Why Do We Overshop? Is It A Syndrome Or A Therapy?

We all have a top, a dress, a perfume or a shoe that is tucked away and never used. Why do we overshop?

We all have a top, a dress, a perfume or a shoe that is tucked away and never used. Why do we overshop?

Have you ever thought about the reasons for overshopping?

In the past few years, I have seen a drastic change in myself in terms of shopping. Of course, clothing and fashion has been an integral part of my life since I started to understand what fashion is all about. I used to think I shopped because I love clothes and fashion, but I’ve come to understand that there is a lot more to it than that.

Many psychologists have proved that being a compulsive shopaholic can go much deeper than just a passion for style.

Let me list down some of the reasons that leads us to shops and what happens in the process.


I think we all go through a phase of depression at some point in our lives. When all you want to do is just sit with the sadness and be unhappy. At this point of time, if you land up shopping, yes – it will definitely help to uplift your mood, at least temporarily. In fact it sends the person to an altered state of mind, although it’s different from the high one gets from alchohol or any other drugs. And in this high we tend to overshop without thinking of what really is our necessity.


Despite social media and many other ways to be connected with your friends and family, many of us suffer from loneliness and a lack of connection. It is a feeling of being left alone within a huge crowd. Shopping can be the best friend to fight against this loneliness. When you visit malls, you tend to see a lot of people around you. The friendly sales team is at your service to help you look better and make you feel less lonely. These nice gestures can lead you to shop for things which are not required and were not in your wishlist until then.


This is my personal experience; when I don’t have a lot going on in my life, I find myself taking small trips to the nearby malls. It’s like a crime to even log on to the Internet at such times, as the e-commerce websites have such lucrative offers, which are just irresistible and you land up shopping again for no reason.

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Low self-esteem or insecurity

Many people struggle with low self-esteem and a feeling of not being good enough. In order to look better, we wear different hair styles. We try brands that friends and families suggest. In this process we buy clothes which are not necessary. If we are well-dressed, we receive compliments and validation from others. But if that dress does not help us look any better, we will not receive any special compliments and the dress will lie in one corner of your closet forever.

Poor judgement of self

All of us want to look pretty, thin and in shape. Some people refrain from shopping for clothes when they have gained weight or feel bad about their bodies. For me, the opposite has been true. When I feel unattractive or fat, I shop in the hope of finding those magical clothes that will provide me with positive feelings about my body. In essence, a person is shopping for a feeling rather than the actual clothing. We tend to forget that our attire mostly provides temporary solutions. For it to be your constant trustworthy companion, you must know your body well and understand the style that looks best on you.

Peer pressure

This is a regular phenomena amongst teenagers. Style is dynamic; it keeps changing and teenagers, in an urge to wear what’s latest, keep shopping for the latest fashion.

When women go out with their family and friends, they land up shopping more than what they would shop for by themselves. We often end up buying too much or we purchase things which really don’t work for our lifestyles or suit our personal aesthetics. Sometimes, we also tend to shop if our friends are buying lots of trendy new items, as we don’t want to miss out on fashion or appear lacking in terms of style quotient.

This post was first published at the author’s blog.

Image a happy woman via Shutterstock


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