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As the cold weather in Hong Kong tightens its grip and we all want nothing more than to stay cosy and warm inside, it’s prime time to bring hygge into your life! If you are not familiar with hygge (it’s actually pronounced “hoo-ga” rather than “higgy”), it’s a Scandinavian concept that captures the ideas of living well, togetherness, and cosiness. It is a philosophy that focuses on simplicity, unwinding, and slowing down the pace of life. Most importantly, it’s about enjoying the simple pleasures in life—something we could all benefit from in these times. To kick off the new year on a happier note, we spoke to Natalie Heaton over at Bupa UK on 10 tips to embrace the hygge lifestyle!
Making use of gentle lights is a good way to set the tone and ambience to practise hygge. Use fairy lights, scented candles, tea lights, and table lamps in the evenings—and don’t forget to turn off the main lights! If you are going for some cosy mood lighting, a warm shade of amber or orange would be ideal for creating a hygge-conducive atmosphere.
While you may prefer to stay cooped up inside these days to escape the cold, it doesn’t mean you can’t experience elements of the outdoors in the comfort of your home. Buy some fresh flowers or plants to bring the outdoors to you, or collect some natural materials to display indoors. As cliched as it may sound to buy yourself flowers, research shows that flowers have a positive effect on our happiness. So bring on the florals and bask in their simple beauty!
Adding some texture to your living place can immediately ramp up the snug factor—when done right, that is. You want a room that looks clean and organised, but evoke a sense of dimension and liveliness. A good tip is to declutter your existing belongings before adding different textures, such as blankets and rugs, candles, and books.
Touches of sentimentality are key to a homely environment. Curate your home with some choice objects and ornaments that mean something to you, whether they were souvenirs that you picked up from your travels or meaningful gifts from people important to you. Tell the story of your life and relive your memories with furniture, gifts, antiques, travel souvenirs, accents, and pictures that reflect you and your life. We promise it will give you the warm and fuzzy feelings that you’re craving!
Hygge and warm drinks practically go hand-in-hand, especially when the temperatures outside drops to finger-numbing lows. Whether it’s a cup of tea, cocoa, lemon and ginger, or soup, putting your hands around a hot mug will not only warm you right up, but it’s also a very soothing and cosy experience!
What is better than warming up your belly with a delicious and nutritious meal? Making the meal from scratch and savouring the full experience of the food! A pie or soup are both great winter warmers when it’s cold outside. You can even take it a step further and make an occasion of it by setting the table with serviettes, candles, and flowers.
Nothing says relaxation more than curling up and having a movie night or putting your nose in a book. Whether it’s a new film or an old favourite, snuggle down on the sofa and enjoy being in the warm—preferably with a purring cat on your lap for good measure.
Even if you don’t have a furry friend to snuggle up with, you can stay cosy by layering up with blankets, slippers, and chunky jumpers—the softer, fleecier, and fluffier, the better! Wearing a soft jumper or fluffy socks is the perfect way to self-soothe. There are plenty of options out there nowadays that will keep you looking stylish even when you’re just lounging around the house!
Although we often associate hygge with being inside, the Danish art of living all boils down to enjoying life’s simple moments. So if you are one to get cabin fever, try donning a bobble hat, earmuffs, scarf, and gloves, and head out for a walk on a bright winter’s day. Instead of going to busy streets and shopping malls, hit up a park and watch the changing patterns in the sky and surrounding nature whilst sipping on hot chocolate.
We all need to reward ourselves with a little extra TLC every once in a while. This could be as simple as switching your phone off and drawing a hot bubble bath or eating a chocolate chip cookie or two. Slow down and take the time to enjoy the experience of it all.