Ideas From IKEA On How To Create The Perfect Relaxing Space

There's nothing better than having a relaxing home — or at least a relaxing space within your home that you can retreat to. Though life can get a little crazy sometimes, it's important for our well-being to be able to have a place to unwind and find a little peace. Contrary to how you may sometimes feel, it's actually possible to achieve a relaxing oasis without spending a lot of money or even doing too much heavy lifting.

Furniture retailer and Scandinavian lifestyle superstar IKEA knows a thing or two about creating a relaxing space and has provided some great tips on exactly how to do so. From color schemes and fabrics to storage pieces and lighting, whether you're trying to amp up the relaxation factor of your bedroom, living room, kitchen, or even your children's playroom, IKEA has you covered. (And don't forget outside space too!) Check out the best ideas from IKEA on creating the perfect relaxing space in any area of your home.

Paint your walls according to science

The color you choose to paint your walls plays a pretty significant role in the vibe of your space, and it goes beyond just coating your walls with your favorite shade. Colors can affect your mood and motivation, and there are some that are scientifically proven to make you feel relaxed.

As IKEA points out, greens and blues are great mood-setters. Green evokes feelings of calm, and is great for a bedroom (we especially like a soft, muted green). Blue is also quite calming and is known to help foster creativity. If a distinct color like green or blue isn't your vibe, don't worry, you can still create a relaxing space. IKEA also recommends pastels, neutrals, and touches of rosy tones.

While color psychology is rooted in validity, ultimately, you should pick whatever color makes you feel relaxed. It's not a one-size-fits-all approach, so if a vibrant pink is what helps you unwind, then go for it!

Add plants to the room

Nature is naturally relaxing. Think about how at peace you feel while strolling through a garden or taking in a lush view on a hike. Therefore, adding plants to your home to kick up the relaxation vibes is a no-brainer — and IKEA thinks so, too. The furniture retailer points out that plants do more than just add to the decor (though they certainly do that too). They also boost your mood, help purify the air, and make whatever space they grace instantly feel more refreshing.

Create a relaxing oasis in your own home by playing around with different types of plants, various sizes, and different locations. For example, add a tall plant in a large planter to the corner of a room, and hang some from the ceiling in another. While we love real plants, when it comes to relaxation, a good quality fake plant is just as great (and less pressure, too!).

Use varied lighting

Lighting is everything when it comes to creating a relaxing environment. Fluorescent lights that make you feel like you're in a hospital? No, thank you. While even having just one light source that fits the relaxation bill is a huge accomplishment, why stop there? IKEA suggests playing around with varied lighting to create a chill and inviting space. Interior designer Elin Stierna advises, "Candlelight helps reduce stress — just light some tea lights." And if you need a brighter light than that, for, let's say, kicking back with a book, she says, "Fix a cozy reading corner with a floor lamp that has a strong flow of light."

What's also great is that lighting options are pretty much limitless, meaning regardless of your decor style, you can still set a relaxing mood. For example, IKEA points to two distinct styles of lamps, both of which create a comfortable atmosphere: a romantic art deco pendant lamp and a rustic, bohemian hand-woven lampshade.

Purchase the TÄLLBYN pendant lamp from IKEA starting at $59.99

Purchase the TORARED lamp shade from IKEA starting at $29.99

Perfect your bedroom

If there is one place that's all about relaxation, it's your bedroom. This is a spot in your home you should invest in making as comfortable as possible. Kathy Davey, head of design for IKEA Canada, notes, "I think we're really becoming more aware of how the environment affects our sleep. However, the bedroom is one of the last places people focus on when designing their home." Davey goes on to explain that IKEA believes in five sleep essentials: comfort, light, sound, temperature, and climate. Everyone's decor preferences will differ, but these key things are true for everyone.

To start, get a good mattress. These days there are many options at different price points, so there's no reason why you should be dealing with bulging springs or major indents. Pillows, duvets, and blankets are just as important — think soft, breathable, and functional, and choose colors that promote calm. Having good bedroom storage is key to keeping things neat and tidy, and curtains are a great way to play with lighting and shade.

Optimize the view from your bed

Now that we've covered the non-decor essentials of creating a relaxing bedroom, we are onto the decor. Specifically, the decor you see from your bed. You should wake up and go to sleep with a view that makes you feel calm and happy. Regardless of what part of your room your bed faces, there are always ways to make it as aesthetically pleasing as possible.

IKEA suggests using shelves to create a display of things that make you feel at ease. For some, it may be a collection of books organized on the iconic BILLY bookcase (it's estimated that every five seconds one is sold somewhere in the world), or mementos from loved ones and past vacations set up on a ​​BERGSHULT wall shelf. As IKEA continues to point out, shelves give you the flexibility to switch out what you have on display, allowing your view from bed to evolve as you do.

Purchase the BILLY bookcase from Ikea starting at $49

Purchase the BERGSHULT shelf from Ikea starting at $12.99

Organization and storage

Your space will never feel relaxing if it's a mess, so you better get serious about organization and storage. The key here is having a place for everything, and that means really optimizing whatever space you have. As IKEA notes, there are many great storage solutions that are not only functional but can even add to your decor.

Boxes and baskets are a great option, whether for cabinets, under the bed, or even out on display. Think about it — it's better to have a single cute box on your dresser than a bunch of miscellaneous items strewn about. Shelves also work well for storage as they take advantage of empty wall space and free up counters and dressers. Or, use one of IKEA's many customizable pieces, like its PAX line, to help you organize. You can design your own wardrobe complete with shelves, hanging racks, pull-out mesh baskets and drawers, and then add sliding doors (as seen in this IKEA bedroom makeover) so that everything is tucked away and out of sight.

Use fabrics and materials to block out sound

As Kathy Davey mentioned, sound is a key component of creating a relaxing environment. In general, a relaxing place is a quiet one — or at least one without unwanted outside noise. While you may not be able to have total control of the noises around you, IKEA recommends utilizing materials and fabrics of furniture and decor to muffle noise, and add as much soundproofing as you can. Interior designer Elin Stierna told IKEA, "Upholstered furniture, cushions, and rugs all combat noise pollution and envelop you with a sense of calm."

The Spruce also discusses soundproofing your room through the use of decor. It recommends carpeting, thick rug, heavy drapes, and textile wall hangings to absorb any noise. Additionally, you should consider soft furnishings. For example, choose a velvet upholstered chair instead of a hard one since noise bounces off hard surfaces, whereas soft surfaces help absorb it.

Set up a cozy corner in the playroom

"Relaxing" may not be the first word that comes to mind when you think of a playroom. In fact, playrooms exist as a place to keep the chaos contained and away from the remainder of the home. Yet, even the craziest of kiddos need to relax sometimes, and it's totally possible to create a relaxing space for them.

Amid the toys and art materials, carve out a distinct space that's used for chill time. IKEA refers to this as a cozy corner. It recommends using textiles, like soft blankets, pillows, and rugs to create a comfortable spot where kids can curl up with a book. Add in a canopy to make the corner whimsical and allow for freedom of imagination. If you want to have some toys in this space, opt for non-electronics like stuffed animals and blocks. By giving your children a space to relax, you'll be able to relax too.

Create an oasis outside

Inside your home isn't the only place to create a relaxing space — you can also make one outside. In fact, things like sunshine, a cool breeze, and fresh air already aid in relaxation. Not all of us may have access to a big yard, and that's ok, because you don't need one to have a spot to relax. In the same way IKEA recommended carving out a cozy corner in a playroom, you can do the same in whatever outside space you have.

As IKEA points out, all you really need is a chair or two and a small table. It also recommends adding pendant lights or string lights for ambiance, and plants and flowers are always a no-brainer. While any chairs will do, try to choose chairs that are actually comfortable to sit in. We love the HÖGSTEN chair as an affordable and functional option. It's made from hand-woven plastic rattan, which makes it super durable and easy to clean.

Purchase the HÖGSTEN armchair from IKEA starting at $159

Outdoor flooring

Another great way IKEA recommends creating a relaxing space outside is with outdoor flooring. Whether your outdoor space is dirt, cement, or grass, don't think you're simply stuck with what's already there. Without having to do any sort of construction, you can customize your outdoor floor to create your ideal outdoor oasis.

There are a few different routes you can take when choosing outdoor flooring. The first is decking, which IKEA points out is an easy way to elevate and upgrade the space instantly. You can go for something like UTLÄNGAN, which is made of wood composite, to give you the look of wood without the maintenance or risk of splinters. Or, check out MÄLLSTEN, a gorgeous decking that looks like tile. Another route is an outdoor rug for some major cozy vibes.

Purchase UTLÄNGAN floor decking from IKEA starting at $60

Purchase MÄLLSTEN floor decking from IKEA starting at $60

Purchase the VRENSTED rug from IKEA starting at $69

Appeal to your sense of smell

Scent plays a bigger role in everyday life than you may initially think. We naturally gravitate towards good-smelling things, whether it's perfume, candles, fresh flowers, or even a walk through nature. Filling your space with a fragrance that smells good to you is a powerful way to create the relaxing environment you want.

IKEA teamed up with London designer Ilse Crawford to create a new set of home fragrances that evoke a sense of well-being, and ultimately relaxation. Crawford told IKEA, "Scent can change the feeling of a space and thus how we feel in spaces." Their goal in creating the new scent was to connect to Scandinavian nature. "There is something that is forever grounding in nature. We wanted to bring the instinctive memory of nature back into our homes, through scents — particularly for those of us around the world who live in dense cities and don't have immediate access to the outdoors." When you need to instantly transport yourself to a relaxing, tranquil space, turn to fragrance.

Declutter your space

While we may not agree with every piece of advice Marie Kondo has dished out, she was certainly right about one thing: Decluttering makes a massive difference in creating an environment that makes you feel happy and at ease. Clutter creates feelings of chaos and disorganization, which sounds like the opposite of relaxation to us.

IKEA is onboard with Kondo's mentality and even gave its own advice on how to declutter your home, room by room. For hallways, use cabinets and shelves for items like coats and shoes to have a clear path to walk. In the bathroom, turn to baskets (even hanging baskets) and boxes to store toiletries and makeup, so that they're accessible but still tucked away when not in use. Plastic containers and bins are perfect for grouping kitchen items like cooking oils and dry goods, and display cases and cabinets with glass doors in the living room work as a form of motivation to keep things neat and tidy.

Bring natural elements into the kitchen

The kitchen is typically the most frequented room in a house. Beyond just being a place to cook and prepare meals, it's also a place to gather with family and friends. But just because it's a busy room doesn't mean it can't also be a relaxing space. The kitchen deserves just as much attention as any other room in the house.

So, how do you create a zen vibe in the kitchen? IKEA suggests you turn to nature. Adding elements of nature — which we all know is naturally relaxing — can create just the right vibe to balance out all the hustle and bustle. The easiest way to add nature to your kitchen is by using wood. Think light wood cabinets, dark wood floors, or even a butcher block table. Farmhouse elements, such as black iron fixtures and a farmhouse sink, can also achieve a relaxing vibe. You of course want your kitchen to be clean, but that doesn't mean it has to be sterile.

A comfortable living room

Living rooms are meant for relaxing. They're a space in your house filled with couches and chairs, perfect for chatting with loved ones, reading a book, or curling up to watch a movie. In addition to the bedroom, a living room really should be one of the most relaxing places in your house.

To start it off, focus on the seating — make sure your couch or chairs are actually comfortable. When it comes to the sofa, IKEA recommends a one with wide armrests. Not only are they cozier, but they can also act as an additional surface. A couch with storage is also a great option for those with limited space, as it's a way to stay clutter-free, which we all know makes a huge difference when it comes to a relaxing environment. Speaking of storage, fill your living room with furniture pieces that provide a combination of enclosed and visible space. Some things are best tucked away, while others look great on exposed shelves or behind glass cabinet doors.