5 Bean Bag Alternatives You Should Consider (and Which One is Right for You)

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I’m a homebody who loves my bean bags. So much so that I got one especially for my home office so I can alternate between a ‘professional’ setup and a comfy one.

If I’m being 100% honest, most days, I spend more time working at my bean bag than at my desk.

In fact, that’s where I am right now.

But as much as I (clearly) love my bean bags, they’re not the only seating option for cultivating a cozy home, nook, or workstation.

In this article, we will explore five bean bag alternatives you should consider and why they might (or might not) be the perfect fit for your space.

1. Inflatable Chairs

INTEX 66551EP Inflatable Pull-Out Chair: Built-in Cupholder – Velvety Surface – 2-in-1 Valve – Folds Compactly – 80" x 91" x 26"See this on Amazon

Before you give me that strange look, I’m not talking about the ones you use when sipping beer or margaritas in a swimming pool. Although, hey, if that’s your style, who am I to judge?

I’m talking about one like this, which has a velvet feel and can act as a great alternative to traditional bean bags for many reasons.

First of all, they offer a similar level of comfort. Yet, unlike bean bags, they’re highly portable. If you live in a small space (or just have too much stuff), you can deflate them and store them away when you’re not using them.

Inflatable chairs also tend to be affordable than bean bags. They’re made from lightweight materials like PVC or vinyl, which are generally less expensive than the foams or beans that you need to fill a bean bag.

When getting an inflatable chair makes sense (and when it doesn’t)

In some situations, an inflatable chair makes more sense than a bean bag.

When you don’t have space for another piece of furniture—for example—yet you want to have the option for extra seating when you have people over. An inflatable chair makes way more sense because you can put them away when you’re done.

The same goes you need temporary seating for a party, outdoor event, or camping trip. Inflatable chairs can provide a comfortable and convenient solution.

On the other hand, inflatable chairs might not be the best option if you’re looking for a piece of furniture that can withstand daily use. They can be prone to punctures or leaks, and the constant inflating and deflating can cause the material to wear out faster.

2. Floor Pillows

Floor pillows are a fantastic alternative to bean bags. They offer a comfortable and stylish seating experience while taking up minimal space. Perfect for small apartments or dorm rooms, floor pillows provide a cozy spot to relax, read a book, meditate, or watch your favorite show.

Meditation Floor Pillow Set of 2, Square Large Pillows Seating for Adults, Tufted Corduroy Floor Cushion for Tatami Living Room, Grey, 22x22 InchSee this on Amazon

When getting a floor pillow makes sense (and when it doesn’t)

One reason you might prefer floor pillows over bean bags is their versatility. You can easily move them around, store them under or behind furniture when you’re not in use, and use them in many different ways. Perhaps you just want extra-setting during get-togethers, or you want somewhere soft to sit when you’re meditating.

Floor pillows are often more affordable than bean bags, which makes them an excellent option if you’re on a budget. Here’s a good example of an affordable (and climate-friendly) comfy floor pillow.

However, keep in mind that floor pillows may not offer the same level of support as a bean bag. If you have back or neck issues and need a seating option that conforms to your body’s shape, a bean bag is probably a better choice.

3. Armchair-Style Floor Chairs

Armchair-style floor chairs are a great alternative to bean bags because they offer the same level of comfort and flexibility but with a more structured design. They’re perfect for those who prefer a more supportive seat but still want the casual feel of a bean bag.

Here’s an example of an (ergonomic) and highly-rated armchair-style floor chair.

Giantex Chaise Lounge Chair Indoor Multipurpose Folding Armchair Couch Lounger with 6 Adjustable Position, Integrated Armrests, Lumbar Pillow, Padded Seat Ergonomic Single Lazy Sofa Floor Chair (Blue)See this on Amazon

When getting an armchair-style floor chair makes sense (and when it doesn’t)

Armchair-style floor chairs often have adjustable backrests, allowing you to customize your seating position for maximum comfort. They also typically come with removable and washable covers, making it easier to keep your chair fresh and clean.

If you like the sinking feeling of a traditional bean bag (I personally do), then an armchair-style floor chair is probably not the best option. They also are heavier and less portable than bean bags, so if you like to move your seating around, this might not be the best option.

4. Foam-Filled Lounge Chairs

If you like the bean bag feel but not how it looks, then consider foam-filled lounge chairs. They offer the same comfort and convenience while providing additional benefits.

When getting a foam-filled lounge chair makes sense (and when it doesn’t)

Foam-filled chairs tend to have a more structured shape, which allows you to sit upright or recline more easily. This can be particularly helpful if you need to use your chair for extended periods, such as while working from home or binge-watching your favorite show.

Unfortunately, foam-filled lounge chairs can occupy more space in your living area. And while they often provide better support, they may not have the same “sink-in” feel that some people love about bean bags.

5. Swivel Floor Chairs

Popular with gamers (and often referred to as ‘gaming’ chairs), these are essentially floor sofa that…swivels. You can rotate on it as you sit, and some (like this best-selling one from Amazon), even lets you recline.

Giantex 360 Degree Swivel Gaming Chair, 6 Position Adjustable Folding Floor Chair, 300lb Spring Support, Comfortable Padded Backrest, Lazy Sofa Chair Game Rocker for Teens Adults (Coffee)See this on Amazon

When getting a swivel floor chair makes sense (and when it doesn’t)

Obviously, swivel floor chairs are great if you are primarily using them for gaming or watching TV. They have great back support and are portable, making it easy to move them around or from room to room.

They are, however, less versatile when it comes to sizing than traditional bean bags, and the design and shape mean that they can take up more room.

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