Hygge (pronounced hoo-ga) is the buzzword of the moment. Fuelled by Penguin's new release of The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking, hygge is quite simply the appreciation of cosiness and the nice things in life. Stemming from Denmark and an essential part of daily life over there, it’s being cuddled up on the sofa with your lover; it’s eating a bowl of pasta and cheese and watching old episodes of Friends with a smile on your face; it’s climbing into your favourite PJs and surrounding yourself with twinkling candles. (Those Nordics just do everything better, huh?) It’s basically acknowledging and embracing those cosy moments that are pure joy and happiness. And given Copenhagen was just voted the happiest city to live on the planet, it sounds as though we could all do with a hefty dose of hygge, especially now we’re headed into colder, rainier, darker climes.
It’s all well and good referencing the buzzword in on-trend conversations, but how do you actually go about getting more of it in your life?
We kind of forget about candles through the summer months, don’t we? Why add extra heat to our furnace-like bedrooms? But through winter, it’s a different story. They transform a room, adding not just scent and light but instant atmosphere too. So quick, invest in your favourite Diptyque now so you’re ready for those magical winter feels. Just FYI, the Danes recommend at least five flames to appreciate proper hygge.
We’re talking bath bombs with glitter, bath salts, lavender bath oils, extra bubbly bubble bath. IT ALL. Candles too, obviously. A situation that basically melts away the week’s stresses and leaves you leaving extra warm and fuzzy inside.
Is there anything more satisfying than climbing into a new pair of PJs? And whether they’re from Primark or Olivia von Halle, that feeling, that do-a-little-happy-dance-I’m-so-damn-comfy feeling, is hygge.
Can you wake up and not check your Instagram? Can you just enjoy 10 more minutes appreciating the luxury of lying horizontal? Can you watch Great British Bake Off without simultaneously checking the LOLs on Twitter? In fact, can you just chill, with your eyes shut, with no TV on and no emails/ texts/ Tweets to ping. That, there, when you're offline and think, “well this is nice”, is the art of hygge.
What is a film night without a blanket? As we approach colder climes — or 'peak hygge season' as the Danes would say — it’s time to dust off the blankets, or buy new if needs be, and appreciate that snuggled up sofa time with friends. Or a lover.
Through summer, it’s all too easy to never be at home. There are rooftop bars to chill on, parks to kick back in, canals to ride along, and one too many pub gardens to while away your weekends in. But we still need a little ‘me time’. Whether that means lying on the sofa reading a book, writing love letters, or doing at-home yoga to a YouTube video, it's an important block of time, so factor it in to your diary.
Anyone else cuddle up with a giant bowl of pasta and cheese when it’s that time of the month? Jacket potatoes with extra cheese when you’re ill? In order to get more hygge in your life, you need to let in those moments and meals more. Enjoy them for what they are and the happy vibes they bring. It’s called comfort food for a reason.
With extra whipped cream. Yep, hygge is all about getting more of those things that make you go “ahh” and when it’s cold and rainy out, and you’ve got wet shoes and socks at your desk, is there anything greater than a hot chocolate, with cream and extra sprinkles?