How To Make Hygge More Ethical

When I started immersing myself in a Hygge lifestyle, I didn’t even realise I was doing it! I didn’t know anything about the concept of Hygge or that there was even a name for it! I was simply looking for more comfort in my life.

I had recently turned minimalist and I didn’t want to portray the sometimes cold and dry imagery that is shown within the minimalist ‘look’. I wanted to live a cosy and warm life while still living with less and valuing what I did own.

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For anyone who doesn’t know what Hygge (pronounced Hoo-Gah) is, it is a Danish and Norwegian word for cosiness and wellness. People who follow Hygge, aim to bring that comfortable and warm feeling into their daily lives.

More often than not, we see the visual aesthetic of Hygge as fluffy blankets, candles, socks and hot cups of coco. While all of these things do indeed give that warm, comfortable feeling, do we ever stop to think about at what cost is that comfort?

We live in a world where we take from animals for so many of our daily products, which most of the time, is carried out with cruelty and abuse to make those products.

In the Hygge movement, one of the big focusses is treating others with warmth, so I guess we can’t pick and choose who that warmth is towards. Animals are no exception.

This is why I have put together a list of the ways that embracing Hygee could unintentionally support animal abuse and how I follow Hygge in a cruelty-free way! Take a look and see how you can embrace it within your life too! 

FYI: The videos on this post contain graphic footage of animal abuse. These are commercial and are not minority cases. This was a very hard post to make because of it but I want to be as informative and accurate as possible.

The Vegan Hygge Dress-Code

I love embracing Hygge with cosy clothes, socks and blankets. I live for being able to snuggle up in my blanket, favourite pair of fluffy socks with a good book. 

Because I am a vegan, I never invest in wool. And sadly, a lot of people still do not know the depressing lives full of abuse that sheep endure so that we can have wool based products. 

Sheep in commercial wool farms are often shaved too early leading for them to freeze in cold weather. On top of that, they also have their tails cut off without aesthetic in a lot of cases to avoid disease. Whenever you see a sheep without a long tail, you can guarantee it was chopped off without anaesthetic. 

When a sheep gets too old, ill or weak, it gets sent off to be killed, because it is no longer of any use to the wool industry.

Check out Earthing Ed’s informative video all about the wool industry, which explains everything in so much more depth:

It is cruel and we don’t need to do this when there are plenty of alternative materials to have lovely, fluffy products such as: bamboo, hemp, organic cotton & recycled plastic.

Feathers

When buying my duvet and pillow in Japan, I was very careful to buy one that was made of soft synthetic materials. Duvet covers and pillows often are filled with feathers, which have been cruelly & painfully ripped from birds, while still alive and fully conscious. This is called ‘live plucking’

I bought a duvet which makes me want to snuggle in bed with a book every night and on top of that, it was less money than buying feathers! Can you imagine paying for something knowing that some poor animal was abused and is out of feathers because of it? It’s safe to say that they need their feathers more than you do!

Candles Without Beeswax

Candles can be calming and peaceful, but at what cost?

In honey and beeswax manufactures, it is not uncommon for bee farmers to cut off the queen bee’s wings. This is to ensure that she cannot leave the colony. Similarly to on dairy farms, the female queen bee is often artificially inseminated on a ‘rape rack’. You don’t need much of an explanation for what that does; the name says it all. 

On top of that, bees are gassed in order to retrieve their produce and the queen is drugged to make her in a constantly dazed state. If you don’t want to support this cruelty, then don’t buy honey or beeswax products.

You can check out my friends business called Evical, where you can get a selection of beautifully smelling and aesthetically pleasing, bee cruelty-free candles. Their entire website is full of vegan and ethical products that will benefit your Hygge lifestyle, so I would definitely recommend checking it out.

Hot Drinks

Even as a vegan, I don’t ever miss out on hot cups of tea, coffee and hot chocolate. I love sitting down with a hot drink, embracing the cosy atmosphere and I get to do it knowing that I have no blood on my hands. 

It is starting to become more publicly known about how cruel the dairy industry is towards cows. It is hypocritical to live a Hygge life while supporting the dairy industry. This is why:

Female cows, as mentioned earlier, are artificially inseminated on ‘rape racks’ over and over throughout their lives, where they are made pregnant in order to produce breast milk for their babies. When their babies are born, usually within 24 hours, they are taken away. This is very traumatic for the mother cow and she will usually cry out for days for her baby. 

If the baby is female, she will have the same fate as her mother. If he is a male, he will be locked in a box without sunlight to be killed for veal shortly after.

The mother cow will go through this over and over until her milk produce starts to slow down. When this happens, she will be killed for food.

There are plenty of tasty alternatives to cows milk so we don’t have to support this vile treatment! 

Some cow milk alternatives include: oat milk, rice milk, soy milk, almond milk, hemp milk, coconut milk, walnut milk & cashew milk. You can make beautifully frothy coffees without knowing that someone suffered for it! I personally would recommend oat milk to get a beautiful creamy texture in your hot drinks!

Cooking & Baking

Baking your favourite cake or bread can be such a cosy, warm feeling when you know you haven’t contributed to animal suffering. Cruelty-free baking feels so great and you get to enjoy your meals ethically and sustainably.

Some of my favourite egg alternatives include: mashed banana (1 banana = 1 egg) , which is naturally very sweet and healthy, and flax seed with water (1 tablespoon of flax, 2 tablespoons of water = 1 egg), which is really healthy and makes a great consistency. 

Check out some of my own cosy baking recipes that you can try out on your next Hygge night in:

Mini Chocolate, Nutty Flapjacks

Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate and Vanilla Cupcakes

Chocolate and Almond Vegan Cupcakes

Vegan Cheese and Onion Pasties

I hope that you found this blog post useful! If you did, please feel free to share the love on social media and join the Hello Vegan Bee mailing list for updates on other super helpful and informative posts in the future!

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