Look around the hallways of Sartell High School, what brands do you see Sartell students wearing? Are the logos visible? Do YOU buy expensive brands just based on the status symbol?
The question I have been asking myself is, why would people pay more money on a pair of jeans for instance, with a Calvin Klein logo, when they can go to a department store and pick up a pair for a smaller price.
Logos can be extremely persuasive. People want to buy the best quality item they can even if the price is exorbitant, especially if the people around them paid the extra money for a designer item.
In a study done by Rob Nelissen and Marijn Meijers of Tilburg University in the Netherlands, called Social benefits of luxury brands as costly signals of wealth and status, they found out that “Psychological research has confirmed that the desire for status is an important force driving the market for luxury goods.” People are predisposed to like nicer, fancier things. When they see people wearing these logos, they are drawn to buying them. That is how trends start.
Rob Nelissen and Marijn Meijers also argued, “From an evolutionary perspective, it has been argued that the human preference for luxury consumption originates from a universal tendency.” This shows that almost all human beings are prone to favor a life of luxury. Nelissen and Meijers also conclude from their research that wearing brand-labeled clothing yields benefits in social interactions. People buy these articles of clothing to benefit their social status.
After much research, I decided to ask the students of Sartell High School if they let logos determine whether or not they will invest in a piece of clothing.
Senior, JT Rogers said, “He would not be willing to pay the extra money just because of an items logo/brand.” I wanted to get different perspectives from the students here at Sartell, so I made sure to ask both males and female from multiple different grades.
When I asked Senior, Alexis Kubesh, she said, “ I am willing to pay the extra money for a higher quality, name brand item.” When I asked Junior, Grant Sobania what he looked for in an article of clothing he said, “When choosing something to buy, I look at the how cheap it is and whether or not it is comfortable.”
The answers varied so much that I decided to put out a Twitter poll to see what the general public thought. After evaluating the results of my poll, I came to the conclusion that whether or not people buy name brand items is pretty much equal. Some people are willing to purchase designer products whereas others favor the cheaper alternative.
In my opinion, if buying that designer item makes you happy go for it! But, if you are simply buying these items to increase your social status, there are much cheaper alternatives. I am not saying in any way that you should stray away from buying designer logos, but if you are buying an item based simply on whether or not you think people will know how expensive your new pair of jeans are, you should reevaluate your options.
I believe that you should dress for yourself, not to please the others around you. So if buying that pair of Hunter Boots or that new Apple Watch puts a smile on your face, you totally should. But, if you are buying to impress your peers, know that you should dress for yourself and yourself only. Don’t let our current society misrepresent your own individuality.