The luxury market is suffering not because of soaring unemployment rates or depleted bank accounts. Rich people have money; they just feel bad spending it. Consultants at Bain & Co. just put out a paper identifying "luxury shame" as the worst roadblock to the luxury fashion industry's economic recovery. An executive at a "European luxury powerhouse" who did not want to be identified told The Wall Street Journal that guilt is the biggest problem companies like his face.
But guilt sets in quickly. "It's not very strong at the beginning but increases when you swipe your credit card through the credit-card reader," says [brand strategist Martin] Lindstrom, who conducted three years of studies in neuromarketing — hooking 2,000 people up to sensors to monitor the brain's response to ads and brands. Guilt flashes up in the prefrontal cortex — the same reaction generated in a smoker who has finished a cigarette.
The founder of the Daily Obsession, a shopping blog, said she still feels shamed for spending over $1,000 on a Tod's bag months ago.
"I try not to have those moments anymore," says the 24-year-old, who also works in marketing. "I still have [the bag], but it hides in the back of my closet."
But surely if she took the bag out of the house, that would justify spending over $1,000 on something from Tod's? Well, not exactly, because then she'd be the jerk walking around with a four-figure bag on her arm, and then she'd feel guilty for being That Girl.
In fact, people like the Daily Obsession founder are so afraid of being That Girl, they are entirely avoiding geographic locations where tempting stores lurk. Fashion companies have been forced to tackle "luxury shame" with equally intense psychological tactics. Such as tying purchases to charitable causes or making shoppers think that what they're buying will save the planet. And an increasing number of luxury labels are opening pop-up shops in unexpected locations as if to accost shoppers on roadways they thought possessed no threats.
We think fashion companies are taking the wrong tactic. A lot of people went into stores — and even bought things — on Fashion's Night Out. And it wasn't because they wanted to buy guilt-free ecofriendly socks or donate old sneakers. It was because pretty much every store had free booze and a lot of people got drunk.
Most Viewed Stories
How Angelina Jolie Won the First Big Battle in Her Divorce
25 Famous Women on Being Alone
It’s Time to Get Over Your White Feelings and Start Taking Action for Black Lives
22 Intimate Lost Photos of Marilyn Monroe
Everything We Know About Brad Pitt’s Plane Incident
Jaden Smith on the Many Subtle Flavors of Water
Taylor Swift’s Squad Begged Kim Kardashian for Mercy
Gigi Hadid Fought Back Against a Creepy Stranger Who Grabbed Her
The 6 Best Denim Shops on Etsy
Beyoncé and Tina Knowles Did A Normal Mother/Daughter Thing
From Our Partners
powered by PubExchange
Latest News from The CutArrest Made in Pippa Middleton iCloud Photo Hack
The hacker reportedly offered The Sun and The Daily Mail 3,000 pictures for a large sum of money.The National Nightmare Is Over: Kim Kardashian Will Vote for Hillary
She’s with her.Dolce & Gabbana Was an Italian Lovefest
The theme was Tropico Italiano.Watch the Salvatore Ferragamo Livestream
Enjoy!Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo Unveiled Their Baby on Instagram
Her name is Dusty Rose Levine. Awwww.Beyoncé and Tina Knowles Did A Normal Mother/Daughter Thing
Houston’s Solid Gold Beauty Supply received the Queen Bey herself.Brad Pitt Probably Won’t Face Prosecution for Child Abuse
The Brangelina Divorce Machine marches on.North West Is a Pretty Great Flower Girl
Brides, prepared to be upstaged.The Kids From Stranger Things Are Hanging Out With Nicolas Ghesquière
Millie Bobby Brown, Caleb McLaughlin, and Gaten Matarazzo hit up Louis Vuitton’s HQ in Paris.A ‘Cagney & Lacey-Esque’ Police Drama Is Currently in Development at ABC
Bring. On. The Female. Detectives.
She’ll have to answer questions under oath in the latest lawsuit against him.Lauren Hutton and Gigi Hadid Make the Best Intergenerational Model Pair
It was a major moment.Your Basement Gym Is No Match for These $10 Million Wellness Amenities
The two superstar brokers of Million Dollar Listing New York fame discuss.The NFL Is Taking Steps to Recruit More Women
It’s part of a major push for gender equality.Obsessively Testing the Best White Jeans to Wear All Year Round
When it comes to white denim, the only rule is that it should flatter you.Hotel Counts Sensual Framed Photos of Jeff Goldblum Among Its Amenities
A true luxury.The Cabal of Fabulous Rich Ladies Who Built Gustav Klimt’s Career
Their stories and portraits are featured in a new exhibit at Neue Galerie New York.The Chanel No.5 Launch Party Was the No. 1 Place to Be in L.A. Last Night
It doesn’t get any better than Nas and Chanel bags.An Uber Operator Allegedly Laughed at a Man for Calling to Report a Sexual Assault
The driver has since been permanently banned.Kate Moss and Paris Hilton Partied This Week
People cried while waiting for Gigi Hadid.