Home decor and improvement products have always been hot in the market, but they grew more popular during the pandemic. Clearly, people found comfort in beautifying their spaces when uncertainty was looming above them. It’s as if everything can go wrong, but as long as they find peace in a well-decorated abode, not all hope is lost.
A new lampshade or paint color may not mean much to somebody, but to a person who’s undergoing a lot mentally, those items can make a big difference in their well-being. And professionals actually agree that good design and home aesthetics have psychological effects. Such is called neuroaesthetics, or the sensory responses we get from the things we see, hear, smell, and touch.
To study the effects of neuroaesthetics, John Hopkins University partnered with Muuto, a Finnish furniture company. Muuto created three different rooms with different interior designs and had the study’s participants explore those rooms without speaking and using their phones. The results of the participants’ neuroaesthetics were quite interesting; the room they felt calmest in wasn’t necessarily the room that attracted them the most visually.
The study has proven that there is no one-size-fits-all style of interior design and decor for everyone. Each person has a different preference when it comes to home improvement items that will make them happy. Hence, what’s trending nowadays isn’t professionally decorated homes but mostly DIY projects for therapeutic benefits.
Household Items Make Us Happy
When we feel so happy and accomplished after buying a particular household item — be it a pillowcase or a centralized AC unit — we often attribute it to getting old. But younger people can also experience happiness from home improvement.
The actual reason household items make us happy has nothing to do with age. Instead, the items trigger an emotion in us. For example, fresh flowers can trigger feelings of life satisfaction. Hence they elicit happiness. Scented candles, specifically vanilla ones, improve our mood and reduce stress. Green or yellow paint colors evoke happiness more than the other colors in the rainbow, according to a study. So if you start liking home improvement projects or items a little too much, don’t worry — it’s not a sign of aging.
Home Decorating Gives a Sense of Control Over Your Environment
The interior design photos on Pinterest are no doubt stunning. But they tend to give off a soulless vibe too. Their stark perfection doesn’t seem to give way to reality. You wouldn’t think of hanging personal photos or clothes in an otherwise staged space. Doing so feels like ruining the aesthetic.
That’s why in the neuroaesthetics study, the spaces that calmed people the most aren’t the ones they automatically considered the most attractive. No matter how much beautiful spaces attract us, at the end of the day, what we’d call home is the one that feels like us. That means personal photos, clothes, food items, and even a bit of clutter.
But more importantly, we feel calm in a space that we have control over. It doesn’t matter if the aesthetics don’t look anything like the pictures in the magazine or on Pinterest. As long as the decorations are chosen based on your tastes, you’d thrive in that space and find it beautiful.
Home Decorating Can Improve Sleep
Adorning a space exercises your mind, so you might feel tired afterward. But more than that, home decorating improves sleep because your abode feels safer and more secure. When you know that you live in a house that truly feels like a sanctuary, and it’s all because you decorated it well, your body will be more relaxed at night.
Of course, the type of your mattress matters in a high-quality sleep, too. So aside from sprucing up your room with some fancy lighting or aromatherapy, consider investing in a soft but supportive mattress as well. That item will certainly cause a greater sense of accomplishment, making you love home decorating more.
Home Decorating Eased Our Pandemic Worries
During the first and second waves of the COVID-19 pandemic, everything felt out of control. People were getting sick here and there, as if it was only a matter of time before you get sick, too. Jobs were lost, small and big businesses closed, and life turned upside down on such short notice.
But our homes stayed within our control. As long as we had money to pay for rent or mortgage, utilities, groceries, and other household expenses, we’ll always have a roof over our heads. Therefore, we’d always enjoy the freedom to decorate it however we want.
The pandemic shed new light on homes. It made us appreciate our abodes more. Whether we live in a 300-sqft apartment or a 10,000-sqft mansion, the mere fact that we have a place to call home made us thankful that we were protected from the virus.