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Best Foot Massagers

Updated June 2018
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 92 Models Considered
  • 9 Hours Researched
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 132 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best foot massagers

    Last Updated June 2018

    An average person walks approximately 115,000 miles in a lifetime, so it's no wonder our feet need a little TLC once in awhile. Unless you have a willing and able masseur on call 24 hours a day, a good foot massager might be what you need.

    You can find a huge variety of foot massagers on the market, so how do you pick the right one? Do you need a foot spa or a manual massager? Shiatsu or vibration? Kneading or infrared? The choices seem endless.

    Well, if you're confused, you're in the right place. When you're reading to buy a foot massager, the product matrix at the top of the page features our five favorites. But, first, read on for our full guide to foot massagers.

    Roughly 75% of Americans suffer from foot problems at least once in their life. A foot massager might help prevent issues – or at least relieve symptoms.

    Benefits of a foot massager

    If you're still on the fence about your potential purchase, let's examine some of the benefits of a foot massager:

    • Pain relief

    Foot massagers can help relieve foot pain. They're ideal for people who work on their feet, athletes, or anyone who suffers from aches and pains in their feet. A foot massager can also help lessen the discomfort associated with a range of foot-specific conditions, such as bunions, plantar fasciitis, and heel spurs.

    • Blood flow

    Massage promotes blood flow, so a foot massager can improve circulation in your lower extremities.

    • Relaxation

    Many people find using a foot massager extremely relaxing.

    • Health

    Having your feet massaged makes them generally healthier and can help prevent future issues. What’s more, foot massagers can beat fluid retention in the feet, ankles, and lower legs, which can be an issue if you sit or stand for the majority of the day.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    The best foot massagers tend to use a combination of massaging methods for a more well-rounded experience.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Some people who suffer from arthritis find that foot massagers help relieve discomfort and inflammation.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Some foot massagers have toe-touch or remote controls so you don't have to bend to adjust its speed or settings.

    Types of foot massagers

    You can find three main types of foot massagers on the market: manual foot massagers, electric foot massagers, and foot spas. Below, we look at the pros and cons of each type.

    Electric foot massagers

    Electric foot massagers plug into a power outlet and have parts that knead, heat, compress, vibrate, or a combination of these things (plus further options) to give your feet a thorough massage.

    • Pros: High-quality and effective massage, relaxing, a good range of settings and massage types available.

    • Cons: Can be bulky, high-end models are expensive.

    • Price: Between $50 and $300, depending on the brand, quality, and range of features offered.

    Manual foot massagers

    Manual foot massagers are generally made from wood or plastic. They don't massage you on their own, but they do have moving parts you can rub your feet against to massage them.

    • Pros: Inexpensive, no electricity needed so can be used anywhere.

    • Cons: Not as effective or relaxing as other foot massager types.

    • Price: $5 to $25.

    While manual foot massagers are an interesting budget choice, this review will mostly focus on electric foot massagers and foot spas, as they're much more common and have a wider range of features to consider.

    Foot spas

    Foot spas are water-based foot massagers, like little tubs for your feet. They massage your feet using water jets and bubbles.

    • Pros: Gentle and relaxing, reasonably priced, water good for muscle pain.

    • Cons: May not give as deep of a deep massage as dry-foot massagers, can be inconvenient/messy to fill with water every time.

    • Price: Roughly $30 to $100.

    If you prefer a gentle massage over a more intense one, we recommend a foot spa.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Massaging methods

    Foot massagers can utilize one or more different massaging methods. These are some of the most common:

    • Shiatsu

    A traditional Japanese massaging method, shiatsu usually involves massaging pressure points with the fingers, but in a shiatsu foot massager, the technique is replicated using rotating heads or vibrators.

    • Heat

    This shouldn't be the sole method of a foot massager, but heat can be used in addition to other techniques to help relax muscles and generally improve the experience.

    • Kneading

    Foot massagers often have moving heads to help knead the feet.

    • Compression

    Direct application of pressure helps relax and revitalize muscles and improve circulation, which is why some foot massagers have a compression setting.

    • Vibration

    Like heat, this isn't usually the only method used by a foot massager. However, vibration can add an extra dimension to the experience.

    • Hydrotherapy

    This is what's used in foot spas; it usually involves a combination of bubbles, water jets, vibrations, and heat to relax muscles, ease pain, and increase circulation.

    • Infrared

    Some foot massagers use infrared lights on top of other methods. The infrared exposure is said to increase blood flow and relax muscles.

    EXPERT TIP

    Never underestimate the value of self care. A foot massager could be just the thing to help you take a little "me time."


    Staff  | BestReviews
    EXPERT TIP

    Some electric foot massagers have a plate to rest your feet on, so only the soles are massaged. Others envelop your entire foot to massage the sides and tops, too.


    Staff  | BestReviews
    EXPERT TIP

    If you suffer from hard skin or calluses on your feet, some foot massagers come with a built-in scraper function that can help tackle these issues.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Considerations for selecting a foot massager

    Adjustability

    If it’s important to you, look for a foot spa that easily allows you to adjust pressure, speed, and settings.

    Some foot spas don't allow for these adjustments, and some people are fine with that – but others find it an annoyance.

    As such, we recommend that you carefully consider this factor and choose accordingly.

    Sole vs. 360-degree massage

    Foot spas and some electric foot massagers offer 360-degree massage for your whole foot. But other electric foot massagers simply massage the soles of your feet. Think about where you have foot pain or other issues and whether or not you need a 360-degree foot massage.

    Cushioned surface

    Some electric foot massagers have a specially cushioned surface that contours to your feet, increases comfort, and improves the sensation of the massage. These cushioned surfaces are usually made from malleable plastic or gel-injected foam.

    Size and weight

    Consider the size and weight of your chosen foot massager. Some models can be fairly heavy and bulky.

    Look at the product specifications to make sure the model you're considering is small enough to easily store and not so heavy that you'd have trouble dragging it out every time you wanted a foot massage.

    FOR YOUR SAFETY

    If you suffer from any underlying health issue that you believe could potentially be negatively affected by a foot massager, always check with a healthcare professional before use.

    Tips

    • When you get your foot massager home, keep it out in the open, or store it somewhere easy to access. The visual cue will remind you to use it more often.

    • A daily foot massage can help reduce stress and anxiety levels. It’s not just about your feet!

    • Some foot massagers have an automatic shut-off feature. This is useful if you think you might get so relaxed during your massage that you fall asleep.

    • Finding a comfortable sitting spot and playing relaxing sounds or music can really help you unwind while using your foot massager.

    Many runners use foot massagers, reporting they can decrease pain after a run, loosen and relax tight muscles, and improve range of motion.

    FAQ

    Q. Is there anyone who shouldn't use a foot massager?

    A. Foot massagers are generally very safe, but they may not be suitable for some people. A handful of experts believe that some types of foot massage can induce labor, so check with your doctor before using a foot massager if you're pregnant. Some diabetics should also avoid foot massagers, because people who suffer from neuropathy (a potential complication of diabetes) may not be able to feel if a massager is too hot or powerful. Check with your doctor before using a foot massager if you're diabetic.

    Q. Are foot massagers easy to clean?

    A. The majority of foot massagers are very easy to clean. Just give them a quick wipedown with a damp cloth or a mild cleaning solution. Importantly, you should always make sure your foot massager is not plugged into a power outlet during cleaning. Furthermore, you should avoid getting the foot massager more than slightly damp, as getting the device wet could damage the motor inside.

    Some 360-degree foot massagers have removable covers that make them easier to clean, since they can be hard to see inside.

    Q. Will a foot massager help with dry skin on my feet?

    A. A foot spa is the best kind of foot massager if you're trying to remedy dry skin, since the water will hydrate your feet. However, we also recommend putting a regular moisturizing regimen in place.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bob
      Bob
      Writer
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Lauren
      Lauren
      Writer
    • Melissa
      Melissa
      Senior Editor