Difference Between Couch and Sofa?

Last Update:

Are couch and sofa the same thing? According to the 2010 Google Trend Stats, 50% of American people think that sofa and couch are the same. The couch and sofa are interchangeable terms used to describe furniture that resemble each other quite a lot in terms of design. Most perceive that there is no difference between these two and often end up confusing themselves. However, these are two different pieces of furniture, and they aren’t the same thing due to their functioning.

Difference Between Couch and Sofa


A sofa is like a bench with plenty of space for numerous people and comes with armrests on both sides having various seating options. These include sectionals, loveseats, and others, giving you plenty of variety, making them perfect for living rooms and guest rooms. The sofa has cushions and features more of a classical design, making it ideal for formal settings such as a sitting room.

Characteristics of High-Quality Sofa

  • Sturdy Construction

The sofas come with hefty price tags and are pretty expensive as compared to the couches. A solid sofa usually consists of a wooden frame and high resilient foam that can last for more than seven years. In other words, you won’t have to replace them anytime soon, making them worth an investment. Along with this, these use Nozag springs rather than standard coils, and these tend to last beyond your expectations.

  • Colors

You also get so much variety in colours and designs that include natural and bold hues. It all depends on how you want the interior of your room to look, especially the living room and others. These sofas have the most alluring designs and can transform your space, ultimately bringing it to life.

  • Cushions

The cushions are made from various types of materials, including polyurethane foam and poly-down material. The high-quality sofas have cushions that consist of poly-down with a Dacron batting along with feathers and springs. In contrast, the affordable ones are made from polyurethane foam and don’t last like the top-notch ones.

  • Shape

There are various types of sofas available in the market, such as the curvy and the straight lines giving you plenty of variety. The straight-line sofas have more of a masculine look and feature a modern design than curvy ones. In contrast, the curvy sofas have a traditional design and have a feminine look.

  • Style

You have plenty of options when you’re purchasing a sofa, and you can either get a boxed sofa with a straight line shape or retro having a curvy shape along with tampered arms. The top-notch sofa doesn’t require much maintenance and harmonizes perfectly with the interior of your room. These sofas can completely change the look of your room and turn it into a magical place.

  • Indoor Sofas Versus Outdoor Sofas

The outdoor sofas have a robust build quality and have excellent water-resistant properties, making them suitable for the outdoors. Along with this, they don’t get damaged easily due to sunlight and are relatively easy to clean compared to the others. In contrast, the indoor sofas are more elegant and can’t withstand the damage from sunlight.

  • Legs and Comfort

The legs of the sofas are manufactured from high-quality materials, which make them extra stable. Moreover, they are super comfortable and perfect for family meetings and get-togethers, making them ideal for living rooms. These can also be used in formal settings due to their formal-looking design.


A couch is just like a sofa, but it looks more informal and is designed for entertainment and living rooms just for chilling out and relaxing. These don’t have armrests and are more for casual purposes like celebrating movie nights. They are also small in size as compared to the sofas and accommodate few people.

Characteristics of High-Quality Sofa

  • Solid Filling

The high-quality couches are heavily filled with polyurethane wrapped within the cushions and provide the comfort you desire. The better the filling, the longer the couch will last, and you won’t have to purchase another one anytime soon. So never invest your money in a couch that has a poor filling.

  • Shape

You get so much variety, especially when it comes to the shape of the couch, giving you plenty of options to choose from. Some of these include sectionals, chesterfield, English rolled arm, and others ideal for informal gatherings. Some couches have chaises attached to them, allowing you to expand them whenever necessary.

  • Pillows

The pillows are never attached to the couch, allowing you to place them according to your choice. You can also get them separately and enhance the aesthetics of your couch and completely transform its look. However, get the pillows that don’t require much maintenance and have a formal look, so these don’t look saggy.

  • Fabric

A couch having a low-quality fabric can quickly wear out, especially if you’re a family with pets and children. The top-notch have rigid material that can withstand all the wear and tear, saving you money in the longer run. Moreover, these couches are dark, and you won’t have trouble cleaning them, unlike the others that require a lot of maintenance.

  • Comfort

The high-quality couches are pretty comfortable and are heavily filled to provide you the comfort you desire. These are soft and so comfortable that you can enjoy sleeping on them as they provide extra leg space. Therefore you can also use these couches for sleeping and won’t suffer from body pain.

Difference Between Couch and Sofa

Below are some basic differences between sofa and couch that you often don’t notice. They are different from one another in terms of shape, size, function. However, you can see these differences once you compare them with one another in detail.

  • Origination of Terms

The term “sofa” has an Arabic origin and comes from the root word “suffah,” which means a bench wrapped with a blanket covered with cushions. Suffah was commonly used among Turkish people in the old times. In contrast, the term couch comes from the french word “ couche” referring to furniture that was quite famous in the Victorian era. According to a well-known interior designer, the word “couche” also means “to lie down” in French.

  • Shape

Usually, the couches have a single armrest, or they don’t have an armrest at all, depending on the design. On the other hand, the sofa has two armrests which makes it different from couches. Moreover, the couches have a tapered back, whereas the sofa has more of a uniform back.

  • Size

The size of the sofa is always larger than a couch and provides you with much more seating space allowing more people to sit on it. The sofa at maximum is suitable for four people without any problem. In contrast, the couches are relatively smaller and take less space on the floor. The couch can accommodate two or three people at a time, and you can’t turn it into a bed. You can also convert the sofa into a bed which adds extra convenience for the user.

  • Function

There is a difference between how these two furniture pieces function due to their unique structure and design. For instance, You use the couches for casual settings such as entertainment rooms or living rooms. On the other hand, the sofa is for formal settings and gives a more classic look, enhancing the aesthetics of your room.

Sofa or Couch

Usually, it depends on your priorities and how you want to use the furniture along with the interior of your room. If you love sitting with your family, I would recommend a sofa as it’s ideal for family get-togethers due to its design. However, if you like watching movies with your family and comfort is your utmost priority, go for the couch. You can also choose a sofa depending on your requirements as it comes with cushions making it super comfortable.

How to Pick a Sofa?

When you’re purchasing a sofa, make sure you pick the one that’s easy to clean and maintain. In addition to this, it should have excellent durability and consist of materials like kiln-dried wood. It must have strong and sturdy legs with dense foam cushions because these tend to last a lot longer. Moreover, the internal frame must be strong, and you must check it before purchasing the sofa.

How to Pick a Couch?

Before purchasing a couch, you must have your priorities set out and decide the size of the couch and its design according to your needs. Larger families should get a giant couch, whereas the smaller ones are suitable for smaller families. Plus, it would be best if you went for high-quality fabric as they are easy to clean and maintain. In addition, get the couch that has solid filling and can last for a long time, saving you money in the longer run.

Ending Thoughts

Although the sofa and couch are pretty similar, you can easily distinguish between them by looking at their design. A sofa will always have two armrests and feature a classic look, but a couch lacks the armrests and features a casual look. You can also differentiate them by considering factors like their design and shape.

You can also read a detailed article on how to clean a sofa/couch here!

Photo of author

Leave a Comment