Brand Strategy Consumer Sentiment Work & Wellbeing

Brits cling to life’s little luxuries as the cost of living crisis bites


By John Glenday, Reporter

September 6, 2022 | 3 min read

Britons are refusing to embrace full austerity, even as wallets get lighter and purses empty, according to YouGov research from influencer marketing platform LTK.

cost of living

The YouGov study quizzed 2,183 consumers online between August 16 and 17

The survey found that far from battening down the financial hatches in preparation for a bleak winter of turnip and woolly jumpers, most consumers are still willing to splash some cash – so long as the price is right.

20% of the most spendthrift shoppers professed to increasing their beauty spending over the past six months as a way of distracting themselves from waves of bad news. Retail therapy was the tonic of choice for 59% of respondents, who admitted to making an impulse buy to find temporary respite from glum reality.

Putting a price on happiness, the research shows that 42% of shoppers would stump up £30 or more for an item that makes them feel good. Dubbed ‘dopamine dressing,’ the phenomenon has fueled month-on-month increases for brightly-colored items, with lime green garments, yellow dresses and pink shirts all flying off the shelves.

To seal the deal, marketers are advised to focus on quality, with 51% citing this as a decisive purchase factor. An even greater lure is keen pricing, with 62% keen to feel like they’ve snapped up a bargain. This is reflected in the fact that 80% of adults would rather purchase an item they love less for no more than £15 than a loved item worth up to £250.

Amber Venz Box, co-founder and president of LTK, said: “Shopping has changed considerably in the last year, and we’ve seen from LTK creators that consumers are finding a way to navigate the current economic climate while purchasing items that provide them with a sense of escapism. We’re seeing more and more consumers follow creators for their savvy sales shopping tips and look to them as guides for the best recommendations on how to shop smarter and more cost-effectively during this time.”

The YouGov study quizzed 2,183 consumers online between August 16 and 17 to inform its findings.

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