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What are Creature Comforts?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 16, 2024
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Do you have an especially luxurious pillow, an elaborately designed kitchen table, or an extraordinarily comfortable couch? These things may make you happy, and help you feel that you are truly at home, but they’re not necessities. Instead we can define these as amenities, luxuries or creature comforts. In most definitions creature comforts are things not really needed by humans, but that improve comfort or a sense of being at ease.

You can define creature comforts in many ways, and many of us view some of our creature comforts as near necessities. They can be all the little things about the home that make it yours and cry out to you “Welcome!” when you enter the door, or they can be those nice simple things, like a great fluffy pillow that enhances your sleep at night. Could you live without a great fluffy pillow? Of course you could, but if you have the wherewithal, why should you forego it?

There are so many different types of creature comforts that it is challenging to put them into a single class or category. They can include most furniture, most bed and bath items, most kitchen supplies, and many types of clothing. When you think about it, there are many accessories or extras in your life that aren't necessary to survival. These may even include creature comforts we might list as basic things like toilets or beds. Such things are often viewed as necessities but it should be noted that much of the world’s population lives without them.

Sometimes people go overboard in providing their homes with creature comforts. A house can become less comfortable if it is cluttered with too many things that really aren’t needed. A decorative pillow may be great for a chair, but do you need a couch that is made uncomfortable because it has too many pillows on it? There are magazines devoted to the idea of cutting back on having too many amenities, as too much of a good thing can quickly complicate our lives or make it less comfortable.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a HomeQuestionsAnswered contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By bear78 — On Apr 14, 2014

@discographer-- I think that the importance given to creature comforts is a cultural issue. I think that Americans value belongings and comfort a lot. There are many other cultures that do as well. But there are also cultures where creature comforts are not that important. I suppose it depends on many factors like worldview, habits and even religion.

I also feel that creature comforts are of greater importance to people living in the developed world because they have more belongings in general. How can someone yearn for a favorite fluffy pillow or a teddy bear if they've never had one? People living in poverty don't have many creature comforts because they can't afford to own many things.

I think that we need to think twice about our belongings and ask ourselves if we really need them. What if we only bought necessities and used the extra money to help people who can't afford to buy food or pay rent? Wouldn't the world be a much better place?

By discographer — On Apr 13, 2014

I guess I'm weird because I don't really miss my own belongings when I go somewhere. I can stay at a friend's house or at a hotel and feel completely comfortable. I don't think that creature comforts are that important for me.

By literally45 — On Apr 13, 2014

I think that sometimes creature comforts can also be a necessity. For example, I have a great orthopedic pillow. I could live without it but the pain from my neck hernia would be aggravated and would make my life very difficult. I wouldn't be able to sleep and rest properly and would have a stiff neck in the morning.

There are many creature comforts I don't need, like the expensive rug or an even bigger TV. But there are some creature comforts that feel like a necessity, like my orthopedic pillow.

By Reminiscence — On Apr 03, 2014

I've gotten to the point where I bring my own pillows and blankets to whatever hotel I've booked. I can't sleep well without a few familiar things from home. I can survive for a few days without some other creature comforts, but I have to have my own pillows. The ones furnished by hotels tend to be too firm for my liking.

As far as camping goes, I can usually rough it for a few days without many creature comforts as long as I have access to a shower. I can live without an electric razor or a cellphone, but I need to feel clean after a day or so of outdoor life.

By AnswerMan — On Apr 03, 2014

The time I miss my creature comforts the most is when I'm camping. I don't want to sleep in a sleeping bag on a thin air mattress on the ground. I want my own comfortable bed with my usual pillows, and I don't want to hear things chirping or howling three feet away. I want my television and laptop computer within arm's reach. The only kind of shower I want is the long and hot variety. I think that's why I like the idea of "glamping": glamorous camping.

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a HomeQuestionsAnswered contributor,...
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