When you’re starting solid food (and once your baby can sit up by himself), a highchair gives your child a safe place to experiment with tastes and textures. It also makes it easy for you to supervise meals – and clean up afterward. Highchairs come in a wide variety of styles and prices. Choose one that's sturdy and easy to clean; it needs to be durable enough to withstand several years of daily use. Your child may use a highchair until age 2 or 3. Basic highchairs will do the job, but some high-end models hold up better to wear and tear, and can be more useful in the long run. Types of highchairs Basic metal- or plastic-frame highchairs These models are fairly simple. Some are just molded plastic with harnesses; others have a bit of padding on the seat. Some have trays, others don't. Pros: They're usually inexpensive and lightweight. Some fold, making them easy to move and store. Cons: They typically offer less comfort for a baby than other kinds, can have tough-to-clean nooks. Full-feature highchairs These have all the features of basic models plus extras like well-padded seats, wheels, detachable trays, dishwasher-safe tray covers, and adjustable height and seat recline. Some models grow with your child, converting to a booster seat or or kid-sized chair. Portable and hook-on highchairs Instead of a freestanding highchair, some families choose a seat that attaches to the table or that straps on to a regular kitchen or dining-room chair. These hook-on chairs can free up space in tight quarters and tend to cost less than standard highchairs. And since they’re portable they’re useful for restaurants, Grandma’s house, and travel. On the downside, many hook-on chairs don’t work on every table, particularly if yours is extra-thick or thin or has a lip. Wooden highchairs Wooden highchairs can be very appealing but may have drawbacks. Often the seat is too deep and the footrest too low for an infant. And wooden trays are heavier and harder to clean than plastic. Still, theymay have fewer crevices that can trap crumbs and spills, and some models convert to regular chairs as your child grows.