If you tend to feel less productive while working from home and think your current work set-up has something to do with it, a standing desk — or a standing desk converter — may help you. Standing desks can be key to improving poor desk posture and mitigating chronic body pain associated with sitting during the day. But you may not be aware that standing desks may also help add to your fitness abilities over time, and more importantly, keep you energized and focused throughout the entire workday.
With the help and expertise of Rachel Rothman, Chief Technologist and Director of Engineering in Good Housekeeping Institute, and Stefani Sassos, MS, RDN, CSO, CDN, NASM-CPT, the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutriton Lab's Deputy Director and certified personal trainer, we're sharing the best standing desks on the market today. These are our top tested, and expert-approved standing desks, which we evaluated in our own home offices for criteria such as adjustability, ease of assembly, customization, price, size and appearance.
Our top picks
- Best Overall Standing Desk: Seville Classics Airlift Tempered Glass Electric Standing Desk
- Best Value Standing Desk: Flexispot Electric Height Adjustable Desk
- Best Designed Standing Desk: Branch Standing Desk
- Easiest Standing Desk to Install: Flexispot Comhar All-in-One Standing Desk Glass Top
- Best Electronic Standing Desk: Vari Electric Standing Desk 48
- Best Manual Pnuematic Standing Desk: Apexdesk PneuDesk
- Best Adjustable Standing Desk: Uplift V2 Bamboo Standing Desk
- Best L-Shaped Standing Desk: Jarvis L-Shaped Standing Desk
- Best Mobile Standing Desk: Seville Classics Mobile Laptop Desk Cart
- Hidden drawer to store keyboard and mouse
- USB charging dock pre-installed
- Top height doesn't surpass 50"
Seville Classic's adjustable model (which lifts up to 47 inches tall easily in tests) is as smooth as it looks, easily transforming from a spacious sitting desk to standing height with a touchscreen controller equipped with 3 different programmable settings. Its sleek rounded design is also one of the more compact options on this list, for those who might be short on ample space but still require a standalone desk.
- Available in 5 finishes for any home design
- Quiet lift system
- May require drill for seamless installation
- Limited height presets compared to other models
If you're on a tighter budget for a desk, FlexiSpot's EN1 Model is a solid option for you. Sassos notes that unboxing and assembly were straightforward and that the desktop's 48" width is substantial without overtaking an existing space in your home. Its width might also allow you to work in some freestanding storage beneath it. Equipped with three different height presets, this desk can hold up to 154 pounds of weight and is fully extendable to 48" in height.
- Streamlined design including built-in cable port
- Quiet motor with ground stabilization
- Installation over 30 minutes in tests
Among the sleekiest desks, Branch's desk can be tweaked by each customer for a perfect WFH desk of their dreams; you can add a monitor arm to keep your desk space free, or a built-in power strip to avoid trip-prone wires in your workspace. It has an incredible range in height settings spanning from 2' when sitting to a full 4'4" for those users who are nearly 7 feet tall. The height panel enables four different presets, and what the brand calls "EasyGlide" promises an eerily quiet motor. There isn't much of even a purr of the motor to be heard, and the leg's stability means your items won't shift while in motion.
- Adjustment lock feature for child safety
- Built-in storage drawer and USB power ports for accessories
- No electrical cord organization port
A newer model from the brand, this model was one of the fastest installs in our tests — painless and ready to use soon after it was unboxed. The tempered glass top has rounded edges to avoid painful bumps in tight spaces, but the compact nature of the desk makes it a great option for a nook or an unused corner of an apartment's living room. The expanded keypad controls are handy, as is the desk's anti-collision feature, which saves you from accidentally crushing a chair or box beneath it.
- 25" seated height for shorter individuals
- Wide range of accessories for customization
- Slower lift system
Rothman notes that like other Vari products, its full-sized standalone desk is easy to assemble out of the box, and offers easy cable management for your monitor's cords and any other chargers on your desk. Rothman's tests reveal that Vari's desk isn't as speedy in changing its height as other models on this list, although its moderate price point might attract shoppers, as well as the fact that it's available in five different finishes and two different sizes.
- Doesn't require electricity to lift and lower desktop
- Incorporated wheels to easily move about your room
- Desktop can't support as much weight in movement
Available in four different sizes for any room you may have in mind, ApexDesk's easy lift-lower desk may be a solution to those who can't plug in. The desk can be pulled up to 48" tall using a hand lever, gliding the desktop up and down at your touch. It may also be truly designed for those who have a dynamic workspace and need to move about, including those in art studios or a manufacturers' space. The installation only calls for a screwdriver and can be completed in less than 20 minutes.
- 51" maximum height for tall individuals
- A comprehensive weight limit for heavier items
Uplift's standing desk is very stable when adjusted via electronic keypads. Rothman notes that this may be the best fit for a couple or for shared office spaces due to its versatility in adjustment ranges. While a bamboo-finished desk is standard here, Uplift offers 19 different finishes on its website, and four different frames, plus a few add-ons you can select if need be. The desk itself won't move even if you're a heavy typer or are constantly switching modes during the day, as there's a steel crossbar between the desk's legs to reduce any sway.
- Wide range of height for multiple users
If you have more room within your office space, you don't have to stick to a traditional rectangular-sized desktop. Jarvis' standing desk models have a bit more flexibility in height settings (between 25" and 50.75" in total), and the L-shaped configuration also comes in a multitude of dimensions for various office sizes. While the base model doesn't have storage, Jarvis' desks are fully customizable, and you can add storage solutions, power outlets, sleek cable managers, and even a mechanical arm to support mounted monitors.
- Lightweight and height adjustable
- Uneven surfaces can leave this desk feeling unsteady
If you're needing to move freely about the building or your home, a mobile standing desktop might be the solution for you. There's no storage and it requires manual adjustment, but Seville Classic's rolling workstation can be brought up to 33" high without losing stability. A wooden desktop can fit any laptop or tablet with a keyboard for easy use.
To make the most of a standing desk, consumers often mistakenly think they'll need to be standing all day long. You do not need to be standing continuously from 9 to 5 — in fact, the best strategy for optimal results might be frequently transitioning between standing and sitting throughout your day, says Chad Henriksen, D.C., the director of WorkSiteRight at Northwestern Health Sciences University. "I recommend sitting for no longer than 20-30 minutes," Dr. Henriksen says, adding that those with serious injuries or health concerns should discuss a standing desk with their doctor first.
You should also be implementing "micro-break" stretching and movement while at home. Experts have known for some time that increasing low-level activity provides health benefits compared to sitting for a prolonged time in a fixed position, Dr. Henriksen explains. "Alternating between [sitting and standing] balances the negative effects of either standing or sitting throughout the entire workday."
Published research is conflicted on how standing desks improve your focus and productivity throughout the day, and how often you need to stand to reap any benefits — but a 2016 case study discovered some immediate reported benefits from those at a desk during the workday. The best productivity boost was enjoyed by those who frequently alternated sitting and standing throughout the day, with a reported 50% boost in productivity in six months.
At the Good Housekeeping Institute, health experts and engineers tested the best standing desk in their home offices. Rachel Rothman, chief technologist and executive technical director, coordinated review tests of a majority of the units on this list, scoring desks based on design, comprehensive height range, and ease of assembly from a consumer's standpoint. Reviews of the best standing desks hinged on desk stability throughout multiple hours of standard use, as well as ease of adjustability through electronic or manual operation.
Assisted by Stefani Sassos, MS, RD, CDN, the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab's deputy director and certified personal trainer, as well as Health Editor Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping reviews occurred in real home office environments to best gather consumer feedback, which influenced our rankings.
Rachel Rothman was born into a family that owned and operated a consumer electronics distribution business for over seven decades (her first Consumer Electronics Show was in the womb)! She has since tested just about any consumer tech gadget, ranging from computers, TVs, smartphones, smart home products, and more.
Stefani Sassos has been working in the fitness industry for the past 10 years, specializing in indoor cycling and strength training. As a NASM-Certified Personal Trainer, she uses her expertise and fitness background to create informed fitness content for the Good Housekeeping Institute. From vigorously testing exercise equipment to curating workout plans for GH readers, Stefani is passionate about leading an active lifestyle and inspiring others to do the same.In his role as Health Editor, Zee Krstic works hand in hand with analysts in the Good Housekeeping Institute to highlight consumer-facing input from leading health experts; he interweaves doctors' and healthcare providers' expertise into shopping guides to better educate readers. He also independently reviews new products in the wellness space for Good Housekeeping, which he has done previously for Martha Stewart Living and Cooking Light.