This article is part of a larger series on Starting a Business.
There are three main types of office chairs: task chairs, mid-back chairs, and executive chairs. Task chairs are small, usually armless, and meant for shorter use; mid-back chairs are larger, have arms, and are more ergonomic with good back support for longer use; and executive chairs are generally the plushest and most ergonomic with the fullest back support.
While desk jobs have traditionally meant sitting in a chair for hours on end, studies have shown that a healthier option is actually a standing desk. Check out Varidesk if you’re interested in exploring that option–many of their offerings will enable you to convert back and forth from a regular desk to standing desk quite easily, letting you adjust your workspace based on your comfort level.
We looked at the top rated office chairs from major retailers and up and comers and picked the best office chair of each type at different price points. That’s nine of the best office chairs on the market to help you narrow down your search. And, as with most of our recommendations, we not only recommend the product but we use them every day in our own office.
For the purposes of this guide, we’ve defined the three price points as budget, professional, and premium. Generally speaking, budget options are for those businesses that are looking to meet their office needs as affordably as possible, professional options are noticeably sturdier and higher quality, and premium is the highest quality with the most available features. Most office chair manufacturers will offer models at each price point.
If you’re purchasing office chairs because you’re furnishing a new office space, be sure to check out our guide on the five easy steps to setting up your office.
How To Choose Between Task, Mid-Back, & Executive
The type of chair that will best suit your needs usually depends on these factors:
- Length of use: Do you need a chair for a full eight-hour workday (or more), or will you only use it for a few hours in the evening? Generally, task chairs are not intended to be used for more than four hours at a time. Executive chairs and ergonomic mid-back chairs, on the other hand, can keep you comfortable for 6-8 hours or longer.
- Work environment: Do you generally sit stationary at your computer, or do you move around your desk a lot? If you work a lot with your hands, for example, then you probably want a chair without armrests since these could get in your way of your movement. However, if you sit in the same position for several continuous hours, then consider a full-back executive chair with lumbar (lower back) support.
- Space restrictions: Mid-back and executive chairs can be heavy, wide, and tall. If you work in a smaller cubicle, you may be limited by the chair’s footprint. Task chairs, on the other hand, are compact and easy to fit into tighter spaces.
Best Budget Task Office Chair: Boss Office Products B205-BK Fabric Steno Chair
Best Professional Task Office Chair: basyx by HON Low Back Task Chair
Best Premium Task Office Chair: Safco Products 3397BL Vue Intensive Use Mesh Task Chair
Best Budget Mid-Back Office Chair: AmazonBasics Mid-Back Office Chair
Best Professional Mid-Back Office Chair: Alera Elusion Series Mesh Mid-Back Multifunction Chair
Best Premium Mid-Back Office Chair: Herman Miller Classic Aeron Chair
Best Budget Executive Office Chair: Lorell Executive High-Back Chair
Best Professional Executive Office Chair: WorkPro Commercial Mesh Executive Chair
Best Premium Executive Office Chair: Steelcase Leap Chair
Bottom Line on Best Office Chair
When reviewing the best office chairs, we took three main points into consideration:
- Is the price competitive?
- Will the chair remain supportive and comfortable throughout the workday?
- Is the chair durable enough to stand up to regular use?
Based on our research, first-hand experience, and hundreds of customer reviews, we recommend the office chairs above at each price point to meet and exceed all of these requirements for your office.