As much as indulging in “retail therapy” can trigger a short-term giddy feeling, new research shows that some products actually work in the opposite manner: we buy them because they make us feel bad. A new study finds that beauty product marketing, in particular, makes female shoppers feel bad about their appearance by suggesting to women that without the product, they are not as attractive as they should be. The unrealistic appearance of air-brushed models has already been shown to have a negative affect on female self-esteem. But this study found that even packaging and advertisements without humans in the imagery had a negative psychological impact on female viewers.
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