The signature scents.
The forgiving lighting.
The sight of flutes running over with champagne.
The sound of “Vous-voulez desire” seductively flowing from the mouth of an enchanting SA.
The feel of caviar leather grazing your finger tips.
All equals a recipe for disaster.
And I KNOW the psychology of retail.
Oui, mes amies there is an ENTIRE science that is involved with determining what; color schemes, scents, layouts, physical appearances of the SA, lighting and more that retailers use to induce consumer spending.
I’ve been tremendously blessed to travel internationally multiple times a year and those travels always involve shopping in flagship boutiques.
Inspite of having the will power of a toddler who’s fighting their sleep and an entire degree in fashion, I still find myself (almost) falling victim to temptation/pressure.
Case in point. I have vowed (written and orally) to never buy another CHANEL brooch (or any with stones or pearls.) The two main reasons being, the influx of counterfeit options I see daily and the quality.
Having made this statement on more occasions than one, while shopping at the premiere CHANEL boutique en Paris, I came three seconds close to purchasing yet another jeweled CHANEL brooch, for €2,200.00.
It was the lighting. The smell. The physical appearance of my tailored SA. But most of all, the sounds of “J-uuu should have, oui?”
The pressure to purchase isn’t an international phenomenon (although I do think the euphoria is heightened abroad.)
I have received countless calls, video chats or texts from mes amies while shopping in luxury stores. These mes amies weren’t calling for style advising, they were calling to be talked out of making an irrational/impulse purchase.
Shopping avec aimes and not wanting to be the only one not making a purchase, pressure from the SA, or the infamous not wanting the SA to think you can’t afford it are all ingredients for buyers remorse.
If you thought you got the stinky eye for not making a purchase, imagine the look you’ll get when returning them.
On the same trip en Paris I witnessed self restraint at it’s finest from ma cherie “Cutie.”
Although we nearly drowned in bottles of champagne (on an empty stomach) “Cutie” never wavered from her conviction. There was a particular item at Louis Vuitton that we’d discussed for months. When the SA arrived with the tray of luxury goods, “Cutie” carefully examined the item and was truly disappointed with the feel of the canvas.
Apres un hushed tête-à-tête, she made the decision to walk away.
In Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, I discussed an experience I had with an SA at CHANEL en Paris, and it TRULY was an eye-opener.
Walking away “empty handed” is easier said that done. Please trust that I truly understand. Weekend trips to Cairo and Paris was not always my life.
I’m not close to the place I’m working to be financially but I am counting my blessing at how far I have come.
With that, I remain extremely grounded and realistic (my reality) when making purchases. Whether it’s a cost-per-wear analysis or the REAL eye opener; calculating how many hours you work/ed to make the purchase.
A person earning a salary of $102,477
Hourly Rate: $49.10
Chanel Card Holder: $575
To pay for the Chanel card holder you felt pressured to buy, you must work over 12 hours.
Are you comfortable with that?
There is no denying my affinity for luxury goods and I’d be the most stylish (tee-hee) hypocrite if I denied said claims. As much as I showcase champagne sipping and shopping, I also balance that with financial savviness.
I am the biggest advocate of only purchasing what moves you. Don’t succumb to trends, pressure or the “every woman should own this” list. If it makes you smile and it is worth your hard earned money, DO IT!
I’ve wasted money on $14.99 cheaply made dresses and swooned over $1,000 collars that I absolutely adore. And oui, that collar was worth every hour I had to work for it.
Purchases of any denomination should be made solely on your accord. After all things are only worth what you are willing to pay.
Have you ever felt pressure to make a purchase?
How did you handle it?
Ciao for now 💋