The Complete Guide to Buying a Chaise Lounge

The chaise lounge, literally “long chair” in French, has been around for millennia — with archaeologists finding the earliest examples in Ancient Egypt! Naturally, furniture that was good enough for the pharaohs has continued to flourish, with a few changes to the design transforming it into the long, sofa-like chair we have today.

Popularized in the Victorian era, the chaise lounge remains one of the most elegant and stylish ways to relax. When it comes to choosing the perfect chaise lounge, there are lots of different styles, colors, and other considerations.

We’ve put together this comprehensive chaise lounges buyer’s guide to help you make an informed choice, so you can purchase the right furniture for your outdoor space.


Step 1 — See if the Chaise Lounge is the Right Chair for You

The chaise lounge is a long chair with an angled back at one end, providing complete support for the whole body. The backrest of a good chaise lounge should be adjustable to you can set it to the right angle for maximum comfort.

The chaise lounge is furniture designed for relaxing — it’s perfect for napping, sunbathing, reading, contemplating life, or just watching the world go by.


Chaise Lounge Form and Function — Points to Consider

Captain Chaise with Arms
  • Due to its whole-body support and angled back, chaise lounges are meant for relaxing and dozing
  • Chaise lounges are close to the ground, bear that in mind if you have mobility issues
  • Many chaise lounges come with armrests to make it easier to get into and out of them, but some do not
  • Chaise lounges are best used with accessories and cushions to maximize comfort
  • Due to their larger size, chaise lounges are best used on larger decks or patios

Step 2 — Choose the Right Materials for Your Chaise Lounge

Chaise lounges are available in a wide variety of materials — softwoods like pine, hardwoods like oak and teak, wicker, HDPE lumber, and aluminum are all available. When it comes to choosing the right materials for your chaise lounges, you’ll want to take several factors into account:

  • Durability — how well will your chaise lounges last when it’s left outside?
  • Maintenance — how easy will your chaise lounges be to look after?
  • Appearance — how will your chaise lounges look over time?
  • Comfort — how comfortable and luxurious will your chaise lounges be?
  • Weight — how easy is it to move the chaise lounges around, and how resilient is it to weather?
  • Price — how much value for money will you get from the chaise lounges?

Pine and Other Softwoods as a Material for Chaise Lounges

Although teak is more popular, some chaise lounges are made of pine or other softwoods. Softwoods are abundant and inexpensive, but are not great choices for an outdoor chaise lounge, as they don’t tend to weather very well.

Softwoods — Points to Consider

  • Softwood isn’t very resilient or durable, it is easily scratched or dented, which can impact the appearance of your chaise lounges
  • Softwood must be varnished and protected if it is going to stay outside — even then, the elements can quickly impact how good the chaise lounges looks
  • Softwood chaise lounges will typically need to be restained or revarnished on a semi-regular basis
  • Softwood is an inexpensive choice when it comes to outdoor furniture

Oak and Other Hardwoods as a Material for Chaise Lounges

Hardwoods are generally a better choice that softwoods for a well-crafted, lasting chaise lounge, but they are not without issues. Like softwoods, they need to be regularly maintained to look at their best.

Hardwoods — Points to Consider

  • Hardwoods are quite resilient and durable, and it is difficult to scratch, dent, or damage them
  • Hardwood must be varnished and protected if it is going to stay outside
  • Hardwood chaise lounges will typically need to be restained or revarnished on a semi-regular basis
  • Hardwood chaise lounges are more resilient to the elements and gusts of wind
  • Hardwood is a moderately expensive choice as a material for a chaise lounges

Teak as a Material for Chaise Lounges

Teak is a popular choice for outdoor furniture, and is better than other woods like pine, oak, bamboo, or wicker.

Teak — Points to Consider

  • Teak is durable and resilient, as it produces its own oil — it’s a hardwood, so it isn’t easy to dent or scratch
  • It’s completely resistant to wind, water, and rust and can stay outside all year-round
  • It’s only available in one “color,” teak
  • It is difficult to maintain and needs to be regularly rubbed down and treated to avoid “silver patina”
  • Teak is one of the pricier options when it comes to outside furniture

Wicker as a Material for Chaise Lounges

Wicker is sometimes used as a material in chaise lounges today. Although wicker can be a good material for an indoor chaise lounge, it doesn’t really have the durability for outside use.

Wicker — Points to Consider

  • Wicker is not very resilient, it can be easily damaged, especially if you use the chaise lounge a lot
  • When used outside, wicker can lose its appearance quickly, as it is not weather-resistant
  • Wicker is very light and vulnerable to wind gusts
  • The way wicker is woven means that dirt can get into the gaps, spoiling the appearance of the chaise lounges
  • Wicker is not easy to maintain

Aluminum as a Material for Chaise Lounges

A popular choice, chaise lounges are often available in aluminum. It’s a lightweight, durable metal.

Aluminum — Points to Consider

  • Aluminum is tough, resilient, and easy to maintain
  • Your chaise lounge can be left outside all year-round, with no ill effects
  • It is highly durable and completely resistant to water and rust
  • Lightweight construction means it can be vulnerable to gusts of wind

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Lumber as a Material for Chaise Lounges

HDPE is a synthetic resin for building solid, high-quality, durable outdoor furniture. Its cost is offset by the luxury, comfort, and resilience it provides. It’s a perfect material for a stylish outdoor chaise lounge.

HDPE Lumber — Points to Consider

  • It is easy to maintain, needing just a cloth with a simple solution of water and mild dish soap
  • Medium weight, HDPE is sturdy and resistant to wind — your chaise lounge can stay outside all year-round
  • HDPE is highly durable and completely resistant to wind, water, and rust
  • Your chaise lounge will be comfortable, stylish, and luxurious with a high-quality, strong, and sturdy construction
  • HDPE is infinitely recyclable and is often made from recycled milk jugs
  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • HDPE lumber is manufactured to last a lifetime and its price does reflect that

Our favorite material is the HDPE lumber — it’s manufactured to last a lifetime, stays looking great, is completely weather resistant and durable, takes just moments to maintain, and comes in a wide variety of colors.


Step 3 — Choose the Right Height and Size for Your Chaise Lounge

Once you’ve decided on the right materials, you will want to think about the size, height, and spacing of your chaise lounge, especially if you have more than one.

Chaise Lounge Sizes

There are a lot of dimensions to consider when it comes to the chaise lounges. Here are the most important ones:

  • Overall length of the chaise lounge — between 73 and 80 inches
  • Overall length of the seat area of the chaise lounges — between 42 and 48 inches
  • Overall height of the chaise lounge — between 35 and 40 inches
  • Overall width of the chaise lounge — between 25 and 30 inches
  • Overall seat height of the chaise lounge — between 11 and 12 inches

We recommend placing chaise lounges at least two to three feet apart. A patio or porch around 10 square feet can hold a couple of chaise lounges – any more and it is going to be cramped!


Step 4 — Choose the Right Style of Chaise Lounge

The chaise lounge is a classic design, and although it may have been around for 5,000 years, we can still give it a contemporary twist.

We’ve been refining and adding some flourish to our own take on the POLYWOOD chaise lounge to create styles suitable for any outside space.

Our Nautical Chaise w/Arms & Wheels features smooth wheels for greater maneuverability (also available without arms), and our Euro, Bayline, and Nautical Chaise Lounges stack for easy storage when not in use.

Our Euro, Bayline, and Nautical Chaise Lounges stack for easy storage when not in use

Step 5 — Choose the Right Color of Chaise Lounge

If you’re buying a pine, oak, teak, or wicker chaise lounges, you’re likely to be limited in your choice of colors and finishes. If you’re going for HDPE lumber, you will have plenty of choices. Even our aluminum chaise lounges are available in a several finishes.

Bayline Chaise Lounge

All our chaise lounges are available in a wide variety of colors. From beautiful grays, browns, greens, and other earth colors, through to vibrant hues of red, yellow, blue, and more that add some real visual distinction.

You can stay with a modern look by choosing black or white, or bring in a sense of the natural with brown or green.

Euro Chaise Lounge

Step 6 – Accessorize Your Chaise Lounge

You’ve chosen the perfect chaise lounge for your outdoor space, but for the maximum in comfort, you need the right cushions. All of our cushions are made of Sunbrella® fabric, manufactured to stay outside all year-round.

South Beach Chaise Lounge

Sunbrella cushions are weather and fade resistant, so they will stay looking great. They also shed water quickly, so they’ll dry out fast after a passing rainstorm. With a large variety of colors and patterns, you’re sure to find the perfect chaise lounge cushion or pillow.

You can even add side tables and other pieces to create a complete set of beautiful furniture.

South Beach 3-Piece Chaise Lounge Set

The Bottom Line

When it comes to choosing the perfect chaise lounge, there’s plenty to consider. We hope this buyer’s guide has given you all the information you need to make an informed choice.

If you still have questions, we have answers! Feel free to call us on (855) 935-5550 or email us at hello@polywoodoutdoor.com and one of our experts will be delighted to help you out!

Shop our entire line: Chaise Lounges

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