What Are the Different Types of Recliners?

by Andrew Smith| Last Updated: January 6, 2021

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No home furniture can compete with the comfort and relaxation of a recliner. Moreover, they can efficiently operate with a remote control or a lever hence a favorite to many.

As a new mode of comfort, recliners have hit the market with a lot of popularity in most homes. The days of one-size-fits-all recliners are long overdue. With the new advancements and attention to special needs, recliners come in many types. So how do you know your type?

Remarkably, the consumer has the freedom to choose a type that fits their lifestyle. Before buying, you need to understand the various types in the market. See below the types of recliners currently in the market.

Table of Contents

Rocker Recliners


Just as the name states, this chair rocks and reclines, and a doctor can prescribe this chair as a treatment for insomnia. Moreover, it’s a great comfort source for nursing mums as they experience sleepless nights of colic trying to put the baby to sleep.

The rocking motion induces sleep making it a favorite spot for many people to nap. It has different reclining angles. With a rocker recliner, you can set the footrest up with the back, not necessarily going all the way down. This factor makes it ideal for small spaces as it takes little space in the room. Preferably, you can place the rocker recliner in your bedroom or nursery.

Most rocker recliners have swivel and glider features. However, these features come for an extra cost since they boost your comfort levels and convenience. See our review of the best rocker recliners for your home.

Two-Position Recliners

Two Way Recliner

If asked to bring a recliner, most people would go for the two-position recliner. This is because; the general idea of a recliner to most people is entirely flat and upright. Hence the name, two-position recliners comes to birth.

Operating this type is relatively easy as you need to release the footrest as the back reclines fully down to a flat position. The two-position recliners take a lot of space in the room with the back fully reclined since you have to place them away from the wall. Also, since they have no advanced features, they tend to be the cheapest type of recliners in the market (Budget Recliners).

Even though they have no special features, they come in various colors and fabric to blend and boost your home’s interior décor.

Wall-Hugger Recliners

Wall hugger recliner

As a small space owner, you do not have to give up on the comfort of a recliner. A wall-hugger recliner takes up very little space allowing you enough room to style it according to your preference. In a wall-hugging recliner, there’s less movement as it reclines slightly against the wall. This chair only needs a maximum of 6inches clearance from the wall to the back of the chair.

Some can also adjust to a higher position allowing you to unseat effortless, especially mobility issues. All you need to do is get your perfect size and have it in your small space.

Related: 10 Best Wall Hugger Loveseat Recliners

Lift Recliners

Lift Recliner

This chair is motorized. This is the perfect type of recliner for the elderly with limited mobility. When you touch a button on the remote control, the chair rises, lifting you to a standing position. This way, you get to stand up effortlessly from the chair without straining your knees and back. Also, you can sit in 3 positions, read, watch movies, and sleeping.

A riser recliner requires you to plug into a wall socket with a transformer. This way, there will be no risks of electrical shocks. Furthermore, you need to have enough space to own one of the lift recliners. Read on.

A lift recliner can either be a single or dual motor. The single motor operates on just one motor for both lift and reclines functions. Conversely, the dual-motor each motor operates a different role. One runs the back of the chair while the other manages the footrest.

Push-Back Recliners


the back of the push-back recliner moves is the only movable part, making it a plus for small spaces. Besides, it does not have an in-built footrest. Most push-back recliners come with a separate ottoman to rest your feet.

It is a simple chair that does not require a lever or remote control but your back’s strength. However, even with a simple operating system, this chair comes in a classy model that will lift the face of your space.

Orthopedic Recliners

Orthopedic Recliners

This type is for those people with special needs. Such needs include lower back pains and hips or joint pains. Therefore an orthopedic recliner comes with advanced features like heat and massage functions, an adjustable headrest, and a padded footrest.

Related: Top 10 Best Recliner for Lower Back Pain

Functions like heat and massage relieve back pains and boost blood circulation. According to your budget, you can choose a massage that only vibrates or kneads and vibrates at the same time. Also, you get to choose the massage’s location and heat functions on the chair from a wide range. This means that they come with different pressure points according to your needs.

The adjustable headrest allows you to use your recliner more comfortably without straining your spine. Mostly, orthopedic recliners are motorized to operate by remote control.

Recliner Materials

Different recliners have different materials. The common types of recliner upholstery are as follows;

Leather: this is the most common material for middle to high-end class customers. Even though getting real leather is challenging, faux leather makes a perfect substitution. Leather is expensive but easy to maintain. Apart from being classy, it is smooth, soft, and wear-resistant. Preferably, please do not use a leather recliner with pets or kids around to avoid their claws, cuts, and bites damaging the material. Use a dry or wet cloth to clean a recliner and leather balm to make it shine and prevent cracking.

Brushed fabric: if you have a tight budget, look for the recliner with this upholstery. It is tough and durable to last an extended period giving you value for your money. Also, it is easy to clean even with tough stains. Being somewhat fuzzy, it blends easily with any décor regardless of the color scheme. It is skin-friendly, making it easy to sleep on.

Stiff woven material is not common in homes since it is perfect for office and work areas. It is stiff and rigid, making the recliner uncomfortable to sleep in. It is a sturdy and long-lasting cover making it also tough for comfortable wear and tear.

Also read: Leather Vs Fabric Recliner – Which One Is the Best Material?

Color Guide for Different Types of Recliners

Not every color will match your interior. Therefore, below is a color guide tip if you are a new owner of a recliner.

looking for the best recliners for gaming? Check this review.

Parting Shot

Recliners should help you relax, but the search can be tiring. Please go through our reviews of the different types to make a great choice. Furthermore, you can walk into a store and do physical testing to have a one-to-one experience and an appropriate judgment point.

Happy shopping!


  • Andrew Smith

    Andrew Smith is the founder of CozySeating, is a father of 2, and an engineer from one of the leading furniture stores in the country. Due to his 10 years of experience, he has proved to be the best person to offer advice to clients regarding different seating furniture based on their needs and performance. Besides, he is a specialist in product reviews and always keeps up with the current trends in the market.

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