Go ahead and treat yourself.

Fresh Flower Bouquet
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Good news, Trader Joe's flower-aisle enthusiasts: those $4.99 hydrangeas may be worth much more than their bargain price tag. A new study from the University of North Florida's Department of Public Health finds that living with flowers "significantly alleviates daily stress."

It's something most people who have picked up a spur-of-the-moment bouquet at the grocery store know—there's just something happy about a big, bright arrangement in the home. In a press release, lead researcher Erin Largo-Wight, Ph.D. says it's something people are starting to pay more attention to: "There is a growing body of research that illustrates how environmental design positively impacts health," she says. "Now it is both intuitive and scientifically known that adding elements of nature, like flowers, to interiors promotes well-being."

The study observed a sample of 170 women, who tracked their perceived stress over a 12-day period. On day five, they each received one of three options: cut flowers, a comparison gift (luxury candle) or nothing at all (as a control). At the end of the study, those who received the flowers self-reported a "statistically significant" difference in stress levels. According to the press release, the participants all reported about the same stress levels at the beginning of the study. By the end, those who received the flowers "overwhelmingly" said it improved their mood and reported lower stress levels.

All the more reason a sweet arrangement is the perfect gift for a stressed friend or significant other—or just because! It's easy, quick, and guarantees a mood boost. To make it even more thoughtful, give a flower with symbolic meaning. Check out our guide here:

Read more about the 2018 study, entitled, The Impact of Flowers on Perceived Stress Among Women at aboutflowers.com. Once you've picked up your favorite bunch, check out our tips for keeping cut flowers fresh here.