There is no substitute for a fantastic professional person to person massage, however, if you suffer from chronic neck and back pain, you could do worse than buy a Homedics Shiatsu Pillow for the price of a massage (you can find the Deluxe version here) – currently ranges from £34 – £40.

Due to having previously broken my shoulder in three places and my spine in two places, it often doesn’t take much for my body to go out of alignment. You begin to notice that every way you sit, move, carry things etc all have a specific effect on each of your bones and muscles, that you would most likely go your whole life taking for granted. Therefore, being able to get massages once or twice a month is important, but can be expensive (you’re looking at around £40 in the UK per session), so having the ability to work out some of the pain, tension, tightness and knots anytime and from the home is a massive benefit – as much as I welcome the OH’s massages, I can’t expect him to do them everyday for the res of our lives!

I’m only 5’2″ so many of the full chair massage options don’t fit my frame very well. What I appreciate about this pillow is the ability for me to move it around to different locations as needed. It can be used for my lower back in a char or seated position – on the couch, at work if wanted/needed; my upper back and neck lying on the couch or in bed. The pillow offers two different directions for movement and the option of heat – which really helps the muscles and tension to release.

I was apprehensive at first, because I’m a bit frugal and once the package was opened I wasn’t allowed to return the product unless it was faulty. I was jet-lagged and impulsive and just went for it and I’m glad I did. I made a point of reading reviews when I got back home, before opening the package and found them to be quite varied, but nothing that was a deal breaker – and to that point, I found a few of the issues other people have had, I’ve still not experienced.

Overall, if you suffer from neck and back pain of any kind, I would highly recommend this device. Not to permanently replace real massages, but definitely a helpful and budget friendly alternative or in between solution.