Did you guys hear about the investigation into retail therapy done by Selin Atalay and Margaret Meloy? With the help of three different studies* they concluded that "retail therapy generally works, that people deploy the practice strategically, rather than impulsively, and that there are few if any negative emotional side-effects."
Personally, I aim for a minimalist approach to my closet. I'm limited on space and can catch myself up in buyer's remorse if I purchase something I don't absolutely love. However, I love fashion. And I love shopping. It's a tricky mix for me to balance.
If I find myself bringing in new items I automatically make myself take a look at my wardrobe and get rid of anything I've held onto for too long. If I haven't worn something for a long time (more than 6 months to a year) and it's in good condition, it's usually in the charity bag. If something's not in good condition I set it to the side and see just how much I come up with. I only need so many "painting" clothes or scrubby stuff to wear for DIY projects.
I have definitely noticed a lift in my mood after buying something new. I will even say:
"Hi, my name is Rachel and shopping is my happy drug."
How about you? Do you notice a shopping "high" when you're feeling low?
*Atalay, A., and Meloy, M. (2011). Retail therapy: A strategic effort to improve mood. Psychology and Marketing, 28 (6), 638-659 DOI:10.1002/mar.20404