Retail Therapy Makes You Feel Worse According To Study, But Here Are 5 Reasons I Totally Disagree

NEW YORK, NY - JULY 16: Shoppers walk down Broadway in Manhattan on July 16, 2012 in New York City. Retail sales declined for a third straight month as the U.S. economic recovery remains shaky. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Source: Mario Tama/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Gotta love retail therapy, right? You know — the shopping you do when you're feeling a bit down on your luck? Well, it might not be an effective mood-booster, after all. A recent study by the Journal of Consumer Research concluded that retail therapy actually makes you feel worse about yourself. Ladies, you know those moments I'm talking about. Those days when you don't wake up to your alarm, spill coffee on yourself the minute you step into the subway and have to endure the longest, most pointless meeting of your life? This study is saying new shoes can't cure that awful day.

I don't want to get all scientific on you, mostly because I don't think the benefits of shopping can be quantified by stats, but the scientists basically state those impulse shopping trips diminish our feelings of self-worth. The study says that shopping after a bad day is "compensatory behavior" or an action taken as compensation for a bad experience. JCR goes on to explain the kind of things we buy matches the bad experience we had. The study illustrates a master's student who has not received any job offers while her classmates have. JCR guesses that student will go to the mall to buy something related to job success, like a watch or briefcase. 

Here's the thing — I get where the study is coming from. It is kind of like giving into a bad mood. But I have yet to meet a pair of shoes that did not turn that day around. To disprove JCR, not that I have anything against other studies they have done, I have conducted my own extensive research and found these five reasons why retail therapy works every time — as told by GIFs, as all great scientific discoveries should be.

1. It's (Finally) an Excuse to Buy That Item I've Been Eyeing

2. It Really Does Help Me Get Along With People

Maybe not because it's someone else buying it for me, though. I'm just in a generally happier mood. Which brings me to my next point...

3. The Power of Using My Own Money On Things I Want

Maybe it's just me, but I like the feeling of knowing I have money I can drop on impulse shopping on those bad days. Not only because I worked hard earning that money for myself, but knowing I will still be financially OK if I do buy that sweater. 

4. I Can Wear That New Item Around Whatever Event/Experience/Person Made Me Mad in the First Place

It's like saying to your frenemy "Yes, you got me upset yesterday, but I have new shoes. So..." And it's a nice little reminder to yourself to stay calm whenever you see that person again. 

5. Dressing for Success

If the study is right about one thing, it's the correlation between our bad days and what we buy. So if I were to buy a new outfit to wear to work, I'm sure it would make me feel a little bit more successful than the last time I was there.

P.S. That $26 mascara I bought after I failed a chemistry final also disproves this theory. 

Images: Getty; Giphy(5)

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