If you are in the market for a new sofa, then we're here to help you come to a decision. There are so many sofas to sift through, from an abundance of retailers and we're guessing that you haven't got the time to browse them all. Now, this all-important purchase needs to be right, so you've done the smart thing by coming to the experts as your new sofa will prove itself to be the focal point of your living room, tieing all of your home decor together nicely. Also, a high-quality sofa will last for years and years so it's important that you get it right or you might be stuck with something you're not happy with.
These sofas have been highlighted by our expert Amy, who has spent many hours trawling through sofa stores in the UK, to come to a conclusion on the most comfortable sofas. We've also tried and tested a few bestselling designs, read multiple reviews and grilled the team for their expert opinions to help narrow down the top sofas around. When choosing these sofas, we made sure to consider four factors: style, quality, comfort and price.
Should you be in the market for something that your guests might end up sleeping on, then you're in the wrong place as our best sofa beds guide is the one for you to read. Keep scrolling for the sofas we're loving right now, from the likes of Sofa.com, Swyft, Habitat and more. Whether you want a spacious corner sofa with room for all of the family, a chaise sofa to kick back and relax on, or even a classic three-seater sofa, you'll find the best options right here.
The best sofas to buy in 2023
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Comfortable and stylish, there's a lot to like about Habitat's Julien sofa, and at just £670 for the 180cm wide two-seater or £800 for the 220cm wide three-seater, if you're looking for one of the most affordable sofas you can invest in — without compromising too much on comfort or looks — then this option comes high on our list.
At this price point there are still some compromises, of course, namely the fixed seat cushions which mean you can't just flip over a cushion if a spillage occurs, and the limited upholstery options (you're going to need to like velvet), plus the shortage of width options compared to other sofa models on this list. The low-to-the-ground frame with 40cm seat height may not be for everyone either.
So why does the Julien still score so highly? For the price, this is one comfortable sofa. The fixed fibre-wrapped foam seats are on the slightly firmer side but the model we tested still had a good amount of squish, and we loved the seat depth, which with the foam-filled seat cushions offering good comfort and support was perfect for sitting or curling up on. Plus the low armrests are well-padded and the perfect head height for naps, or (although generally not recommended for your sofa's frame health) a great width for perching on during a party.
And, although the upholstery options are limited, the velvets are amongst some of the nicest we've sampled, with a lustre that feels a lot more luxe than most sofas of this price-point can muster and deep rich shades in some great colourways. Plus, although the coordinating range isn't extensive (there's no ottoman to turn this into a chaise sadly) the matching armchair is a great buy too.
If you're looking for a sofa to fit into a small living room, then the Holly is a great option to consider. The 125cm wide loveseat is the most compact seating size on offer, though this sofa does also come in a wide choice of larger space-saving options including two-and-a-half, three and four-seater sofas, plus a variety of chaise and corner sofa sizes.
Its petite proportions are partly down to the slim armrests that lend the design a contemporary edge, and its ability to make a small room feel more spacious is largely thanks to those tall legs which allow the eye to travel under the sofa and reduce the frame's bulk to give the impression of more spaciousness.
A wide variety of sofa sizes and configurations are also matched by a broad selection of 70+ upholstery options, including some great family-friendly smart velvets and cottons, textured boucles, leather and linen-mix options. And the contemporary style has just enough of a nod to mid-century design that we think it will work brilliantly in either a modern or period home.
It's also a good option if you want to overhaul your entire living room suite, with a coordinating armchair and footstool available alongside the wealth of sofa sizes. What's not to love?
The convenience of the Swyft Model 03 gives it pride of place as our third favourite sofa. Our Head Ecommerce Editor Annie has this sofa in her living room and she loves it. It's definitely one to consider if you are looking for a sofa in a hurry as the convenience of their 24-hour delivery is second to none, which means that you'll be sitting and watching TV in comfort for the 16 weeks that you'd usually be waiting for a sofa to be delivered. It also arrives in boxes, meaning that it will definitely fit through your front and interior doors. It's essentially a hassle-free sofa.
Otherwise, it's undeniably great for smaller spaces that you want to make look bigger thanks to its low back and sides. It never fills a room or overwhelms a space because of this. Alternatively, it's a solid option for open-plan spaces too as having it in the middle of a space, again thanks to its lower back, will ensure the flow from one space to another is just right and it'll never feel boxy. In fact, this is a really light and airy sofa considering it sits on the floor. Another reason why we love it: you never have to worry about the dog pushing his toys under the sofa.
When it comes to comfort, it admittedly takes some getting used to because of its lower back, but rest assured that when you find your spot you'll love it. It's more of a sofa that you really kick back and lie into, surprisingly enough. And even when not in use, it never looks untidy and always gives off a modern and sophisticated vibe. It comes in three upholstery options: linen, faux leather and velvet. All of these are stain-resistant (yes, we poured red wine onto our sofa to test it, and spoiler alert: it really comes out). While you can choose from a huge range of colours, including a bunch of shades of grey.
The fact this sofa is modular means that you can rearrange it to suit the size of any room. Yes, renters, this is a game-changer! You can remove or add sections as you please, and with the chaise model, the ottoman is a separate part so that you can move it from left to right as you please. It's also worth noting that it stays in place and never moves thanks to its rubber feet.
The most affordable sofas often tend to be quite modern in appearance, but if you're after seating that's a little more timeless – and that won't break the bank — then the Cory sofa's blocky build could well fit the bill.
Having tested a few models in different upholstery options with both the classic back
or scatter back cushion design, we've been impressed by the cosy design which strikes the best balance of sink-in comfort and sturdiness from the seat itself and the slightly elevated armrests. It's sure to keep both straight sitter and curler-uppers happy.
There's also a good selection of sizes on offer, including two and three-seater, plus a chaise and corner sofa option that can be complemented by a matching footstool, armchair, and swivel chair. There's even a cleverly disguised sofa bed version that is a rarity amongst sofa beds in that it's barely distinguishable from the sofa in terms of seat comfort. Ideal if you're looking for a multifunctional sofa that will allow you to host guests without compromising on your own comfort if said sofa bed needs to also be your main living room seating.
The only potential downside is the shortage of upholstery options. We weren't blown away by either the slightly too-shiny Dallas woven chenille or the slightly too-thin Cosmos polyester option, although all are versatile neutrals. It's a shame the slightly more exciting scatter back cushion fabrics aren't available as the main body cover, but, as long as you want grey or beige (and statistics show most of us end up playing it safe this way) then this sofa still remains a good all-rounder at a great price point that's well worth considering, especially if you time your purchase with one of Furniture Village's fairly regular sales.
If you have the space to work with then you're unlikely to regret opting for more sofa to stretch out on, especially if you have multiple housemates, family, or friends to seat comfortably.
A large sofa will usually be a lot more expensive which is why the Hendricks sofa is one of Habitat's most popular designs. It offers spacious seating at a very affordable price point.
There are generously proportioned two, three, and four-seater sofa options, plus a three or four-seater chaise and two corner sofa configurations to choose from, all in Habitat's luxe-look velvet upholstery. And while the colour choices may be limited, all are great shades that lend statement style to this contemporary design.
What's more, we loved the comfort levels on all the models we tested. The seat is deep, especially if you're on the shorter side, but we found it very comfortable for sitting or lounging, with comfortable seat cushions that have a nice amount of sink, and soft yet supportive back cushions. The padded armrests are also super comfortable, with the low arms at the perfect height for resting your head for a nap.
Although the back may be a little low in height for some, this low profile design also works especially well in an open plan room where it won't interrupt the flow from one zone to another, delivering a designer look without the designer price tag.
Sold through Furniture Village, we were impressed by most of the Lounge Co. sofas we tested, but if you're looking for comfort then the Romilly sofa comes top of our list.
The high-backed design features lumbar support cushions that make sitting back super comfortable and supportive, and we found the seat depth to be just the right in-between depth that suits either sitter-uppers or curler-uppers. The foam seat cushions are both supportive and soft.
Available in two, three, or four-seater widths, this sofa can cater to different household needs and, if you love nothing more than mid-century interiors, this pick will look the part. Tapered legs, recessed armrests and high backs serve classic style with no compromise on comfort as you might expect with this kind of design.
Upholstery options are more extensive than Furniture Village's usual range too, with some statement velvets, linen-look cotton and viscose mixes, and a selection of soft leathers.
If time is of the essence and you're looking for a sofa with quick delivery, then a Swyft sofa is one of the fastest options going. In-stock designs arrive in under seven days and can be delivered in just 24 hours if you buy directly from the Swyft website with next-day delivery which is almost unheard of in the sofa world.
The flat-pack designs make getting your new sofa to its final destination a stress-free experience, with each box far more likely to fit through narrow doorways, tight hallways, and up multiple flights of stairs than a fully-built sofa. Having tried and tested a good selection of Swyft models (see our Swyft Model 02 sofa review and Swyft Sofa Model 03 review) we can also confirm that self-assembly is a fairly easy process, with no tools needed, although plenty of cardboard to dispose of in the aftermath.
The Model 05 sofa is one of Swyft's latest offerings, and its clean lines nod towards that trad high-backed sofa shape, making it a great option for both modern and period homes. The seating is a little on the firmer side, but we found it a happy compromise for those who want both a sit-up sofa and seating that's deep enough to curl up on if required.
Upholstery options are limited, but they're all great shades and fabrics, with our review team giving Swyft's stain-resistant technology a good run through, and all tests (thankfully) resulting in spotless sofas to date!
If you're looking for an affordable sofa then one of the most common compromises that will crop up is a lack of upholstery choice, and there's little more annoying than finding a sofa that's super comfortable and on budget only to discover that none of the colourways or fabrics will work in your home.
Although the Darlings of Chelsea's Darwin sofa is at the more expensive end of the price spectrum compared to other options on this list, the brand does offer the widest selection of fabric choices, with over 170 velvets, cottons, linens, and leathers to choose from in heaps of colours and patterns. Plus, you can customise the feet by choosing from four wood tones.
Comfort is also well-considered, with a great depth seat that offers the best of both worlds whether you want to sit upright or lounge, and a nice amount of sink to the seat cushions whilst still offering good support. Our only gripe was that the armrests were a little under-padded for our liking.
Another bonus is the option to have this sofa delivered dismantled and built in situ, a great solution for anyone struggling with awkward delivery access.
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2 important things to consider when choosing a sofa
The best sofa for your home will depend on a range of factors, not least the size of your living room, your lifestyle, and of course, your budget. So what are the key things to consider when shopping for this key household item?
Sofa size and layout
First up, you need to work out how big your perfect sofa should be.
You may be constrained by room size, but if you have a little more space to play with then think about how many people your sofa will need to seat on a regular basis. If you can, opt for a sofa a little bit larger than the maximum capacity to make things less of a squeeze.
However, it's also important to keep your sofa in proportion to the room to stop things from feeling cramped in a small living space, or the sofa from getting 'lost'.
A top tip is to measure out where the sofa will go in your room, bearing depth in mind, to make sure there is plenty of space to walk around it. Check heights, especially under windowsills or existing wall furniture, and if it isn't flat-packed then measure doors and awkward hallway angles carefully to ensure you will be able to get it into the room.
A sofa can also be really useful when bringing a living room layout together and can help define designated spots for dining and relaxing, in small and larger more open plan spaces alike. So it's worth tapping into how its design can complement your home and lifestyle needs when it comes to choosing yours.
When it comes to finding the most comfortable sofa for you, to our mind, sofa sitters fall into two main camps. Those who prefer to sit up straight with good back support might prefer a shallower seat depth with a higher backrest so that you can keep your feet planted on the floor and your back aligned. Those who like to curl up or recline on a sofa will want to look for deep squishy seats.
A chaise sofa can combine the best of both worlds and offer plenty of sprawling space to keep everyone happy, whilst a corner sofa can be a great option for family living or shared households.
Next up, there's cushion construction to consider. Most modern sofas have either foam, fibre, or feather cushions. Foam cushions will bounce back into shape more quickly but generally provide a seat with more resistance, whilst fibre and feather cushions create a deeper cushion to sink into but will likely need regular plumping as
they risk becoming compacted otherwise.
Which option you find most comfortable, and prefer the look of is largely down to personal preference, but lots of manufacturers have now combined the best of both worlds by wrapping resilient foam cushions in plumptious feather or fibre outers.
Should a sofa touch the walls?
Looking for small living room ideas? Pushing furniture right back against the wall is only going to make a room feel smaller, even if it does mean you gain some floor space. It's best to go for a low, contemporary design with narrow arms. Sofas and chairs raised up on high legs will make a room feel bigger, as the floor can be seen beneath.
How we chose the sofas included in this guide
To find the best sofas for all budgets we’ve walked hundreds of miles around multiple sofa showrooms and toned our glutes doing sit test after sit test to try out all the latest releases, plus grilled the Real Homes team for their expert knowledge, along with their friends, and their friends' friends, to find out how their sofa choices are holding up to the rigours of day to day life. We also take into account the wider views of those who own each product, whether that’s via online reviews or social media.
Amy was previously Real Homes' resident sofa expert and she clocked up the miles testing out bestselling sofas in showrooms across the country to find the best-in-class sofas for this guide.
Annie is the Head of Ecommerce at Real Homes, and she was sent the Swyft Model 03 sofa for her spacious living room. Annie lives with her husband and her Pug, Doug, and rated this sofa highly in her Swyft Model 03 review, where she poured all sorts of liquids onto her sofa to test its stain resistance properties – and more.
Where to buy a sofa?
If you need a little help when it comes to finding a place to buy a sofa, then here's a list of the retailers we can recommend:
Yay, you've found the perfect couch. You've plumped the cushions and planned the Sofa-based Netflix marathon. But what happens when disaster strikes and your new sofa gets its first spillage? Take care of your brand-new sofa by cleaning it regularly using the best methods and tried-and-tested upholstery cleaners for your fabric type. That way yours will last for years to come, bringing your space all the comfort and function that it deserves.