Survey reveals Brits’ favourite simple pleasures

A new ‘happiness index’ has revealed Brits favourite simple pleasures with a kiss and a cuddle topping the list. 

The feel of crisp, freshly-laundered sheets and receiving a compliment are also highly valued according to new research revealed today. 

The new study, commissioned by UKTV’s premium entertainment channel W to celebrate Davina McCall’s weekly TV series The Davina Hour, reveals life’s top 20 simple pleasures.  

A survey asked 2,000 UK adults to list their favourite simple pleasures with a kiss and a cuddle topping the list

Although over half (56 per cent) of respondent’s favour receiving a kiss and a cuddle as their top simple pleasure, almost as many (47 per cent) believe that they do not receive enough.

Money may not bring happiness after all as 87 per cent claim they appreciate simple, everyday pleasures more when budgets are squeezed however, bagging a bargain still brings a surge of joy to 25 per cent which came in at number five on the index.

The research suggests that the UK is a kind-hearted nation, as almost all (97 per cent) of those surveyed agree that helping other people improved their mood.

The pleasure of doing a good deed for someone (19 per cent) features in the top 20 and receiving a compliment (24 per cent) is also highly prized by many of those surveyed. 

Sleeping in clean sheets were also highly valued coming in third on the happiness index 

Sleeping in clean sheets were also highly valued coming in third on the happiness index 

The survey of 2,000 adults discovered that Brits share an array of wonderful quirky pleasures including laughing with others (54 per cent), giving a gift (17 per cent) and sitting in front of a log fire (14 per cent).

Age also played a part in the increased enjoyment of simple pleasures, as almost all (97 per cent) respondents who took part agreed that they had a greater appreciation of everyday joys as they got older.

Steve North, General Manager of W, said: ‘People can go to great lengths and expense to buy lavish gifts, throw sumptuous parties, or go on outlandish holidays but as often as not, we get intense pleasure from the simple things in life. 

‘With the cost of living rising at a faster pace than salaries people are more conscious of budgets and what they spend, focusing more on what really makes us happy. This is one of the many contemporary topics we will be discussing in The Davina Hour.’ 

The study was carried out ahead of the next episode of The Davina Hour, which focuses on happiness. 

The Davina Hour airs on TV channel W on Monday 2nd October at 9.00pm.


1. A kiss and a cuddle (56%)

2. Laughing with others (54%)

3. Clean sheets (38%)

4. Stroking a pet (30%)

5. Getting a bargain (25%)

6. Receiving a compliment (24%)

7. Finding money (21%)

8. Hearing from an old friend (21%)

9. Doing a good deed, i.e. helping someone with a child (19%)

10. Having a lazy Sunday (18%)

11. Having tea with a friend (17%)

12. Giving a present (17%)

13. The smell of mown grass (16%)

14. Losing weight (16%)

15. Sitting in front of a log fire (14%)

16. Kindness from a stranger (14%)

17. Relaxing in a warm bath (12%)

18. Morning birdsong (11%)

19. Finding something you thought you’d lost (11%)

20. Walking barefoot in the sand (10%)