The Best Heating Pads Of 2020: Heat Your Pain Away
Heating pads can be used to relieve all sorts of muscle pain.
Women rely on them to ease their menstrual cramps, athletes use them in case of injuries and muscle strains, and seniors reach for them when they suffer from arthritis, or other similar ailments old age tends to bring.
There is no doubt that heating pads can be of great help when used appropriately and every household can greatly benefit from them. For that reason, we have generated the list of five best heating pads that will guarantee a pleasant experience and successful therapy when needed.
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- Comparison table
- How do heating pads work?
- Why Use Heating Pads?
- How to Choose the Best Heating Pad
- The 5 Best Heating Pads in 2020
- 1. Pure Enrichment’s Pure Relief XL King Size Heating Pad – Superb performance at a great price
- 2. Sunbeam’s King Size XpressHeat – Super soft fabric for extra comfy heat therapy
- 3. UTK Infrared Heat Therapy Healing Jade Mat – Heat therapy in the lap of luxury
- 4. Thermophore MaxHeat Deep-Heat Therapy Pad – Moist or dry, definitely worth a try
- 5. FIGERM Extra-Large Heating Pad – Extra long cord for heat therapy with no restrictions
- Heating Pads FAQs
- Final Words and Verdict: The Best Heating Pad in 2020
If you prefer to cut to the chase, here’s the short table that describes the pros and cons of all our picks. In case you need more detail read our full reviews instead.
|Our Top Picks|
|Superb performance at a great price|
|Super soft fabric for extra comfy heat therapy|
|Heat therapy in the lap of luxury|
|Moist or dry, definitely worth a try|
|Extra long cord for heat therapy with no restrictions|
How do heating pads work?
When you apply the pad, the heat it produces increases blood flow in that area, dilates blood vessels, and improves circulation. In that way, cramps and spasms of the affected muscles ease up, and the aches and soreness give in.
Are there limitations?
Of course, not every injury or pain should be treated in this way. In general, it has been noticed that applying a heating pad within 72 hours from injuring yourself can increase your pain and worsen the inflammation process. Improper or too frequent use of heating pads can lead to serious problems such as burns or prolonged pain. It is hence important to consult professionals how and when to use the heating pads.
Why Use Heating Pads?
In winter season it is not hard to find a reason why you should use the heating pads. It is simple; they will help you warm up whenever and wherever you are. However, this is not their sole purpose; there are numerous other situations where heating pads come in handy.
The benefits of heating pads are numerous. We have already mentioned their role in reducing stomach cramps, soothing sore muscles, and alleviating pain so let us elaborate on that subject.
There is a saying that you must sweat out the fever to feel better. Consequently, heating pads can help you feel better as well. Heat does not only make you feel warm but also relaxes you and makes you feel comfortable. As a result, you immediately feel better.
The real and proven physical benefits of heat have to do with your circulation. Once the blood vessels in your muscles are heated, they expand and allow for better flow of much-needed oxygen and nutrients that help heal the damaged tissue or muscle.
As a bonus, heating pads are inexpensive and can be used over and over again with almost no additional cost saving you money you would otherwise spend on pain-reducing therapy.
Besides being low-priced, heat therapy is versatile- you can apply it when you just need to relax or feel warmer, but it can be applied in some serious medical conditions such as disk herniation, osteoporosis, and spondylolysis as well. Of course, consult a doctor before you start heat therapy for any medical condition including the seemingly trivial ones such as sprains, back, neck or shoulder pain.
Finally, some people use heating pads for meditation purposes as well. In this way, heating pads promote a healthy state of mind which is essential in this hasty modern world.
How to Choose the Best Heating Pad
Most heating pads appear quite similar at first glance. There are small differences in shape, size or color or they cost a bit more or less. These differences are rarely crucial and have to do with personal preferences rather than the quality of the product.
So, what should you pay special attention to when searching to buy the best heating pad out there?
After consulting numerous experts and testing numerous heating pads, we can advise you to consider the following features:
- How quickly the pad heats-up and how well it distributes the heat
- How easy it is to maintain the heat pad (washing or drying the pad cover)
- Automatic shut-off function/ Timer
- The number of heat levels it offers (we recommend at least three heat levels)
- The ease of use of the controller
- UL and ETL certification
- The length of the power cord
The 5 Best Heating Pads in 2020
1. Pure Enrichment’s Pure Relief XL King Size Heating Pad – Superb performance at a great price
The Pure Enrichment Pure Relief XL King Size heating pad has six different levels of heating ranging from 105 to 140 degrees F, with small gaps in-between so that you can adjust the right temperature for you. The controller is easy to operate; you can turn the pad on and off, adjust the heat up or down, and turn the auto-off timer function on or off- it is all straightforward.
The backlight LCD shows big numbers that will never leave you questioning whether you have set the temperature right even in the darkest of night. The cord is long enough for most average users and stays firmly in its place.
The cover can be washed, dries rather quickly and comes with a five-year warranty. The storage bag keeps it safe from harm when not in use. The texture of the Pure Relief feels good on the skin, especially its gentle plush side. It does not cause excessive perspiration like many other pads. On the downside, the Pure Relief makes a bit annoying noise when folded and requires specific gentle washing on the delicate cycle with cold water. You can dry it in the drying machine, but you have to make sure you set it to the delicates cycle too. In time it will become your routine and will not represent an issue.
Things I Liked
- Soft to the touch
- Six levels of heating
- Intuitive controller
- A backlight LCD with large numbers
- Comes with a storage bag
- Can be used for both moist or dry heat therapy
- Extra-large 12” x 24” with 9-Foot Long Cord
Things I Didn’t Like
- Odd smell
- Requires delicate washing
2. Sunbeam’s King Size XpressHeat – Super soft fabric for extra comfy heat therapy
Although a bit pricier, Sunbeam’s King Size XpressHeat heating pad is very similar to the previous model, it also features six heat settings as well as the backlit LCD with large numbers. Even the controller has the identical button layout: a two-hour auto-off timer and four control buttons.
The XpressHeat pad heats up very fast (in about 30 seconds) which is a plus. It looks more like a blanket than an electrical device and has a pleasant texture that feels good on your skin no matter which side you choose. It has the same fault as the previously reviewed heating pad: it makes a crinkly noise when you fold it, even more so than Pure Relief. In order to avoid temperature fluctuations always turn the timer on.
The pad measures 12 x 24 inches and is large enough to help you relieve pain in any area of your body, or simply keep you warm in cold winter days and nights. The microplush cover is machine washable, and the warranty is five years long.
Things I Liked
- Unique Heat-Meter becomes brighter as the pad heats up
- Machine-washable fabric
- Extra-long 9-foot power cord
- Quick heat up
- Soft fabric
Things I Didn’t Like
- Heat sometimes fluctuates, especially when the pad is set to an unlimited time
3. UTK Infrared Heat Therapy Healing Jade Mat – Heat therapy in the lap of luxury
If you do not mind spending some serious money on the heating pad, UTK Infrared Heat Therapy Healing Jade Mat might be a good option for you. It is designed for you to lie on it and emits heat that penetrates deep into the affected tissue and muscles. Of course, you can also sit on it or wrap it around any part of the body that requires heat therapy thanks to the Velcro body strap. It measures 21 X 31 inches.
UTK Infrared Heat Therapy Healing Jade Mat is not an average electric heating pad: it emits infrared heat which penetrates deeper into your body and has 126 individual natural jade stones that produce negative ions which are believed to relieve stress and increase the energy levels.
The memory function saves your favorite settings for the utmost convenience. The control pad requires some training before you can master all the commands, but it is worth it. Give yourself some time and you are sure to learn all the commands by heart. The smart digital controller allows you to adjust the heat anywhere from 103°F to 159°F by 1°F increments. You can also set the time from 0-240 minutes by 15 minutes increments and customize the therapy to your liking. The cord is ten feet long so that you can use the pad wherever it suits you.
Things I Liked
- Memory function
- Velcro body strap
- 4-Hour Auto Shut-Off
- Comes with a premium travel bag
Things I Didn’t Like
- The smart digital controller is a bit complex
- The plug is too tight and hard to remove
4. Thermophore MaxHeat Deep-Heat Therapy Pad – Moist or dry, definitely worth a try
The Thermophore MaxHeat Deep Heat Therapy pad measures 14 x 27 inches which is more than enough for all sorts of heat therapies. Furthermore, it is flexible enough to wrap around your ankle, wrist or knee when needed. The cover can be removed and washed in the washing machine.
This heating pad provides you with three levels of heat to choose from and emits strong and consistent heat throughout the session. It takes about three minutes to reach the desired heat level though. As a bonus, it provides a moist-like heat without you having to add moisture source all thanks to the patented Moist-Sure technology.
The slide control is easy to use but, unfortunately, you have no option to set the auto-off function or choose the duration of the therapy manually- it is designed to turn off automatically after 25 minutes. This may save you energy and keep you safe, but when you need prolonged heat therapy (or something to keep you warm all night long), this is a real nuisance. Therefore, we would recommend this unit to users who require timed therapy sessions.
Things I Liked
- Suitable for timed heating therapy sessions
- Soft, machine washable cover
- Easy to use slide control
- Moist-Sure technology allows for better heat penetration
- Has weights to keep it in place
Things I Didn’t Like
- It switches off after 25 minute- no option to change the duration of the heat therapy
- The cord is only 6 feet long
5. FIGERM Extra-Large Heating Pad – Extra long cord for heat therapy with no restrictions
Measuring 12 x 24 inches Figerm heating pad is large enough to cover your entire back or both your legs at once. Besides, this pad is very versatile thanks to three different heat settings to up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
It heats up super quickly, in a matter of seconds and features a two-hour automatic power off function that will not only keep you safe but also keep your electric bill in check. It is ETL certified as well and comes with a 90-day warranty and lifetime service.
The Figerm heating pad is suitable for both dry and moist heat therapy as it can safely be moistened for a deep penetrating steam heating effect. The flannel material is very comfortable due to the soft microplush fibers, and it is machine washable for easy care. This heating pad has the longest powered cord among all the reviewed models- whooping 10 feet that will allow you to use it all around your house. Avoid the maximum setting and you will avoid temperature fluctuations as well.
Things I Liked
- Reaches the desired heat level in about 4 seconds
- Three heat settings to choose from
- Automatic 2-hour power off function
- Can be moistened for moist heat therapy
- Thin and light: easy to carry around
Things I Didn’t Like
- The heat output is a bit inconsistent, especially when set to maximum
Heating Pads FAQs
The following Q&A list should provide the answers to the most common questions about heating pads:
1. Can I burn my skin when I use a heating pad?
We all have different sensitivity to heat but it is highly unlikely that you can burn skin when using heating pads. If you are sensitive to heat you can apply the pad over one layer of clothing. Also, avoid using heat-inducing creams and ointments in combination with heating pad therapy.
2. Are there people who should not be using heating pads?
Although heating pads are very safe and provide natural treatment with almost no contraindications there are still precaution measures that must be honored and some conditions that forbid you from using such devices. It is best to consult a health professional. In general, children under the age of 6 must not be allowed to use heating pads as well as immobile or incapacitated persons who cannot remove the heating pad on their own. Pregnant women and people who suffer from hemophilia,diabetes, or malignancy must consult their doctor prior to use.
3. What are the restrictions to using the heating pads?
The heating pads such should not be applied to the open wounds or acute injuries as well as your face and intimate areas.
4. How long can you use the heating pad?
Most of the time there are no time restrictions. As long as you feel comfortable you can use the heating pad to keep you warm, relax you or relieve the pain you are experiencing.
5. When can you expect the pain-relieving effect?
Most people feel results almost immediately (in about 30 minutes). However, this will depend on the the severity of your condition and the level of pain you are experiencing. Try to balance the frequency and intensity of heat therapies to best suit your needs and speed up your recovery.
Final Words and Verdict: The Best Heating Pad in 2020
Pain medications can be sometimes avoided by using practical devices such as heating pads. It is surely a healthier option than swallowing harmful chemicals or having to apply messy creams. Heat has been used for pain therapy for centuries, but it remained actual in the time of technology as well due to the consistently good results.
The best thing about heating pads is their versatility. You can use them to relax sore muscles, alleviate arthritis pain, and reduce any tension you might feel in your body. Heat will speed up your blood flow and secure more oxygen and nutrients to the affected area speeding up the healing process.
The heating pad comes handy even when you are not in pain; it helps relieve stress and fatigue or simply keeps you warm when you need it.
It is affordable, safe, but most importantly highly efficient. It is perhaps the only model that offers so many temperature settings at that price range. It is sure to relax your sore muscles and alleviate pain quickly and pleasantly.
We hope you will make the right decision and find the heating pad that will best suit your needs!