Zyllion Shiatsu Pillow Massager | $42 | Use Promo Code INVENTZMA15
In a birthday card last month, my eldest brother joked that the aches and pains don’t start until you turn 40. Man, I wish.
It felt like the switch for serious back pain flipped on the day I turned 30. More likely, it’s because I was frequently hoisting my infant son at the time, but the nexus of those life events hit me in a bad way. Occasional cramps and tweaks built up until one day I woke up, sat up on the bed, leaned down to grab my shirt on the floor, and felt a pop in my lower back. I’d thrown my back out and was hobbled for a solid week ... and it wouldn’t be the last time. Over the last few years, I’ve had severe bouts of this every few months or so, when either the pressure in my back builds to a breaking point or excessive strain yields quick and obvious results, like the morning after flying back home from a walking-heavy trip to Tokyo (worth it).
Like many adults, I’m terrible at taking care of myself. It just rarely seems like a priority amidst everything else going on in life, and while I’m getting better at it in some respects, that’s mainly from having learned some hard and stupid lessons over and over again. Thank goodness for my wonderful wife for showing me the care and foresight that I rarely apply to myself. A couple years back, she gave me this Zyllion Shiatsu Pillow Massager for Christmas, and like a proper oaf, I didn’t bother to set it up immediately. But ever since I got it plugged in and permanently in place next to my desk, it has been a life-changer.
The Zyllion Shiatsu Pillow Massager sits behind your back or neck in a chair—and can be affixed with velcro straps (particularly useful for the neck)—with four sturdy, circular knobs that sit behind a mesh fabric window. Power the massager on and each set of two knobs begins rotating and kneading themselves into your muscles. On top of that, the massaging knobs heat up during use and alternate between clockwise and counterclockwise rotations. In short: oh god, it’s nice. I work from home and spend much of my day at my desk, so when my back is sore or feels tight, I’ll pop this slim, cushioned massager behind my back and savor the soothing sensation. You don’t need to push very hard against it to feel the results, but sometimes in a really sore spot, it’s worth leaning into the massager. It hurts so good.
Zyllion’s massager runs for 20 minutes before automatically shutting off, but I’ll usually just press the button again and keep going for a longer stretch. And if you don’t like or need the heat or just need to cool off, another quick press of the on/off button shuts off the red glow and the radiating warmth. In addition to the wall charger, Zyllion also helpfully includes a car charger, although I’ve never personally used it there (no commute). And while billed as a back and neck massager, you can use it all over your body if you can find the right position and backing support to drive the pulsating balls into your muscles.
I never thought I’d be enthusiastic about a back massager, but reading the glowing Amazon customer appraisals—with 4.5 stars across more than 15,000 reviews—I’m reminded of just how much benefit I’ve felt from this little thing over the last couple of years. A particular shout out to the reviewer who called it their “little glowing friend” and concluded, after four years of faithful service, “They should be distributed to everyone over 30. I think if used by enough people, they could end wars, mend marriages, and save humanity from itself.”
Hyperbole, sure, but it’s hard to believe that something this useful and durable sells for $50 or less. In fact, you can snag it right now for $42 at Amazon when you use the promo code INVENTZMA15.
I use mine almost every day, and between this and the Spoonk acupressure mat I also use a few nights a week, my back pain episodes are less common and less severe, and tend to diminish much more quickly than before. Hell, I’m using it right now as I write this review. And that’s an endorsement even more glowing than the warm, red massage balls within this thing.
Disclaimer: The massager shown is a new review sample sent by Zyllion for photos and so I could verify that it’s exactly the same as my already-owned unit. Mine still runs like new but has everyday wear and dirt from years of steady use.