The pandemic has left many with a craving. Warmth, comfort. And cleanliness. In striving for a more hygienic home, many people have been turning to innovative products and design trends, and Moen has been conducting their own research to see just where these habits are taking the market in 2021 and onwards. So let’s dive into what they found out, and how homeowners are integrating features to boost cleanliness in their spaces.
Moen’s Hygiene Conscious Design Trends
1. Upgrading to Touchless Technology
The future is coming with touchless solutions on the rise. While these types of devices have been around for quite some time, emerging products are stepping up with increased personalization and control while still maintaining a safe distance.
“In light of the increased focus on hygiene during the pandemic over the past year, it’s not a surprise that hands-free solutions in the home are becoming more popular,” says Birchfield. “At Moen we’ve looked at how we can effectively take the idea of a hands-free faucet and make it a real focal point of the kitchen.”
These newer, more modern faucets can be controlled with a user’s voice and even deliver specific measurements of water in some cases. Extra precision can also be given to the temperature of the water, so users needn’t worry about potentially burning their hands.
2. Ramping Up Visual Cleanliness
Visual clutter can wreak havoc on consumer wellbeing, and this has led many to incorporate design elements that greatly reduce clutter and mess.
“Visual cleanliness is about using space in the best ways possible to support relaxation and limit stress,” notes Birchfield. “At Moen, we’re incorporating this trend into our products by designing kitchen fixtures that seek to reduce stress around clean-up and are easy to clean, while adding sleek, streamlined design to the most hygiene-conscious rooms in the home.”
One primary example of this trend in action comes in the form of a scullery, or pantry kitchen. In these area, the mess of prep and cleanup exist out of the visual line of sight while the kitchen is in use. Coordinating kitchen accents with functional space, such as by choosing a healthy balance in materials between a faucet and countertop, is another way to embrace visual cleanliness in the home, according to Moen. These visually pleasing, but useful, choices allow homeowners to optimize small spaces and better preserve peace of mind while in the kitchen.
DeBoe Harper and Birchfield also have observed that consumers are moving towards materials and surfaces in kitchens that are easier to keep clean such as quartz and quarzite over high-maintenance marble.
“Not only are these materials easier to maintain, when chosen in the right color scheme, they also can help boost a visually clean design,” adds DeBoe Harper. “For instance, by swaying towards countertops in lighter shades of off-white with graceful veining, homeowners are able to brighten spaces while showcasing a sleeker design aesthetic.”
3. Incorporating Layered Neutrals
Branching off of visual cleanliness, layered neutrals are a trend that has only been growing in popularity. The simple truth is that by focusing on less color and bold accents, designers can brighten up the room giving a more unified, clean design style.
“A layered neutrals effect can be created with different shades of whites or by mixing whites, grays and wood tones,” says DeBoe Harper. “For a slightly bolder, more modern take, accentuating a layered neutral with black accents gives a distinctly more contemporary appeal.”
4. Reducing Clutter with Warm Minimalism
“Warm minimalism” uses warm textures and matte finishes to breathe new life into otherwise sparse environments, helping a space appear less cold or severe but instead feel cozy and visually clean – all accomplished without adding unnecessary or distracting elements.
“Warm minimalism is all about limiting what is in the environment to what is truly useful or providing an organic accompaniment. You can accomplish this by reducing the number of accents such as throw pillows or blankets and incorporating greenery like plants throughout the space,” says DeBoe Harper. “Another effective way is through choosing the right color palette and paint, such as using lime wash paint in warm, yet light-toned colors like greige and other earth tones to give the walls subtle movement and natural textures.”
This minimalist idea is also driving the trend in technology to simply disappear into the background. According to the New Home Trends Institute, “Tech will become more silent and more predictive, working in coordination with the rest of your tech as an invisible butler.” This means that while technology will continue to grow in usage, its presence within a home is more likely to blend into the design of the space.
These trends are unlikely to change any time soon, with the pandemic having placed a huge focus on hygiene across the board. Wellness concerns, as well continue to remain top priority for homeowners and businesses alike, and these are likely to only continue to influence design decisions.
“The pandemic has led to changing lifestyles which are inspiring new innovations and trends for the home,” says Birchfield. “We’ll see the effects of the pandemic for many years to come as we look at how future trends influence home décor as well as Moen product design.”