People who work on their desks for the best part of the day can experience back issues, lower back pain, stiffening of neck, muscle fatigue, among other issues. Buying an office chair can be an investment in the monetary sense, but it is a much-needed investment health-wise.
Having used many chairs for office over the years, I have dabbled all too well with the expectations vs. reality scenario. You have to either pay big bucks or make compromises on the features that can be found in one chair.
Spending a great deal of time on research has brought me to the conclusion that you can get the best office chair under 300 dollars, and here are a few that I have shortlisted based on the best features you can find in the chair.
Here’s a quick list of the chairs that we are going to be discussing the review in great detail of:
- Best High Back Office Chair: Smugdesk Executive Thick Padding Office Chair
- Best Big and Tall Office Chair: HON Big and Tall Executive Office Chair
- Best Task Office Chair: Duramont Ergonomic Adjustable Office Chair
- Best Gaming Office Chair: E-WIN Computer Gaming Office Chair
- Best Budget Office Chair: SIHOO Computer Office Chair
Best High Back Office Chair
Smugback executive office chair is designed with all-day comfort in mind. The chair is sufficiently padded to give the users maximum comfort. It comes with a built-in headrest that is softly padded to provide your neck and head cushioning when you rest back. The armrests, too, are similarly padded and offer you support and relieve the pressure points in your hands and wrists.
The design of this chair makes you sit comfortably, and you get the feeling of being enveloped in comfort and provides great support for the upper body. The back, headrest, raised sides, seat, everything is padded to contour to your body shape. The upholstery is of bonded leather. Even then, the chair has a good air circulation design, with the utilization of high-density mesh in its build design. The chair legs are fitted with double wheel casters, which give you a 360 degrees swivel with ease.
The backrest is designed to help maintain body shape, which relieves stress on the spine. The built-in lumbar support helps mitigate lower back pain. The high back design comes with a seat height adjustment mechanism, which makes it suitable for users of different heights. The tilt function allows the chair to tilt back up to 120 degrees and also allows it to rock back and forth so that you can work with the angle you feel comfortable in.
The waterfall seat is designed to provide comfort to the back of your thighs and legs and relieve the pressure and pain with the padding. The seat in this chair also features an in-built coil spring that provides support and helps the seat bounce back to its original shape after usage, thus maintaining the seat shape and avoiding sagging.
Smugdesk Executive Office Chair is Suitable For –
This chair is suitable for big people – height and weight-wise. Because it supports up to 500 lbs, it becomes an inclusive option for many people, and the adjustable seat height makes it easy to adjust the chair to suit your needs.
- OPTIMAL SITTING EXPERIENCE: Our deluxe executive office chair was upholstered in durable bonded leather, in pursuit of a longer service...
- SUPEREME COMFORT PADDING: Built-in headrest, providing you the ultimate in ease. After typing in front of the computer for hours, you can...
- CABLE ACTUATED MECHANISM: Seat-side cable actuated levers make this big and tall office chair easy for customized settings. With ergonomic...
- The chair supports up to 500 lbs making the chair the best choice when many people are going to be using the chair.
- The chair has fully adjustable ergonomic functions.
- The armrests, backrest, and headrest are thickly padded.
- Seat height adjustment option.
- The chair provides 360 degrees of swivel support.
- It is easy to assemble.
- Users can’t adjust the armrests.
- The bonded leather will start to fade or crack over the years.
- The seat tends to lean forward, which can make you slide off the chair.
- Some customers noticed a slight lean to the side.
Best Big and Tall Office Chair
The HON big and tall executive office chair is one of the best options if you are looking for a size-inclusive chair. It supports up to 450 lbs and is also height adjustable. Because of this, the mesh material used to make the chair is a good option because it promotes air circulation.
The mesh material and seat are black in color, making it a great fit for a home or office environment. The black makes it look sleeker even though it is a big chair.
The seatback is made by sandwiching two layers of padding between mesh layers to keep your body cool and also not compromising on comfort. The lower back support is also customizable so that you can move it up and down depending on what points on your lower back need the most support. The back comes with a recline option that you can adjust, which gives you support no matter what your sitting position is.
For people who want a seat to sink into, this can be a great option. The ultra-wide all-inclusive seat option is a big selling point for this chair. The padding is soft yet firm, providing you with a perfect balance of comfort and support.
The one main problem in the Smugdesk chair was that the armrests weren’t adjustable, which is not an issue here. The armrests can be moved up and down with height-adjustment and can pivot closer or away with width-adjustment.
HON Big and Tall Executive Office Chair is Suitable For –
This tall executive chair is suitable for a myriad range of people in terms of height or size. It is a great option for tall or heavy users because it is supportive and provides many ergonomic settings.
- BREATHABLE MESH EXECUTIVE CHAIR: This work chair's mesh seat back and sandwich mesh cushion with two layers of padding keep your body happy...
- ERGONOMIC ADJUSTMENTS: Let this comfortable office chair take care of your body while you work with an easy, adjustable recline,...
- ADJUSTABLE ARMS: Give your neck and back a break; these adjustable-height and width arms move up and down, and toward and away from the body...
- This chair is durable and has superior build quality.
- Two layers of padding, that provide comfort, are sandwiched between breathable mesh material for proper air circulation.
- The chair provides adjustable lumbar support. It can be moved up and down to support the area that needs it the most.
- This chair has adjustable armrests that can move up and down or pivot sideways.
- Users can adjust the tilt tension.
- The 360-degrees swivel is smooth.
- This chair supports up to 450 lbs.
- 5-year limited warranty.
- Although the seat is deep, it is relatively narrow (20 inches).
- Back does not move independently of the seat, so the entire seat tilts backward (not just the backrest).
- The lumbar support can occasionally loosen up and move even after being tightened.
- This chair has convex armrests, which can be uncomfortable when working on the keyboard.
Best Task Office Chair
This breathable mesh used to design this office chair makes it look stylish and modern. The ultra-modern design is the best fit for any minimalistic office interior. The mesh back provides better air circulation to support prolonged usage without your body sweating. The mesh is also supported by a sturdy frame to give you the feeling of extra strength when you lean on the mesh; you won’t have to worry about it breaking.
The leaning angle of the chair can be customized because of the tilt lock mechanism. This helps you find a seating position that works well with your sitting position. There is also an adjustable lumbar support option, which allows you to customize the height and depth of the lumbar.
The recline option lets you comfortably rest whenever you take a break from work. This makes taking a break much easier because you don’t have to leave your chair to get some relief.
The height and angle of the headrest can be adjusted for maximum neck and head support and comfort. The headrest seamlessly blends with the backrest tilt function. You can adjust the height of the armrest along with its distance from the seat, and it is also padded to help you rest your hands and relieve pressure from your wrists.
Speaking of the seat, you can adjust the height too. The seat is made up of soft cushion but thick padding to give you premium comfort during stretched hours of work, but the support isn’t lost either.
The rollerblade caster wheels allow you to move the chair easily across the office floor so that you can make use of your workspace without getting up each time you need to grab something from the other end of the desk.
Duramont Ergonomic Office Chair is Suitable For –
This chair is suitable for people who work for prolonged hours. The mesh back keeps the chair cool and drives the body heat away from you. The adjustable backrest, armrest, lumbar support, seat height, and tilt mechanism all add to the comfort level of switching positions as the day progresses.
- COMFORTABLE - Thanks to this state-of-the-art office chair’s numerous adjustable features you can be assured of finding a comfortable...
- BREATHABLE MESH - The breathable mesh back on this ergonomic office chair provides support while keeping your back cool and comfortable....
- BACK SUPPORT - Have back issues or don’t want to develop them? This adjustable office chair includes adjustable lumbar support and a...
- The chair features a breathable mesh back that helps the body to remain cool.
- The chair supports up to 330 lbs.
- The chair has adjustable lumbar support that can move up and down based on your preference.
- The soft seat cushion comes with thick padding.
- Adjustable headrest.
- Adjustable and padded armrests.
- The chair is light-weight and easy to assemble.
- The assembly of the chair can be a bit tricky.
- Even though the cushion is soft because of the thick padding, it can feel much firmer for many people.
- Sitting upright can be a tad uncomfortable because of the adjustable lumbar support.
- The seat cushion edge can push between the legs.
Best Gaming Office Chair
E-WIN is one of the leading and reliable chair producers. If you want to go for a high-end chair in a budget, this is the one for you. EWIN’s champion series office chair built with great ergonomic functions is a great fit for gamers and for people who desire proper lumbar and headrest support in their office chair.
The back is leather cushioned and has adjustable lumbar. The headrest is removable, making it great for people who need the support and also for who have no use for it. The armest can be raised or lowered depending on how you are sitting. The 360-degrees swivel is smooth and makes moving the chair around your workspace comfortable.
The frame is made up of robust and high tensile steel, and the foam that makes the base of this chair is independently produced especially for this chair. The height is adjustable, making it easier to customize it according to your sitting position and height. The tilt of the chair is not only backward but also features a slight forward tilt that goes from 85 degrees to 155 degrees.
The wing design chair provides the right amount of support and comfort. The foam used for the seat cushion is a high-density foam that has a better elasticity resilience. The cover is made up of sports car PU leather, and the use of high-quality materials gives it a longer life span.
E-WIN Computer Gaming Office Chair is Suitable For –
It is suitable for people who want proper support along with a cool look. The black and red color combination of this chair definitely makes it the center of attention in any room. Proper lumbar support and removable headrest gives you the comfort you need to work long hours.
- 【Selected High-end Material】Made of Sports Car PU Leather,Seat with Wing Design, like Sitting in a Sport car. All Foam is Integrated...
- 【Extreme Comfortable and Mufti-function 】Ergonomics Design,Make Long Gaming Sessions become much more Comfortable.You can Swivel...
- 【HIGH-SECURITY】Integrated Metal Frame, European Standard E1 Environmental Painting Avoid Rust.Class-4 explosion-proof gas spring of...
- This chair features removable headrest.
- The chair supports up to 330 lbs.
- This chair is easy to assemble.
- 10-year warranty on metal frame and a 2-year warranty on other parts – which is one of the best warranties for a chair at this affordable price!
- Although removable, the headrest isn’t adjustable.
- It can be a little tough to lean back because of the weight of the chair.
- Lumbar support can slide around if not fastened properly.
Best Budget Office Chair
This is the best value desk chair in the list with fully functioning ergonomic features to provide the users with a perfect blend of comfort and proper support under budget. The design is engineered based on the human dynamic digital model. The backrest ridge is structured to be the same shape as the human spine. This helps contour the spine and align the chair flush with the spine to release pressure on the spine and reduce back pain.
The double S-shaped backrest provides contouring support to the waist and the neck. The back tilts up to 117 degrees. The waterfall seat reduces the pressure on the back of your thighs and helps increase the blood circulation. L-shape armrest provides practical support. The streel-frame structure provides structural integrity to the chair and also contributes to the slim, sleek, and modern look of the chair.
The surface layer of the seat is made up of a textile mesh cloth, followed by supportive compound silence oxford cloth, the combination makes the seat soft and breathable, which also makes it long-lasting.
This is by far the cheapest on the list, but while it lacks in some ergonomic features, the in-built focus of the ones it has has been tested to be highly comfortable and supportive by the users.
SIHOO Computer Office Chair is Suitable For –
This chair is a great fit for someone who is looking for a practical solution. It is an excellent fit in any modern office space and provides phenomenal head, neck, and spine support. If you would like to customize the settings, then this might not be the best fit.
- 【Features】Double S-shaped backrest, waist support neck, 48cm wide pillows more space, comfortable support neck, head full stretch, 10CM...
- 【Ergonomic design】SIHOO is recommended by the Ergonomics Application Association. SIHOO's ergonomic design is based on the human...
- 【material】The steel-frame structure is made by 235 project refined stainless steel.Its service life can be up to 10 years.The castors...
- Double S-shaped backrest that contours to the body.
- Waterfall seat design reduces pressure on the legs.
- Sleek and stylish design.
- This chair has a tilt mechanism and a tilt tension adjustment.
- This chair has no cushioning, which can be a turn off for many people.
- The arm isn’t adjustable.
- It comes with no height or seat adjustment.
- It has a limited tilt angle.
- One-year warranty.
How to Maintain Your Office Chairs
Office chairs are an investment, even though you are looking for a budget chair, but $300 is still a considerable amount for many. Taking proper care of the chair will make it last even longer. Maintaining your furniture is as important as taking care of your home, vehicles, and electronics to make them retain their luster for years.
Office chairs are used for hours on end, and they undergo a lot of stress resulting in a good amount of wear and tear. Proper maintenance of the chairs will slow the process of decay. The continuous weight of our body and the constant movement can make the parts to loosen and for dirt and dust to settle between joints and various components to interfere with the smoothness of the chair’s movement.
Here are some easy steps you can follow to make sure you are treating your office chair well:
1. Schedule Periodic Cleaning
While cleaning with soap and water might not be the best idea for some chairs, vacuuming works wonders even if you do not know the maintenance tips for the material from which your chair is made.
You will at least get rid of all the dust and grime that collects over the week, and also the crumbs of whatever food you were eating. Crumbs can get wedged around the edges and between tight spots, which become a breeding ground for bacteria and smell. Immediately wiping any spills and cleaning any bits helps reduce the cleaning efforts and also helps the upkeep of the chair.
If you are going to use cleaners to clean the upholstery, then be sure to use the specific cleaners meant for the material such as leather cleaner for leather, and so on. Use non-abrasive cleaners to prevent your cleaning tool from scratching and leaving marks on the chair. A cotton cloth is the best bet to be gentle with the cleaning.
2. Make Use of the Caster Wheels
When the chair is new, we love rolling the chair on its wheels. Eventually, the excitement of the wheels dies, and so does the use of wheels with it. The caster joints are great traps of hair and carpet fur, that can get wound up tightly and stop the wheel from moving freely. They also collect dust, dirt, food particles, and whatnot.
Remember to keep moving your chairs from time to time to keep the mobility smooth. Make sure to clean the joints thoroughly whenever you are cleaning your chair so that the things caught up there do not settle deep enough. If your wheels are getting squeaky, oil them thoroughly and wipe the excess before use.
3. Check the Hardware
Under the constant weight of our bodies, the screws and joints can get loose over time. It is essential to check the hardware to stop any mishaps from happening periodically. Most manufacturers suggest checking the screws and bolts every six months.
Check all the screws and bolts and tighten the ones that feel loose. If the screw doesn’t tighten snugly, then you might have to replace that particular screw. Check the cylinder as well, if the screws don’t stay in place no matter how much you tighten or how many you replace. The cylinder can be the issue too.
The Basic Considerations When Making an Office Chair Purchase Under $300
When we go for a set budget, we have to adjust our expectations accordingly. To start out with, you need to be clear about your needs. What the use of the office chair is going to be has an important role in selecting the functions that we favor over others. How many users are going to be using the chair for office is another factor that you need to take into account. The hours the chair is going to be used is also one of the significant considerations to be made.
Here are some of the major features that you might want to focus on:
When looking for a chair that is bound to be used for prolonged hours, ergonomics is something that you can’t compromise on. Look for a chair with good lumbar support, adjustable tilt option, and adjustable armrest. If you need a headrest, make sure to include that in your list and check for adjustability.
Your budget will decide what material you can buy. While leather chairs are good for long periods, they might easily go out of your $300 affordable price point. The fabric or mesh material are few of the ready options for you.
Mesh chairs are breathable and make the chair convenient for prolonged hours of usage. They fit in the budget, look good, and function great. How long the chair lasts also depends on the material of the chair, like the structural integrity is dependent on what it is made of in addition to the design engineering.
3. Adjustable Parts
Adjustability makes the use of the chair to be more versatile, and you can get more out of your chair. The chair is not customized to a single person, so it makes it easier to be used by various people and also makes it supportive of different sitting positions.
- Adjustable backrests – they should be able to tilt so that you can get support no matter if you are reclining, sitting straight, or slouching.
- Adjustable armrests – they should be able to move up and down and pivot to the sides to support your sitting posture.
- Adjustable height – this makes it easier to adjust the chair according to our body posture and our height.
- Adjustable seat – this helps you customize the seat with respect to your height and your work needs.
There are also other adjustable features like headrest adjustment, adjustable lumbar support, seat depth adjustment, etc. Most chairs come with built-in lumbar support, but in this list, I managed to find many with adjustable ones. But, these are difficult to find in a budget chair. Although all the adjustable options might be difficult to find in one chair, these are some of the major ones you should look for.
With budget chairs, the warranty is limited. The best I could find was one with a 10-year warranty plan, and even that covered the chair partially. For an extended warranty validity, you will have to buy an expensive chair, which might fall out of your budget range. But, they cover the chairs completely for 10 to 12 years.
When you think about it, budget chairs eventually turn out to be more expensive. The high-end chairs can easily last you for a decade. You might have to buy 2-3 budget chairs in the same time period. If the warranty is something that matters to you, then you will have to read the warranty details. The coverage period for the chair structure is usually more than that of the upholstery.
The best office chair under 300 dollars that can be a great budget replacement for a $1000 office chair can be a bit tricky to find, but it is not that difficult. After rounding up all the chairs, my recommendation is the HON Big and Tall Executive Office Chair because it has almost all the features that make an office chair great.
It is great for tall or heavy users. It supports all height and weight spectrums. The ultra-wide seat is great for support and also provides comfort. The mesh material used increases breathability. It has adjustable lumbar support that you can move to direct the help to the area of your back that needs it the most.
The adjustable armrests can change positions and width, making it a comfortable option for people who keep changing positions and would still like to have proper arm support. The reclining option also makes it a great buy for those few rest breaks you take between work throughout the day.
All in all, the HON Big and Tall Executive Chair provides you great value for money with the most features and superior build quality with an inclusive support system and comfort.