House & Beyond is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
There’s nothing quite like the enjoyment and the de-stress that a great book can bring in today’s fast and busy world. It’s a way of escaping the humdrum nature of everyday work and life. The experience only gets better with the addition of a very cozy and comfortable chair. When it comes to furniture, we’re all different shapes and sizes and we all have things that we like and don’t. In this guide, we’re going to help you find the best reading chair for you.
There are many types of reading chair. The one you pick will depend on the style of chair that you like most. As an individual, you need to be comfortable reading in the chair you choose, and we’ll help you do that. We’ll look at chairs that will fit your room and décor, in many price ranges. We’ve included something to suit every preference and budget.
We’ve looked for a wide range of examples, covering all styles, fabrics, materials, colors and dimensions. We’ve looked at reviews and tested lots of different chairs to help you find the best reading chair, so stick with us! There’s a handy table which is quick to view, our detailed reviews, and we’ve also included a buying guide at the end. So have a book at the ready and let’s get to looking.
Extra features: hardwood frame; moisture-repellent and stain-resistant fabric; 3-year warranty
This chair ticks all the boxes when it comes to style, comfort and build-quality. The Stone & Beam Lauren Down Filled, Overstuffed Chair is fashioned around a hardwood frame, so you know it’s going to go the distance.
The chair is neutrally colored and comes in two shades. This will ensure that the Stone & Beam effort will fit seamlessly into most environments and suit any décor. The overstuffed design will provide great comfort to even the heaviest of reader and it’s hard to see where this chair might fail to please.
Topped off with a stain-resistant finish, the attractive upholstery and the welcoming look of this modern chair will attract any reader. A great addition to any household and a worthy winner at the top of this list.
Extra features: swiveling mahogany wood base and floor glides; adjusting lever
This is a beautiful chair with more contemporary and clean styling than a lot of chairs. Supplied in leatherette finish in a color that goes with anywhere, the Flash Furniture Contemporary Black Leather Recliner and Ottoman will tick a lot of reading chair boxes, for a heck of a lot of people.
If contemporary is your thing, and you like a chair that both swivels and reclines, then look no further than the effort from Flash Furniture, which sits second on our list of the best reading chairs. This model gets ball bearing based swivel mechanism and lever operated reclining for multi-position comfort which provides a great choice for readers.
The frame is mahogany, and the Flash Furniture comes with a stylish, matching ottoman to complete that laid-back reading experience. Generous padding in a supportive form will complete the perfect picture for many buyers.
Why did it make our list?
Thick and comfortable support
What is not ideal about it?
Some reported quality control issues upon assembly
Extra features: head and back pillows for comfort and support
We’re throwing a chaise in at number three on our best reading chairs list. This is the Dilleston Upholstered Chaise and it’s a reasonably priced item of furniture that’s pretty much perfect for anyone that prefers to do their reading in a more reclined position.
What you get here is PU leather-look, so it’s very easy to keep clean. The overall look of the chaise from Dilleston isn’t in any way, shape or form a traditional chaise look – so don’t buy this expecting it to look like something from a romance novel, this is pure modern style we’re dealing with. This design also allows it to be very versatile – you can sit upright, or lie down as and when you wish.
The metallic feet are a nice look which will fit many modern décor combinations too. The Dilleston is very well padded and looks to provide a decent level of support for most back pain sufferers. The absence of any arms on the sides will make this chaise easier to get on and off than a lot of chairs, for people with mobility issues or chronic pain. This item has a lot going for it.
Color options: bark, orange, red, tan w/ vine pattern
Extra features: weather-resistant fabric; 400 lbs. weight capacity
This is the Flower House Hanging Pumpkin Loveseat Chair and it’s an outdoor chair, for those of you who like nothing more than doing your reading outdoors. This chair has obviously been designed for a specific purpose and it really will look good in most gardens, yards or even on a verandah or balcony – if you live in an apartment. It’s a loveseat chair too, so it’s great for curling up on and letting your cares fade away.
The frame is a powder coated metal and the seat is surrounded by a mesh material, which will be great for keeping things cool and well ventilated in the Summer months, as well as helping out with keeping some of the pesky mosquitos at bay – if you live in an area where they’re around.
The Flower House Hanging Pumpkin Loveseat Chair comes in three colors, one of which is a very nature-inspired and neutral bark color – so this chair really will fit most settings and there should be an option that will suit most buyers. This is outdoor comfort, perfect for all readers.
What are its best features?
Airy design for Summer
Sturdy metal frame
What could be improved?
Watch the delivery – some issues with scratches reported
Extra features: ergonomically designed back for extra support
The Irene House Contemporary Arm Chair is near the middle of our list of the best reading chairs. This is a more contemporary design than will suit some. The lines are clean, and this chair isn’t pretending to be anything it’s not. The look does have a quality that would fit with traditional or modern décor, though – which is a great selling point.
The padding on the Irene House Contemporary Arm Chair isn’t what you’d refer to as plush, which will suit any readers out there who prefer a firmer and more supportive feel when they’re settling down with a good book.
This chair will suit people of a taller frame, though. The back of the Irene House chair is long, and it will support the head and neck of people up into the six feet and over group. The timber frame is attractive and looks to be well made. This is a chair that will go with a lot of settings, and suit a lot of people.
This chair is the Romee Channel-Tufted Fabric Club Chair and it’s a mix of more modern and traditional styles that looks great. The stitching features button tufts that give it an almost historic and regal character, even though it was made in the modern day. The look of the chair is a versatile one, which doesn’t scream as to any school of design, making it the perfect addition to – well, almost anywhere!
The padding here is luxurious, although customers do report that there’s an initial firmer period while the chair breaks in – so be aware of that if you plan to get down to reading in this chair immediately upon delivery.
The covering on the Romee Channel-Tufted Fabric Club Chair is polyester, and this does have the distinct drawback of attracting and retaining a lot of lint, animal hairs and dust. Bear that in mind if you like the look of this chair, especially if you have pets. It might be worth using a throw or some type of cover with the Romee Channel-Tufted Fabric Club Chair, because it’s a great looking chair.
Extra features: shredded memory foam filling; machine-washable cover; made in the USA
We just couldn’t make a list of the best reading chairs available without including a bean bag on it! This is the Chill Sack Bean Bag Chair and it’s a HUGE package of comfortable reading space, at a great price.
Everything about this chair is huge – even the color choice! The Chill Sack range comes in a massive choice of eighteen colors. This thing will look great in any setting, with any décor and in most houses.
At five feet, you’ll need to make sure you have a big enough space to fit the footprint of the Chill Sack, but if you do, you’re going to get a great option for reading in.
Chill Sacks are stuffed with very comfortable shredded memory foam and one of the best design features here is that there’s an inner liner which allows you to remove the zipped outer cover so that you can wash it in a machine. Perfect for kid’s rooms and great for eating on while you read. Overall, a great, comfortable reading chair that can double up as a bed for daytime naps!
What do we love it for?
18 colors to choose from
Machine washable cover
Memory foam is incredibly comfortable
What were we disappointed with?
Not technically a chair
Not great for getting off if you have mobility issues
Extra features: water-resistant and stain-resistant; 360-degree metal swivel base; 1-year warranty; 300 lbs. max weight capacity
Ok, so this next chair fits well and truly within a specialist bracket for reading chairs, but it deserves a place on this list and might be just the ticket for a parent who wants to read to their child at bedtime, so let’s take a closer look at the Babyletto Madison Swivel Glider chair.
The first thing you’ll notice is that this chair is very much on the small side. The Babyletto Madison Swivel Glider has been specifically designed to suit smaller spaces – particularly nurseries and younger kids’ bedrooms. This makes it a great option for bedtime stories and whilst it’s not large enough to curl up and go to sleep on, as a shorter term option for a quick bedtime read, this is great.
The Babyletto chair also swivels and rocks, making it even better for reading to very small kids that don’t fall asleep until they’ve had their story and a cuddle – and most of us know a kid like that, right?
Why is it special?
Swivels and glides/rocks
Perfect for reading to kids in
Great-looking design that can suit many different décors
Extra features: back adjusts from 90° – 165°; durable steel frame, curved armrests; 265 lbs. max weight capacity
The next chair on our list of the ten best reading chairs is the JUMMICO Fabric Recliner Chair, and it is our best budget chair for a few reasons. The first reason is the cost, and it’s almost impossible to figure out how they can make a whole chair for this sort of money. It’s even harder to come to terms with the fact that they have managed to make a reclining chair for the number of dollars you’re required to part with in order to own it.
A place we might start in trying to figure out this pricing mystery is quality. Whilst this chair will suit a lot of budgets, and solve a problem for a heck of a lot of people who are looking at emptier bank accounts than most, you sort of are half expecting to get quality issues with a chair like that and the JUMMICO Fabric Recliner Chair delivers on those. There isn’t anything major reported but it’s something to be aware of. It’s worth reading the reviews before you buy.
Extra features: made from comfortable and supportive high density memory foam; free from: BPA, phthalates, latex, lead
We’re big believers in reading making kids smarter and the best time to start reading is as soon as you’re old enough. So, we couldn’t make a list of the best reading chairs without properly catering for the small people. The P’Kolino Little Reader Chair – Best Kids Reading Chair has got everything you’d want to see in a reading chair designed for smaller children and it’s a great way to encourage them to get into the habit of picking up, and sitting down to read a good book.
The P’Kolino Little Reader Chair – Best Kids Reading Chair has a very wide and stable footprint, so it’s perfect for tiny people who are still learning balance and how to walk. The cover is fully removable and made of a very high quality microfiber material, which is fully machine washable – so no need at all to limit eating and drinking in this chair, and all the better for getting that young child to reap the benefits of reading early on in life.
The P’Kolino Little Reader Chair – Best Kids Reading Chair is great at what it’s supposed to do, and it’s amazingly reasonably priced. No reasons at all not to buy this. Great all round.
What are our favorite features?
Good stable base
Handy book pocket
Machine washable cover
What could be better?
Soon that toddler will be smarter than you
Things to Consider
If you like a good read, and if you want to have somewhere comfortable to do that, then the best comfortable reading chair is an essential item of furniture. Choosing the right chair for you is an important task, because this is a place where you’re going to be spending a lot of time, and when you read, you want to get lost in the story – not lost in upholstery that’s too squishy. You also don’t need any distractions when you’re reading. It’s a time to switch off that phone and to become engrossed in the tale, not to be worrying about niggling bumps or uncomfortable lumps in the fabric of your chosen seat. In this buying guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to consider when choosing the best reading chair.
Reasons to get a comfy reading chair
Of all the things you’ll ever buy, if you’re an avid reader, or even if reading is just one of the ways you choose to unwind and get away from life’s stresses and dramas – is a comfortable reading chair. Reading chairs aren’t just any chair either, they’re a place to relax and get cozy with your book, and a place where life’s distractions, bells and responsibilities melt away. A cozy reading chair is where you go when you want to be magicked away to far off lands, whisked on a word to places where larger than life characters get involved in tall tales of romance, deceit, drama and tragedy. Reading chairs are a place where you can take a hot cup of tea or coffee, perhaps even your favorite snack or a sweet piece of pie, and immerse yourself completely in the thrills and the spills, or the ups and the downs of someone else’s imagination and flair for storytelling.
The last thing you want when you’re trying to lose yourself in fiction is for anything to bother you. It’s important that the chair you choose for your excursions into other worlds is a good one, with not an annoyance or a lump about it. If you get that part right, and if the chair provides the right sort of support, where you need it, you’ll be set. This is pretty much a Goldilocks situation, because you’ll want to choose a chair that’s just right for you. Not too soft, and not too hard – just like in the book. Which is a great way to start when you’re looking for a chair in which you’ll hopefully be enjoying many a book – whether you’re looking for the best ergonomic reading chair or the best budget reading chair – we’ve got something for everyone and all tastes.
Things to consider when choosing a reading chair for your home
There are a few things to look out for when you’re looking for the perfect reading chair. Some of them are universal, and some of them will change depending on other factors, like setting, décor and the like. Some of them will change from person to person, and preference to preference. It’s important to have your set requirements in mind, and then to pay attention to some of the other things we’re going to discuss in this buying guide. This guide should give you all the important information you need to know in order to maximize your chances of finding the reading chair that best suits you, your home, and your personal requirements. Don’t worry if you’re on a budget. We can still help you to find the best affordable reading chair if that’s what you need.
As you would with any chair, it’s important to match décor, to think about scale and make sure that the chair fits. If you have pets, then to save on cleaning, a leather reading chair might be the one for you. If you want to sit on the deck and read, then an outdoor reading chair may suit that environment better.
Chair design and style
There are a wide range of different options when it comes to furniture, and in particular chairs. Choose from arm chairs, recliners – with and without footstools, including zero gravity chairs, lift chairs, bean bags, such as the Chill Sack which come in a wide range of colors and are easily stored, outdoor chairs for the deck or verandah, swivel chairs (which can also double up as a great chairs for sewing rooms) so you can easily reach that last cookie while you read. Knock yourself out! The list is a long one and there’s something for everyone, no matter what your own idea of the best chair for reading. You can even find specialized kids’ chairs, such as the P’Kolino Little Reader Chair – this is a great way to get your kids into reading, as they’ll enjoy having their own personalized comfy reading space.
Materials and padding
Check out what’s inside the chair that you’ve narrowed your search down to, or if this is the most important aspect for you, then start with this – chairs contain many fillings and paddings ranging from memory foams to more regular chair foams. Different chairs have different amounts of padding, so do your looking at the choosing stage and go for what best suits your own needs and preferences. Strategically placed padding may be of great importance if you’re looking for the best reading chair for bad back sufferers – the Irene House chair provides great support thanks to the specially padded back. Make sure to look for what you need to sit comfortably for longer periods.
Textiles are an important part of choosing a chair. You can use textiles and textures to match where matching color matching isn’t possible, and textiles are also important in determining if the feel of a chair is comfortable for your own tastes, so choose one you like.
It’s also important that your chair is made out of durable and tough materials, as this will ensure it doesn’t get worn out and lasts you for many years to come.
Overall dimensions and seat size
Some of this is applicable to the physical size of the person who will be using the chair. If you’re on the petite side, then don’t go too big or you may find the chair isn’t cozy – although cushions can be added to great effect. If you’re on the larger side, make sure the dimensions of the chair suit you. The other consideration with the size is to make sure the chair fits well in the space that you want to site it. If space is an issue, the Babyletto Madison Swivel Glider is a great choice that’ll fit well in homes even with limited room!
And if you are looking something big enough to sit you and your beloved one at the same time you should better check out this list of the best recliners for couples with extra-large armrests, cupholders and natural leather upholstery.
Comfort, support and ergonomics
Pay close attention to the design of any chair you’re considering. Does it look comfortable and ergonomic for reading in? Does it have the type and level of cushioning that you usually find to be comfortable? Just like with art, knowing what you like is important.
If you have any back issues, look to see if the chair you’re considering provides back support for during extended sitting periods of heavy reading.
The best reading chair for your back is often the one that sits you in a position that takes the strain off your back. If you find the best reading chair for backache, then it’s a great place to find relief from a condition that can be extremely uncomfortable. The Irene House Contemporary Arm Chair is a great ergonomic choice, as it has just the right amount of extra padding around the back area to support extended periods of sitting.
Color choices available
Depending on the chair, there may be a wide range of colors available. That’s not always the case, though. Color can be a good place to start if matching is a very important factor for you personally.
If you’re a larger person, then it’s important to pay attention to weight ratings. You don’t want the chair to sag or get damaged, so it’s well worth keeping an eye on that.
Where will you be using it?
Think about the environment this chair will be used in. If it’s going outdoors, then even if it’s undercover it may be prone to getting damp. Look at the outdoor-rated chairs if that’s the case – our outdoor pick, the Flower House Hanging Pumpkin Loveseat Chair has a great design that features water-resistant fabric. If it’s going indoors, matching other furniture, carpets or wall coverings might be necessary. You may be looking for the best kids reading chair, to put in a nursery (such as a nursery glider), or your search may be to find the best reading chair for bedroom areas. Whichever you need, look accordingly. A point to remember is that if you are looking for the best reading chair for kids, it’s worth running the chairs past them first. You want them to be happy readers.
The best way to clean a textile fabric is with a damp cloth. Not too wet, and not too dry. You can concentrate more effort on spills and areas that need more of a clean. Make sure that the chair can air well after you’ve wiped it over, and it’ll be dry as a bone and ready for more reading in no time.
No. This is a common misconception, but reading while lying down is in no way bad for your eyes. Unless you drop the book onto them! There’s no reason not to get a chair you can relax in, and the more relax the better when reading a great book. Switch off, unwind and get reading – upright or reclined.
First of all, it’s important to get yourself into as comfortable a position as possible, one that doesn’t place any amount of strain on your neck. Then, get a pillow for better neck support if necessary and make sure your back is supported too. If you take care to provide as much support where needed as possible, then reading won’t have any negative effect on your neck or back. In fact, with the right amount of support, the relaxation will do your neck and back good, helping your tired muscles to relax and recuperate from the normal aches and strains of busy life.
We’ve looked at ten great reading chairs, and there was a clear winner. The Stone & Beam Lauren Down Filled Overstuffed Chair is a chair that’s got quiet afternoons and great books written all over it. We loved the shape and size of this beautiful chair. It’s not too big or small to get cozy and it’s comfortable to look at – never mind sit in. A worthy winner and a great choice for any avid reader.
In second place on our list of the ten best reading chairs was the Flash Furniture Contemporary Black Leather Recliner and Ottoman, and this will be a real winner with any of you out there that prefer something other than a fabric covering. With its footstool and swiveling action, this chair fills a gap in the reading chair market, and it’ll be the top choice for those of you out there with a need to match style and décor too.
In third place – and what a perch for reading – was the Dilleston Upholstered Chaise. This is a chaise and we loved the shape and the curves that have been designed into the Dilleston for comfort. This is the sort of furniture on which you can have a read and then snooze to your heart’s content. There’s no way the Dilleston is going to see you tossing and turning, looking for comfort. It’s all there to see with this great chaise for reading on.
Whichever chair you choose, just remember to relax, get engrossed in your book, and make sure to ignore the doorbell!