Mother and Baby

The best nursing chairs

Section: Nursery
The best nursing chairs

Make feeding your baby a comfortable experience with a purpose-designed nursing chair.

During your baby’s first months, you’re likely to spend a lot of time feeding – and we mean a lot – both in the day and at night.

A purpose-designed nursing chair should be comfortable and supportive, whether you’re breast- or bottle-feeding. For breastfeeding, the chair should also help you get in the best position for helping your baby latch on, and to minimise any discomfort or backache for you. And once the feeding years are over, a nursing chair can provide a cosy spot for bedtime stories with your child. 

Do you need a nursing chair?

A nursing chair isn’t essential and not everyone has the space for one. Many new mums carry out feeds perfectly well in a normal armchair, on the sofa or sat up in bed, with pillows or cushions for extra support. Doing this means you’re not tied to the room the chair is in. However, plenty of new mums like having a purpose-designed nursing chair.

Consider the space you have available and think about how much you’re willing to spend on a nursing chair, as you might not want to keep it longer term. You can wait to see if you need one, but the time between ordering one and it being delivered might mean you don’t get the chair you want immediately. 

How much movement do you want in a nursing chair?

Some nursing chairs are fixed in position, while others have adjustable backrests. A recline function will be useful if you feel like resting during a feed. A choice of three or so different positions should be fine, although some chairs provide more.

Some babies find a rocking or gliding movement comforting – if you like the idea of this, look for a chair that has either of these functions, or both, but that you can lock in a fixed position in case your baby – or you – prefer this at times. And check the movement isn’t noisy, as a creak or squeak every time the chair rocks could drive you to distraction in the middle of a quiet night feed. 

Is the fabric easy to clean?

Most newborns bring up a little milk, and the odd bout of sickness is inevitable, so make sure the fabric is washable or can be wiped easily to prevent stains. Plush velour might be soft to the touch, but it can be a nightmare to clean unless treated with stain guard. 

How big a seat do you want?

If space is limited where you plan to put the chair, take measurements first and, if needed, go for a more compact option, perhaps without a separate footstool. If you have an older child who likes to cuddle with you for a story, or wants to sit next to you while you feed your baby, go for a larger seat. 

Do you mind what your nursing chair looks like? 

Nursing chairs can look a bit old-fashioned, but some brands realise being a parent doesn’t mean your sense of style goes out of the window. If the chair fits in with your style and decor, you’re more likely to want to keep it after you’ve stopped nursing. 

Our real-mum testers put six of the best nursing chairs through their paces - click through below to read their full reviews