The home office has become more of an aspirational space in the American imagination (or at least the internet’s). A quirky antique desk is situated over a bright Berber rug, while a fiddle leaf fig sparkles in the corner by the window; the image is completed with a contemporary office chair. Branch is a company that positions itself to deliver the chair for this idyllic home office. The Ergonomic Chair is a direct-to-consumer piece that will keep you engaged and comfortable throughout the work day, while looking sleek enough to impress anyone who should happen to Zoom in.
Branch delivers a chair that’s ergonomically customizable and simple enough to put together at home. Its adjustable seat positions and lumbar support ensure it adapts with you throughout the day, as you lean into the details in the morning and kick back to mull over the broad picture in the afternoon. The chair’s only downside comes from a couple of chemical concerns. However, most of these are resolved in a couple of the company’s other offerings, such as the Daily Chair (which is built with 70 percent recycled materials). Otherwise, the Branch Ergonomic Chair makes for a truly comfortable and stylish chair that comes at a surprisingly affordable price. (While you’re building your home office, check out our guide to the best laptops.)
While Branch offers a number of signature chairs, the Branch Ergonomic Chair is the option that’s focused most on comfort and support. With a thick cushion, the chair is satisfying to sit in from first contact. Its two armrests easily adjust on two axes: sliding up from the cushion, and sliding forward and back. Stemming from a solid metal-alloy base with five wheels, a height-adjustable central pole rises up and allows for easy and smooth height adjustments via a lever underneath the seat. Two other levers allow you to control how much the chair leans and its backrest positioning. Finally, the chair back features an adjustable lumbar support slider to tune the chair perfectly to you.
A Big Box In The Mail
This direct-to-consumer chair comes shipped in a large cardboard box. I live in a fourth-floor walk-up apartment and I was skeptical of lugging the box up the tight stairs alone. However, I was pleased to find that the box wasn’t at all too heavy to lift and fit around landings by myself. Some others may want a hand, but it’s not a cumbersome load for two. Opening the box, I was impressed by the limited throwaway packers inside. In spite of the chair’s size, the packaging creates about as much non-recyclable trash as a laptop’s packaging.
Assembly was relatively easy, but you might benefit from the help of a friend or roommate. The only challenging part of assembly came with fitting the chair’s rear into the mechanical base for the support, which the instructions advise you to do with the chair upside down on top of the cardboard packaging. Most of the components snapped into place, with only a few parts requiring the included allen wrench.
My only point of concern with this chair comes from some of the chemicals used to make the Ergonomic Chair. Its fabric is primed with flame retardants, which have been linked to health issues like cancer and hormone disruption. Additionally, the chair comes with a Proposition 65 warning triggered by its metal alloy base, which includes some lead. While this isn’t out of the ordinary in modern direct-to-consumer furniture (or items like cars for that matter), it’s still worth noting. When I asked Branch about my Prop 65 concerns, I was told that they’re currently working to eliminate lead from the Ergonomic Chair’s base, so this concern could be addressed in future generations of Ergonomic Chairs.
For anyone worried about Proposition 65, Branch’s Daily Chair is a great alternative to the Ergonomic Chair, as its materials are safely under the law’s threshold. According to the website, it’s also made of 70 percent recycled materials, and it is 96 percent recyclable post-use. Learn more about how we gauge sustainability.
Comfort and Aesthetics
Working from home often requires that you spend your work time and leisure time in the same space, and for many of us, this means spending a lot of time in the same chair. That’s why tip-top comfort is more important than ever. (For more health benefits, consider one of the best standing desks.)
The Ergonomic Chair is incredibly comfortable. The main cushion is plush and thick, yet still gives you support. This feels like a piece of furniture that should cost many hundreds more than it does. The sliding seat and adjustable lumbar support pair to give you a chair that tunes to your body’s moods, adapting to you as you navigate the workday. It’s a chair that you can sit in all day. It’s also a chair that can fit many different body types.
The Branch Ergonomic Chair also looks great. With a few different color schemes it’s ready for numerous home aesthetics, and will look just as at home in a magazine editor’s loft as it will in a Fortnite streamer’s nightly content videos. I love how mine looks in my room when I get back from the coffee shop and sit down to write. Get started with one of the best tablets for note-taking and drawing.
The Ergonomic Chair delivers most of the premium features you’d look for in an ergonomic chair, yet costs hundreds of dollars less than its competitors. The company also puts emphasis on delivering especially responsive customer service that’s there to help you with any questions that might come up. While I do have some concerns about some of the chemicals used in the chair, in all other ways, the Branch Ergonomic Chair delivers deep value for its low price, with excellent customizable comfort, easy assembly, and a stylish design that will look great in any office space.
This post was created by a non-news editorial team at Recurrent Media, Futurism’s owner. Futurism may receive a portion of sales on products linked within this post.