Style & Shopping

It’s Time to Upgrade Your Dorm Desk Chair — Here Are 10 Options Under $100

published Sep 29, 2023
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4 desk chairs on graphic colored background
Credit: Walmart, Kohl's

It’s no secret the desk chairs that come with most dorm rooms kinda suck. They’re not the most comfortable, even if they come with a cushion, and if you’re the type of person who goes all-out on decor, your chair probably sticks out like a sore thumb. But you don’t have to be stuck with your boring, standard-issue chair all year; if you hate the chair in your dorm room, you can always buy a new one to replace it with. 

Purchasing a desk chair is a quick and easy way to personalize your space while giving you another comfy seating option besides your bed. Just keep in mind that most dorms don’t allow you to remove furniture from your room, so don’t try to sell your ratty old chair or stash it away in a storage unit for the semester unless you clear it with your RA or residential life staff first. Some schools will allow you to return your unwanted dorm furniture and replace it with furniture of your own choosing. If none of those options are available at your school, you can still get yourself a new desk chair; you’ll just have to hold onto your old one as well. You could always use it for extra seating when you have guests — or, more realistically, it could become your laundry chair.

Below, check out 10 desk chairs that are sure to be major upgrades to the one you got stuck with on move-in day.

1 / 10
was $79.99

With its low-slung seat and tufted cushioning, this ‘90s-style butterfly chair not only gives your study sessions a more relaxed vibe, but it’s also great for just hanging out in. It comes in a light gray color, which means it can match pretty much any aesthetic you choose for your room, and it’s an especially solid choice for those low on space — you can simply fold it up and store it under your bed, in your closet, or behind a dresser whenever you’re not using it.

2 / 10

If you’re someone who spends a lot of time in front of your computer screen (gaming, studying, or otherwise), a gaming chair will be your best friend. With its ergonomic design, this one offers tons of comfort and support. It comes in all-black or gray and white, perfect for minimal and modern decor styles.

3 / 10

This posh velvet swivel chair screams “corporate glam.” The soft seat cushion and adjustable height put comfort at the forefront, and it rolls, so you can glide over to your mini fridge for a snack without ever having to stand up. The chair comes in beige, light red, black, and gray.

4 / 10

If you’ve been looking for a chair to match your boho aesthetic, the search is over. As someone who had a very bohemian dorm room my sophomore year, I wish I’d seen this chair earlier. WIth its rattan backing and brown seat cushion, it would go perfectly with plants and earth tones — maybe a tapestry, too, if you’re really leaning into the breezy vibes.

5 / 10

This hot pink pick is giving Barbiecore. It’s a fun option that also provides serious comfort, with armrests, back support, and adjustable height settings. Get ready for your Studious Barbie era.

6 / 10

This mid-century modern option is sleek, with soft fabric that comes in teal, gray, vanilla, and black. IMO, it looks way more expensive than its actual price.

7 / 10

As someone who loves ‘70s styles, this chair caught my eye right away. The velvet exterior and mustard hue give a vintage feel, but with the comfort of a brand-new chair. It also comes in other colors, including blue, cloud, dark gray, green, and pink.

8 / 10

If you’re someone who just can’t sit still, this chair is a must-have. Exercise balls allow you to get work done at your desk while also improving your posture, and strengthening your core — and this one has the added bonus of a furry exterior, which will certainly be a conversation starter for anyone who stop by. It comes in blue, pink, black, gray, and ivory.

9 / 10
was $89.99

Yellowstone fans, give your space the Western accent it needs with this faux cowhide chair. You can either get it in black or brown cow print, with or without arms — or, if you’re more of a traditionalist, the style comes in plain black or brown faux leather.

10 / 10

Once I saw that viral TikTok trend of people who like to sit with their legs criss-crossed at their desk, I knew I needed to track down an armless desk chair — and this chic cream-colored option instantly won me over. Note: In addition to not having arms, this chair also doesn’t have wheels, but if you sit criss-cross or prop up one leg while working, that shouldn’t be a problem.

Madison Harrison

Dental Hygiene

Madison has a huge creative side and a love for decorating as a creative outlet. She is most excited to help others create a life and space they love during her time at Dorm Therapy. Starting college led her creative side to skyrocket, and she cannot wait to help others with projects, inspiration, and more. She loves creating videos on YouTube and TikTok.

Follow Madison
SchoolSouthern Illinois University of Carbondale '24
MajorDental Hygiene
FavesThrifting, dogs, plants, painting, reading, movie theaters
Get to know Madison Harrison
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