I’m in a perpetual search of the best foot massage. I’ve tried physical therapy myself, and I talked with various chiropractors about the devices they recommend and the techniques they use.
I’ve visited a few stores and showrooms to try and test different massagers.
I’ve bought a few of them myself and had my team test them during organized focus groups.
I’ve read countless reviews and spent a lot of time on forums.
At least until I get a hand on newer and better, I will have to rethink everything.
But, until then, I have for you the best models to date.
They aim to relieve pain and relax you, but they’re all suited for different purposes.
I’ll list all my reviews below, answer your most ardent questions in the FAQ section, plus add a short buying guide with the factors you need to take into account before buying.
What's the real story?
Best Foot Massager Reviews in 2023 (For Pain Relief & Relaxation)
If I have to choose one model that will make a difference, it would be MedMassager 11 Speed!
But all the models below have their positives. While MedMassager is the most versatile of the batch, some of them below are best for deep-kneading, others for Shiatsu, and others are amazing when it comes to plantar fasciitis pain.
Below are reviews of some of the TOP models of the best electric foot massagers:
#1 MedMassager MMF06 11 Speed Foot Massager!
MedMassager is a therapeutic, medically approved foot massager and one of the best.
Endorsed by plenty of physical therapists and MDs, MedMassager is recommended to help with diabetes or neuropathy pain.
That’s because it improves blood circulation (a great type of massagers for circulation improvement) and unwinds muscle soreness, therefore alleviating any pressure in the area and allowing you to regain your mobility.
I appreciate functional, versatile, and reliable devices, and MedMassager is known as today’s most powerful massager.
With 11 speeds, the motor rotates quickly, between 1000 to 37000 rpm.
This powerful motor makes the MMF06 highly efficient, allowing you to enjoy a satisfying massage for your achy feet.
Besides, this is a sturdy, resistant unit. It’s not just me saying it – it’s the 12-month replacement warranty against all failures and defects.
The MMF06 has an ergonomic design, it’s easy to use, and it’s safe.
The user-friendly pad slants are inclined at a comfortable angle, so you can relax while having this foot massage.
The package includes a kit so you can use the massager on various floor types, like tile or hardwood without slipping.
As I want the products I use and recommend others to be extremely safe, I’m glad that the MMF06 respects all the ISO 9000-2001 standards and it’s FDA-certified for therapeutic use.
With so many things I said about MMF06, you would say it’s a perfect massager.
But I do have a couple of complaints. First – the price. But, I understand you have to pay for quality.
Secondly, it’s a bit noisy, but that doesn’t affect its functionality.
Third – and this is a big one – the MMF06 has a footpad design, with a pressure point targeting surface and a bar to massage your arch.
So it’s not an enveloping design that would massage your forefoot as well.
Summary: The MMF06 is a powerful, versatile therapeutic massager.
#2 Cloud Massage Foot and Calf Shiatsu Massager - Best for Calf Massages
The Cloud Massage is my second choice. It is designed to provide superior shiatsu massage. The first thing you notice when you look at it is its partly enveloping design.
While this leaves the forefoot out in the open, it can massage the sides of your feet, which means you’ll get an almost complete massage. It is great for people with large feet.
You can also place this massager upright and massage the back and sides of your calves.
This brings me to my point: this is the best calf massager I could find.
Its kneading technique provides quick relief because it gets rid of painful knots.
The massage is of high quality, using heat therapy, air pressure, and vibrations.
These techniques help improve blood circulation, reduce swelling and unwind muscle soreness.
While this makes it a reliable therapeutic chair, the MMF06 features a more powerful massage, which is what ranks it first.
As it is, the Cloud Massager wins an honorable second place.
But it’s a worthwhile product, with a 100% no-hassle warranty. The easy-adjustable bar is a plus.
The inclined design is impressive – you won’t be forced to sit up straight and stiff in a chair.
You can lean back, with your legs at a natural angle, so you can relax while being massaged.
The only two things I dislike about this massager are the open-toe design and the price.
But if you think about it, the open toe design has its perks: you can use this massager even if you have big feet.
Still, the 5x11 inches area is wide, and I like that I could adjust the massage intensity levels.
I started with the lowest intensity level first so I can ease into a more vigorous massage.
Summary: The Cloud Massage Shiatsu foot massaging machine is costly but versatile and effective against calf pain.
#3 Belmint Shiatsu Machine Deep-Kneading Foot Massager With Heat
The Belmint massager is advertised as deep kneading – and boy, does it knead deep!
If you have heel pain, heel spurs you’ll love how easy it is to disperse chronic pain or nerve pain.
This Belmint will become your therapist, at an affordable price.
Its control panel located at the top, and you have to adjust it manually as it doesn’t include a remote control.
The heat function is therapeutic, warming up your feet so that the muscles can unwind faster.
Your blood circulation is well improved, which minimizes swelling and reduces pain.
I also liked the ergonomic design, even though it’s an open design. But the unique curvature is good for people with flat feet.
However, I’m not sure if you can use this for your calves.
The massage area is split into six segments, three per foot, with three nodes each.
These nodes revolve in opposite directions, to massage your acupuncture points.
Besides, the massage nodes respect the Shiatsu technique principles, which means you’ll benefit from a very relaxing massage.
As such, this massager works well for relaxation and mild pain, but it won’t provide vigorous massages.
This Belmint unit is easy to use, with just one single button for one-touch operation.
You can press this button with your foot instead of leaning down to turn the Belmint on or off.
There’s a disadvantage here, though: you’re not getting intensity or speed adjustments.
Summary: The Belmint Shiatsu feet massager offers a deep massage for plantar fasciitis, though it doesn’t allow speed or intensity level adjustments.
This deep-kneading Triple Action Shiatsu Foot Massager is advertised as perfect for tired arches and soles.
I couldn’t feel its healing effects too much because the 18 rotating heads feel more like tingling.
To achieve a deep tissue massage, you need to press down on the massager with your feet.
Most of the time, this means standing up. But if you’re on the heavier side, your weight might cause the motor to stop working,
When you turn the heat on, the massage becomes better.
Heat relaxed my tired feet almost instantly, and it felt soothing to my achy feet.
Besides, heat therapy stimulates circulation, so it can work well to reduce swelling. If you’re worried about overheating, don’t.
The Homedics unit has a breathable fabric that protects your feet.
The ergonomic, user-friendly design is another thing I appreciate about Homedics.
Its large platform can accommodate any shoe size, but, unfortunately, you can’t use this unit for calf massage.
Otherwise, the massager is easy to use because you can press the controls with your toe.
Still, there aren’t too many options or adjustments to choose.
You can simply turn the heat on or off and turn the foot massage machine on or off.
Summary: The Homedics unit offers a relaxing massage experience, but it’s not a therapeutic massager.
#5 TheraFlow Dual Roller - Top Budget Manual Massager
This best manual massager is a reliable budget option.
You can touch all your acupressure points easily with this manual massager, which in turn improves the circulation of blood and releases painful knots.
At such an affordable price, you also benefit from a lifetime guarantee.
That’s because the TheraFLow massager is manufactured from polished Theaceae wood, which is a durable material. But when I took it out of the box, it smelt pretty strong.
This manual massager offers good relief and is versatile enough to use on your whole body.
However, it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of an electric foot massager, like heat or vibration.
My conclusion is that the TheraFlow massager is an inexpensive massager that’s perfect for runners, but not for people with ticklish feet. Also, there are manual balls types (spiky balls and rollers)!
Summary: The TheraFlow Dual is the best top manual massager thanks to its ability to touch acupuncture points and improve blood circulation.
#6 Miko Shiatsu With Deep-Kneading
Best Shiatsu Foot Massager
The Miko Shiatsu Foot Massager is genuinely the best shiatsu foot massager because the nodes are strong and offer a powerful massage.
It alleviates arch pain, removes bunions, and relieves muscle soreness. It can even ease plantar fasciitis pain, especially if you combine Shiatsu with the air massage.
The Miko has various other functions, including kneading, rolling, vibrating, and heat therapy. It can target very accurate pressure points, and it feels very lifelike.
I liked the pressure adjustments because I could select the intensity.
This massager can stabilize your foot and heels if you have the right foot size.
As it is, it doesn’t target the heels of people with large feet, though it provides a terrific arch massage for everyone.
Other features I liked about this massager are its intuitive center control panel with soft-touch buttons, its portability, and compact size.
It even has a heating feature to relax you and help unwind sore muscles, but the temperature isn’t as hot as I would’ve liked.
Summary: The Miko comes with deep Shiatsu nodes that offer a therapeutic massage experience, especially when you add air pressure and soothing heat to the mix.
#7 Nekteck Massager With Heat
Nekteck massager is a reliable choice if you’re on a budget.
Though it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of a more expensive massager, it’s functional and quality.
This massager features six heads and 18 massage nodes, meaning it will touch all your pressure points.
In turn, this releases tension and helps sore feet relax. The heat therapy it features can further unwind achy muscles and improve blood circulation.
My biggest complaint is its open design – no surprise there – because it can only target your soles.
However, it’s an excellent arch and sole massager for runners or people who have been standing all day long.
But if you want to relieve chronic foot pain, you need a massager that targets your Achilles’ tendon and your metatarsal bones.
Another feature I liked about this Nekteck is its easy customization, with three adjustable heights.
The massager is easy to use, and it’s portable. However, it’s better suited for people with flat feet, not with very high arches.
Another frequent complaint is that its Shiatsu is very vigorous, so hobbyist users are warned!
It would have been better if you could adjust the massage intensity, but remember its affordable price.
Summary: The Nekteck is a powerful massager, although its massages can be too rough for hobbyist users.
#8 TruMedic InstaShiatsu With Air Compression & Heat
This unit offers a deep massage, so it’s excellent for bunions and PF.
It was amazing how quickly my pain went away, even after a long day hiking.
But I could also adjust the massage intensity so that I could get a milder massage for relaxation.
Either way, the rolling foot pressure is especially effective when it’s combined with the air pressure.
I appreciate the three massage modes and three intensity levels.
Still, some users complain that even the lowest intensity is a bit too much for them. No pain no gain, right?
Another frequent complaint comes from people with size 13+, whose feet feel crammed inside this massager.
The TruMedic comes with a 90-day full money-back guarantee.
This unit uses the Shiatsu principles of applying pressure, and the soothing heat can relax you and unwind sore muscles, not to mention it’s effective against bunions.
I took it to my office; I used it while enjoying my favorite show and got immediate tension relief. However, you need a wall socket nearby.
Another user-friendly addition, the calves air compression sleeves are easy to use and release tension.
On the downside, you can’t get a Shiatsu massage on your calves, which would have been better to alleviate pain and improve blood circulation.
Summary: InstaShiatsu from TruMedic isn’t extremely affordable, but it’s effective against plantar fasciitis and bunions.
#9 Beurer Shiatsu Massager
This foot massager is useful for soothing tired feet. There are 18 nodes distributed onto six massage heads to mimic a Shiatsu technique.
This massage touches all your pressure points to release tension, not to mention it’s relatively deep.
Besides, reflexology uses powerful kneading, which has important therapeutic benefits, especially for reducing arch pain.
However, some customers say they haven’t seen any improvements for chronic pain, although this unit helped them relax.
You can adjust the speed on two levels, but some customers still complain about the massage which feels too vigorous.
The best news is that you can make these adjustments with just your foot, without bending down.
You can also adjust the height with twisting pegs, which customize your massage experience.
The heat function is another plus because it’s relaxing. In theory, therapeutic heat improves blood circulation and unwinds sore muscles, which is perfect for achy feet after hiking, running, or standing all day long.
However, Beurer’s temperature is just lukewarm, so it’s more on the relaxing side rather than highly therapeutic.
Summary: The Beurer is a functional foot massager with powerful Shiatsu nodes, but it’s not ideal against chronic pain.
#10 Brookstone Foot Massager F4 Shiatsu
Although this foot massager features some positive reviews and has over four stars on Amazon, there are lots of complaints regarding it.
The massage is too vigorous for most people.
If you read my other articles, you know I appreciate robust massages that touch all my pressure points and release painful knots.
But the F4 can hurt your feet if you’re not used to deep tissue massages, causing bruises.
Otherwise, the company advertises this as soothing and refreshing to achy feet.
The Shiatsu nods offer a deep kneading massage for muscle tightness, but I wore three pairs of wool socks to make sure it wouldn’t hurt me.
The F4 features three massage programs called Soothe, Pulse, and Energize so you can choose your own massage experience.
The compression massage with airbags is there to eliminate muscle tension, and I liked this feature.
The heat works well too, it’s relaxing, and it helped with my swollen fit.
In terms of design, this unit is compact, easy to move and so you can use it anywhere. However, it doesn’t fit people with big feet.
Summary: The Brookstone Shiatsu F4 has plenty of functions, but its massages are borderline painful.
#11 Slabway Slabway Shiatsu
I owned this model. It helps me to keep my feet and ankles taut and my calves toned and smooth. It's like a very thin, but firm, surface to go across my calves for some much-needed relief. But really, I get a lot of use out of it. I also use the icy hot patches to help aching muscles, and they too work wonders.
After lots of trials and errors, the Slabway Shiatsu was a success. It works great for its intended purpose: massaging the feet and hands. It's an all-in-one product that makes massage accessible to all…but that doesn't mean it's not nice to have.
I was nervous about using it. One man who claims to be a masseur reviewed the Slabway, claiming that it is a rip-off and not worth the price of £22. He is wrong – and his main concern was that he might hurt me. The hand massager kept getting stuck and he was physically pushing on my legs. Well, the Slabway is supposed to be for massage and nothing else, and apart from that, we got on famously.
The whole thing came to life when I took it into the shower and twisted the top back and forth on my left hand. It's particularly great at relaxing my sore feet. However, it's more about feeling my hands on it than having them working, and I also found the base uncomfortable – although not painful.
The massage head and hand massager are absolutely brilliant. I was shocked by how powerful the massage head is, and how good it felt on my hands. But my only complaint is the slight gap between the base and the massaging head. When it gets wet, it can get a bit wobbly, but it's not a big deal.
Slabway Massager is a good investment. All you have to do is grab it and you're set.
If you’ve read the reviews above, you saw that I included various types:
The Manual is sturdy and reliable. They’re safe, and they can’t short-circuit.
If they’re made from a durable material like quality wood (wooden foot massagers) or plastic, they can’t break.
That’s why most quality manual models come with a lifetime guarantee.
The bonus is that you can massage your whole body with them. It’s easy to adjust the intensity settings by just pressing harder.
The disadvantage here is that you need to be flexible and have a decent amount of strength.
You can’t unwind and let the foot massager do its job. That’s why manual models are better for people with active lifestyles who are on a budget.
Otherwise, the manual models lack therapeutic features like heat, vibrations, or Shiatsu nodes.
Electric foot massager bring all the advantages that manual massagers lack, from soothing heat to vibrations and the opportunity for you to enjoy a relaxing massage.
You can place them under your desk while working or enjoy a TV show.
The downside is that electric foot massagers don’t have a lifetime guarantee.
There are different types of electric models too.
Features to Look For in a Foot Massager
Here are the factors I take into account each time I try or review a foot massager:
FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
Can Foot Massagers Damage Feet?
There are different types of foot massagers available in the market. Some may be suitable for specific types of feet, while others may be best suited for other types of feet. However, most of them have the basic design of a circular plastic, rubber-like pad with a massager's head and a power cord. Flexi Pads. These are mainly for giving and receiving pressure. You can buy foam or foam-tipped pads. These may be good for repetitive use and provide a firm massage to your feet.
However, these pads may tear the skin if not used carefully. They are best for rough and hard terrain. This foam or sponge-tipped pad has a rubber belt around it. It is convenient for use, as it does not tear the skin. However, they are not very comfortable for use with your feet. They provide a firm massage to your feet. They are good for rough and hard terrain.
About Renpho Foot Massager Machine
Like the Rego, this model is suitable for both short and long time use. It comes with a USB charging outlet, which allows you to charge your smartphone. The massager is among the most expensive massagers on this list, yet it’s well worth it. Not only does it easily heat up and massage your feet while you’re on the go, but it also features a phone and USB charging outlet. It comes with a power cord and a USB charger, which you can either plug into the wall or charge in case your car’s USB port isn’t equipped with the right outlet. If you’re looking for the best foot massager, It is a great option for you. This model is easily controlled, and users will not have any trouble using this device. The massager comes with eight electrodes that run from the bottom of your feet, under your big toe, to your heel.
You can even control the speed of the massager with a button, so that you can use it at a comfortable level, according to other customer reviews. It is another modern model that is great in giving relief to sore feet. There are a number of electronic foot massagers available in the market. But this model is one of the best massager machines available in the market. This electronic unit is not only economical but is also a good solution for the numerous problems related to the feet. It is a hybrid of massage and the treatment of the muscles and problems related to the feet. It is not only very effective but is also very economical. This massager can help in relieving almost all the problems related to the feet including inflammation, shock, allergy, heel pain, and bunion.
Are Foot Massagers Bad for You?
Osteoarthritis causes a lot of discomforts and can even affect the quality of life for people suffering from the condition. Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes degeneration in joints. These processes can affect any part of the body from the hands to the knees. The natural treatment for osteoarthritis involves reducing joint pain and swelling. A foot massager can help to relieve the pain and stiffness. The massager uses a gentle and mild electric stimulation to relax and improve the movement of your feet. The sensation of the electric current feels almost like pins and needles and people report that it actually feels good.
However, there are some people who are skeptical about using them. They believe that these massagers can have negative health effects on the body. They state that the massagers can lead to serious and even life-threatening health problems. A lot of people have even filed lawsuits against some companies that offer them claiming that they have caused serious injuries and even death.
Are Electric Foot Massagers Good?
Two studies from the University of Colorado concluded that electric foot massagers can relieve minor back pain and stiffness, and even help reduce the pain. The University of Colorado studied 47 people, all of whom reported back pain. After 60 minutes, participants used electric foot massagers at varying intensity levels to compare their impact on pain.
Do Foot Massagers Really Work?
Foot massage is also known as foot grooming. It is used for the overall well-being of the body, especially for the feet. In this article, we will be discussing their benefits of them. Let us see how a foot massager can help you. A good massage for heels. The soft skin of your heels, directly above your toes, is a sensitive area. This area often receives direct pressure due to the pressure exerted when you walk, train, work or wear tight shoes. When your feet are cramped up, the pressure is increased on your heels and causes excruciating pain. However, it has been proven to relieve this pain and gives relief from tension, too.
A good massage for hot feet. For people who have suffered from painful conditions like corns, callouses, calliphlebias, and other foot problems, a foot massager is a must. If you have difficulty finding a good masseuse, why not try a foot massager? They reduce inflammation and increase blood circulation. It also works to improve blood circulation to the feet, helping the body to work in harmony. Massaging your feet while at the gym. It is known to improve balance, balance in posture, coordination, and strength.
Do Podiatrists Recommend Foot Massagers?
Podiatrists often have mixed views on the use of foot massagers. While these devices can provide short-term relief for sore and tired feet, their long-term impact and appropriateness depend on various factors. Here's a more detailed exploration of podiatrists' recommendations regarding foot massagers:
- Short-Term Relief: Foot massagers can offer immediate relief for common foot issues, such as muscle tension, soreness, and discomfort. They work by stimulating blood circulation, relaxing muscles, and reducing tension. Many people find these benefits to be highly valuable after a long day of standing or walking.
- Managing Specific Foot Conditions: Podiatrists may recommend foot massagers as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for specific foot conditions. For instance, individuals with plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis may benefit from the targeted massage provided by some foot massagers to alleviate pain and promote healing.
- Diabetic Foot Care: Diabetic patients must exercise caution when using foot massagers. Podiatrists often emphasize the importance of regular foot exams for diabetics, as they are at a higher risk of developing neuropathy (nerve damage) and poor circulation. Unsupervised use of foot massagers can potentially cause injury or discomfort for individuals with diabetes, so it is advisable for them to consult their podiatrist before incorporating these devices into their self-care routines.
- Overuse and Dependency: There is a concern that excessive use of foot massagers may lead to dependency, where individuals rely on the device to alleviate foot discomfort instead of addressing the root causes. Podiatrists emphasize that while foot massagers can be helpful, they should not replace other important practices, such as proper footwear, stretching, and maintaining a healthy weight.
- Individual Variation: People have different foot shapes, sizes, and sensitivities. What works well for one person may not be suitable for another. Podiatrists understand the importance of personalized care and may recommend or discourage the use of foot massagers based on an individual's unique foot health and medical history.
In summary, podiatrists may recommend foot massagers for short-term relief and as complementary treatments for specific foot conditions. However, they typically caution against overuse and encourage a holistic approach to foot health. Patients with underlying medical conditions, such as diabetes, should consult their podiatrist before incorporating foot massagers into their routine to ensure their safe and effective use. Ultimately, the appropriateness of foot massagers depends on an individual's specific foot health needs and should be considered as part of a comprehensive foot care plan.
Where to Buy
The best place to buy a quality foot massager on sale (with a discount compared to directly or in a physical store near you) is Amazon. Limited models an Also available at Walmart, Target and Meijer, Kohl's, and Best Buy.
Some offline stores allow you to test their product and compare different models.
Amazon has an excellent policy regarding shipping and returns, plus you can get some used models too for a significant discount.
I’ve taken you through a series of best foot massagers and discussed the different types, plus the most important features on how to select a quality home foot massager.
Hopefully, I’ve answered all your questions so you can compare, contrast, and make an informed decision. That said, MedMassager MMF06 is my best choice.
It’s versatile, it’s endorsed by medics and physical therapists as a therapeutic device, it can treat chronic diabetes/ neuropathy pain, and it has a powerful motor.
However, the best model for plantar fasciitis is InstaShiatsu from TruMedic thanks to its mix of massage techniques: deep tissue Shiatsu, air, and heat therapy.
The best calf massager award goes to Cloud Massage Foot and Calf Shiatsu Massager!
This massager throws all its weapons at tired, achy, swollen calves, from air massage, heat therapy, vibrations, and Shiatsu.
All these techniques improve blood circulation and unwind sore muscles.
My foot massager reviews did not include any foot spa models!