When your child starts eating solid foods, it’s time for his very own high chair. A place for a little independence to explore different tastes and textures of food.

The sheer amount of choices you have for baby gear is overwhelming. You know a high chair is important, but how do you know what the best high chair for your lifestyle is?

To help you navigate all the factors of choosing a high chair, we’ve looked at four types of high chairs and will help you answer the following questions:

  • Is it easy to use?
  • Is it comfortable?
  • Is it easy to clean?
  • Does it have the features I need for my lifstyle?

Types of High Chairs

There is not a one-size-fits-all within the world of high chairs. But most high chairs fall within four categories: basic metal/plastic high chairs, full-feature high chairs, portable and hook-on high chairs, and wooden high chairs.

Basic Metal/Plastic High Chairs

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Ease of Use

This version of high chair is fairly simple to use – usually constructed of molded plastic with an attached harness for safety. A majority of them fold down in some way for storage.

Comfort

This simplistic high chair may or may not come with a tray or extra cushion for your baby’s tushie. So it isn’t always comfortable.

Easy of Cleaning

Most basic plastic high chairs are fairly easy to clean. Cushions are usually removable and the tray, although it may not detach, can be washed and sanitized. The biggest complaint of a basic, plastic high chair, is cleaning in the corners. Food does have a tendency to build up.

Full-Feature High Chairs

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Ease of Use

This version of high chair adds to the basic model. Made of metal or molded plastic it features more of the bells and whistles. A majority of the full-feature high chairs fold in some way for storage, but are not very compact.

At times all of the features make this high chair a little heftier than it’s simple counterpart.

Comfort

Because of the depth of features, this high chair is usually more cushie than your basic high chair. It features extras such as thick padding, wheels, detachable tray, adjustable height, and seat recline.

Ease of Cleaning

Because it is a more premium chair, most element are removable to make getting the chair clean easier. The detachable tray is usually even machine washable, along with the removable cushion.

Portable and Hook-On High Chairs

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Ease of Use

Instead of a freestanding high chair, the hook-on high chair affixes directly to your table or kitchen chair. It is an affordable option and allows your baby to eat with the family as well as fit in tight quarters.

For those who are on-the-go, a hook-on high chair makes it easy to travel to restaurants and grandma’s house.

Comfort 

Hook-on high chairs are usually well padded because of how your child sits in the chair. They are also equipped with a 5 point harness for safety.

Ease of Cleaning

On most portable high chairs, the padding is removable from the frame for easy washing – whether that be machine washable or by hand. It makes it easy to get into all corners and crevices where food normally builds up in other chairs.

Wooden High Chairs

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Ease of Use

Wooden high chairs have a stylish appeal for many, but their functional ability is limited. Without the ability to adjust, the seat may be too deep or the footrest too low. They struggle to store, as most do not fold down.

Some of the wooden chairs do have the versatility to convert to a regular chair as your child grows – which is a great feature.

Comfort

This mostly depends on the chair. A lot are equipped with a cushion, but overall wooden high chairs are meant more for looks than comfort.

Ease of Cleaning

Because they are often very minimalist, they do tend to clean easy. Remove the cushion and you can wipe the entire chair. They often do not have hard crevices to get to with a rag, so you feel like you have truly sanitized the chair.

Other Questions to Ask Yourself

As you narrow down a type of high chair, you now need to consider a few of the questions below in order to determine which high chair is best for you.

 

Is it JPMA certified?

A JPMA certified high chair means it has been tested and approved to be safe for your baby to use.

It’s an important feature to give parents peace of mind.

 

Does it have the features I need?

This depends on your needs. Are you an on-the-go family? Then it may be best to consider a hook-on high chair. If you are a family that takes have everyone around the table seriously, a hook-on chair would work well.

If you feel almost all meal times will take place at home, then you will need to weigh the pros and cons of a basic, full-featured, or wooden high chair each type to determine what fits your baby the best.

We hope we’ve been able to answer your questions on choosing a high chair and given you insights to make a purchase for the best high chair for you. Let us know what you feel is the best high chair or the type you went with in the comments!

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