By Salony Satpathy:
“I bought a new Reebok T-shirt”, “Have you checked out the new collection at Shopper’s Stop?” , “I wish I had those pair of Levi’s jeans”– These are the kind of statements that is common among young professionals, college goers and even school goers nowadays. It is the age of brands and brand name. Youngsters do not even think twice before buying an exorbitantly priced apparel of a famous brand with the hard earned money of their parents which has been given to them as pocket money or themselves which they have earned after hours of hard work.
The question now arises as to whether this expenditure is a necessity or just an unwanted obsession of the young bloods. It is a pity that today people associate looking “fashionable” and “good” with a brand name rather than quality. If Nike sells a low quality product at a high price, a majority of the population will still consider it “trendy” and “worthy” even though a similar “unbranded” material is available which is of considerably better quality and a much lower price. People have stopped using their brains in making decisions.
The problem is that brands are now being associated with status and recognition, the higher popularity and price, the better. People indulge in comparisons within their peers on the basis of brands and this further deteriorates the situation as it leads to a never ending race of reaching higher and higher on the ladder. These people also fall prey to the aggressive marketing and sales promotion strategies of the apparel companies whose major aim is to make their customers believe that buying branded products of is essential for their survival.
Wearing branded clothes has assumed so much importance today that articles are being written on whether it is a necessity or not. The truth is that it is never wrong to buy and possess a wardrobe of branded clothes. If this were to stop then the designers and people in the fashion and apparel industry will be jobless. But what is wrong is to get obsessed with them and not consider other good quality alternatives like handloom and indigenous products. An obsession with everything branded can be considered like an addiction like that due to drugs and alcohol, which then become a necessity in the lives of the individuals under question.
It is high time the youngsters understood that peers or society should not affect their decisions to such an extent that they forget their own personal choice and economic status in the process. They need to learn to appreciate beauty and quality rather than being brand freaks.