timer. A car adapter is included in the package, making this a ready-set-go kind of massager.
The fabric on top of the massage nodes is somewhat on the thin side, which means it could rip if you’re not careful. If you’re interested in this massage cushion, it’s best to keep the device away from anything that might puncture, tug on, or rip through the fabric.
This unit from Comfier is a vibration massager. It has 10 vibrating motors that do the work of gently massaging your body to release aches and stress; this is in contrast to Shiatsu massage, which uses pressure (from rollers) to release tension and pain.
You can customize your massage—in other words, you can program the massager only to massage the lower back, the upper back, the buttocks, or the neck. You can also combine one, two, three, four, or all five of the areas for the massager to work on. The massager has three different massage intensities as well. The heated seat cushion features three heat pads for the hip, back, and buttock/thigh areas. These provide warmth that can help relieve pains and aches. The buttocks and back heater can work separately or together. You can choose between two heat levels: 114 degrees Fahrenheit for low heat or 131 degrees Fahrenheit for high heat. The heated seat is great for winter and it heats up fast.
Some users of this massager report that the cushion can be uncomfortable when you are not using the massager. If the massager stops working after a short time, be sure to exchange it for another one.
The Coby Massaging Car Seat Cushion with Heat is a full-body vibrating massager that's designed to provide relief to the back, neck, spine, shoulders, thighs, and waist. It features five programs that target different zones, including preset options for the lower, middle, and upper back as well as the seat and thighs. There are adapters to use it in a vehicle or to plug it into a wall socket at home.
The pad has adjustable straps, which make it easy to secure to a car seat, office chair, or couch. It's also very portable and easy to move from vehicle to vehicle. There is an optional heat function and a vibrating seat cushion with three speeds that you can adjust for intensity (low, medium, and high). This high-quality cushion has an attached remote control and is simple to wipe clean should it get dirty. There's also a built-in pocket to hold the remote and an automatic shut-off feature.
While this product is very comfortable to use while driving, the biggest complaint is that it doesn't get hot enough. Also, the cushion doesn’t cover the neck area.
The Snailax car seat cushion is ideal for drivers suffering from back problems. The product relieves stress, tension, fatigue, and soreness, making rides comfortable and enjoyable while providing more warmth for the upper back, lower back, hips, and glutes.
The cushion features six vibration motors and proves to be quite powerful. You get to switch between five modes to target different areas on your body and adjust the heat according to your preferences. The cushion has three heating pads for keeping you warm during cold days. It also comes equipped with automatic shut off and overheat-protection features. Additionally, the product is easy to mount on different seats and chairs. It comes with a rubber bottom and adjustable straps to ensure a secure fit. You can use it in all kinds of cars, trucks, RVs, and boats.
The drawback to this product, however, comes from an awkwardly designed heat setting. The massager is too hot on high mode and too cold on low mode. It might be quite challenging to adjust it perfectly. Another thing to keep in mind is that the massager might become a little uncomfortable after some time of use. If you need something for a long-term massage, you might want to look for other options.
Best Choice Products features a unique product that offers an air compression massage. The cushion has several airbags that inflate to keep your waist and thighs comfortable and relaxed.
Overall, the device is specially designed to relieve stress and tension in muscles, and you get to use it everywhere, from your home to your office and car. The benefit that almost all buyers love about this model is its deep-kneading massage. The powerful vibration relieves pain almost immediately and ensures comfort on extended use. There's even a heat feature for improved circulation and more warmth during cold winter days. As if that wasn't enough, you get to switch between a rolling massage and spot massage depending on your needs. The first one is super gentle and perfect for relieving muscle pain, while the second one is ideal for tension in the neck and back areas.
However, make sure to double-check the dimensions before the purchase. The massager is quite large and might be unsuitable for some body types. The rollers also don't go up and down to full length, so your upper and lower back might stay untreated. Therefore, it's crucial to check the dimensions of the massager and compare it to your body and car seat.
This Shiatsu massager is one of those models you get to transfer from your vehicle to your office and home. It's a perfect travel companion that ensures comfort and pain relief, fitting all seat and chair types.
The massager combines a vibration massage and heat therapy, working to resolve muscle soreness, tension, and overall, pain in your upper and lower back. Even better, the built-in nodes can give both a rolling and spot massage. That allows you to target a specific painful spot or enjoy a full massage for ultimate comfort and relaxation. Lastly, the massager is made from quality materials and proves to be rather safe and durable.
The massager is not ideal for long-term use, though. Some buyers complained about it being too uncomfortable after the first 15 minutes of use. If you need something for long rides or office, you might want to look for alternatives. Also, the device is a little loud when on the highest setting.
The Naipo massager is an excellent choice for those who are searching for an affordable option that would still give their back a good treatment. It's a well-made and durable unit you get to take on your road adventures or keep at home for more comfort during sedentary days.
The cushion has a lot to offer, starting with adjustable features and four-plane 3-D massage nodes. They cover both the upper and lower back, providing complete or spot massage for ultimate relief. Thanks to the deep kneading massage, your muscles will get rid of tension, stress, and soreness. Furthermore, you'll feel more comfortable sitting for extended periods. All you need to do is to mount the cushion, set up the heat and vibration, and enjoy.
The powerful motors might turn out to be an issue, though. Some users noticed the massager becoming uncomfortable after a short period. It might even bruise the skin if not used properly. Another minor inconvenience comes from the fact that the rollers don't go down enough to cover the lower back.
The TENKER Shiatsu Back Massager with Heat includes four keep-kneading massage modes to sooth your whole back. It also has three zones: full back or just upper back or lower back. You can target the kneading to one particular area of your back by pressing the "target" button on the remote control.
The infrared heat function provides warmth for you back, lumbar, and shoulders. The seat has three levels of intensity and targets your backside, hips, and thighs. It has just the right amount of pressure and hits all the right spots. The cushion also has an automatic shut-off feature and will turn off after 15 minutes. The company backs up its product with a 12-month warranty if you experience any defects.
However, you may need to lean back to feel the neck massage. Also, it's a little large, so it can be hard to find a place to store it when you're not using it in your vehicle.
If you're looking for a relaxing cushion for your vehicle, you might want to check out this model coming from Sotion. It's a budget-friendly option you get to transfer between your car seat, office chair, and home couch.
With it, you can stay comfortable no matter where you are. The massager comes with 10 vibrating motors and a heat-therapy feature. It works to soothe sore muscles, improve circulation, and relieve stress in your body. Thanks to the five massage modes and three intensity settings, you get to adjust the massager according to your preferences. That will ensure your body gets just the therapy it needs. Also, the device is easy to control, and it comes with an overheat-protection feature for more safety.
The thing that might bother you with this unit is the intensity of the vibration. Some buyers don't find the massager powerful enough to relieve pain completely. They also noticed the straps are a tad short. You might not be able to fit the cushion to all types of car seats.
Usage Tips for Car Seat Massagers
- Use your car seat massager in small increments rather than long stretches at a time. 10-20 minutes is a great session length that will give you many of the benefits of a massage without taxing your muscles. A session that’s too long can actually cause soreness and discomfort.
- Regularly clean your car seat massager to keep it functioning well. While it depends on the materials and design of the massager, most can be wiped down with a damp cloth.
- If you get a massager with a heater, be aware that it can overheat, especially with a lot of use. Take care to avoid this problem on long trips.
- Choosing a good position for the massager is an important step. Make sure that it’s even, flat, and centered on the seat. If it has a strap to secure it to your car seat, use it—it will keep the cushion from slipping while in use.
Q: Is it really beneficial to have a massage cushion in my car?
A: The answer is a resounding “yes.” Especially if you’re a busy person, having a massage cushion in your car is extremely convenient. It’s also a great option if you suffer from chronic back or shoulder pain, or if you need some help unwinding after a long day at the office.
Q: Is it safe to use a car seat massager while driving?
A: That’s what they’re designed for—the speed and intensity tend to be on the low side, keeping distractions to a minimum. That being said, if the massage cushion has a high setting, it’s best to save that setting for when you’re the passenger.
Q: How long can I use a massage cushion per session?
A: This depends on the type of massager and the intensity of the particular massage. In general, most massages last between 15 and 30 minutes. The more intense and deep the massage, the less time you’ll want due to a small risk of muscle bruising.
Q: Can I use a massage cushion in the car while I sleep?
A: Unfortunately, this isn’t a good idea since the massager can actually harm your back and shoulders if you sleep on it for a long time.
Q: How often should I use my car seat massager?
A: The more you use it, the more you’ll notice its benefits, as long as you don’t overdo it. Once or twice a day is usually more than sufficient. Even just a couple of times a week can make a huge difference.
Our top pick for the best car seat massager is the Zyllion Kneading Massage Pillow. It offers many functions and is small but powerful.
If you’re looking for a more affordable option, check out the Comfier Massage Seat Cushion with Heat.