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The best Herman Miller chairs in 2022: our complete guide

One of the best Herman Miller chairs in front of a crowded desk
(Image credit: Herman Miller)

The best Herman Miller chairs are among the most comfortable, ergonomic and downright stylish items of office furniture that you could own. They can offer a world of benefits for your back and posture in general, and they look superb. But there are quite a few different models, and they're all rather expensive, so you want to make sure you choose the right one for you. We'll try to help you with that decision in this guide to the best Herman Miller chairs available.

Most of the best Herman Miller chairs are highly adjustable and offer lumbar support to protect your lower back while you work, study or play. They also offer quality that lasts and stunning style, which many find more than justify the price if they spend a lot of time sitting at a desk. Most come with a 12-year guarantee, reflecting the fact that they're a long-term investment.

There are some big differences in style and features, though. The Mirra 2 and the Aeron are probably the two best know Herman Millers chairs, and as we'll see, they're the most adjustable but also the most expensive in the lineup. Other options can be a little cheaper while still offering fantastic looks and ergonomic features, but they're not all ideal for long periods of use, for example as you're regular work chair.

For some tips on how to choose the best Herman Miller chair for you, skip down to the bottom of this guide. You might also want to see our direct comparison of Herman Miller Mirra 2 vs Aeron if you're torn between those two. If you decide to go for the popular Mirra 2, make sure you see our roundup of the best Herman Miller Mirra 2 prices, and if you're still undecided on whether to invest in a Herman Miller chair, take a look at our selection of the best office chairs for back pain and the best office chairs overall for some more affordable options. We also have useful guides to how to choose an office chair and how to clean an office chair.

The Best Herman Miller chairs

Product shot of Herman Miller Aeron, one of the best Herman Miller chairsCB

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

01. Herman Miller Aeron

The best Herman Miller chair overall is a design classic

Specifications

Height: 978 - 1,093mm
Width: 655 - 718mm
Depth: 407 - 470mm
Seat height: 376 - 519mm
Maximum weight: 136 - 159kg

Reasons to buy

+
Three size options
+
Great ergonomics
+
A design icon with fantastic looks

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive, and the extras push up the price further

Picture a Herman Miller chair, and you're probably thinking of the Aeron. This customisable Herman Miller chair was a milestone for ergonomic chairs when it was released and It remains one of the most desirable office chairs around. In fact, its instantly recognisable design continues to be emulated by other brands today but few can match the fully adjustable design and quality build of the original.

Herman Miller's Aeron chair remains a very expensive option, but it lives up to expectations  – Herman Miller wouldn't have sold over seven million of them if it didn't. We find the ergonomic features are great for spinal support and a healthy posture, and we love having such precise control over the arms, seat height, depth, and recline. There are three size options to choose from, A, B and C, and three colour and four arm options, but these customisable extras do raise the price even further.

Product shot of Herman Miller Sayl, one of the best Herman Miller chairsCB endorsed

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

02. Herman Miller Sayl

The best affordable Herman Miller chair

Specifications

Height: 1035mm
Width: 622mm
Depth: 502mm
Seat height: 419 - 559mm
Maximum weight: 159kg

Reasons to buy

+
Striking geometric looks
+
Designed to support spinal curvature
+
The back will keep you cool 

Reasons to avoid

-
Adjustable lumbar support costs extra

If the price of Herman Miller's Aeron is just too much but you want a fine-looking chair with sound back support, we think the Sayl is the perfect alternative as the best Herman Miller chair for those on a more prudent budget. Inspired by the geometry of the Golden Gate Bridge suspension system, the Sayl office chair has the hallmarks of a future design classic. Its striking Y-Tower armature and ventilated elastomer back not only look stunning, but they also give you plenty of spinal support as well as space to stretch and move about. 

The foam seat will keep you comfortable all day, and the webbed plastic back actually offers an advantage over the Aeron because it's more breathable, which is ideal for anyone working in a stuffy room or who tends to naturally feel too hot since. It will keep you much cooler than a padded back.

The Sayl office chair comes in several smart black, white and grey colour combinations, and you can specify adjustable lumbar support, although that increases the price. The same applies to the seat depth, which is fully adjustable if you choose to pay for it. That said, the non-adjustable lower-tier options offer plenty of support.

Product shot of Herman Miller Mirra 2, one of the best Herman Miller chairsCB endorsed

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

03. Herman Miller Mirra 2

The best Herman Miller chair for restless sitters

Specifications

Height: 1111mm
Width: 762mm
Depth: 470mm
Seat height: 424 - 565mm
Maximum weight: 159kg

Reasons to buy

+
Stylish and functional
+
Fully adjustable
+
Two back options

Reasons to avoid

-
More supportive than comfortable

The Herman Miller Mirra 2 takes its name from the fact that it's designed to intuitively mirror your natural movements. Herman Miller likens it to a good running shoe, and it's an apt comparison. The Mirra 2 is responsive and supportive and allows your body to move, stretch and reach naturally, and its Harmonic 2 tilt provides a balanced feel when you recline the chair. 

It has two back options, a flexible TriFlex back or an ultra-responsive Butterfly back. Its woven seat distributes your weight evenly and allows air circulation, and it comes in a range of great-looking colourways, giving you more colour options than with the classic Aeron above. Some might find the seat just a little unyielding compared to the Aeron, but if support matters most to you then it's a definite winner.

Product shot of Herman Miller Setu, one of the best Herman Miller chairs

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

04. Herman Miller Setu

The best Herman Miller chair for a minimalist design

Specifications

Height: 980mm
Width: 638mm
Depth: 381mm
Seat height: 432 - 546mm
Maximum weight: 136kg

Reasons to buy

+
Thoroughly minimal
+
Flexible and comfortable
+
Very lightweight

Reasons to avoid

-
The arms cannot be moved

While not quite the cheapest Herman Miller chair you can get (see number six below), the Setu is a notably minimalist office chair and one of the more affordable options. It has a mesh seat and back and a flexible spine that responds to your movement. There are six tasteful colour options and either white or black frames. 

You can adjust the height but nothing else in this case, making it less ergonomic than other options on our list. That said, the plastic panels that support the back of the chair are designed to adjust and respond to your body with no manual controls necessary. So while it's not something you have total control over, it does mould itself to your body. 

The Setu's biggest selling point though is its lightweight design, which makes it easy to manoeuvre. Herman Miller bills it as a side chair, and the light manoeuvrability makes it very suitable for that. We're not sure we'd choose it for all-day use, but if you don't spend the entire day seated or if you like a firmer chair with no cushioned seating, this is Herman Miller quality at a more affordable price.

Product shot of Herman Miller Cosm, one of the best Herman Miller chairs

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

05. Herman Miller Cosm

A smart Herman Miller Chair that adjusts to your form

Specifications

Height: 864- 1311mm
Width: 734mm
Depth: 678mm
Seat height: 409 - 544mm
Maximum weight: 159kg

Reasons to buy

+
Three back heights
+
Self-adjusting tilt mechanism
+
Fantastic looks

Reasons to avoid

-
The arms are not the most adjustable

Available in three back heights, the Herman Miller Cosm is designed to adjust itself to provide you with optimum support. It features Herman Miller's Auto-Harmonic tilt mechanism that automatically gives you the balanced support and movement you need, based on your body and posture, and its seat and back are combined into a breathable and temperature-neutral Intercept Suspension that conforms to your body to provide dynamic spinal support. This also encourages better posture by allowing you to sit in a way that specifically aligns with your spine. 

There are three arm options – fixed-height, height-adjustable and leaf – and multiple colour options; we particularly love the Cosm's 'dipped-in' look, which means it's the same colour from top to bottom.

Product shot of Herman Miller Lino, one of the best Herman Miller chairs

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

06. Herman Miller Lino

The cheapest Herman Miller chair

Specifications

Height: 956 - 1118mm
Width: 693mm
Depth: 384 - 454mm
Seat height: 375 - 528mm
Maximum weight: 159kg

Reasons to buy

+
Simple design
+
Breathable back
+
Comfortable cushioned seat

Reasons to avoid

-
It lacks that classic Herman Miller look

If price is your priority when choosing the best Herman Miller chair for you, then you're looking for the Lino. You won't find a cheaper option than this minimal, no-nonsense chair. It looks more like a traditional office chair than most other Herman Miller chairs, but while it lacks the advanced features of the likes of the Aeron or Embody, it's still impressively comfortable and supportive. 

It has adjustable arms and seat depth so that you can find your perfect sitting position and a breathable suspension back offering full spinal and lumbar support. It also comes in a wide range of colour, material and finish options so that you can ensure that your Lino fits perfectly with your office décor.

Product shot of Herman Miller Embody, one of the best Herman Miller chairs

(Image credit: Herman Miller)

07. Herman Miller Embody

The best Herman Miller chair for gaming

Specifications

Height: 1016 - 1143mm
Width: 749mm
Depth: 381 - 457mm
Seat height: 432 - 559mm
Maximum weight: 136kg

Reasons to buy

+
Designed for healthy sitting during long gaming sessions
+
Four-layered seat cushion for maximum comfort
+
Fully adjustable height, arms and seat depth

Reasons to avoid

-
Not the most breathable material choice

Herman Miller's Embody was another option in its range of premium office chairs, and one designed for people who spend a long time sitting. It's still available as such in the US, and it's very expensive. But the chair's also been reborn as a gaming chair in partnership with Logitech. The gaming version adds some features designed specifically for games, both in terms of the look and function.

There's an extra layer of foam to better support your posture while you play and the use of a new copper-infused cooling foam to prevent heat from building up. The matte back is available in either black or a cyan colour option that should please those who like the gamer look without going too far.

The Herman Miller Embody features a backfit adjustment so that you can tune the chair to your spine, a smooth tilt that mimics your natural pivot points, and a seat with four breathable layers for comfort and airflow. Height, arms and seat depth are fully adjustable, allowing you to get the best position for you.

Herman Miller Lino

The Herman Miller Lino is a great choice for home workers (Image credit: Herman Miller)

How do I choose the best Herman Miller chair?

In our best Herman Miller chair guide, we've included all the measurements you'll need to get the perfect fit for you. There's more than just the dimensions to think about though, because the design materials will also play a part in not only your level of comfort, but also in how well your chair fits into your home office. 

Many Herman Miller chairs have a mesh back that supports and flexes with your body as you move throughout the day. These are designed to be breathable while still offering complete support, and while they may feel a little unyielding when compared to the couch, they will still allow you to sit back and relax thanks to an adjustable tilt handle. 

The Herman Miller Sayl, which is a close contender for the top spot thanks to its sleek design and thoughtful construction, has a more breathable webbed plastic back which is ideal for those who work in warm spaces and want to keep cool. 

How do I choose the right size Herman Miller chair?

Some Herman Miller chairs come in a single size, offering adjustable features so you can adapt them to suit, but others, such as the popular Aeron, come in several, eschewing the one-size-fits-all approach. In these cases, you might be concerned about choosing the right size, so make sure you take a look at Herman Miller's size reference chart (opens in new tab), which combines height and weight to suggest the ideal chair for every user.

Herman Miller Sayl

The Herman Miller Sayl has an iconic design (Image credit: Herman Miller)

Why are Herman Miller chairs so expensive?

The best Herman Miller chairs are undeniably expensive, but it's clear why. They offer excellent build quality, with superior materials that should last longer than budget office chairs (they are guaranteed for 12 years as standard). They're also highly ergonomic, offering improved comfort but also better health for your back (see our guide to the factors that make an office chair ergonomic for more on that).

Some models come in different sizes rather than being one-size-fits-all, and some of those that do come in just one size offer so much adjustability that you can easily adapt them to your shape. Most have a mesh-like design that keeps them clean and well ventilated. 

Also, note that not all Herman Miller chairs are expensive as the iconic Aeron. There are some options well shy of the $1,000 mark, and the best Herman Miller chair deals can get you a handful of the top picks in our guide for about $500 / £450 when there's a Herman Miller discount.

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Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.

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