We have seen so much about the concept of hygge. If you haven’t heard of it yet, it’s defined all over the place as a sense of cosiness, of being social with friends, of warmth and joy. You can find lists of hygge food; hygge products; services that promise to make you more hygge.
In fact, a quick search turns up everything from string lights to hot chocolate to Uggs by way of making your life more hygge. The list of products you can buy seems to rotate entirely around snuggling in and lighting a fire and reading something. (Not your phone, though, that’s hygge-death right there.)
We did a little more research. Hygge can’t be just about pulling on the biggest sweater you have, getting under the biggest blanket you have, and then sipping hot chocolate, can it? (Don’t forget to pull your Uggs on to level-up your hygge.)
And then we found this wonderful video from VisitDenmark.com, on what is hygge. And we found an interesting trend in the things they highlight. Danes seem to like things that are paired together: They like coffee shops that are also laundromats. They like bike shops that also serve as cafes. They like, in other words, to be social even when you’re not necessarily expecting to be social, like, say, when you’re washing your delicates.
It makes more sense now. Hygge is not about what other folks think of as cozy. You feel cozy in a sweater and leggings? Fine. But also: You feel cozy in a lacy bralette and some super soft pj pants? That’s totally up to you. Because hygge is also about being present. In fact, according to the wonderful web site Hygge House, which has been detailing hygge since 2005, hygge can’t be unless you take the time to acknowledge the fact that you’re experiencing–notice we said “experiencing” and not “being”–hygge.
We also find it interesting that so much of the way we’ve interpreted hygge seems to involve being warm, in a, well, manufactured sense. Now, look: just because hygge has its origins in Denmark, which can be dark and cold a lot of the time, doesn’t mean hygge can’t be practiced in a sunny place, like our headquarters in Los Angeles, or your lovely home on a beach, or your cabin in the woods. After all, doesn’t the sun give you warmth? Yes. yes it does.
Hygge seems to be what you make it, on your own terms. Tell us about the way you might practice hygge in the comments below.