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The Best Office Chair in [2021]

The Best Office Chair in [2021]

in a hybrid work environment, you’ll need one of the best office chairs not just at work, but also at home. Since you’re likely to spend as much time in front of a computer at home as in an office, it makes sense. 

Our guide to the best office chairs can help. In addition to being comfortable, these chairs are also adjustable. Since no two people are alike, a chair should be able to adapt to your body. It should also support your lower back, shoulders, arms, and wrists, to prevent repetitive stress injuries. 

The best office chairs should be affordable, which is why we’ve included models ranging from less than $100 to more than $1,500, just in case you want to splurge.

What are the best office chairs?

The classic Herman Miller Aeron is the best office chair. Though this chair has been around for many years, the company never rests on its laurels; they constantly redesign the Aeron to keep up with technological changes, and this chair is a marvel of material engineering. It’s a big investment over $1,000, but it’s the most configurable and adaptable – and most comfortable – chair we’ve sat in. 

Additionally, we’re testing the Steelcase Leap, another pricey – yet extremely comfortable – office chair that’s in the same price range as the Aeron. Keep an eye out for our full review.

The Branch Ergonomic Chair is the best option for those with a limited budget. With a price of $300, it’s not too expensive, but has adjustable arms, a tilting seat, and a mesh back with lumbar support. It also comes in a few colors.

Best Overall
Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair
Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair
  • Very adjustable
  • Affordable price
Editor`s Choice
HON Exposure Mesh Task Office Chair
HON Exposure Mesh Task Office Chair
  • Adjustable arms and height
  • Lumbar support
Best Budget
Space Seating Professional AirGrid Office Chair
Space Seating Professional AirGrid Office Chair
  • Adjustable arms
  • Adjustable seat tilt and height

Top 7 Best Office Chair in [2021]

1. Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair

Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair

It is sleeker than most other office chairs, but without being overly flashy. As we sat in the $300 office chair while working from home, we largely forgot about it. Isn’t that the point of a good office chair?

The Branch Ergonomic Chair has seven adjustment points (the height and width of the armrests, as well as how far forward you want them to go, seat height, backrest angle, and position of the seat relative to the backrest), which can all be easily manipulated. Its padded seat was not as comfortable as mesh seats. 

Pros
  • Very adjustable
  • Affordable price
Cons
  • Seat a bit firm

2. HON Exposure Mesh Task Office Chair

HON Exposure Mesh Task Office Chair

Hon Exposure is like the Honda Civic of office chairs: It’s reliable, it’s affordable, it gets the job done, but it isn’t flashy. The Hon Exposure, which costs around $200, has adjustable arms and height, as well as a lumbar support, which can be moved in and out for support. 

This chair is comfortable, but a bit firmer than the Branch Ergonomic Chair, which is also more stylish, but costs about $90 more. As a whole, you can’t go wrong with the Hon Exposure, but there are more exciting models out there. 

Pros
  • Adjustable arms and height
  • Lumbar support
  • Mesh back
Cons
  • A little boring to look at
  • Seat somewhat hard

3. Space Seating Professional AirGrid

Space Seating Professional AirGrid

Low-cost office chairs aren’t usually very adjustable; the mechanisms that allow for lumbar support and tension zones aren’t cheap to make. With the Space Seating Professional AirGrid, you can adjust many of the features of this chair and still spend less than $200.

The AirGrid’s arms can be adjusted in height and position, and the tilt of the seat can be tweaked to create a comfortable sitting position when you lean back or forward. The armrests can be moved left or right, but the angle and slope cannot be adjusted. In addition to a mesh fabric back, the AirGrid has a mesh fabric front, which provides better ventilation on hot days. While you don’t get some of the fancy adjustments of some more expensive models, you do get most of the features that make for a comfortable seat. 

Pros
  • Adjustable arms
  • Adjustable seat tilt and height
  • Fabric back for ventilation
Cons
  • Doesn’t support as much weight as other chairs

4. AmazonBasics Classic office chair

AmazonBasics Classic office chair

It doesn’t need to cost a fortune to get a decent place to park yourself, and the AmazonBasics Classic office chair is our top budget pick. The chair costs $120, but has all the features most users need. Microfiber covers wick moisture away, so you won’t get sweaty backs. The chair provides full body support, so you can lean back and have your head and neck supported. With its adjustable height and five rotating rollers, it should work both on carpets and hardwood floors. The tension of the seat and back tilt can also be adjusted, affecting how easy it is to recline the whole seat. 

You don’t get much adjustment. All but the height of the seat from the floor and the tilt tension are fixed; there is no lumbar adjustment, no armrest adjustment, and no seat tilt adjustment.

Pros
  • Adjustable height and tilt tension
  • Stain-proof and sweat-wicking microfiber cover
Cons
  • No arm, lumbar or seat-tilt adjustment

5. X-Chair X2 K-Sport Management chair

X-Chair X2 K-Sport Management chair

Spend the extra $100 or so on the optional heating and massage pad if you buy the X-Chair X2. As if you were sitting in the Brookstone store at the mall in your home office. 

Besides that, the X2 Chair is very comfortable, with lumbar support, mesh back and seat, and most of it is adjustable. The chair also has a solid metal base and casters. It costs around $800-$900, which isn’t cheap, but it’s less than a Herman Miller Aeron. 

Pros
  • Solidly built
  • Very adjustable
  • Optional heat/massager
Cons
  • Can take a while to get everything adjusted
  • Pricey

6. Steelcase Leap Office Chair

Steelcase Leap

If you suffer from back pain, you need a chair that can be adjusted to fit your needs. With Steelcase’s Leap Chair, you can adjust how the chair tilts as you adjust your position. You can adjust these by using three controls that let you customize how you configure the chair for your spine, lumbar region, and posture. This makes it a great choice for people with chronic back pain, as adjusting these controls can make a chair much more comfortable. 

Steelcase’s Leap chair isn’t cheap, however; at $860, it is one of the more expensive chairs we looked at. It might be a good investment if you use it a lot and want something you can adjust to suit your mood.

Pros
  • Live back technology adjusts as you move
  • Armrests can be moved in multiple directions
Cons
  • Expensive

Best Office Chair Buying Guide

Even if you have the best office chair in the world, it’s unhealthy to be seated for hours at a time. Studies have shown that sitting for prolonged periods of time can negatively affect your health, such as a higher risk of heart disease, obesity, and cancer. 

A number of experts recommend that you stand up from time to time. Mayo Clinic, for instance, recommends standing up every 30 minutes, or investing in a standing desk. Whatever you do, get up and stretch your muscles. Set a timer; some smartwatches, such as the Apple Watch, will automatically remind you to move if you’ve been sedentary for too long.

1. How to choose the best office chair for you

After price, comfort and adjustability are the two most important factors when choosing an office chair. The concept of comfort is pretty straightforward: a comfortable chair should offer a seat that is yielding but also offers the base firmness your back needs. It should also wick moisture so you don’t sweat on hot days. Mesh seats and backs tend to be the most comfortable in this regard.

People of larger stature should be able to sit comfortably on the seat without feeling like they are squeezing into a kids’ chair. 

Armrests should be contoured so that elbows and upper arms can lean comfortably on them, and made of fabric or a softer material that won’t jar the elbow when bumped into. 

Lumbar support is another important feature. It helps you maintain the curve of your lower back so that you don’t fatigue yourself by sitting for long periods of time (not that you should). This too should be adjustable so that you can move it up and down, or increase or decrease how much it pushes out.

The other major factor is adjustability. You should be able to adjust pretty much everything on a good office chair, including:

  • Armrest height
  • Armrest width
  • Armrest angle
  • Backrest angle
  • Backrest height
  • Seat height
  • Seat angle
  • Seat depth

It’s important to get a chair that allows you to adjust all of these things because every person’s body is different; it lets you customize it to fit your unique shape. The more expensive the chair, the more things you’ll be able to adjust. 

2. How we test the Best Office Chairs

Sitting in them, of course! Each office chair is evaluated by sitting in it for a few weeks and going about our daily activities. It is not just how comfortable the chair is, but also how easily it can be adjusted. 

We tested the chairs with a 6-foot male and a 5-foot 4-inch female to see if their comfort levels differed. 

We also consider the chair’s design, its appearance, and its overall cost before making our decision. 

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