1. Are your selfies landing you in debt?
The rise of the “selfie culture” and a fixation on the lifestyles of celebrities may be landing young people in debt.
Research found that young people felt pressured not to be tagged in a photo on social media wearing the same outfit twice. Not wanting to make a fashion faux-pas, one in 10 borrow money they can’t afford to buy new clothes.Internet survey found that 41% of all 18- to 25-year-olds feel the pressure to wear a different outfit every time they go out, rising to 47% for young women.
One in six young people say they don’t feel they can wear an outfit again once it’s been seen on social media, and 79% admitted being influenced by at least one social media platform.
Instagram topped the list at 55%, followed by Facebook (40%), YouTube (37%), Snapchat (25%) and Twitter (14%).
Additionally, unboxing videos, in which YouTubers film themselves opening shopping hauls, are hugely popular, with 30% of young people reporting they watch them regularly, possibly influencing young adults to go out and get a “haul” of their own – with money they don’t have.
The selfie culture has a darker side, though, with 1 in 10 borrowing money they can’t afford to repay to fund clothes shopping. Also many borrowing to purchase new clothes were eating cheap food, skipping meals and even selling sentimental belongings to fund their shopping habit.
More concerning, another study from Royal Mint shows that this is affecting savings levels, too – the #YOLO generation (You Only Live Once) are saving just £300 a year (£5.70 a week) so they can have fun with the rest of their income. This compares to £1,500 per year, which was the average saved 40 years ago, according to historical data published by Lloyds Banking Group.
b. Does stuff = success?
The problem is a cultural one that stems from our tendency in the West to value “acquisition” more highly,
“In effect, we have psychologically fused together success with acquiring ‘stuff’,” he says. We think, “the bigger my house, car, wardrobe, or holiday, the more I demonstrate to myself and others that I am successful.”