The 10 Best Heating Pads of 2022

The Pure Enrichment PureRelief Heating Pad eases aches and soreness in minutes

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Verywell Heating Pad Test

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Aches and pains in your muscles and joints can make it debilitating to go about your daily routine. That’s where heat therapy comes in. A heating pad is a medication-free way to address pain and soreness without leaving the comfort of your own home. “Applying heat to a sore muscle will improve blood flow which increases the amount of oxygen and nutrients the muscle has enhancing tissue healing,” says Alyssa Raineri, DPT, a Florida-based physical therapist.

Tested & Approved

Pure Enrichment’s PureRelief XL Heating Pad has four heat settings to deliver warmth to your legs, back, and lower abdomen. We recommend Sunbeam’s Heating Pad Standard Size as a budget-friendly and easy to use option.

It can also vasodilate blood vessels, which increases blood flow and circulation “to reduce stiffness and pain,” according to Karena Wu, PT, DPT, physical therapist and owner of ActiveCare Physical Therapy. 

When selecting a heating pad, it is important to think about what your specific needs are for the product–whether it is hands-free, can be microwaved, or offers targeted pain. To make shopping easier, we tested 17 heating pads and evaluated them based on their setup, design, features, and heating quality. From this test, we chose the best options.

Here are the best heating pads on the market today.

Best Overall: Pure Enrichment PureRelief Heating Pad

4.8
Pure Enrichment Heating Pad

Walmart

Pros
  • Has four heat settings

  • Made from soft fibers

  • Has an auto shut-off to prevent overheating

Cons
  • Neck area doesn’t get as warm

What do buyers say? 88% of 8,500+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.

We chose the Pure Enrichment PureRelief Heating Pad as our best overall pick for a few key reasons. It sets to four heat settings with a press of a button and automatically shuts off after two hours of use to prevent overheating and to conserve energy. Not only does the pad have a strong heating system, but it’s also made from soft fibers, which prevents the pad from burning the skin. Plus, it’s wearable and covers your back, neck, and abdomen, so you can walk around the house in comfort. The magnetic neck closure and the adjustable elastic belt help to keep the heating pad in place.  

It scored a five on all attributes, except for features, where it scored a 4.5. Our tester noted that it didn’t have a self-timer for the various heat settings. The pad’s affordable price point, easy setup, and high heating quality make this pad the best overall.

Price at time of publication: $40

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Neck, back, and shoulders | Number of Heat Settings: 4 | Auto Off Function: Yes | Added Features: Magnetic neck closure, adjustable waist strap

Pure Enrichment PureRelief XL Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

What Our Testers Say

"This heating pad is definitely the best I've tested overall. It's easy to use, has multiple features, and is extremely comfortable and warm." —Kayla Hui, Health Commerce Writer and product tester

Best Budget: Sunbeam Heating Pad

4.2
Sunbeam Heating Pad

Courtesy of Walmart

Pros
  • Easy to use and set up

  • Budget-friendly

  • Has a moist heat option

Cons
  • Not as comfortable as other pads

This option from Sunbeam delivers most of the features of other pads on this list at a fraction of the cost. Using a sliding controller, you can adjust the three heat settings to deliver warmth to your muscles. The pad comes with a washable cover and a 9-foot cord, making for easy use and clean. For deeper relief, you can use the sponge insert to activate the moist heat option.

One caveat that our tester noted is that the cover material is not as comfortable as other pads tested in the lab. However, it’s still made with a soft cloth and sponge. Overall, it’s an easy-to-use pad that functions exactly as advertised.

Price at time of publication: $30

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Legs, shoulders, lower abdomen | Number of Heat Settings: 3 | Auto Off Function: No | Added Features: Moist heat option

Sunbeam Heating Pad for Pain Relief Standard Size

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

What Our Testers Say

"This pad is exactly what you're getting for your money: it gives you a comfortable level of heat and functions exactly as advertised." —Christina Oehler, Health Commerce Editor and product tester

Best Maximum Coverage: Sunbeam Heating Pad for Pain Relief XL

4
Sunbeam Heating Pad for Pain Relief XL

Walmart

Pros
  • Large surface area

  • Easy to use

Cons
  • Lightweight controller

The best pad for maximum coverage provides heat to your pain area and has a larger surface area, and this one from Sunbeam gets the job done. It’s 12-by-24-inches and can be used on multiple parts of your body, such as your legs, back, and lower abdomen. You can change the heat setting to low, medium, or high heat, using a sliding controller. Plus, it comes with a sponge, so you can use the moist heat option.

Once the pad is turned on, it can take a few minutes to start feeling the warmth. Our tester wasn’t a fan of the lightweight controller and noted that it tends to slip off the couch easily, but this was a personal preference. Overall, it’s a large heating pad and is ideal for anyone who needs to cover areas of the body with larger surface area or has arthritis.

Price at time of publication: $23

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Back, neck, lower abdomen, legs | Number of Heat Settings: 3 | Auto Off Function: No | Added Features: Moist heat option

Sunbeam Heating Pad for Pain Relief XL

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Best Massager: Comfier Heating Pad with Massager

4.8
Comfier Heating Pad Wrap Belt

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Has a built-in massager

  • Can be worn like a belt

  • Made from soft, velvet material

Cons
  • Only has two heat settings

If you’re looking to take your heat therapy to a whole different level, look no further than Comfier’s Heating Pad. This pad does double-duty as a heater and massager and provides much-needed relief to sore muscles in your lower back. There are two heat modes, three massage modes, and two intensity levels to choose from, so you can pick the settings that meet your lifestyle needs. It fits like a lifting belt and is made from a soft, velvet cover, so you won’t have to worry about being uncomfortable.

This pad scored a five across all attributes, except for features, where it scored a 4.5.  Our tester noted that there were only two heat settings, which may not be ideal if you’re looking for more warmth. We’d recommend this for people who may not need many heat settings and are looking for a light massage on the back.

Price at time of publication: $43

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Lower back | Number of Heat Settings: 2 | Auto Off Function: No | Added Features: Massager with three modes

Comfier Heating Pad with Massager

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

What Our Testers Say

"The best thing about this belt was that it fit like a weight lifting belt but was padded, making for a comfortable and soothing fit. The massager helps relieve back tension." —Kayla Hui, Health Commerce Writer and product tester

Best Microwave: SuzziPad Microwavable Heating Pads

4.5
SuzziPad Microwavable Heating Pads

Source: SuzziPad

Pros
  • Use hot or cold

  • Folds easily into the microwave

  • Works on multiple areas

Cons
  • Absorbs microwave smell

Made with flaxseed, millets, and clay beads, the SuzziPad heating pad delivers heat to relieve joint pain, cramps, swelling, and tight muscles. The paneled design allows the pad to distribute heat evenly and can be folded easily. All you have to do is pop this pad in the microwave for 60 seconds and place it on your desired pain area. After one minute in the microwave, you can enjoy up to ten minutes of heat in one session.

Our tester noted that the pad may absorb any odors lingering in the microwave, so it’s recommended to clean your microwave before heating your pad.

Price at time of publication: $18

Charge Type: Microwave | Areas Targeted: Back, neck, lower abdomen, legs, ankles | Number of Heat Settings: N/A | Auto Off Function: N/A | Added Features: Can be used hot or cold

SuzziPad Microwavable Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Best Targeted Relief: Sunbeam GoHeat Portable Heated Patches

4.2
Sunbeam GoHeat Portable Patches

Courtesy: Amazon

Pros
  • Patches can be placed almost anywhere on the body

  • Portable

  • Provides heat instantly

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Patches can only be used up to 10 times each

Unlike heating pads, which tend to be larger in size, these Sunbeam patches are small enough to be placed on various parts of the body, including your back, abdomen, arms, legs, and calves. The pads are adhesive, so you don’t have to worry about them falling off, and can be reused up to 10 times for each pad. It features three heat settings: low, medium, and high to deliver warmth directly to your muscles. Make sure the controller is fully charged before each use.

These heated patches scored no less than a four across all attributes, except for features, where they earned a three. This heating solution doesn’t have a timer or auto shut-off, which may not be ideal if you prefer those features. However, the patches heat up quickly and can be placed wherever you need relief, so we recommend this option if you’re looking to target a specific part of your body.

Price at time of publication: $75

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Back, neck, lower abdomen, legs, ankles, arms | Number of Heat Settings: 3 | Auto Off Function: No | Added Features: N/A

Sunbeam GoHeat Portable Heated Patches

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Best for Menstrual Cramps: Yeamon Portable Cordless Heating Pad

4.5
Yeamon Portable Cordless Heating Pad

Source: Yeamon

Pros
  • Heating distributes evenly across the pad

  • Lightweight and compact

  • Heats quickly

Cons
  • External cover may be uncomfortable

Having a period can be painful if you experience cramps, but this heating pad from Yeamon helps alleviate that pain. Using graphene heating, the pad generates high heat quickly to relieve muscle tension, making it the best option for menstrual cramps. Choose from three heat and three vibration settings.

The pad’s interior is made from a soft, velvet-like material, making it comfortable against the skin, and its belt-like design makes this product portable. Our tester wasn’t a big fan of the vibration settings as they said it was too intense, but this was a personal preference. The scale earned a 4.5 for overall value and we recommend it if you’re looking to alleviate cramping.

Price at time of publication: $30

Charge Type: USB charging | Areas Targeted: Lower abdomen, back | Number of Heat Settings: 3 | Auto Off Function: No | Added Features: Massager with three modes

Yeamon Portable Cordless Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

What Our Testers Say

"I liked that the pad's adjustable belt accommodates a variety of sizes, which is really great for finding a fit that is snug and comfortable. I would love to wear this around all day, because its so snug and discreet that you could keep it with you for whenever you might need it." —Christina Oehler, Health Commerce Editor and product tester

Best for Lower Back Pain: Sunbeam Heated Back Wrap

5
SUNBEAM Heating Pad Back Wrap

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Easy setup

  • Contours to your back

  • Moist heat option

Cons
  • Velcro fastener doesn't feel very durable

Made from a soft pad and using four heat settings, the Sunbeam Heated Back Wrap contours to the shape of your back while relieving sore muscles. There's an adjustable waist strap to lock the back wrap in place, and the strap extends up to 85 inches. What’s more, it features an automated timer that automatically shuts off the device after two hours to prevent overheating.

This pad did not disappoint, receiving a five on all attributes: setup, design, features, and heating quality. It gets hot quickly and the heat is concentrated in the upper and lower areas of the back, per our tester. We recommend this heating pad to people who are experiencing regular back pain and need relief in-between doctor and physical therapy sessions.

Price at time of publication: $25

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Lower back | Number of Heat Settings: 4 | Auto Off Function: Yes | Added Features: Moist heat option

Sunbeam Heating Pad Back Wrap

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Best for Knee Pain: Comfier Heated Knee Brace

4.5
Comfier Heated Knee Brace

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Has a built-in massager

  • Made with soft, velvet-like material

  • 30-minute auto off timer

Cons
  • Difficult to put on

Built with two heating levels and five massage modes, the Comfier Brace Wrap is great for relaxing sore leg muscles. It’s made with a soft, velvet-like material and the straps are velcro, making for a comfortable and secure fit. As for safety, the knee brace has a built-in timer that automatically turns off the heat at the 30-minute mark.

While the brace is comfortable, our tester noted that it can be difficult to strap around the leg. Because of this, this choice may not be ideal for people with mobility issues. Overall, it’s a solid choice if you’re looking for heat and vibration therapy.

Price at time of publication: $58

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Knee | Number of Heat Settings: 2 | Auto Off Function: Yes | Added Features: Massager with 5 modes

Comfier Heated Knee Brace

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Best for Feet: Gintao Electric Heated Foot Pad

4.2
Gintao Electric Heated Foot Pad

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Soft, plush cover material

  • Machine washable cover

Cons
  • Takes 8 to 10 minutes to reach full heat

Made from super plush material and with a built-in heater and wide opening, the Gintao heating pad makes for the best feet heating pad. Setup is easy; all you have to do is plug it in and select one of three heat settings (low, medium, or high). Beyond these features, there is an auto shut-off option, so your pad won’t burn you or overheat.

Of all the pads on the list, this one took the longest to heat up. Our tester said that it took between eight and 10 minutes to reach full heat. Thankfully, the plush cover material is super cozy and comfortable, and helps to insulate the warmth. If you experience arthritis or Raynaud's syndrome, we would recommend this pad from Gintao as an option.

Price at time of publication: $30

Charge Type: Plug-in heating pad | Areas Targeted: Feet | Number of Heat Settings: 3 | Auto Off Function: Yes | Added Features: N/A

Gintao Electric Heated Foot Warmer

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

How We Rated

4.8 to 5 stars: These are the best heating pads we tested. We recommend them without reservation.

4.5 to 4.7 stars: These heating pads are excellent—they might have minor flaws, but we still recommend them.

4.0 to 4.5 stars: We think these are great heating pads, but others are better.

3.5 to 3.9 stars: These heating pads are just average.

3.4 and below: We don't recommend heating pads with this rating; you won't find any on our list.

How We Tested

The Verywell Health team spent eight hours at the Verywell Testing Lab testing 17 heating pads to find the best ones. Our testers, comprised of a Verywell Health editor and writer of varying different weights and heights, conducted the tests. The testers compared the pads using the following attributes: setup, design, features, and heating quality.

Verywell Best Heating Pad Testing

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Our testers examined how easy it was to use and set up the product from the box. They turned the pad on and timed how long it took to heat and tested the additional features. Additionally, they used an infrared thermometer gun to see each heating pad's heat distribution. They repeated the process for each pad. If the pad took too long to heat or didn’t function as advertised, those products were left out of the roundup.

Gintao Electric Heated Foot Warmer

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

What to Look for in a Heating Pad

Size

When it comes to heating pads, size is important because it better determines how it will target the area of your body in need. You’ll want to choose a pad that’s large enough to cover the area of the body you’re treating most frequently, says Alexandra Rios, PT, DPT, a licensed physical therapist and provider at Airrosti.

Pure Enrichment PureRelief XL Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Flexibility

If you have aches and pain across multiple areas of the body, Rios recommends a heating pad with a flexible design that can mold to multiple areas of your body. It’s important to not use the product on specific injuries, as it could further exacerbate the problem instead of helping.

“Heat therapy should be avoided with any injury that is considered acute or has just recently occurred,” Dr. Raineri says. “Acute injuries will likely present with swelling, bruising, and possibly even open wounds where heat should not be used."

Heat Settings

When deciding what heating setting to use, it’s important to understand the different types: dry heat and moist heat. Electric heating pads produce dry heat, Dr. Raineri says. An electric heating pad can be convenient because it offers a wide range of temperatures.

“Heat pads equipped with three or more heat levels are ideal because they allow the user to gradually work up to a heat setting that is sufficient for pain relief, yet safe for the skin,” Rios says. 

Pure Enrichment PureRelief XL Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Another option is a moist heat pack. “As there generally are no specific heat settings with these types of heating packs, it is important that you use the correct number of layers between types of heating pads are not created equal, specifically when you’re looking to address muscle aches. “Although dry heat is more convenient, moist heat is generally more effective with treating muscle aches and stiffness as it can penetrate deeper into the tissues than dry heat,” Dr. Raineri explains.

Geniani Extra Large Electric Heating Pad

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Cover Material

The material of your pad cover matters too, according to Wu, who recommends ones that are made of washable cotton or fleece, “so that they stay clean and are more inviting to the touch.”

Verywell Best Heating Pad Testing

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How long should you lay on a heating pad?

    According to Wu, it is not recommended to lay on a heating pad for “more than 15-20 minutes on an area,” to prevent your risk of burns. If you’re using a heating pad during the nighttime, set your pad to an auto shut-off to ensure you’re not overusing the pad on sore muscles or joints.

  • Are there any risks associated with heating pad use?

    The most common injury that people suffer from heating pads is burns, Dr. Raineri says. “To decrease your risk for burns, remove all jewelry, inspect your skin, and assure intact sensations, use layers between your skin and the heat pack, and set a timer,” she recommends. If you’re experiencing any side effects while using a heating pad, speak to a licensed doctor or physical therapist. “While assessing your skin during the use of a hot pack, if any severe redness or rash, blistering, pain, or swelling occurs, discontinue use and seek care from a doctor,” Dr. Raineri says.

  • Can you use a heating pad while pregnant?

    People who are pregnant or experiencing menstrual cramps can use a heating pad to help relieve the symptoms. “The uterus is a muscle. Uterine cramps are muscular contractions which serve to expel the uterine lining, which are painful,” says Kecia Gaither, MD, a double board-certified in OB/GYN and Maternal Fetal Medicine, and director of perinatal services at NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln. “Heat works to relax the muscle, improve blood flow to the area. Use of a pain reliever (an NSAID like Advil or Motrin) in addition to heat, a bath or a heating pad, to decrease the pain.”

Verywell Best Heating Pad Testing

Verywell Health / Leticia Almeida

Why Trust Verywell Health

Receiving her master’s degree in public health in 2020, Kayla Hui is a seasoned public health practitioner and health journalist. She has interviewed dozens of experts, reviewed numerous research studies, and tested a plethora of products to deliver well-researched product reviews and roundups. Her goal is to help readers make more informed decisions about their health and well-being.

Additional reporting to this story by Danielle Zoellner

As a seasoned health writer, Danielle Zoellner knows the importance of finding just the right product to fit your medical needs. Throughout her career, Danielle has interviewed a variety of experts in the medical and health fields while reviewing dozens of products. Her experience and knowledge in the field work together to help readers like yourself find the best products for your daily life.

2 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Jo J, Lee SH. Heat therapy for primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis of its effects on pain relief and quality of life. Sci Rep. 8(1):16252. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-34303-z

  2. Freiwald J, Magni A, Fanlo-Mazas P, Paulino E, et al. A role for superficial heat therapy in the management of non-specific, mild-to-moderate low back pain in current clinical practice: A narrative review. Life (Basel). 11(8): 780. doi:10.3390/life11080780.