Which type of car seat cover is best?

A seat cover is a car owner’s best friend. It protects your original upholstery from spills, crumbs, and the grime that builds up over time, and it helps maintain your seats’ shape and color. It can also shield your upholstery from the sun’s UV rays, which fade fabric over time and make it brittle. In short, a well-made seat cover is an affordable investment that will save you time and money in the long run.

The best car seat covers will be durable, easy to clean and breathable. You’ll also want to consider the fit and whether or not it’s compatible with your vehicles seatbelts (inflatable types are common in some cars). The fabric used is a major factor as well, because certain materials restrict air flow, which can cause discomfort during long rides.

You can find seat covers for every season, from lightweight options that will keep your seats comfortable on fresh spring mornings to insulated ones designed for cold winter driving. Regardless of the fabric or season, though, the six best car seat covers are designed to withstand whatever life throws at them.

We put them through the wringer in our Good Housekeeping Institute Lab—slipping them over front bucket and bench seats, attaching them to the headrest and even putting them through a vigorous washing cycle. We analyzed how they looked, felt and fit, taking into account how difficult they were to install and remove. They also had to be easy to wipe down when they got dirty. In addition to these features, we looked for a wide range of other important details that can make or break your purchase.

Our top pick for universal seat covers is the Weather Tech Seat Protectors, which easily slip over your existing front bucket and rear bench seats. These covers are water-repellent and stain-resistant, with nylon linings that add extra protection. They have hidden velcro and nonslip backings for added security, and they come in an array of eye-catching hues to complement your interior—as well as neutral colors like burgundy, black, and tan.

We also found a set of high-quality universal seat covers in the form of a set from FH Group that offers a more custom fit. These covers slip over front bucket and back bench seats, and they feature headrest pads and adjustable straps to hold them in place. The material is breathable and water-repellent, while a soft interior provides comfort during long drives. They’re also easy to wash, with machine-safe polyester that’s easy on your wallet and resistant to fading and water damage. We recommend this set for anyone looking to upgrade their vehicle’s interior without breaking the bank.