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Injury and some health conditions can cause neck pain. Neck massagers may help relax the muscles and soothe pain. Some massagers also use heat to aid relaxation.

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Please note, the writer has not tested these products. All information is research-based.

Neck massagers may help relieve tension and pain in the neck. Massagers work by applying pressure to certain points of the body to relax muscles and ease pain.

Learn more about massage here.

Some massagers may also use heat to soothe and relax muscles. If a person purchases a massager that uses heat, they should ensure they follow the manufacturer’s instructions to reduce the risk of injury.

Learn more about hot massagers here.

There is some evidence that massage therapy can help with neck and shoulder pain.

A 2013 review found that massaging the neck and shoulders was more effective than waiting or false therapy, such as a fake myofascial release. However, massage therapy was not more effective than other active therapies, such as physical therapy, exercise, and acupuncture.

Massages may also help with other conditions. For instance, authors of a 2015 study suggest that myofascial trigger point-focused head and neck massage may reduce pain in recurrent tension headaches.

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) states that long-term massage therapy of at least 5 weeks may reduce pain in people with fibromyalgia. People with fibromyalgia may also notice a reduction in pain, anxiety, and depression.

Additionally, the NCCIH notes that massage therapy may reduce stress, anxiety, and depression and improve quality of life in individuals with cancer, HIV, or AIDS.

A person may wish to consider the following when purchasing a neck massager:

  • Comfort: It is advisable to choose a massager that is the size and weight that a person finds comfortable.
  • Power supply: If a person intends to use their massager while traveling, it is important to choose a product with a rechargeable battery, or a massager with a power source that is compatible with the person’s mode of transport.
  • Functionality: Some models are only suitable for use on the neck, whereas others are suitable for other parts of the body.
  • Cost: People should buy a massager that fits their budget. It is also important to consider the features of a massager before purchasing.

Below is a list of neck massagers available to buy online.

SMTALY Cordless Intelligent Neck Massager

Best for a quiet massage

This neck massager requires a compatible mobile app through which a person can control the device.

The massager uses electrical impulses to perform a variety of massages and can warm up to 107°F. People can choose from three heating options and six massage modes.

This product turns itself off automatically after 15 minutes and features a rechargeable battery. It weighs 4.2 ounces.

At the time of publishing, the SMTALY Cordless Intelligent Neck Massager has a list price of around $40.

Brookstone Neck MassageDr™

Best for a universal fit

This compact neck massager is available in three colors.

The massager uses heat and electrical impulses to reach up to around 2 inches below the skin to reduce cervical pain.

People can choose from 15 force levels and three massage modes, including acupuncture. The company recommends using this product for 15 minutes daily.

At the time of publishing, the Brookstone Neck MassageDr™ has a list price of $199.95.

Zyllion Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager for Chair

Best for home and office use

This massager has an auto-adjustable neck massager that is suitable for people of most heights and fits on most seating surfaces. People need to plug the massager in to use it.

Individuals can use the remote to choose from three vibrating levels. The massager also features a 15-minute automatic shut-off timer to protect the product from overheating.

Zyllion offers a 1-year warranty on this product. Also, the massager weighs 10 pounds (lb).

At the time of publishing, the Zyllion Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager for Chair has a list price of around $150.

Naipo Shoulder & Neck Massager

Best for gentle heat

The Naipo neck massager uses 3D rotation kneading nodes that are suitable for use anywhere on the body. People will have to plug this product in to use it. The massager includes a power and a car adapter.

A person can choose from three levels of massage. The massager also uses consistent, gentle heat to soothe muscle aches and pains.

The Naipo Shoulder & Neck Massager automatically switches off after 20 minutes.

Naipo offers a 30-day return policy and a 2-year warranty.

At the time of publishing, the Naipo Shoulder & Neck Massager has a list price of $79.99.

Voyor Dual Trigger Point Shoulder Massager

Best for trigger points

This massager is suitable for use on the neck, shoulders, and legs.

Voyor states that this massager mimics the feel of a masseuse and can help relieve pain.

This product is lightweight, weighing 310 grams. A person can control this device by squeezing or opening the handles to fit it around the parts of the body.

At the time of publishing, the Voyor Dual Trigger Point Shoulder Massager has a list price of around $20.

Comfier Shiatsu Back & Neck Massager

Best for a full body massage

This massager provides a deep tissue shiatsu massage suitable for use all over the body. People can adjust the massage nodes to fit their body.

The massager needs plugging in and features a mild heat.

Comfier states that this massager fits most dining, office, and couch chairs. It weighs 22.1 lb.

At the time of publishing, the Comfier Shiatsu Back & Neck Massager has a list price of around $200.

Body Back Massage Roller Ball

Best for a manual massage

This manual massager rolls across the skin to promote blood flow and ease pain.

The company claims that this product can relieve pain in as little as 15 seconds. The ball contains premium quality resin and a durable plastic body.

At the time of publishing, the Body Back Massage Roller Ball has a list price of $17.90. Each purchase contains two balls.

Mirakel Shiatsu Back Neck Massager

Best for adjustable pressure

This massager provides a deep tissue shiatsu massage. A person can adjust the pressure by wrapping their hands through the loops to provide a deeper massage.

People can choose from three levels of pressure. This product uses an AC/DC power supply and comes with a car adapter.

The massager weighs 10.62 lb and features gentle heat that automatically shuts off after 15 minutes.

At the time of publishing, the Mirakel Shiatsu Back Neck Massager has a list price of around $50.

Below, we answer some frequently asked questions about neck massagers.

Are neck massagers effective?

There is currently no research on whether neck massagers are effective.

However, there is evidence that massage therapy from a masseuse can help with a range of conditions. The NCCIH states that there is some evidence massage therapy can reduce symptoms of pain, anxiety, depression, and stress and improve a person’s quality of life.

Additionally, the frequency and length of a massage session may influence its effectiveness. A 2014 study found that a 60-minute therapeutic massage the study participants received two or three times per week was more effective at reducing chronic neck pain than shorter or fewer sessions.

Can neck massagers cause injury?

According to the NCCIH, the risk of massage injury from a masseuse is very low. The NCCIH states that there have been rare reports of blood clots, nerve injuries, and bone fractures.

People should follow the manufacturer’s instructions to reduce the risk of injury. If a person experiences any pain, they should stop using the massager immediately.

Does the price of a neck massager matter?

Prices of neck massagers vary, but the highest price does not necessarily mean that the product is the best.

A person should consider their needs and the features a massager offers before making a purchase.

Some alternatives to neck massagers include:

  • Masseuse: A person may wish to book a session with a masseuse for a deep tissue or sports massage. Not all states regulate masseuses. However, in states that do, masseuses must receive a license or other certification.
  • Acupuncture: Research suggests that acupuncture may also be useful in relieving neck pain. The authors of the review report that acupuncture was more effective than sham acupuncture after the treatment finished and after a short-term follow-up. However, this systematic review notes that there is only moderate-quality evidence that acupuncture is more effective than waiting lists for relieving pain.
  • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS): This treatment uses low voltage electrical currents to relieve pain. Research suggests TENS may be effective for those with mild neck pain.

A person should consult a doctor if:

  • neck stiffness or pain does not go away by itself
  • over-the-counter pain relievers do not reduce the pain
  • neck pain occurs alongside other symptoms, such as pins and needles or a cold arm

Massagers can reduce neck pain through manipulating the skin tissue and using heat to soothe and relax muscles.

There are many massagers available to purchase online. People should carefully read the product description to ensure they are buying the correct product for their needs.