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The Best Office Chair Material for You

Choosing an office chair can be a surprisingly difficult decision. You want to find an office chair that is long-lasting, easy to clean, ergonomic, attractive, and comfortable but don’t want to spend more money than necessary. 

Unfortunately, no office chair material will satisfy every employee’s requirement. The best material for your office furniture will depend on your priorities and office climate. Here are the benefits and drawbacks of four common office chair materials.

Fabric Office Chairs

Fabric is the most common material used for office chairs for a reason. It’s cost-effective, bears plenty of weight, and can withstand movement. 

Fabric office chairs are also somewhat breathable, although this factor may be restricted by the material in the cushion.

The downside of fabric office furniture is that it’s tough to clean and may stain easily. If your office employees tend to bring a lot of snacks and drinks to their desk, you may want to choose a different office chair material.

Office employees with particularly sensitive skin should be aware that some fabric chair materials may be irritating. However, most modern office furniture is made with healthier materials that are less likely to cause problems.

Summary: Fabric office chairs are best for office furniture decisionmakers who are more concerned about cost and durability than ease of cleaning.

Mesh Office Chairs

Mesh Office ChairsMesh office chairs are a good option for employees who are concerned about breathability. If your office lacks air conditioning, mesh office chairs with a simple plastic or metal frame may be your best bet to keep cool on hot summer days.

Like fabric office chairs, mesh office chairs are soft but often difficult to clean. It’s challenging to adequately reach every corner of this highly textured material, especially if the mesh is stretched over an insulating cushion.

Also like fabric, mesh may agitate sensitive skin. Mesh office chairs may be poky, and they are often sprayed with chemicals to make sure they are fire retardant. Before purchasing a mesh office chair, check to make sure the fibers don’t poke at the user’s skin by either trying the office chair out in person or reading online reviews.

Everett Office Furniture’s Cool Mesh Pro series is an adjustable office chair option for employees who engage in different tasks throughout the day. With extensive adjustability and color options, the Cool Mesh Pro series can work well for nearly any office and employee.

Summary: Mesh office chairs are good for breathability and comfort in summer temperatures, but may not be a good option for those with sensitive skin.

Vinyl Office Chairs

Vinyl office chairs are durable and sturdy. Like their cloth and mesh counterparts, vinyl office furniture tends to be less expensive than leather options.

Vinyl office chairs have several advantages over cloth and mesh office chairs, including ease of cleaning and a more luxurious appearance. If your employees tend to snack during office hours, vinyl office chairs may be a good option. High-end vinyl fabrics may have a similar appearance to leather at a fraction of the cost. 

The main drawback of a vinyl office chair is that it’s not good for temperature control. This material is one of the least breathable office chair options in the summer heat. On the flip side, a vinyl office chair is unlikely to hold heat in the winter.

Summary: Vinyl office chairs may be the best option for employees who want a durable, easy-to-clean, and rich-looking material and aren’t worried about comfort across different temperatures.

Leather Office Chairs

Leather Office ChairLeather office chairs have long been associated with prestige and class. In addition to being a status symbol, leather is one of the friendliest options for employees with sensitive skin. Many C-suite employees choose a leather office chair for maximum comfort and an impressive image.

However, you may need to invest in extra care to keep a leather office chair from drying out and cracking. That said, leather is typically easy to clean as long as you don’t spill sticky liquids on the seams.

Leather office chairs are generally more expensive than chairs made from other materials. But if you’re willing to pay the higher cost, you’ll appreciate the quality, comfort, and style of a leather office chair.

Everett Office Furniture’s Cleveland Series offers unbelievable comfort, adjustability, and style for busy executives who prefer a leather office chair.

Summary: Leather chairs are prestigious, easy to clean, and great for sensitive skin, but require additional maintenance and may be too expensive.

High-quality Office Furniture in Everett

Everett Office Furniture is your go-to source of high-quality local office furniture. We offer new and used office furniture in a wide variety of materials. To learn about our current offerings, contact us today.


Whether you are in the market for the perfect desk chair or are planning a large office remodel, Everett Office Furniture can help you with all your facility needs.