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5 Best Chair Beds for Sudden Overnight Guests

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Written By Connie

CPD Sleep Consultant

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Featured image of Best Chair Beds

3 April 2024 5 min read

Chair beds – simple, space-saving, problem-solving, guest-sleeping solutions everyone could benefit from! Choose the best chair bed from our list.

Aren't you just tired of having to force your guests to stay in a hotel? Wouldn't it be nicer if your folks could spend the night when they pop around from out of town? It would, wouldn't it?

Well, luckily for you, getting your hands on the best chair beds is the only solution you'll need.
Chair beds are a wonderful addition to your living room. They're nice and cosy, and more importantly, a lot more compact than sofa beds.

While it is true that a single sofa bed could offer more space for your guests during the night – it would also take up more space during the day. And, considering you're the one that has to live there, you kind of have to go for a chair bed.

Now, the issue we're running into now is – how do you select the right chair bed/guest bed? Well, you put your faith in us, and you allow us to present you with some options, alongside a few helpful pieces of information.

Our top 5 chair beds

Now, for the main event – top 5 best chair beds on the market. We put in quite a few hours into researching these products and let us tell you – it was no picnic. There are so many good chair beds from various reputable brands on the UK market, but that number can't possibly compare to the number of mediocre chair beds we've come across. However, these five met our criteria. They were all from reputable brands. They were all comfy, affordable, good-looking, and most importantly – ready to become a bed in mere seconds. Let's check them out!
    Chair Beds 1
    Product image of Happy Beds Jay-Be Retro Mink Chair Sofa Bed.
    Happy Beds Jay-Be Retro Mink Chair Sofa Bed
    Best Overall
    Chair Beds 2
    A product image of Dunelm Mito Single Futon.
    Dunelm Mito Single Futon
    Best Value
    Chair Beds 3
    Product image of Happy Beds Farrow Grey Fabric Sofa Bed.
    Happy Beds Farrow Grey Fabric Sofa Bed
    Best Compact
    Chair Beds 4
    Product image of Homcom Sofa Bed
    Homcom Sofa Bed
    Best for All Rooms
    Chair Beds 5
    Product image of Vonanda Sofa Bed.
    Vonanda Sofa Bed
    Best Contemporary Design

Best Overall: Happy Beds Jay-Be Retro Mink Chair Sofa Bed

The top pick when it comes to chair beds – don't look elsewhere!
Best Overall
Product image of Happy Beds Jay-Be Retro Mink Chair Sofa Bed.

If you don’t care much about the price and just want the best possible chair bed on the market, this is the ideal option for you. Although it comes with quite a hefty price, the Jay-Be Retro also sports unparalleled comfort.

That’s because it actually has a built-in mattress that easily folds and unfolds with the bed. Not only is this not something you’d see every day but it also means you’re getting the sleeping experience of a premium bed while also keeping the compact design chair beds are made for.

With a wool cover that wicks away moisture, a spring system that offers support without sacrificing comfort, and a simple but elegant design, this chair bed truly is in a league of its own. So, if you want the best of the best, this is the chair bed for you!

KEY FEATURES:
  • Type: Foldable/Roll out
  • Material: Polyester fibres, wool, recyclable steel, wood, e-Fibre
  • Sizes: Small double
  • Assembly: Assembled
  • Trial: N/A
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Delivery: N/A

Advantages

An icon depicting a spring
Built-in mattress
This sofa bed comes with a built-in spring mattress that is foldable.
An icon depicting a wool
Wool cover
High quality wool cover wicks away water.
An icon depicting a medal indicating a warranty
5-year warranty
You get 5-year warranty for this sofa.

Disadvantages

An icon depicting a money bag indicating an expensive product
A bit expensive
Though expensive, the quality justifies the price.

Best Value: Dunelm Mito Single Futon

The most comfortable sofa bed on a budget!
Best Value
A product image of Dunelm Mito Single Futon.

This neat little chair/futon is an essential piece for any modern home owners. It's a timeless piece, designed to fit any decor and with nine available colours to choose from – that statement holds very true.

The Mito sofa chair easily unravels its solid pine body to form a single-sized low-profile sofa bed, big enough to fit a grown person. Out of all the sofa chair beds on our list – this one resembles an actual bed the most. When in “bed mode”, obviously.

It's sleek, it's contemporary and most importantly – it's rather comfortable.

KEY FEATURES:
  • Type: oldable
  • Material: Pine, cotton, fibre blend
  • Sizes: Single
  • Assembly: Half-assembly
  • Trial: N/A
  • Warranty: 28 days
  • Delivery: 5-7 working days, free

Advantages

An icon depicting a good value product
Excellent price-to-quality
Considering everything, this is a fantastic price-to-quality ratio.
An icon depicting modern design
Contemporary design
You can match any decor or interior design, thanks to the timeless design.
An icon depicting chain links indicating durability
Sturdy & durable
The product is sturdy and highly durable.

Disadvantages

An icon depicting no warranty
28 days warranty
We would love to see warranty period more extended.
An icon depicting a heavyweight person, illustrating a product that is not suitable for overweight people
Not for heavy people
Heavy people reported durability problems as well as a lot of sinkage.

Best Compact: Happy Beds Farrow Grey Fabric Sofa Bed

If you really want a chair bed but simply don’t have the room for an extravagant, big model, this is the ideal choice for you.
Best Compact
Product image of Happy Beds Farrow Grey Fabric Sofa Bed.

First off, we have to point out just how good this sofa bed looks. Although the design is fairly simple, the upholstered gray fabric fits just about any room and gives off that modern vibe. And it doesn’t lose any of those aesthetic points even when it’s unfolded.

The bed is definitely on the smaller side and fitting an adult might require getting a chair for their feet or for them to curl up quite a bit – but that’s what you should expect with a bed this compact.

KEY FEATURES:
  • Type: Foldable
  • Material: Wood, upholstered material
  • Sizes: 115 x 154 cm
  • Assembly: Self-assembly
  • Trial: N/A
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Delivery: N/A

Advantages

An icon depicting a magnifier indicating high quality
High quality
High quality materials & manufacturing.
An icon depicting modern design
Modern design
It's perfect for all rooms, especially for the modern designs.
An icon depicting a foldable design
Easily foldable
The backrest folds easily and turns into a chair bed.

Disadvantages

An icon depicting a non-adult product
Not a great fit for adults
Adults may require another chair to get their feet on.

Best for All Rooms: Homcom Sofa Bed

Fully adjustable to adjust to your needs!
Best for All Rooms
Product image of Homcom Sofa Bed

If you really want to make the most out of your chair bed – get the one that can do it all. Homcom single sofa bed has a backrest that reclines to five different levels. So, when your guests aren't around, you can just kick back and relax in it. Neat, right?

Its solid metal frame is far sturdier than you'd usually find in a chair bed, and despite being single sized – this one could probably hold two people in terms of weight.

Also, we can't help but mention the faux suede upholstery covering the softest high-density foam that's just as comfy as you'd want it to be.

KEY FEATURES:
  • Type: Foldable, click-clack
  • Material: Alloy, steel, metal, faux suede
  • Sizes: Single
  • Assembly: Half-assembly
  • Trial: N/A
  • Warranty: N/A
  • Delivery: 5-7 working days, free

Advantages

An icon depicting a magnifier indicating high quality
High-quality
The product sturdy and high quality, meaning it will last long.
An icon depicting modern design
Modern design
It is a great fit for any modern room so it can easily fit in.
5-level reclining design
You can choose 5 different settings for your backrest.

Disadvantages

An icon depicting no warranty
No warranty
There is no warranty available for this product.
An icon depicting a non seesaw
Stability issues
Customers reported a lack of stability in legs once the bed is fully reclined.

Best Contemporary Design: Vonanda Sofa Bed

Feel the luxury with this faux leather 4-in-1 sofa bed!
Best Contemporary Design
Product image of Vonanda Sofa Bed.

Wouldn't it be nice to have an ottoman that can turn into a chair, that could turn into a lounger, that could turn into a bed? Sounds impossible, right? Wrong. This Vonanda sofa bed does exactly that. It's a 4-in-1 package!

Not only is it unbelievably good looking, but it's also very versatile. This faux leather with jacquard detailing contemporary-design package is all a living room needs. You could virtually buy this same product four times and have four different pieces of furniture that would last you a long time. Bonkers, isn't it?

KEY FEATURES:
  • Type: Foldable, click-clack
  • Material: Metal, faux leather
  • Sizes: Single
  • Assembly: Half-assembly
  • Trial: 180 days
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Delivery: 5-7 working days, free

Advantages

An icon depicting a kettlebell on a surface
Heavy duty
The product is sturdy and highly durable for the price you pay.
An icon depicting a good value product
Excellent price-to-quality
The quality you get, as well as the craftmanship, is of the highest quality.
Adjustable backrest
Fully adjustable backrest, with 5 reclining angles to choose from.

Disadvantages

An icon depicting a product for people that are not tall
Not for tall people
Due to its dimensions, this is not an ideal pick for tall people.
An icon depicting a hand holding a wrench
Slight mechanism issues
Some customers have reported problems with reclining mechanism.

What to look for when buying best chair bed

As we have just learned, not every chair bed is the same. They differ quite a lot one from another, and the only way to make an informed decision when shopping is to know what to look for.
In this section, we'll outline all the important features you should be on the lookout for when searching for the best chair beds. If you manage to keep these in mind while shopping, there's no doubt in our minds you'll end up with the best chair bed possible.

Types of chair beds

What's interesting about chair beds is that you could basically consider them sofa beds, only in smaller form factor. So, just like a sofa bed, the chair bed also has similar types.
The three types we're going to discuss today are foldable, pull-out and click-clack chair beds.

Foldable

Foldable chair beds are probably the most popular type out of all. As you can tell by the name, a foldable chair bed or a sofa bed is the one that folds open and becomes a bed.

They also often come with separate mattresses, folded in strategic places to form a cushion to sit on, and later on a mattress to lay on. However, that's not always the case. As you'll see with our top picks, foldable sofa beds come in all kinds of shapes, forms, and sizes, and are sometimes even merged together with other types of chair beds.

Pull-out

A pull-out chair bed is a simple to open bed with a pull-out mechanism. As such, it has become an industry standard.

It is incredibly easy to use and operate. All you have to do is remove the cushion, pull out the “pull-out” portion of the chair that will fall into place, place the cushion back on, and you're all set.
The same mechanism will work with a sofa bed with a pull-out mattress, as well as a chair with a cushion because as we've said – pull-out chair beds and sofas are essentially the same things, only one of them is more compact.

Click-clack

The click-clack sofa bed or a chair bed has gotten its name over a click-clack mechanism that makes a distinct sound when it locks into place. Just like the pull-out mechanism, click-clack is extremely easy to operate and set up.

To convert this kind of chair into a single bed for your guests, you simply have to open up the mechanism and fold out the mattress or a cushion, and you're all set. The mattress will settle in a few minutes, and your guests should be snoozing shortly after.

Frame quality & material

Chair bed with black steel construction

Frame quality and material are some of the most important things to look for in a chair bed. As a general rule of thumb, if you want your chair bed to act as a durable, good-looking, long-lasting and comfortable bed – you need to find one with a high-quality frame.

Usually, your safest bet would be to go with a hardwood frame or any combination of kiln-dried hardwood and furniture-grade plywood. Those materials should be the best option for a long-lasting, high-quality piece of furniture.

High-quality opening mechanism

An opening mechanism of a black chair bed

High-quality opening mechanisms will be the difference between a janky chair bed and a high-quality one. Not only will you not have to worry about durability if you pay a little extra for a better opening mechanism, but you also won't have to worry about the bed breaking on your guests in the middle of the night.

A good mechanism should lift up, pull out, or click into place in a single, smooth motion without any squeaking or getting stuck. Whether it is a pull-out or a click-clack, find the one that's been tested and designed to stand the test of time. Otherwise, you might have to do your shopping more frequently than you'd ideally want to.

Quality of a mattress

A chair bed in full size

A quality foam mattress is probably the most important thing to look for when shopping for a chair bed. You may not have to sleep on it, but your guests will have to. And, unless you're willing to spend additional money on a mattress topper, we suggest you take your time to find a chair bed that comes with a comfy mattress.

To be fair, a chair bed mattress will never be as comfortable or supportive as a single or a double bed mattress you'd get in a store separately, but it'll have to do. Some of the best sofa beds do come with some pretty comfy mattresses, so try and look for those.

Size

A gray 2-seater sofa

Finally, depending on how much space you have and how many guests usually come over – you might have to consider getting something bigger than just an armchair bed.

To be fair, a single sofa bed or a chair bed should be more than enough if you never have more than one guest at a time, but if you'd really like to make the most out of your spare room, consider getting something other than a single.

As far as size options go, these guest sofa beds and chairs are available in:

  • Single
  • Two-seater
  • Three-seater

Now, as you can see, some of it can't really pass as a chair, seeing how it sits more than a single person, but the line between a chair bed and a sofa bed is pretty much blurred, so just roll with it.

Tips for buying and using best chair bed

Before we go out and meet our top five best chair beds, we wanted to give you a few helpful tips for buying and using a chair bed.

The advantages of owning best chair bed

Now that you've seen our picks, we wanted to show you some of the advantages you'd get to enjoy if you get yourself one of the best chair beds we've found for you.

Naturally, we won't talk about the most obvious advantage that's allowing your guests to get a comfy, good night's sleep when they come over.

Spread the word

FAQs about your chair bed

Should you get a comfortable sofa bed or a chair bed? Are they worth the money? How often should you clean them? These are just some of the FAQs we've come across, so we thought to ourselves – why not answer some of them?

Is it recommended to sleep on a chair bed every night?

We certainly wouldn't recommend it. Think of a chair bed as your backup parachute. You know it's there, you're glad it's there – but you certainly wouldn't mind not using it.

How long do chair beds last on average?

It all depends on the usage, but we don't see why you couldn't comfortably use a chair bed for five, possibly even ten years.

How do I clean my chair beds?

It all depends on the seat cushions. Some come with removable covers and some you'll have to spot-clean and wipe.

How thick should a chair bed mattress be?

Around 5 inches (12 cm) should be fine.

Where should I place my chair bed?

Wherever you want. They usually work best with sofa beds, or just your regular living room ensemble. As long as there's room for the chair bed to turn into a guest bed – you're good.

Do all chair beds come with mattresses?

No. Some come with regular chair-bed cushions.

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About the author

Connie
As a CPD certified Sleep Consultant I know how important sleep is. And as a combination sleeper, I have found it difficult to get products to suit my sleep style. I have more than 2 years product testing experience with The Sleep Advisors which means I have slept on, with and under more than 500 products with varying degrees of success. This is added to more than 2 years experience as a product reviewer for Closer, Heat and Grazia magazines, so I've got a rigorous process. I love sharing my sleep testimonials with our readers and hearing their experiences too.
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