A recliner is a sofa or armchair with a relaxing back and an inbuilt footrest. There are manual and automatic recliners.
For a manual recliner, the lean back features are controlled by the occupant’s body movements, while one or more buttons control the positioning of an automatic chair.
This piece of furniture provides support to the occupant’s back and lower legs for better rest.
They are also known as “action” or “motion” chairs because of their ability to change shape and form.
Persons suffering from certain health conditions like sleep apnea or gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) have found sleeping in a recliner to be very comfortable.
There are no health risks of sleeping in a relaxing chair, these most comfortable recliners gives quality resting and sleep time.
Types of Recliners
There are eight general types of recliners, each designed to provide specific comfort to the occupant.
The traditional reclining chair is a common piece of furniture found in living rooms all around the world.
It leans back when a lever or button usually placed at the side is pushed to release the backrest into the down position and the footrest into the up position.
The traditional chair takes up a significant amount of space up to 3ft, so it is better suited for big rooms.
The power recliner has similar features to the traditional one except that a power button replaces the lever to release the backrest and footrest into the desired positions.
The power button is electrically-wired to adjust the chair into comfortable angles.
This type of chair is more versatile than the traditional one because the occupant has more control over it.
It is made up of automated motors and usually features three buttons at the side of the armrest.
The three power controls work for the three parts of the chair that is, the backrest, footrest, and headrest.
The user of this chair has more control over the relaxing features and may choose to position one part of the chair and leave the others.
It an upgraded version of the traditional model, as it offers the same comfort technologies, but doesn’t demand any physical effort to use it.
It is simple and easy to use and encourages quality resting time at your preferred angle. Modern recliners often have built-in USB ports for easy charging of the occupant’s mobile devices.
They are ergonomically-designed for neck and back support, for even weight distribution and posture corrector.
Rocker chairs are common among nursing mothers and parents or guardians with young children.
The chair moves on arched tracks, allowing the user to rock back and forth.
The slow and steady movement helps children and adults suffering from insomnia because the gentle motion is calm and soothing.
Adults can rock themselves to sleep on this piece of furniture while nursing mothers can enjoy the comfort while nursing their babies.
This chair is better suited for big rooms because it takes up to 3ft of space after leaning back.
Glider recliners have similar features to rocker chairs, but instead of moving along on a curved path like the rocking chair, the movement on a glider is restricted to a horizontal path.
People can easily mistake gliders for classic rocker chairs but if you pay attention to details, you will notice a slight difference in movement and construction.
The movement of this recliner is more stationary than a rocking chair and it tends to offer an almost noiseless, smoother ride.
Some gliders are designed to swivel, that is, move freely without restrictions. It may also include a safe-lock feature so that children don’t get injured.
Push-back recliners are also called manual recliners because they are designed without a lever or button.
The operation depends on the user’s body weight, requiring him to lean back and exert pressure on the backrest of the chair until it relaxes.
This piece of furniture has a sleek and unique look compared to other recliners, making it a popular piece in most living rooms.
Because there are no buttons, it resembles a regular armchair when upright.
Swivel chairs have the most unrestricted movements of all the chair types.
It is designed with a 360 degrees circular base that allows the user to move left, right, forward, and backward.
These chairs have a full range of motion, a feature that makes them unique compared to the limited motion of otherchairs.
This product is also called a spinning or revolving chair and it has a single central leg that allows the seat to rotate without any restrictions.
Lift recliners are popular among aged persons and those with back problems who find it difficult or painful to get out of recliners.
This chair has a mechanism that lifts the seat from a flat position to a more upright angled position, easing the user into a standing position.
Lift chairs are medically-recommended by medical experts for persons suffering from bad backs, weak knees, weak legs, or achy hips.
This chair is designed with a powered lifting mechanism that raises the entire chair from its base into a standing position.
It often comes with a remote with multiple control buttons for reclining the headrest, footrest, seat, and backrest.
The lift chair gradually raises itself from the floor and into a forward position, until the occupant is almost standing.
Wall-hugger or wall recliners are among the top favorites for homeowners looking to conserve space.
This piece of furniture sits up straight, so it can be pressed directly up against a wall.
It has a more limited range of motion compared to the swivel or rocking chair but has a resting position that is easier to get in and out.
This type of recliner is ideal for small-sized rooms like the bedroom because it only takes up minimal space.
This chair doesn’t move back and forth like a rocker chair, rather, the angles come from moving forward on its track mechanism.
This product is an excellent option to save space while getting the same level of comfort, relaxation, and support as a rocking chair.
Features to consider before buying a recliner
You should consider the space that the chair takes up after relaxing because it is best to pick a recliner that fits into the available space.
The traditional, rocker and swivel chairs are known to take space up to 3ft when in a leaned back position.
This makes them ideal for big rooms where there is enough space to avoid congestion.
On the other hand, the wall-hugger chair fits perfectly into small spaces because it sits up straight and can be pressed directly against the wall.
The best recliners on the market are made with synthetic fibers like acrylic and polyester.
They are durable, stain-resistant, and do not fade easily.
Recliners made with natural fibers like cotton, wool, or linen are prone to fade easily and are usually more expensive than synthetic ones.
The buyer should look out for the recliner that provides the level of desired comfortability.
The rocker chair is useful for insomniacs and adults with little children, and the lift chair is a safer option for the elderly and persons suffering from weak bones.
Reclining chairs are designed to be more comfortable than regular armchairs; hence the homeowner should ensure he or she makes the best purchase.
Ensure that you are getting the worth of your money when purchasing a recliner.
Electric recliners tend to cost significantly higher than manual ones; however, there’s little to no physical exertion when operating electric chairs.
The buyer must compare prices, and outweigh the pros and cons of the product before making a financial decision.
Homeowners are advised to look at the specifications of different products before deciding on the one that suits their specific situation.
The swivel chair is perfect for those looking for a wide range of motion and the wall-hugger is an excellent choice for persons looking to conserve space.
Push-back chairs are best for those that prefer manual to electric products.
The modern or swivel chairs are better suited for people who do not want any physical exertion when operating their chairs.
Here are some of the best recliners on the market
Most Comfortable Recliners Reviews
This reclining chair is manually-controlled such that it looks like a regular armchair until it is in a leaned back position.
It has a tufted button fabric at the backrest and an extra padded cushion for maximum comfort.
It is easy to assemble, which is ideal for people that prefer easy set-up over complicated ones.
It has a mid-century design and gives a unique look to your living room.
It weighs fifty-seven pounds and is made with 100% polyester material for durability and stain-resistant.
- 100% Polyester material
- Button Tufted Fabric
- Clean lines
- Smooth finish
- Extra padded cushion
- Easy assembly
- No power is required because it is manually-controlled.
- It is sustainable because it doesn’t add to your electricity bills.
- It is easy to assemble.
- Extra padded cushion for maximum comfort
- Requires physical effort because the user has to lean back against the chair to move into a relaxed position
This is a luxurious piece of furniture that provides maximum comfort.
It has a full range of motion for users to move right, left, forward, and backward.
This product is a perfect balance of style and comfort and is a unique addition to your living room.
It is made with a highly durable fabric that is stain-resistant and anti-fade.
- 100% Polyurethane fabric
- Breathable leather lining
- One central stand (leg)
- 360 degrees rotation
- Power lever by the side of the armrest
- It is made with Polyurethane fabric, which is extremely durable and stain-resistant.
- It is easy to assemble, which saves time and energy.
- It has a full range of motion.
- It takes up space and is better suited for large rooms.
This is a manually-controlled recliner that looks like a regular armchair until it takes a relaxed position.
It is made with high-density foam and linen fabric that is soft against the skin, providing maximum comfort.
It is made with top-quality materials that give it a sleek and unique look.
- Soft linen fabric and alloy steel
- Non-toxic and hypoallergenic high-density foam
- Slim silhouette
- Side pockets
- It has a soft cushion fabric for maximum comfort.
- It is easy to assemble, which saves time and energy.
- Reclining position is dependent on the occupant’s physical effort to lean against the backrest.
This chair is designed for kids with manual control for safety purposes.
It is a lightweight chair and features a cup holder to prevent your child from spilling.
It has a fine leather material, which is among the top-quality materials for sofas and is stain-resistant.
It is highly durable, which makes it an ideal choice for children.
- Leather material
- It has a cup holder
- Easy to assemble
- Easy to assemble, which saves time and energy.
- It is made with high-quality leather, which is highly durable and stain-resistant.
- It has a cup holder on the armrest.
- It does not require a power source.
- It is sustainable and easy to manage.
- Requires physical effort to move into a relaxed position
This modern recliner has a stylish mid-century design, making it the perfect addition to your living room space.
It has clean lines and a smooth finish, which makes it look like a regular sofa until it relaxes.
The cushion is extra padded for a softer texture and better comfort.
- Polyester, Textile, Birch materials
- Extra padded
- Tufted backrest
- The cushion is extra-padded for maximum comfort.
- It is easy to assemble, which saves time and energy.
- It is made with high-quality and durable materials.
- It is manually-controlled, requiring physical effort.
This chair is a manually-controlled swivel recliner. It has a European-style seating comfort that gives your living room a unique look.
The central stand is made with solid hardwood and the seat with polyurethane for durability.
The user enjoys a full range of motion as the chair can swivel on a 360-degree rotation.
- 360-degree rotation
- One central leg (stand)
- 100% polyurethane fabric
- Hardwood frame
- Adjustable headrest
- It is made with high-quality and durable materials for longevity.
- The occupant enjoys a full range of motion without any restrictions.
- Movement requires physical effort because it is manually-controlled.
This is a manual reclining chair that is made with polyester and birch material.
The manufacturer pays great attention to detail by giving it a clean and smooth finish.
It is a great option for homeowners that are looking to conserve space because it only takes up minimal space.
The simple and smooth design allows this piece of furniture to fit into any room décor.
- Plush cushions
- Pipe rims at the edges
- Tapered leg stands
- Ideal for small rooms because it takes up less space compared to most sofas
- It has a clean and smooth finish with pipe edges along the rims
- It is easy to assemble with minimal effort and little time
- It has no power button, which means it requires physical effort to relax.
Electric Vs Manual
The electric recliners include Modern, Glider, Rocker, Swivel, and Lift chairs.
They are made with automated motors and controlled with buttons.
These chairs do not require physical strength to operate and are designed to provide a maximum level of comfort for its users.
The Push-back chair is manually controlled, without any power buttons or lever.
There are some pros and cons associated with both categories.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Manual and Electric Recliners
- Since there is no power required for manual recliners, you can place your chair anywhere in a room without having to worry about plug points. Electric chairs depend on power to function.
- Manual products are easier to maintain with no fear of technical issues because it relaxes by the occupant’s bodyweight. Electric chairs may over time develop technical issues.
- Manual chairs tend to be significantly cheaper than electrical ones because of the absence of power.
- Manual chairs are sustainable options because they do not add to the user’s electricity bill. Using an electric chair is an added cost to your electricity bill.
- An electric chair does all the hard work on your behalf without having to exert any physical strength. On the other hand, manual chairs are dependent on the user’s body weight to move into relaxed positions.
Fabrics that make recliner most comfortable
Natural fibers like cotton, rayon, wool, and linen are great to achieve the best-tailored look of many recliners.
The flat weave of the natural fibers is also suitable for creative patterns.
However, this group of fiber is susceptible to fading caused by the ultraviolet rays of the sun.
Synthetic fibers like acrylic and polyester, although not as beautiful, are stronger and more durable than natural fibers.
They are stain-resistant and fade-resistant, and because of their durability, are used for most of the top-quality recliners on the market.
Natural fibers are better in look and feel compared to synthetic, but they fade and stain easily.
Synthetic fibers are still prone to pilling over time, but they are extremely durable and resistant to stains.
Benefits of using a Recliner
- Encourages restful sleep for persons suffering from certain health conditions like sleep apnea and gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
- Lift chairs provide support for the elderly and those with weak bones and muscles.
- It provides a higher level of comfort compared to regular armchairs.
- Rocking chairs encourages restful sleep for insomniacs and babies.