How we test highchairs

Here's how we assess highchairs.

Child eating in highchair

Our expert testers assess the latest highchairs for safety, ease of use and how easy they are to clean.

Safety (70% of overall score)

Our safety tests are based on the Australian Standard for high chairs, AS 4684:2009. This standard also calls for compliance with at least 1 of the international standards, so we refer to the European Standard EN 14988.

Our safety tests look at:

  • Stability.
  • Strength of construction.
  • Whether there is a risk of finger pinching or entrapment for the child or an adult folding and unfolding the chair.
  • Whether there are sharp edges, points or burrs.
  • Gaps and/or holes that could trap a finger, or any small parts that could be a choking hazard.
  • Whether the chair comes with a five-point harness, back and side protection as well as locking mechanisms to stop the child falling out.

Ease of cleaning (30% of overall score)

We also look at how easy the chair is to clean. We apply Weetbix and milk, spaghetti and tomato sauce and baby food to the tray, seat back and padding, and harness. We let it dry overnight and rate ease of cleaning for each area on a scale from “very easy” (residue is easily removed using a kitchen cloth) to “very hard” (needs thorough scrubbing or washing). This is converted to a score.

Ease of use

We also note how easy it is to assemble and operate the high chair. Highchairs tested since 2016 have an “ease of use” score but it doesn’t contribute to the overall score.

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