Americans Embrace Hygge: Are We Becoming a Nation of Homebodies?

Date posted: June 12, 2017

at home

By Rieva Lesonsky

When’s the last time you went out for an evening? If you’re like millions of other Americans, more of your date nights are likely taking place at home. According to NPD, a research firm, after the recession of 2008 younger generations of Americans watched movies, played video games and ate great food—all in the comfort of their homes.

Today, NPD says, nothing much has changed. People are still cocooning—but they’re doing it with “more toys.”

There’s actually a name for this—hygge (the Danish word is pronounced hue-guh). NPD says hygge means “the constant pursuit of homespun pleasures.” The New York Times explains it here.

Hygge isn’t just staying at home. It’s about creating a “cozy” environment. This is good news for retailers. NPD says stores catering to this trend are popping up everywhere. (Check out Hygge Life and The Foundry Home Goods to see what products consumers are buying.) In fact, NPD reports, the home goods industry is booming, with products ranging from refrigerators and fancy hairdryers to candles, pillows and throws flying off the shelves.

And hygge is not just about stuff. The food industry is impacted, too, with fewer Americans eating out. In fact, NPD’s National Eating Trends survey shows 76% of meals are eaten at home—no matter where the food comes from. Close to half of all dinner meals bought in a restaurant are eaten at home, making food-to-go and delivery options a must for restaurant owners. NPD forecasts that by 2022, restaurant delivery will increase by double digits. It advises restaurant owners to “find the technology to get your prepared meals on the tables of American homes—and fast.”

Part of the reason for all this home-based activity is, thanks to technology, people are doing more from home, including working, shopping and being entertained.

NPD says the “bottom line [is] Americans want to create meaningful experiences in their homes, and products that help them keep clean, healthy, creative and comfortable at home will come out on top.”

There’s a lot more in NPD’s report—you can check it out here.

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