Best armchairs to seek solace and relax

Sit comfortably in your favourite spot.

Best armchairs

by Natalie Knowles |
Updated on

The best armchairs combine comfort and form, giving you a seat to relax in that looks good too. Picture the scene: You've got your 65" 4K TV all setup, the ice cream is chilling, and that film you've been wanting to watch is just a click away. But, for whatever reason, your seating just isn't up to scratch. Perhaps you just moved into a new home, or your current seating has seen better days. You may be an empty nest couple who can finally jettison the 2000s sofa in favour of two comfy armchairs just for you. Whatever your style and needs, there's a recliner for sleeping, a snuggler or a loveseat that's perfect for you.

A good armchair is synonymous with brands such as La-Z-Boy and Parker Knoll, and the great thing about opting for a premium brand is being able to customise the armchair. You can choose the fabric or leather from a huge range of swatches. However, if the chair is needed for someone with restricted mobility, go for a material that's low maintenance. Although a traditional leather armchair may be idyllic by the fireside or in the study, fine leathers require cleaning and care.

Best armchairs at a glance:

Best budget leather armchair: Yaheetech Recliner Armchair – View on Amazon UK
Best armchair by brand: Parker Knoll Classic Motion Recliner High Back Armchair – View on John Lewis
Best vintage-inspired armchair: Evie Armchair – View on Marks and Spencer

We want an armchair that embraces like a hug – it's our cosy spot to sit with the cat and enjoy a natter on the phone. Comfort comes first, so help to reduce fatigue in your back, arms and legs after a long day with an ergonomic armchair. The cushioning should offer plenty of back support, especially if it's an armchair for reading. A recliner or an armchair with a matching footstool allows you to put your feet up, which is important for bringing any swelling down. Some even swivel, which could also be a useful function for anyone who has trouble standing up.

Alongside this, some armchairs even have several leg options so you can coordinate with your décor and Feng Shui your living room, or if you'd prefer a recliner, you can choose whether it's electric or manual. If you want a quality and durable armchair – that's going to be your comfy companion for years to come – it's worth investing. If possible, we'd recommend visiting your local department store to give the armchairs a test first. Seeing a range up close and personal could help you gauge the size and where it could fit in your home. Even if you eventually buy online, it's helpful to physically see what a seat that's 110cm wide actually looks like.

Best armchairs

Best budget leather armchair

Relax and unwind after a long day in this Yaheetech Recliner Armchair. It's made from artificial leather and high-density foam, so it's comfortable, durable and easy to clean. The leg rest is a stable rack structure. Feel the comfort of a thick backrest, wide curved armrests and a retractable footrest with this Amazon Choice product. The leg rest and reclining functions are adjustable, so you can find your optimum comfort.

Customer review: "Excellent quality, simple to use, very comfortable and as I've got a lower spinal problem I find it seems to ease the pain when sat up straight."


  • Durable and waterproof faux leather
  • Marshmallow-like softness
  • A good option if you suffer from fabric or dust-relative allergies


  • It's small and narrow

Best armchair by brand

We love this chameleon armchair that can be transformed from contemporary to traditional, depending on which fabric you choose. In addition, it's a power recliner with a 25-year guarantee, so it will keep you in comfort for years to come.
Parker Knoll has been handcrafting chairs and sofas in Britain since 1869. From the classic Chatsworth chair to the Modern shape of the Statesmen Chair there's a silhouette and colourway to suit all tastes.


  • Quality brand
  • Power recliner
  • High back
  • Choice of fabrics


  • Custom design so longer delivery time

Best vintage-inspired armchair

Inspired by Art Deco design, this glamorous Evie armchair has an elegant, tall, fluted back. It's an iconic shape that takes its cues from nostalgic charm, yet it pops in a range of vibrant colours. Perfect for an eclectic boudoir that will enhance the ambience and be an uplifting place to perch... preferably with a champagne coupe in hand and a string of beads to twirl.


  • Available in six colours
  • Style and personality
  • Comfortable without being too oversized


  • Velvet is a delicate material to maintain

Best premium recliner

With its wide padded armrests and backrest, this La-Z-Boy Staten Leather Rocker Recliner Chair provides the perfect spot to make your comfortable haven. Choose from a standard armchair, manual recliner or electric-powered recliner for enhanced comfort. Pair with Staten sofas and footstools. For support, functionality and natural materials, choose from 12 shades and textures of leather from this iconic brand.

Customer review: "Very good leather, looks lovely and its firm for support, recliner very good."


  • Durable
  • Easy to clean
  • It will be assembled for you


  • A little cumbersome if you're limited on space

Best armchair for choice of fabrics

Wonderfully balanced, the Hampstead Armchair combines a modern, minimalist look with tradition. The Hampstead's design is rooted in classic features, such as its wooden legs, but the low, wide and gently sloping shape is distinctly contemporary and designed with comfort in mind. Accessorise with plump cushions for the epitome of contemporary leisure seating.


  • Made from quality materials
  • Classic yet contemporary style
  • Customise with a choice of fabrics
  • Neat shape


  • No customer reviews

Best Scandi-style armchair

With narrow arms, this John Lewis Hendricks Accent Chair is a great space-saving piece of furniture. The seat is wide, with a supportive cushion, so you don't compromise your comfort. With a modern and sturdy exposed oak frame, this low armchair would be lovely as a set of two or four. Invite friends round for coffee and make it a Scandi fika morning. Choose from literally 100s of fabrics and two-leg finishes as part of John Lewis's Design Your Own service, so you can customise this armchair to suit your décor.

Customer review: "We recently took delivery of two Hendricks' chairs in Mustard Aquaclean Velvet. We are delighted with the quality and comfort. Everyone who visits us comments on them, wanting to know where we purchased them. They were delivered ahead of schedule and we were kept updated regarding delivery date and time slot."


  • Fully assembled
  • Customise to suit your décor


  • Not overly comfortable for long period

Best armchair for a child

Childrens Armchair Rainbow Sky Printed Kids Chair
Price: £64.99+

If they're learning to read, your grandchild will love having a nook to call their own. A wonderful gift idea, this handmade Rainbow Sky Printed Kids Chair is available with personalisation. You could have the child's name printed on the seat. So sweet and simple, this mini armchair is machine washable and available with a footstool and washbag.

Customer review: "Beautiful material and clearly comfy as my toddler happily sits on her chair and fully relaxes."


  • Personalisation available
  • Wonderful gift idea
  • No assembly required


  • Only for children between 3-6 years

Best snuggler armchair

Lovely for loafing on, this Swoon Denver Loveseat is too good to share. Available in seven colours, including Ink Velvet, House Weave Chalk and Kingfisher Velvet, it's an elegant low and wide armchair that exudes a sense of warmth and comfort. Those wide arms are begging for a pile of magazines and a large mug of coffee. Go on, light some candles, sit back and relax.


  • Made for relaxing
  • Spacious
  • Range of colours
  • Quality materials


  • No customer review

Best contemporary club chair

Alexander and James Lincoln Classic Back Snuggler doffs its cap to low, deep and inviting leather armchairs of gentlemen's clubs. There are classic features, such as the swan neck arms with metal studding and solid wooden feet. A club chair with a contemporary fabric twist, it exudes a luxurious sense of comfort. This snuggler is part of the Lincoln Collection, with matching sofas also available. A timeless design with a mix of leather and fabric upholstery, and it is comfortable too, with a deep sprung seat that's begging for a beagle to curl up on it.


  • Made from quality materials
  • Spacious and comfortable
  • Durable
  • Tradition meets contemporary


  • No customer review

Best budget traditional armchair

Whether you want to read a book, watch your favourite TV show, or just enjoy a cup of tea, this More4Homes Eaton Wing Back Fireside Recliner ticks all the right boxes. This traditional wingback armchair is available for a very reasonable price on Amazon and comes in a range of fabrics. It's a manual recliner with a push-back mechanism and upholstered in high-quality Herringbone fabric. It offers superb back and lumbar support at a quarter of the price of some of the premium brand recliners.

Customer review: "These are beautiful fireside chairs. Bought one for each side of my fire place. Quite heavy but that's good as it makes it really sturdy and well made. Lovely material too. Very happy."


  • Value for money
  • Choice of fabrics
  • Easy to assemble


  • Not as long-lasting as a premium armchair

FAQs: Best armchairs

What features should I consider when buying the best armchair?

Armchairs come in all shapes and sizes, but there are features that are consistent whether your seating of choice is an antique Chesterfield or an Eames lounge chair.

As the name suggests, the armrests are the defining feature of an armchair. They can be wide and supportive (or somewhere to rest the TV remote); even narrow armrests provide a level of comfort. Some chairs have built-in cup holders and pockets too. Bear in mind that wider arms take up more space, so note the dimensions and how it will fit in your room. There are compact armchairs increasing in size to loveseats; width, depth and height are the essential dimensions to know if it will fit in a space. Also, seat height, width and depth, along with seat back height, are important for your comfort.

The backrest is another essential feature, helping to support your back and promote good posture. Since this is a leisure chair, the backrest will be padded and comfortable.

Armchairs are generally upholstered in fabric or leather over foam, fibre or feather padding. If you suffer from allergies, opt for a leather or faux leather cover. In addition, opt for treated leather as it's easier to clean and extra durable. Take care with fine leather seating, however, as this will mark and require regular conditioning with a cream or wax. Whether it's soft velvet or durable microfibre, a fabric chair will benefit from an upholstery cleaner, especially for removing spills and stains.

Whether you buy online or in-store, check the delivery and assembly options before purchasing – so welcoming your new armchair is a stress-free experience.

Finally, money matters – buying a new armchair can be expensive, but there are budget options available. Amazon UK and Ebay offer good deals.

Woman in armchair
©Getty Images

How do I choose a comfortable armchair?

First, choosing an armchair that's comfortable for you depends on your individual preferences. However, armchairs known for exceptional comfort often feature plush cushioning, generous seat depth, and supportive backrests. Additionally, armchairs with high-quality materials, like memory foam or down fillings, enhance the overall comfort level. Choose high-quality materials and construction for durability and long-lasting comfort.

Look for ergonomic features such as lumbar support, adjustable backrests, and proper cushioning. Recliner armchairs with adjustable positions offer personalised support, while oversized snugglers envelop you in comfort.

Ultimately, the most comfortable armchair is the one that best suits your body, preferences and needs, so try out different options to find your perfect match.

Furniture Village has a comprehensive upholstery buying guide that goes through what size, style and material is best for you and any extra functionality you might want.

What are the best armchairs for lower back pain?

The best armchair for lower back pain puts ergonomic design and lumbar support first. Look for armchairs with built-in lumbar cushions or adjustable backrests; these provide proper alignment and alleviate pressure on the lower back.

Chairs with a high backrest and good cushioning provide excellent support for the entire back. Recliners with various seating positions can help relieve lower back pain by allowing you to find a comfortable angle. Stressless armchairs are specially designed with high-quality cushioning and supportive armrests to promote better posture and reduce strain on the lower back. Chairs made with high-quality materials and construction will maintain their supportive features over time.

Always try the armchair in-store, if possible, to ensure it meets your specific needs and provides the desired comfort for your lower back.

Natalie Knowles is a Homes & Garden Product Writer for Yours, specialising in home appliances. When she's not testing sparkling water makers, she flexes her creative flair as an artist.

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