The best shower chair

Ana Sanchez

For safety and stability, the feet of a shower chair should be placed flat on the bottom of your tub or shower and not against angled or curved sides.  

For people who can't stand up in the shower due to injury, disability, or age, shower chairs allow you to sit while bathing. You can place them in a shower stall or over a bathtub. They can also be a nice addition to perch your leg on while shaving or place toiletries so they're within reach. Whatever your reason for needing a shower chair, there are plenty to choose from. There are stylish ones, ones that slide, and others that swivel.

With all the considerations when buying a shower chair, the choices can be dizzying. We've created this concise guide to help you make an informed decision and have also included our favorite shower chairs. Our top pick is made by Carousel: it's a premium sliding chair that swivels for easy entry and exit.

Considerations when choosing shower chairs

Types of shower chairs


Freestanding shower chairs are just like regular chairs in that they have four legs. These legs rest securely, often with non-slip rubber feet, on the floor a bathtub or shower cubicle. Some are specially designed for people with mobility issues while others are for more casual use. They're easy to assemble and use. They aren't as secure, however, as the next type of shower chairs.


Over-the-tub shower chairs are for bathtubs that have a showerhead for shower use. There are models that securely attach to the side of the tub. Other designs have legs that sit both outside and inside the tub. Over-the-tub shower chairs are very stable and fit better in tubs than freestanding chairs. 


Transfer shower chairs are a type of over-the-tub chair made for people with serious mobility limitations. They make getting into the shower from a wheelchair much easier, whether alone or with the aid of a caretaker. Basic over-the-tub shower chairs are also amenable to those in wheelchairs.


Adjustability: For those who require ample support from a shower chair, select one that is adjustable by height and/or has an adjustable backrest or arms. Tall and short people will also appreciate height-adjustable shower chairs.

Armrests and handles: Handles and armrests assist people with balance issues or who need extra support. We recommend choosing an armrest that moves so you can get into the chair easily.

Locking mechanism: For over-the-tub chairs with seats that swivel and/or slide, select one with a locking mechanism to keep the seat in place when you want to be stationary. Choose one with a lock that's well within reach and easy to use.

Materials: Most shower chairs are made from waterproof plastic and padding. Many include metal legs that are rust-proof and have rubber nonstick feet. Some freestanding chairs or benches are constructed from treated, water-resistant wood. 


Low-priced freestanding shower chairs range between $30 and $40. Higher-end models run between $100 and $150.

Budget over-the-tub shower chairs start around $50. Models designed for people with little to no mobility run between $200 and $300.


Q. Are there any weight limits on shower chairs?

A. Yes, all shower chairs carry a weight limit. Check the weight limit before buying a chair if this is a concern. For safety reasons, you never want to go over the maximum weight limit. Bariatric shower chairs are constructed for heavier bodies and have a higher maximum weight limit.

Q. Do shower chairs require assembly?

A. Some -- especially freestanding shower chairs -- require little to no assembly or installation. Over-the-tub shower chairs tend to require more assembly. Some require quite a bit of both assembly and installation.

Shower chairs we recommend

Best of the best: Carousel Premium Padded Sliding Bath and Shower Chair

Our take: Premium over-the-tub shower chair with all the bells and whistles.

What we like: Ideal for those with limited mobility. Padded and gentle on the skin. Both swivels and slides.

What we dislike: Expensive. Requires ample space to swivel. 

Best bang for your buck: Dr. Kay's Adjustable Height Bath and Shower Chair

Our take: Sturdy and affordable freestanding shower chair.

What we like: Budget, lightweight. Bears up to 250 pounds. Height adjustable. 

What we dislike: Not designed for people with limited mobility.

Choice 3: EcoDecors Eleganto Teak Shower Bench

Our take: Treated teak shower chair that's eco-friendly and easy on the eyes.

What we like: Aesthetically pleasing addition to any bathroom. Water resistant. Easy to assemble. Great for showers or wet rooms.

What we dislike: More for casual use than for those who require adjustable and mobile features.

Ana Sanchez is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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