What The Heck Is Hygge? Here’s Why You Need Some This Winter

Heard of hygge? It’s the Danish concept that you need to incorporate in your life this winter. Don’t worry. It’s super easy, and you’ll totally relax. When’s the last time you did that?

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The winter months can be especially stressful. Cooking and baking, wrapping the presents, and making it to all eight of your holiday parties…when it’s all over you can really feel worn out. For the post-holiday daze, we’re advocating a little bit of hygge. You’ll thank us later.

What is hygge, exactly?

You know that peaceful feeling you get when you’re nestled snugly on the couch with your favorite blanket and a warm cup of hot chocolate and everything is just right? That’s hygge. Hygge is taking time to appreciate the feeling of coziness. It’s being present in the moment and enjoying the little things, like a nubbly sweater or hot tea on a cold day. We’re feeling calmer just thinking about it. The term hygge is of Danish origin—there isn’t an English word that means quite the same thing (and it doesn’t rhyme with jiggy; it’s pronounced more like “hue-guh”). Hygge is widely considered a defining characteristic of Danish culture and has been trending across the globe, thanks in no small part to the rise in popularity of self-care. Hygge places emphasis on being appreciative of what you have, seeking out comfort, and feeling good about your surroundings. The Danes make hygge a part of their everyday life, and it’s not hard to see why.

How to Embrace Hygge

Especially during the cold, gray, dark winter months, taking a moment to get cozy and be thankful is good for the soul. Who needs a frosty mood on top of the chilly weather? When you get home after a long day and it’s already dark out, practice a little hygge with your lighting choice. Burn a few candles, opt for warming lamps over harsh overhead lights, and get comfortable on the couch with your favorite blanket. Candlelight is warm in color, temperature, and feeling (just make sure to keep an eye on an open flame). You can also infuse a little hygge in your self-care routine to make it more meditative. You can find joy in washing your face, we promise! Enjoy the sensation of bubbles on your skin or the feeling of a warm washcloth when you remove your cleanser. Rushing through a skincare routine, taking the shortest shower possible, or not bothering to brush your hair doesn’t need to be your standard. Bring in some mindfulness and you’ll find the coziness in your self-care routine in no time. Having friends over is an ideal time to embrace hygge. Instead of stressing about getting just the right snacks and making sure every little detail is perfect, relax into it. Pop some popcorn, grab extra blankets, and settle in for a fun night with your gals. Not feeling like socializing? That’s okay! Everyone needs time to themselves too. Some people find it easier to wind down when they’re totally alone. A warm bubble bath is the perfect way to get your hygge on when you’re having an evening in. When’s the last time you allowed yourself to lazily soak in the tub? Take an evening to put your feet up and pamper yourself.

Enhance your hygge.

While you’re getting hygge with it (sorry, had to at least once!) you may want to have a treat-yourself moment. We’re all for cozying up, and this knitted blanket is just the thing. Tea drinkers can get their mug in the mix with this equally warm tea cozy. We also like to light a nice candle like this delicious winter woods–scented one. For adding a little comfort to your day we highly recommend picking up some super soft socks, a wrap cardigan, and some jogger sweatpants so you’ll always feel warm and snug. But really, you don’t need to buy anything to have a hygge moment. Appreciating what you have, warming up with the ones you love, and reveling in the calm is all it takes.

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