Whether you’re replacing an old lounge or you’re redesigning the family room of your dreams, choosing the right recliner is an important decision. From leisurely watching TV, to settling in with a book, or even sitting back for a mid-afternoon nap, there’s a style for every lifestyle.
With many different sizes, shapes, materials and functions to choose from, we’ll help you select the right recliner to fit your relaxation needs, with just 5 easy steps.
1. Before You Shop
Prior to purchasing a recliner, it’s best to take into consideration how you rest and relax after a long day. Is it just you that will use it, or will other members of your household be the main occupiers? These types of questions will help determine which recliner suits your home. It is important to consider these key questions before making your purchase:
Who will be the main user? Is it just for your use, or will others use it too?
Do you need a single seat, or do you want it to be the hero in your lounge room?
How much reclining action do you want? Do you need a full extension?
Do you prefer manual or automatic reclining action?
Do you need adjustable headrests and lighting?
Do you need USB charging?
Would you need assistance getting out of the seat to stand up?
What type of material is your preference - fabric or leather?
What weight rating do you need?
2. Start with Size
Choosing the perfect recliner starts with size, as not one size fits all. To determine which size is right for you, consider who will be using it. Will it be just you, or perhaps there will be a few people reclining at a time? Do you prefer a snug fit or maybe something a bit more spacious?
Single Recliner: Perfect for one person, single recliners are great if you prefer your own space. They come in a standard size, however “Grand”, “XL” or “King” sizes are also available.
2-Seater Recliner: This size fits two people side-by-side, with a reclining mechanism available for both seats. These will commonly have separate recliner functions for each seat, so that occupants don’t have to lay back simultaneously.
3-Seater Recliner: This size easily accommodates three people comfortably, with a reclining mechanism available for all three seats. It is common for the recliner functions to be separate so occupants don’t have to lay back simultaneously.
Above: the Oregon single recliner
3. Select the Right Shape
Deciding on the right recliner size was dependent on your usage and the number of people using the recliner. On the other hand, selecting the right recliner shape entails taking into consideration of your space.
Single Recliner: This style offers versatility, as they are smaller and can be easily moved. They may compliment your main sofa set, or even fit perfectly in a corner of a bedroom or study. If you only have a couple of people in your household, you may even want to consider two single recliners over a larger lounge for their convenience.
Recliner Lounge: These are ideal for when you need space to seat a few people at a time. A recliner lounge is best positioned where you would normally place your main sofa, as they are a bit bulkier than a single recliner.
Recliner Lounge Suite: Suitable for large families to seat several people at a time. A suite may consist of a 2-seater recliner lounge paired with two single recliners, or a 3-seater recliner lounge complimented with two single recliners, perfect for seating up to 5 people.
Recliner Corner Lounge: Perfect for when you have limited space in your lounge room. The corner lounge fits neatly in a corner yet can accommodate for a crowd. These corner lounges usually have recliners on either end, where there is space to sit back and some even have built in easily to use sofabeds.
Above: Oregon 6 Seat Corner Chaise With Sofabed King
Fabric or leather? As a piece of furniture that you’ll use for many years to come, it’s important to choose the right material for your lifestyle. Recliners are often available in the choice of two materials: fabric and leather. Here, we’ll help you choose which material will suit your lifestyle:
Fabric: Affordable to purchase, fabric is available in many colours to suit your home décor. It is often softer than leather, therefore more inviting to rest on. However, fabric is more prone to absorbing spills, mess and stains that can’t be ‘wiped’ off, which may not be the best choice with young children or pets in the home.
Leather: exuding a luxurious and premium feel, leather usually comes with a higher price tag compared to fabric. A downside to leather is that it is usually only available in limited colours, so there’s not many options in the way of design. However, leather is longer lasting as it can be easily treated and cleaned.
Above: La-Z-Boy’s Tripoli Lift Chair in leather
Above: La-Z-Boy’s Tripoli Lift Chair in Caesar Fabric
5. It’s in the Finer Details
At this point in your buying journey, you would have decided on the size, shape and material of your recliner. The finer important details to consider is how the recliner function will operate.
Manual or Electric Reclining: Depending on your preferences, recliner lounges and chairs can be operated manually or electronically. Manually operated recliners do not need to be close to a power outlet and the reclining feature is activated by pulling a lever that’s usually located on the side of the chair or lounge. Electric recliners, on the other hand, require a power outlet to activate the reclining feature which is activated by a button. This can be restricting in terms of positioning your lounge. Is an electric recliner better than a manual recliner? Electric recliners boast the benefit of an automated user experience. All you have to do is sit back, select your desired reclining action and the recliner will transport you to the correct recliner position. Having an electric recliner is great if you want to deeply relax without the effort and they add a luxurious gold-class atmosphere to your home theatre room. Extension Options: from a slight angle to a full 180° vertical extension, choosing how much your lounge can recline is vital to how you rest. Slight recline: a lounge with a slight reclining action or half extension between 90° to 180° is perfect if you’re watching TV, reading or cradling a child to sleep. 180° straight extension: a recliner that can stretch all the way back so you can lie flat is ideal for passing time or an afternoon nap.
Lift Chair: If you require assistance getting out of your seat, a lift recliner chair is the perfect lounge for you. These are powered by electricity and will automatically help you recline and then navigate forward to help you onto your feet. If you have a multi-generational household, this could be the option for you. Is a lift chair right for me? If for reasons like injury, disability or you simply need some assistance with your mobility, a lift chair is the perfect choice. At a touch of a button, the powered lift chair lets you recline and relax comfortably and when you need to, the chair will safely guide you from your sitting position to a standing position. A lift chair is very practical if you have older family members in your home.
Rocker Recliner: a rocker recline lets you recline and rock at the same time and in some cases, without the need to engage or have the footrest elevated. The rocking motion is soothing and is commonly used for nurturing and putting babies and young children to sleep. Is a rocker recliner suitable for me? A rocker recliner is ideal for many uses with the main benefit of being able to rock like you usually would on a wooden rocking chair. If you’re a parent with a newborn or young child and need to rock them gently to sleep, a rocking recliner is a life-saver. Once the child grows up, the rocker recliner still serves to comfortably cradle you and your child as you cuddle, read a book and share all of life’s important moments. Even if you don’t have young children in your home, a rocker recliner is great to have if you prefer the rocking motion that brings rest and helps calm your senses.
Above: Ascot Electric Lift Chair in fabric
Above: La-Z-Boy’s Tripoli Grand Rocker Recliner in leather
Buy your perfect recliner today!
Are you ready to purchase the perfect recliner? With the many important considerations in mind, it’s now easier to buy your lounge of choice so you can relax comfortably. View our selection of recliners below and speak to your local Betta Furniture team to make your new recliner purchase today.