Best sofas 2021: comfortable sofas for a stylish interior on a budget

The best sofas for your living room; we've rounded up the most comfortable sofas including chaise sofas, the best corner sofas and comfy 2 and 3 seater settees

A teal blue velvet sofa with patterned scatter cushions and an orange throw draped over the arm in panelled living room with a metal side table and teal blue lamp
(Image credit: Sofa.com)

Looking for the best sofas? As one of the key pieces of furniture in our living rooms we know choosing a new sofa can be a difficult decision. After all, a sofa needs to fulfil a lot of criteria, including suiting your decor, your budget, and, most importantly, being a place to relax and get comfortable.

Even the most active amongst us still spend a sizeable amount of time on our settees - especially as the night's draw in and evenings get darker - and with most options proving a fairly hefty investment, it's a purchase we all want to get right.

Once you start the search you may also discover there are a lot of options out there to choose from, including the classic two and three-seater sofas, chaise sofas for putting your feet up, modular sofas that come in sections you can configure into your own seating layouts, and spacious corner sofas that have room for the whole family. And, of course, the multifunctional sofa bed that allows you to offer guests an overnight sleeping space (find more of those in our guide to the best sofa beds).

To help you decide which is the best sofa type for you, just scroll to the end of this article for some in-depth buying advice, but if you're ready to start shopping you'll find our edit of the best sofas out there below.  

Best sofas 2021: a buying guide

To compile this guide we walked multiple miles around multiple sofa shops and toned our glutes doing sit test after sit test to find the best sofas available for comfort, style and price. Tried and tested, these are our top recommendations for your living room.

1. Best sofa overall

SOFA.COM HOLLY SOFA: a stylish and reasonably priced sofa with just the right amount of squish and support

A teal blue velvet sofa with wooden legs in a living room with blue painted panelled wallsReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Sofa.com)

Specifications
2 seater sofa: H87 x W155 x D90cm
2.5 seater sofa: H87 x W185 x D90cm
3 seater sofa: H87 x W215 x D90cm
4 seater sofa: H87 x W288 x D90cm
Chaise sofa: H87 x W255 x D150cm
Corner sofa: H87 x W266 x D266cm
Seat height: 50cm
Seat depth: 54cm
Seat cushions: feather-wrapped foam
Back cushions: feather
Upholstery options: 70+
Average lead time: 8-12 weeks
Matching furniture: Armchair & footstool
Does it come in grey?: Yes! Over 20 different shades
Reasons to buy
+Good value+Comfortable seating with just the right mix of squish and support+Four sofa width options+High legs can make a small room feel more spacious+Good range of upholstery options+Matching furniture available
Reasons to avoid
-Armrests may be a little high and thin for some-The feathers will rule it out for some

Out of all the sofas we've tried and tested, the Holly sofa from Sofa.com scores in our books as the best all-rounder. To our minds, the best sofa needs to deliver on style, comfort and price, and this option ticks all three boxes.

What's it like to sit on?
In our opinion, the Holly sofa has just the right mix of squish and support thanks to its deep feather-wrapped foam seat cushions and feather back cushions, plus a high-backed frame. 

The seat is comfy enough to curl up on and the tall soft-but-firm back cushions mean you have great back support if you prefer to sit - with the back cushions coming above the shoulders on most people. For once it's not just the back cushions doing all the work of supporting your back either, the frame itself comes nice and high meaning you can lean back securely without the cushions gradually deflating backwards.

The seat depth is fairly shallow at 54cm, so it's easy to maintain a comfortable sitting posture rather than being tipped backwards into a recline, and we found the 50cm seat height to be a good middle ground - not too high and not too low. It does make this more of an upright sofa than a curling up sofa though - although we still found there was room to do both.

We liked the high armrests as it means you have something to support your back if you like to sit sideways and put your feet up, but some might not like the thin tapered design and height.

Will it suit my interior?
This design suits a wide range of interiors, with the high-legged design working well in a period property but also looking right at home in a contemporary living room. 

Those legs - available in English Oak or Mahogany - also make it a good option for either a large or a small living room, as being able to see underneath the sofa to the back wall of a room will increase feelings of spaciousness within a compact room (although legs do also mean a hiding place for dust bunnies!).

This design also comes in a great range of sizes that make it easy to fit into a whole host of room sizes. The straight-backed designs come in 2, 2.5, 3 and 4 seater, and there's also a chaise and corner sofa version available. And if you prefer to have a matching living room suite then you'll be pleased to hear there is also a Holly armchair and footstool available.

Over 70 upholstery options - including 20 grey options! - also make finding a colour and fabric to suit your decor easy, and all fabrics we handled felt good quality and came in nice hues and textures. There is a great range of velvets, family-friendly cotton and polyester mixes, linens, wools and some great statement fabrics like on-trend textured boucles. There is only one leather option if that's what you're looking for, but it's a nice and versatile tan, which will suit a lot of homes.

How much will I need to spend?
We were pretty pleasantly surprised when we saw the price range of this sofa (and it's not often that happens!). The 2 seater sofa starts at £850, a 3 seater sofa from £1025 and a corner sofa from 'just' £1715 (which is pretty reasonable if you've investigated the price of corner sofas recently).

However, as with most sofas that come with a choice of upholstery, those 'from' prices are just for the entry-level fabrics, although in the Holly's case, those house fabrics are all nice options and offer some good neutrals. 

Prices do start creeping up significantly once you move into the more luxe selection of fabrics, with velvet upholstery on average adding an extra £600 to the starting price, and leather - always the most expensive option - nearly doubling the initial price.

In relation to comparative products we still think this sofa is very good value though. You can get sofas that are (quite) a lot cheaper, but we've sat on them, and they aren't very comfy!

Shop now:
Hollly 2 seater sofa, from £850, Sofa.com
Holly 2.5 seater sofa, from £935, Sofa.com
Holly 3 seater sofa, from £1025, Sofa.com
Holly 4 seater, from £1320, Sofa.com
Holly chaise sofa, from £1410, Sofa.com
Holly corner sofa, from £1715, Sofa.com


2. Best modular sofa

SWYFT MODEL 03 SOFA: a contemporary sectional sofa-in-a-box with a super short lead time

A pale grey contemporary modular sofa in a high-ceilinged living roomReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Swyft)

Specifications
Armless seat module: H71 x W70 x D92cm
Corner seat module: H71 x W92 x D92cm
Left or right armed module: H71 x W92 x D92cm
Seat height: 54cm
Seat depth: 69cm
Seat cushions: High-density foam
Back cushions: High-density foam
Upholstery options: 5
Average lead time: Under a week
Matching furniture: Footstool
Does it come in grey: Yes! A linen and velvet option
Reasons to buy
+Modular units mean unlimited configuration options+Sofa-in-a-box flatpack design useful for rooms with tricky access+Low-to-the-ground design works well in a large open-plan room+Can be easily dismantled to rebuild if you move home+Very short average lead time
Reasons to avoid
-Low back won't be for everyone-Fairly bulky with deep seats so not for small rooms-Will only really work in a contemporary interior-Limited upholstery options-Limited matching furniture-A LOT of packaging to dispose of

A modular sofa makes for a really versatile seating solution. Individual seating sections allow you to configure the sofa layout to best suit your room, and enable you to add, subtract or rearrange the seating units if you want to transfer your sofa to a different room or move home. They are also a great option for open plan layouts, helping to zone a room and create a more intimate seating area within a larger space.

Swyft's Model 03 is a contemporary low profile modular sofa that is part of the sofa-in-a box trend that aims to subvert the usual long lead times that come with most sofa purchases by aiming to deliver in under a week - often even within 24 hours. But, is it comfortable?

What's it like to sit on?
This is definitely a sofa designed for those who prefer to lounge and lay down rather than sit. It's not a squishy sofa, but the foam seat and backrest are comfortable and the seat offers some good bounce.

The backrest won't be for everyone as it is very low, but we found the sofa comfortable to curl up on with the backrest then becoming an armrest, and - if you prefer to lie down - then it's a great height for a headrest. 

The deep 69cm seat depth also means there's plenty of room for cushions if you do want to add more back support - although we think to get the most out of this sofa you need to embrace its laidback vibe and use it with the ottoman module or corner module to turn it into a chaise to lay back and relax on.

Will it suit my interior?
You're going to need a modern home to opt for this sofa, but we love its contemporary low-to-the-ground boxy shape. 

In our opinion, it looks best in a room with plenty of space, as the seats are deep and we think it looks most in proportion with at least three sofa seat modules - preferably in a chaise, U-shaped, or corner sofa configuration.

It works particularly well in a large room or an open-plan layout, where the blocky low-to-the-ground design will help to anchor the room and provide useful contrast to a light, airy and spacious interior.

In this design, the modular units don't lock together making it easy to rearrange the seating as you wish, or if you move home. We thought that might mean they moved apart over time, but rubber foot grips and the weight of the sofa itself keep things in place.

Upholstery options are limited - there are 3 velvets and 2 linen mixes on offer - but all are versatile and on-trend shades. They also promise stain resistance, a claim our pet-owning Shopping Editor put through its paces in our Swyft Model 03 sofa review.

If you have tricky access or are an apartment dweller the modular design is also a real bonus, as all parts are delivered individually making it easy to transport to any room - however, we did find that results in a LOT of cardboard packaging that you'll need to recycle after you're done building this flatpack.

How much will I need to spend?
The modular units don't come cheap, with a single seat costing £705, and the armed corner module or right/lefthand arms both £840 each. However, the adaptability this sofa offers means if you're a renter, or planning on upping sticks in the foreseeable future, then you'll likely save money on the frustrating expense of investing in a sofa that perfectly fits one home, but isn't quite right for the next.

If you need a sofa in a hurry, then you are also paying for the convenience of having this sofa delivered super promptly - plus the ease of being able to get it into a third-floor apartment with minimal stress.

Shop popular sofa layouts:
Swyft Model 03 2 seater sofa, £1680, John Lewis
Swyft Model 03 3 seater sofa, £2385, John Lewis
Swyft Model 03 4 seater sofa, £3090, John Lewis
Swyft Model 03 chaise sofa (3 seater plus ottoman module), £2860, John Lewis
Swyft Model 03 corner sofa, £3930, John Lewis

Shop individual seat modules:
Swyft Model 03 single seat module, from £705, Swyft


3. Best sofa bed

HEAL'S OSWALD SOFA BED: a king-size sofa bed with pocket-sprung seating and sleeping

A grey sofa bed sat on a geometric orange patterned rug in front of three brightly lit living room windowsReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Heal's)

Specifications
3 seater sofa bed: H98 x W222 x D103cm
Seat height: 43cm
Seat depth: 55cm
Sleeps: 2
Sleeping area size: H98 x W222 x D152cm
Seat cushions: Foam with pocket springs
Back cushions: Foam with pocket springs
Upholstery options: 3
Average lead time: 8-10 weeks
Matching furniture: Footstool
Does it come in grey?: Yes!
Reasons to buy
+Pocket-sprung foam seat and backrest makes for comfortable sitting and sleeping+Foam and feather back cushions+A super generous king-sized sleeping area+Hidden storage
Reasons to avoid
-Only one width option-Fairly low seat-Limited upholstery options-Limited matching furniture available

If you're looking for a multifunctional sofa then Heal’s Oswald sofa bed achieves that hard-to-find mix of a sofa that's comfortable enough to sit on every day in the living room, whilst transforming into an equally comfortable bed that your guests will be happy to spend the night on.

What's it like to sit on?
Generally speaking, sofa beds tend to be on the 'firm to rock hard' spectrum, so we were very pleasantly surprised when sitting on this sofa bed for the first time. The seat isn't a squishy sort of comfort but it's firm with plenty of give and bounce that makes for a comfortable seat that we'd be more than happy to spend the evening lounging on.

The contemporary design achieves this with some well-considered construction. The seat and backrest are formed from what Heal’s describes as ‘high resilient foam and hypersoft foam layers’ with 10cm deep pocket-springs nestled in amongst the foam’s midst. 

The loose back cushions are also a cut above the usual sofa bed standard, with feathers and foam adding some squish-factor and the backrest high enough to be nice and supportive to lean back against. And, once the sofa bed is pulled out into position, a handy hidden storage area means these cushions can be stored safely away so as not to clutter the room.

What's it like to sleep on?
As this sofa bed sees the seat and backrest fold out and down to become the sleeping surface, that comfortable foam and pocket-sprung seat transitions into a comfortable sleep experience too - in our opinion akin to a dedicated mattress.

The leather tab at the front of the sofa makes pulling the seat section up and out to transform the sofa into a bed fairly easy, and the legs fold out automatically creating a super generous king-size sleeping surface that’s a fairly good height from the floor.

Guests will be sleeping on the actual sofa surface, but as the sleeping area is a fairly standard king-size area getting a mattress protector to fit isn’t too hard of a job, and adding a mattress topper as well will help to disguise that join where the folded sofa back and seat meet - although we didn’t find it too much of an issue. Taller guests may perhaps find having armrests top and bottom of the sleeping area a little claustrophobic.

Will it suit my interior?
The blocky rounded rectangular design is pretty contemporary, so this sofa bed will suit a modern home best, although if you're not using it in the living room it will work well in a home office or playroom too.

Size options are limited with just the one width available, and upholstery-wise there are only three options to choose from with this sofa bed, although the mid-grey and navy blue Dessin Twist fabric are both good, versatile colours that have a nice texture and feel. There's also a forest green velvet for the same price if you want a more luxe finish.

For more in-depth detail head over to our best sofa bed buying guide to get the full lowdown. You'll find some cheaper sofa bed options there too, but if you're looking for a multifunctional sleeper sofa that isn't a compromise on any front, this is one option we definitely recommend.

Shop now: Oswald sofa bed, £2499, Heals


4. Best leather sofa

MADE LUCIANO SOFA: a contemporary leather sofa that offers plenty of bounce

A tan leather sofa with chaise section in a modern living roomReal Homes Rated Silver Badge

(Image credit: MADE)

Specifications
Chaise sofa: H86 x W278 x D154cm
Seat height: 46cm
Seat depth: 60cm
Chaise seat depth: 116cm
Seat cushions: Foam
Back cushions: Foam
Upholstery options: 7
Average lead time: 6-14 weeks
Matching furniture: No
Does it come in grey: Yes! Fabric or leather (kind of)
Reasons to buy
+A contemporary leather sofa (that can be hard to find)+Comfortable seat with a good amount of bounce+Nice leather texture
Reasons to avoid
-There's only a chaise option-Limited upholstery options-No matching furniture

Finding a leather sofa that doesn't make your living room look too much like a gentleman's club (unless that's the look you're after) and doesn't cost a small fortune can be a tall order. We think the Luciano from MADE has nailed it.

What's it like to sit on?
It isn't a squishy sofa, but both the seat and back cushions are soft and comfortable and we found them to give good support. The seat also has a surprising amount of bounce which made sitting even more comfortable, and the chaise section is a good length for putting your feet up.

The armrests are nice and wide, and the slanted angle of the internal arm makes it comfortable for lying down and resting your head on the armrest when you're ready to activate full lounge mode.

The leather is also nice and soft with a matt velvety texture that felt nice to the touch and doesn't cause bare skin to stick to it in hot weather, or get too cold in cool weather as shinier leathers can.

Will it suit my interior?
This sofa only comes as a chaise option, which is a bit of a shame in our opinion, as we would have liked to see some alternatives on offer. That being said, if you have the space then a chaise is always a good option in our books, allowing two people to get comfortable with their feet up at the same time. 

As well as a fairly hefty depth due to the chaise, this sofa is also pretty wide, so just make sure you double-check your measurements before you buy - including access dimensions.

Colour-wise options are fairly limited. The leather choices include a soft and desaturated tan (a refreshing change from a lot of overly bright tan leather sofas we've come across), grey (which in our opinion is much more of a sable brown - but a nice colour nonetheless) and a paler tan which we have to admit isn't our favourite shade.

If leather isn't for you there are also two velvet options - navy blue and duck egg blue - and three polyester weaves including a great mid-grey option that will suit a lot of homes.

How much will I need to spend?
Considering the polyester weave version is £1099 and often leather upholstery can double or even triple the price, we think the aniline leather option is a good buy at £1899. 

The only downside is you might need to be prepared for a bit of a wait. MADE usually has fairly long lead times, and it's not uncommon for those waits to get a little lengthier after you've ordered if stocks are low. Something to consider if you need somewhere to sit pronto.

Shop now:
Luciano fabric chaise sofa, £1099, MADE
Luciano velvet chaise sofa, £1199, MADE
Luciano leather chaise sofa, £1899, MADE


5. Best high-back sofa

JOHN LEWIS & PARTNERS DRAPER SOFA: a tall-backed sofa that has just the right mix of firmness and support

A grey high back sofa with wooden legsReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: John Lewis)

Specifications
2 seater sofa: H87 x W156 x D95cm
3 seater sofa: H87 x W202 x D95cm
4 seater sofa: H87 x W222 x D95cm
Chaise sofa: H87 x W222 x D148cm
Seat height: 43cm
Seat depth: 59cm
Seat cushions: Foam and fibre
Back cushions: Fibre
Upholstery options: 90+
Average lead time: 1-13 weeks dependent on upholstery choice
Matching furniture: Armchair
Does it come in grey?: Yes! Over 30 different shades
Reasons to buy
+High back+Pleasantly firm and supportive to sit on+Three sofa width options+High legs can make a small room feel more spacious+Option to have built-in footrest mechanism+Good range of upholstery options+Matching furniture available
Reasons to avoid
-Blends in easily with a range of decor but perhaps not the most exciting style statement-Good range of colours but not as many fabric choices - velvet options are thin on the ground and no leathers.

We think there are two main types of sofa sitters in the world; those who instantly kick off their shoes and curl up on a settee and those who prefer to sit up straight with their feet planted on the floor. In our experience, most cohabiting relationships seem to contain one of each, which can make finding a sofa that suits everyone particularly tricky. We think this high back sofa could satisfy both.

What's it like to sit on?
Alongside the Holly sofa at the top of this list, we found the Draper to offer the best sitting experience in terms of back support. The back frame itself comes pretty high on this model and the slightly taller fibre-filled back cushions felt pleasantly soft but firm enough to offer a supportive surface that reached up to nearly the top of our shoulders for taller testers and to the base of the head on shorter sitters.

Again, this isn't a squishy sofa, but the foam and fibre seat cushions are supportive whilst having enough softness to yield and offer some squash. The softness of the sofa will also depend on your fabric choices - thicker fabrics with a tighter weave offering more firmness and drapier fabrics allowing more give.

The seat depth is 59cm - a little deeper than the Holly's 54cm seat depth - and the straight back enabled a good upright sitting posture. That little bit extra seat depth meant it still felt there was enough room to curl up with your feet up if you prefer.

We also like the fact that even on the 3 and 4-seater sofas the seat cushion is one long section rather than seperate cushions, meaning no-one gets stuck sitting on the gap between the cushions, and you don't end up gradually tipping sideways on the edge of a seat cushion which keeps your back in better alignment.

Will it suit my interior?
High back sofas can be a bit like marmite. If you prefer contemporary design then you might tend to gravitate towards low profile shapes, but a more supportive design can be a lot better for your back - especially when you're likely to spend a good few hours on a couch. 

The Draper design aims to offer a high-backed sofa solution for modern homes. Its squared frame adds a contemporary feel, and its tufted cushions offer a modern twist on the classic Chesterfield sofa. 

We just couldn't help but feel the end result ends up being a bit too much a case of trying to please everyone and not quite pleasing anyone enough - not quite traditional enough for a period property and not quite modern enough to become the focal point of a contemporary home, however, we're willing to forgive it because it really was very comfortable to sit on, and the design is fine and very inoffensive. It just didn't quite float our boat.

How much will I need to spend?
Although there are 90+ upholstery fabrics on offer there is more colour choice than there is fabric variation. There are only 8 velvet options for example and no leathers on offer. This does mean prices don't vary too much though, with the more expensive band of fabrics roughly £300 more than the most affordable bands.

Shop now:
Draper 2 seater sofa, from £1449, John Lewis
Draper 3 seater sofa, from £1699, John Lewis
Draper 4 seater, from £1899, John Lewis
Draper chaise sofa, from £2899, John Lewis


6. Best traditional sofa

SOFA.COM BLUEBELL SOFA: a firm yet affordable classic sofa for a period home

A traditional sofa with roll arms and wooden feet in a period property

(Image credit: Sofa.com)

Specifications
2 seater sofa: H91 x W164 x D106cm
2.5 seater sofa: H91 x W192 x D106cm
3 seater sofa: H91 x W218 x D106cm
4 seater sofa: H91 x W244 x D106cm
Chaise sofa: H91 x W227 x D106cm
Corner sofa: H91 x W multiple x D multiple cm
Seat height: 53cm
Seat depth: 60cm
Seat cushions: Feather-wrapped foam
Back cushions: Feather and fibre
Upholstery options: 70+
Average lead time: 8-12 weeks
Matching furniture: Armchair & footstool
Does it come in grey?: Yes! Over 20 different shades
Reasons to buy
+A relatively affordable traditional sofa +Wide range of size options, including multiple corner sofa configurations+High legs can make a small room feel more spacious+Option to have most sizes delivered in four pieces with final assembly completed in destination room - great for rooms with awkward access+Also comes in a sofa bed option (although we found it even firmer to sit on)+Good range of upholstery options+Matching furniture available
Reasons to avoid
-Firm seats and fairly firm backrest-Deep seat won't be for everyone-Overall depth requires a fairly large room-Armrests are very low-The feathers will rule it out for some

This classic look sofa is one of Sofa.com's bestselling styles, and its low scroll back arms and turned wooden legs on castors make it the perfect aesthetic - at a comparatively reasonable price - for a period property. As such, we were eager to put it to the sit test.

What's it like to sit on?
To be honest, we had high hopes of loving this sofa - and there is a lot to love - but initially, we were a bit disappointed by the comfort levels. We found the seat cushions - which aren't all that thick - a pretty firm sitting experience, and the back cushions, although a little softer and quite supportive, weren't as enjoyable to sit back against as other models we've tried.

If it was an upright model then as long as you weren't after super squishy seating this sofa could be a comfortable sit, but because the seat is quite deep (60cm) we found that meant you needed to sit reclined a bit, which didn't feel that comfortable an angle for us with our feet planted, and curled up the seat didn't offer enough give to get super comfy. 

We also found the - lovely to look at -  scroll back arms a bit neither here nor there for practical use - too low to offer much arm support and pretty hard for resting your head on if you laid down. 

Will it suit my interior?
Looks-wise this sofa definitely delivers. If you're looking for a traditional-style sofa then the Bluebell has period elegance in droves, from the turned wood feet on castors to those pleated scrolled arms and the piped upholstery, it has all the classic drawing-room sofa details nailed.

As usual for Sofa.com's sofas it also comes in a super versatile selection of sizes; 2, 2.5, 3, and 4-seater, plus the chaise and corner options. This model also has the added flexibility of allowing you to opt for a 'breakdownable' version which is delivered in four parts with assembly in the room of your choice - a boon for anyone with awkward room access. 

The upholstery choices deliver too, with some great colour-popping velvets, muted linens and plenty of family-friendly fabrics. And there is an armchair and footstool to match for a cohesive living room look.

How much will I need to spend?
Seeing as the Holly could also suit a period property, we're comparing prices to that, and in this case, the Bluebell comes in around £500 more expensive for all the straight-backed sofas and a bit pricier still for the chaise and corner sofas options. 

Just like the Holly sofa, prices increase as fabric upholstery choices get more luxurious, but even entry-level fabrics offer a great selection

If you opt for a model that is delivered in parts there's also a £200+ surcharge for this, but if you have a difficult layout to negotiate it can be well worth it.

Shop now:
Bluebell 2 seater sofa, from £1315, Sofa.com
Bluebell 2.5 seater sofa, from £1485, Sofa.com
Bluebell 3 seater sofa, from £1535, Sofa.com
Bluebell 3 seater sofa, from £1975, Sofa.com
Bluebell chaise sofa, from £2605, Sofa.com
Bluebell corner sofa, from £2730, Sofa.com


How to choose the best sofa for you

The best sofa for you will depend on a range of factors, not least the size of your room, your lifestyle, and of course, your budget. So what are the key things to consider when shopping for this key household item?

How big should your sofa be?

It may sound obvious, but size is one of the most important aspects to consider before falling in love with your dream couch. 

Generally speaking, you're going to want the most spacious settee your room and budget will allow, but it's also important to make sure you measure carefully to ensure your sofa is going to work in your space.

It's easy to fall in love with a roomy chaise longue in a spacious sofa showroom, but back home that family-friendly corner sofa might make your living room feel cramped and cluttered. 

A top tip is to measure out where the sofa will go in your room using masking tape to mark out all dimensions. As well as width, make sure to consider the height of the sofa – especially if you want to place it under a window sill or beneath existing architecture - and its depth to ensure there is plenty of space to walk around it comfortably. 

And don't just measure the room where your sofa will (hopefully) end up - unless you want a stressful few hours come delivery day! Ensure your chosen sofa will fit through doorways, around bending hallways, or up flights of stairs. Most retailers list packaging dimensions on their sites, so ensure these match the access you have. 

And if your access is tricky? Don't think that means you have to plump for the smallest two-seater you can find. Modular sofas that are delivered in sections are great options for adding a large amount of seating to difficult rooms, and both flatpack options and selected models from specialist furniture retailers, like Sofa.com, provide the advantage of being able to have your sofa constructed within the final destination room.

What's the most comfortable sofa?

Just like finding the best mattress for you, finding the most comfortable sofa for you will depend a lot on personal preference, and there is nothing that can quite replace going into the showroom and sit-testing a few of your favourite styles. We've rounded up the most important things to look out for when considering comfort.

Cushions
Sofa cushions come in a range of materials and constructions, but the two most commonly found are foam and feathers. 

A foam cushion is more generally used at the budget end of the market and offers a fairly firm sit depending on the type used. The benefit of foam is that it's quick to spring back into shape after being depressed, although over time you may find a depression in your favourite sitting spot. 

At the other end of the scale are feather cushions. These are generally more expensive but provide a more plumptious seat, although the feathers can gradually shift so you'll need to do more plumping. 

Generally speaking, the happy place is with the best of both worlds, and many sofa manufacturers now offer foam cushion cores that are wrapped in a layer of soft feathers - providing comfort and retaining the sofa shape.

Height
If you're using a sofa to zone a room, then a low-to-the-ground model can offer a great way to create dedicated areas without breaking up the space too much, but, the flipside is that (once past a certain age perhaps) low seating can be harder to get up from and can encourage you to sprawl more than sit.

Ergonomically, the recommended seating position is to have your thigh bones parallel to the floor, which for most of us means sofa seating that's a roundabout knee height when standing.

Backrest
Whilst some love the look of a low-profile sofa, if you're lounging for long then adequate back support is going to make sitting more comfortable. 

Look for models that have a dedicated backrest, rather than sofas that offer a low back and then rely on taller cushions to provide support.

How to clean your sofa

You've found the perfect couch for you, plumped the cushions and planned the Sofa-based Netflix marathon. But what happens when disaster strikes and your new sofa gets its first spillage? Never fear. Our guide to how to clean a sofa will have you sorted pronto.

Want more living room inspiration?

Find out how best to use your space in our guide to how to design a living room, or stay on top of the latest trends and easy decor updates on our dedicated living room ideas page. And if you're struggling with how to make the most of a compact lounge, then find top tricks and tricks amongst our small living room ideas.

Amy Lockwood
Amy Lockwood

After completing a major house renovation, Amy discovered what she had always suspected; that decorating is the best part. She joined the Real Homes team in 2021 to share her love for all things interior, finally putting all those hours spent agonising over the best white paint to good use in Real Homes’ carefully researched buying guides, and helping readers to find the best furniture, decor, and furnishings to create the home they've always dreamed of.