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Express Your Individuality, Be You, and Buy Buy Buy

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posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 11:46 AM
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It’s beautiful how people express themselves through their individual styles, looks, traditional costumes. I, too, enjoy nice things, pretty things, colors and textures, which made it hard to make a pact not to buy myself anything (beyond the necessities) for a year. But doing so has definitely made me wonder about marketing, consumerism, and spending. I realized that to many marketers, I’m in some target group of “middle-aged women.” (Turning 40 in a few weeks
) That techniques are employed in an attempt to attract me by appealing to stuff that middle aged ladies like. This makes me less and less inclined to consume. I think (at least hope) I’ll be smarter about spending money once this year’s over and might try to extend the pact another year too.

Recently, while watching an ad showing a guy get all made up with layers of cosmetics, I wondered about how the cosmetic companies might profit from selling their products to both men and women-- much like the advertising campaigns in the early 2000s to sell face and hair products to men. Makeup is a multi-billion dollar industry worldwide. Of course one is free to spend his/her money however one pleases, but I do wonder whether many of us (and the youth are really buying into makeup-- the market probably starts at kids around 10 years old) are putting more time and energy into “a look” than is benefitting us. I really think that consumerism leads to a kind of self centered thinking and even self esteem issues. I’m not sure being pushed toward MORE makeup is progress, that any amount of makeup will suddenly allow people to truly be themselves and free, that humanity is moving toward a more deeper understanding of the self. I’d venture that it might be better for an individual to put more time and effort into learning new things and into the community/each other than worrying themselves over a slew of beauty products. Our passions and our engagement is what makes us truly beautiful.

Below is an interesting excerpt and link to an article discussing the marketability of makeup to men:


The men’s personal care industry is predicted to hit $166 billion by 2022, according to Allied Market Research. Just last year, men’s skin-care products alone saw a more than 7% jump in sales and with the category currently valued at $122 million, according to market researcher NPD Group.

“In recent years, the notion that men can’t or shouldn’t be using skin-care products or caring more in general about all aspects of their appearance has been receding,” said Andrew Stablein, research analyst at Euromonitor International in a research note.

The success of digitally native brands catered directly to men such as Harry’s and popular subscription service Dollar Shave Club reveal “the average men’s grooming routine isn’t about just shaving, but can be aided by using skin-care products,” Stablein said.

www.cnbc.com...
What do you think, friends? Hope to hear from you on the subject.




edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)

edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 11:57 AM
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a reply to: zosimov

I can dig it.

I dont see a link though, so I am unsure how to find my individuality.



My perspective is that, in most respects, I have "found myself." For better or worse...

So, the things I buy are simply tools in order to interact and express what I have found. An easy, borderline common, way to look at it maybe.. But we only really hurt ourselves if we deceive ourselves about the first part.

There is a difference between saying "im just expressing myself!" as justification for buying crap and actually using it as a tool in order to leverage our creativity and imagination. The former has us being sucked into consumerism as if it has the meaning we seek, while the latter is just very nice window dressing.

We can put crown molding in our house, but its probably a mistake to start thinking it is the house and build everything out of it.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:07 PM
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originally posted by: Serdgiam
a reply to: zosimov


I dont see a link though, so I am unsure how to find my individuality.




LOL! I did, however, edit the OP to add a link because it adds to the discussion.


originally posted by: Serdgiam
a reply to: zosimov



There is a difference between saying "im just expressing myself!" as justification for buying crap and actually using it as a tool in order to leverage our creativity and imagination. The former has us being sucked into consumerism as if it has the meaning we seek, while the latter is just very nice window dressing.

We can put crown molding in our house, but its probably a mistake to start thinking it is the house and build everything out of it.


Love these thoughts here, Serdgiam. As per usual for me, I think true creativity and expression is the answer to the problem of consumerism. You're also right that we do run into a problem finding raw materials ourselves anymore and that artists do need tools. I guess being creative about what to use and where to find tools is fun too



edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:07 PM
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“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

― Oscar Wilde



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:34 PM
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a reply to: zosimov


This started years ago...metrosexual....

Appearance is unfortunately to high of a priority in society today. Even to the point of insisting fat chicks are sexy.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:37 PM
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What's interesting about these threads that bemoan the effect of advertising is that the poster appears to be immune to it, but is only worried about everyone else.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:38 PM
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a reply to: schuyler

Haha nice to see ya in another thread bemoaning the OP's opinion but offering little by way of meaningful rebuttal.
Does strike me as approaching ad hominem territory, which as the recipient I don't mind but it's a terrible way to offer an argument.

edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:57 PM
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originally posted by: zosimov

LOL! I did, however, edit the OP to add a link because it adds to the discussion.


Oh thank God!

*clicks link*

Oh dear God..

Ill be honest and say I dont "get" makeup. I dont use it, so I guess I dont need to get it. I almost said "Im a guy, so I dont get it," but..



Love these thoughts here, Serdgiam. As per usual for me, I think true creativity and expression is the answer to the problem of consumerism. You're also right that we do run into a problem finding raw materials ourselves anymore and that artists do need tools. I guess being creative about what to use and where to find tools is fun too



For myself, its guitars and related things. Both from a playing perspective and a luthier perspective. I think that with something like music, you get a certain kind of "feedback" for your efforts that perhaps sets it apart from something like makeup or collecting Hummel figurines.

Its tough.. The end result from an external view is someone wearing makeup, collecting Hummels, or playing guitar. But, the reasons and perspective from the personal view are probably as varied as there are individuals.

Perhaps where the issue comes in is when folks start personally identifying with things, or worse, perceive some huge, faceless company as if it represents them personally.

We see a lot of that nowadays. When a company like Gillette puts out a "woke" ad, you get people who take the criticism of that ad as personal attacks. As if Gillette, or Proctor & Gamble, cares about any of it at all. They are just trying to make as much money as they can, but the brand loyalty thats fostered from this idea that such a corporation represents "you" as an individual is.. very good for the company. Unless, of course, in doing so they isolate more people than they gain.

Maybe someday soon, we will start to see people treat their favorite corporation like their sports team. Merchandise! Brand (team) loyalty! They can do no wrong!

Rah! Rah! Rah! GoooooOOOO Shoreline Industrial & Electric!

We are already kinda there with "battles" like Apple vs Real Computers (
), but I think it can, and just might, get a helluva lot worse.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 12:58 PM
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This is a good thread. We have been conditioned by the economics of society to buy things we really do not need. This is one of the major reasons that we as a species are destroying the environment.

I try not to buy anything I do not need. I try to fix and repurpose things to fill my needs too. I have always been this way to a lesser extent, but now I am pretty much avoiding impulse buying. We do buy things we do need, but shop around to make sure we are getting a fair price. Often we find that we actually only think we need something, that is one of the social programming scams they run, think you need something you really do not need.

We may have six hundred packs of paper plates in the closet, but they were a buck fifty a pkg, and the plates do not need to be pried apart, just pick them off the top. The wife and I are worried that they may quit selling that brand here someday, so we are being prepared.

You would be surprised how much you can save if you actually are conservative. But always remember, pennywise and a nickel poorer sometimes applies.

It is time to buy a toaster again...talk about depressing, the other one dries out the toast, it takes too long to toast. They all work great for six months then get so the toast is not good tasting. Maybe a three hundred dollar commercial toaster is in the future, they work great and a two slicer can make toast faster than a four slice homeowner toaster. Anyone know of a good homeowner toaster that works and lasts.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 01:03 PM
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originally posted by: schuyler
What's interesting about these threads that bemoan the effect of advertising is that the poster appears to be immune to it, but is only worried about everyone else.


The thing is that I am immune to advertising and being talked into buying things, but I still try to teach others what I have learned. I am good at avoiding high pressure sales techniques and deflecting unneeded purchases because I learned from my mother how to avoid it. My mother was a Stanley regional manager, then went to Amway, Christmas around the world, and Deco Plant sales, succeeding in all of them to deceive people into buying what she sold. So my brother, sister, and I became experts at deflecting sales people's tactics and learned how to deal with them and to say no because my mother taught us to not listen to her sales pitches. Her teachings also helped us to be able to sit through a sermon without getting brainwashed.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 01:37 PM
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a reply to: zosimov

Excellent thread Zos. Nicely pointed out. I have only two comments to add to your observations. One is in response to this comment.



But doing so has definitely made me wonder about marketing, consumerism, and spending


By this time, we should ALL be past the wondering stage about how marketers work on us in every field of our lives. Well past wondering.

The second is to this specific example of how we are exploited by those who would sell their crap to us for our physical self images, and that is from the Sermon on the Mount. ''And why take ye thought for raiment?
Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow;
they toil not, neither do they spin:''



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 01:41 PM
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originally posted by: TerryMcGuire

By this time, we should ALL be past the wondering stage about how marketers work on us in every field of our lives. Well past wondering.

The second is to this specific example of how we are exploited by those who would sell their crap to us for our physical self images, and that is from the Sermon on the Mount. ''And why take ye thought for raiment?
Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow;
they toil not, neither do they spin:''


These are really really good points. I could learn a thing or two thinking about this.

edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 01:49 PM
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originally posted by: Serdgiam


Perhaps where the issue comes in is when folks start personally identifying with things, or worse, perceive some huge, faceless company as if it represents them personally.

We see a lot of that nowadays. When a company like Gillette puts out a "woke" ad, you get people who take the criticism of that ad as personal attacks. As if Gillette, or Proctor & Gamble, cares about any of it at all. They are just trying to make as much money as they can, but the brand loyalty thats fostered from this idea that such a corporation represents "you" as an individual is.. very good for the company. Unless, of course, in doing so they isolate more people than they gain.

Maybe someday soon, we will start to see people treat their favorite corporation like their sports team. Merchandise! Brand (team) loyalty! They can do no wrong!

Rah! Rah! Rah! GoooooOOOO Shoreline Industrial & Electric!

We are already kinda there with "battles" like Apple vs Real Computers (
), but I think it can, and just might, get a helluva lot worse.


I think you've hit on a key point here. Especially your point I bolded-- that the issue might just be when people start self identifying through goods/stuff/merchandise. Companies like Nike have waded into socio-political issues and I think makeup companies may have capitalized on recent issues as well.

One aspect of the movie Idiocracy (have you seen it? interesting movie) that stood out to me was that there were brand names everywhere-- but only a few of the same brands, huge conglomerates.


edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 02:26 PM
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originally posted by: zosimov

I think you've hit on a key point here. Especially your point I bolded-- that the issue might just be when people start self identifying through goods/stuff/merchandise. Companies like Nike have waded into socio-political issues and I think makeup companies may have capitalized on recent issues as well.


They most certainly have, havent they!

I can "get" why the companies do it. I dont like it, and I disagree with doing it.. but I get it.

However, if I say something like "Nike sucks!" or "Apple sucks!" or "Liberals suck!" (gasp!) and someone acts as if I just slapped their mama.. I really dont get that. If someone doesnt say "You Ser, suck!" I just assume they arent talking about me, rather than assuming they are. I feel like technology exacerbates this, since when we see those words on the screen, its easy to think they were meant for us.

Hell, I can even understand how it happens! But, the actual personal experience of it baffles me completely. Its so far removed from my perspective. Maybe thats part of the problem too? When we talk to someone who is a Devout Consumer, it probably becomes clear quite quickly that we dont know where they are coming from. This might make it easy for the Devout Consumer to dismiss anything said.


One aspect of the movie Idiocracy (have you seen it? interesting movie) that stood out to me was that there were brand names everywhere-- but only a few of the same brands, huge conglamerates.


Thats one of those movies that entertains me as much as it disturbs me..

Demolition Man is another, and there are a lot of books that do the same (like Kage Baker's The Company series, a personal favorite).

In some ways, its seems like life imitates art whether we like it or not. Ive never been sure how I feel about that, other than the idea that it might be wise to consider this even when creating the most obscure, absurd art. Perhaps especially then..



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 03:33 PM
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originally posted by: zosimov
It’s beautiful how people express themselves through their individual styles, looks, traditional costumes. I, too, enjoy nice things, pretty things, colors and textures, which made it hard to make a pact not to buy myself anything (beyond the necessities) for a year. But doing so has definitely made me wonder about marketing, consumerism, and spending.



I agree with everything you have said........and have only one thing to say

*handbags* What is a handbag? something to keep all a womans bits and pieces

together so she can grab everything together, throw it down and use it for years

till it has been scuffed and perhaps need another...... However there are women

who have the wear with all to buy several at exorbitant prices (in the £1,000's

infact what some people earn in a year.

They waste so much time keeping them in boxes dusted and packaged (so much

wasted time) when they could be doing something more useful!!


Makes me wonder ...... how easily conned some people can be ..... Whats that

old saying A fool and his money are soon parted!!





edit on 7-9-2019 by eletheia because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 05:03 PM
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a reply to: zosimov

Love this OP

I've recently been targeted for a very weird product (considering i'm a lady)

Mens laundry detergent, smells like Oak and whisky.

Huge niche market. The detergent is like $40. For men that don't like smelling like tide etc.

We are going to see a lot more stuff going that way, men makeup, self care products like face wash, shoes, clothes.



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 06:52 PM
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originally posted by: zosimov
a reply to: schuyler

Haha nice to see ya in another thread bemoaning the OP's opinion but offering little by way of meaningful rebuttal.
Does strike me as approaching ad hominem territory, which as the recipient I don't mind but it's a terrible way to offer an argument.


And what have you done to enlighten the masses lately? The issue is legitimate. I have yet to see - ever - someone bemoaning the effects of advertising admit to being affected by it. Somehow, people who dislike advertising are immune to it. In which case, what's the problem? And in terms of ad hominem attacks, WTF did you just do?



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 07:06 PM
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a reply to: schuyler

LOL I can see my OP riled you up a bit.

I could direct you to the part, right at the start of the post, where I wrote I liked nice things too. I know that inference is tough for people these days, but that should indicate that I, too, fall for the trap of consumerism.

However, I've been making steps to change and thought sharing the steps I'd taken might be of interest to some, so I wrote this post.
What's the problem?


Edit: Ok I did add a few snarky lines in and I'm sorry. This is the second time in about a month you've added some semi-insulting 2 line response which doesn't address the OP in any way-- maybe it's your mannerism, don't know.

Either way, if you'd like to make an argument in favor of consumerism, I'd be interested in hearing it.
edit on 7-9-2019 by zosimov because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 07:09 PM
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a reply to: eletheia


However there are women

who have the wear with all to buy several at exorbitant prices (in the £1,000's

infact what some people earn in a year.


It's insane! people who pay exorbitant prices are paying for a name only. You can get gorgeous things that are of high quality for cheap if you look around, even at second hand stores!



posted on Sep, 7 2019 @ 07:13 PM
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a reply to: JAGStorm

OMG, 40 bucks for laundry soap? Hell, you can get good laundry soap at a dollar store, even brand names. Sales in stores are great too. I never pay much for my laundry soap and it cleans well and smells nice.



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