Forget Hygge, Friluftsliv Is The New Swedish Trend That Could Change Your Life

It's time to embrace the outdoors.
zorazhuang via Getty Images

The weather is finally getting warmer, the sun is beginning to shine so it’s the perfect time to focus on our wellbeing. Most of us have heard of ‘hygge,’ the Danish word for coziness.

Hygge is all about creating a cozy and comforting environment, however, it’s less about things and more about mindset. But, people are moving away from Hygge and are transitioning into friluftsliv.

Pronounced as free-loots-liv, this is a Nordic way of living that has generated over 13 million views on TikTok.


📍Galdhøppigen - Norge 🏔️ Tuff hike men så värt det!! #hike #galdhøpiggen #norge #friluftsliv #mountaingirl #fyp #fördig #foryoupage #foryou @thenorthface @Swedemount

♬ original sound - mel

Dagens udsigt her fra Norge. Har du prøvet at vandre og sove i telt?🏕🇳🇴 #norge #natur #visitnorway #telttur #friluftsliv #trolltunga #norgesnatur #trangia #outdoorcoffee

♬ This Is The Life - Micky

Friluftsliv is all about reconnecting with nature and encouraging you to embrace the outdoors (no matter the season). It’s not just a trend but a way of life. It is described as spending time in nature for your spiritual and physical health and appreciating the beauty of the natural world.

However, creating a calming environment is essential for good sleep hygiene (a strong routine that promotes the importance of sleep), and your bedroom decor can play a big part in that.

This is why the bedroom experts at Happy Beds have created a guide to ‘friluftsliv-ing’ your bedroom.

1. Choose a pared-back, earthy palette to promote higher-quality sleep

Warm, neutral colours like green, warm white, light brown, blue, and muted orange are the perfect colour for a friluftsliv bedroom. These colours capture the outdoor world, bounce light around the room, and can even help to make smaller rooms appear bigger.

2. Pick white, organic bedding that’s breathable and creates calmness and tranquillity

Quite literally woven into the fabric of frilustliv you should opt for bedding made of 100% natural materials, such as cotton or silk. These materials are more breathable and can prevent a person from getting night sweats or hot flushes which can cause disruption during a slumber.

You should also aim to pick white bedding. Not only does white work perfectly with the frilustliv trend, but it is the best bed linen colour to sleep in. The colour is associated with calm and tranquillity, meaning you are more likely to fall asleep in them when it comes to bedtime.

3. Work on real wood furniture to help regulate your nervous system

Wood is the most common and easily accessible material for your bedroom and boasts a very close-to-nature vibe. Plus, wood and floral smells can regulate your nervous system and get you to sleep quicker

Smells such as cedarwood - with its organic, woody tones - and aromas from flowers and plants can help regulate your nervous system and get you to sleep. A study found that groups inhaling yuzu fragrance before bed went to sleep easier than those that didn’t, and even felt better the next day.

Frilustliv Bedroom
Happy Beds
Frilustliv Bedroom

4. Add a coriander plant to promote more restorative sleep

Surprisingly, you should consider adding a coriander plant to your bedroom. Interestingly, studies have found that inhaling the smell of coriander can reduce your REM latency, or the time it takes you to fall into your first REM sleep stage which, typically, lasts around 90 to 120 minutes.

REM sleep is particularly important for learning and memory. Without it, you can become sad, tired, unproductive, and struggle to complete everyday tasks. However, if you’re not keen on coriander or its smell, other sleep-inducing plants include snake plants, spider plants, and gardenia.

5. Opt for plant-patterned wallpaper to elicit more positive emotions

Searches for ‘succulent wallpaper’ have increased by 27% in the last 12 months. This type of wallpaper typically features a multitude of natural greens, blues, and browns, among many other colours, and replicates the beauty of the outside world. And, there are even health benefits to this type of wallpaper.

Studies have found that exposure to the imagery of natural environments can elicit strong, positive emotions and lead to better relaxation than images of urban environments. This is another reason to consider nature when designing your room.

6. Or add artwork that is calming

Alternatively, if you don’t want to add wallpaper, you can add calming artwork which mimics nature. If you’re not sure of what artwork to add, think about matching it to the style of your home.

So, if you live in a home by the river or your house is very bright and airy, look at incorporating beach artwork into your bedroom. If you live in a cottage-style home, go for art featuring forests and mountains. For those who live in urban areas, any natural scenery will help such as walking trails or woodland areas. The importance is having a form of escapism in your bedroom.

7. Add a handwoven rug to prevent noise disruption if you sleep with a partner

If you have wooden floors and you would like to warm them up a little more, a handwoven, shaggy rug is the way to go.

Not only do these help the space feel cosy and comfortable, but they also drown out any disruptive noises. For example, if you add a rug to your bedroom, you’re less likely to be woken up by a partner who comes to bed at a later time.

8. Makes sure your bulbs are warm-toned to produce more melatonin at night

It’s important to choose lighting that reflects natural light during the day but encourages you to wind down and sleep at night - otherwise, your circadian rhythm (internal body clock) will be confused.

Therefore, the best option is to choose a bulb that is more warm-toned or one that can change colour and that becomes warmer-toned as the night progresses. This, therefore, helps your body produce more melatonin, which makes you feel sleepier.

9. Pick on-trend mushroom motifs

Searches for ‘mushroom decorations for room’ have increased by 300% in the past three months.

You can incorporate mushrooms in your bedroom in a number of ways. From the colours of mushrooms and textures and styles of mushrooms - light brown to off-white - to the shapes of mushrooms with your ornaments or even bedside lamps.

There are also mushroom art prints you can hang up, and you can even make your own spore prints by using real mushrooms to hang on your wall for a true feel of the outdoors.

10. Make your bedroom feel as open-air living as possible – or opt for white, sheer curtains

Ultimately, friluftsliv is about outdoor living. By bringing the outdoors in, you can fall asleep faster. On average, we spend around 20 minutes attempting to fall asleep each night. Over the year, that could account for over 121 hours spent trying to sleep.

However, the key to this could be outdoor living. While we might not all be lucky enough to have bedroom doors that open on the outside, you can still bring your outdoor area into your bedroom space.

Use sheer white curtains to reflect the light in your room and place a focus on the outdoors when they are pulled back during the day. But, if you do this, remember to also use blinds at night to ensure your room is dark enough for you to sleep in.