If you like to follow the philosophy of living for the little things in life, you should have the trendy Danish lifestyle of “hygge” on your radar. Hygge lacks a direct English translation , but a short semi-translation is “coziness”. The Oxford Dictionary included “hygge” on the short list for the 2016 Word of the Year which included a longer translation: a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being. Hygge, pronounced “Hoo-guh” can be used as a noun, adjective or verb. It is the act of surrounding yourself with gentle, soothing things and can be an extreme necessity during the cold winters in New York.
Hygge represents the balance of treating yourself without crossing the line to gluttony. You can treat yourself to a fresh croissant or slice of cake, but don’t eat out an entire bakery. Working this philosophy into your life can be easy, since leaning towards coziness is often gentle and soothing to us. Mix up your beauty routine to include moisturizing face masks, keep your lips hydrated with a sweet-smelling lip-balm, and plan a weekly bubble bath for yourself. It’s easy to forget to care for yourself, so make it a priority. Buy a fresh cup of coffee or make a glass of hot tea with honey because you want to, not because you need to.
Working hygge into your style is simple. Embrace layering by using different fabrics, cuts, and textures in your outfits. Throw on a soft, oversized sweater and wear it to class proudly. You’ll be both comfortable and fashionable. Splurge on a cashmere blanket scarf to keep warm for the walk to campus. Wear fuzzy socks in your boots, even if they don’t make the best fashion statement. Incorporate lighter, minimalistic colors such as white, black, grey and camel into your wardrobe. Hygge in both beauty and fashion is about embracing comfort while finding the medium between style and coziness.
Another way to incorporate hygge into your life is by adding a couple of soothing elements to your home. Twinkle lights are all the rage, rightfully so because they offer soft lighting. Light a candle every once in a while, (not in the NYU dorms since it’s against school policy) or buy a diffuser to make your room smell like lavender or eucalyptus. Choose more natural materials such as wood, stone, and marble. Keep life simple yet functional. Follow the advice on Parks and Recreation and “treat yo self.” Just don’t overdo it.
Krista Burton is a contributing writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.