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Expert Shopper Health & Wellness

Best massage bolster

Which massage bolster is best?

Proper spinal alignment is key to relieving tension and pain. To help find the right position when you sleep, relax, or even meditate, invest in a massage bolster.

Made from dense materials with soft coverings, massage bolsters are ready to meet your needs for everyday use. They aim to relieve tension in your neck or back by repositioning other parts of your body. The simple elevation of your hips or ankles promotes improved circulation and overall comfort — and to some, the relief is life-changing.

A massage bolster is a worthy investment for relief and relaxation, which is why we assembled this buying guide. We’re including our top choice, Earthlite’s Full Round Bolster Pillow, which receives high praise from massage clients for its supportive design.

What to know before you buy a massage bolster

Individuals who benefit from massage bolsters

Massage and physical therapists use bolsters to position clients and patients to maximize the benefits of their treatment. Older people may use massage bolsters to make chairs and couches more comfortable if they suffer from arthritis, sciatica, or edema. Restless sleepers can use them to find an optimal sleeping position. 

Round vs. half-moon styles

Round massage bolsters come in a wide variety of thicknesses and lengths. Many of them come with removable covers for easy care, as well as handles. Unfortunately, they’re known for rolling off tables and beds with a slight incline or movement.

Half-moon massage bolsters stay put since they’re flat on one side, and some styles even have non-slip detail. They’re typically shorter than round bolsters, so if you require considerable height, a half-moon style isn’t the best choice.


Massage bolsters can be between 10 and 26 inches in length. Shorter styles are commonly used for the neck or to elevate a single joint. Medium-length styles are used for the lumbar spine, while the longest bolsters are preferred for use beneath the knees and ankles.

Height doesn’t vary quite as much between bolsters, but even an inch can make a world of difference. On average, bolsters can be between 2 and 8 inches high. Round bolsters make up the majority of taller styles.

What to look for in a quality massage bolster


Massage bolsters are made from various types of foam, which can be high-density, memory, or infused with gel beads. There are some cotton-filled styles, but they’re less popular.

Bolsters are usually wrapped or covered with cotton, plush, microfiber, or terry cloth. More often than not, covers are made with breathable materials to keep you from sweating.

Removable covers

Removable slipcovers are an attractive feature in massage bolsters. Not only are they easy to clean, they’re also more sanitary than simply spot cleaning. These covers usually have hidden seams so as not to irritate your skin.

How much you can expect to spend on a massage bolster

Shorter massage bolsters for the neck or lumbar area cost around $20. Longer styles priced closer to $25 are made with superior materials including better-quality foam. Professional-grade bolsters are typically firmer and more durable, so expect to spend $35 and above for these.

Best massage bolster FAQ

How long will a massage bolster last?

A. Massage bolsters made of foam can last up to two years, after which time the foam begins to compress or degrade. Of course, that’s an estimate based on daily or consistent use. If you only use your massage bolster once in a while, it can last several years if you take care of it.

Are round and half-moon bolsters better than wedge bolsters?

A. As much as it boils down to preference, these items actually offer different benefits. Round and half-moon bolsters assist with alignment and relaxation through slight inclination of specific areas. Wedges, on the other hand, elevate entire parts of your body. They have therapeutic applications in their own right and are often used as fitness training devices.

What are the best massage bolsters to buy?

Top massage bolster

Earthlite’s Full Round Bolster Pillow

Our take: Cylinder-style bolster that holds up to considerable use.

What we like: Medium firmness. Lightweight. Available in nine colors. Has a one-year warranty.

What we dislike: It could be too tall for some users, therefore uncomfortable during massage sessions.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top massage bolster for money

Cushy Form’s Half-Moon Bolster Pillow

Our take: Half-moon bolster retains its shape and stays put on the table.

What we like: Supportive design promotes spinal alignment. Organic cotton cover is removable for easy washing.

What we dislike: On the firmer side, so it’s not for everyone. Takes some time to warm up to it.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Zen Bamboo’s Memory Foam Half-Moon Bolster Pillow

Our take: Softer bolster style. Great for those who use it for sleeping.

What we like: Made from chemical-free memory foam. Can be used for side and back sleepers.

What we dislike: Bolster can be a bit too soft for some people, as it can condense a bit with weight. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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