Why Do We Buy The Same Things Over And Over Again?

With slow fashion, and conscious consumerism, we are in a time where we are encouraged to buy less, and buy quality to last us a long time. Wearing what we like shapes our identity, and it takes time to find clothes that tell the right story (unless we make it ourselves). After finding those clothes, we might find ourselves going back to the same styles – and it’s okay. In reality, the tendency to fall into these patterns of choosing the same thing each time comes from our need to feel comfortable.

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Here are 3 reasons why we buy the same things over and over again:


Our Personal Uniform

There are staple pieces in our closets we always reach out for, and it’s for a reason. They pair well with practically anything, and can be worn anytime. It requires less time and energy to come up with an outfit, which is proven to be a key solution for many CEO’s. It might seem dull to wear the same clothes everyday (goodbye primary school uniform), but studies show wearing the same clothes reduce decision fatigue and make day-to-day decision making more efficient.  

If You Like Something, You’ll Buy More Of It

Sometimes it is hard to find a piece of clothing that reflects your personality and beliefs, so why not just buy more of it? With small differences – different embellishments or details, it won’t have to be the exact same garment. There is comfort in the known, and whether it is buying the same brand, colour or silhouette, it is creating a closet of items you will wear and cherish for the years to come.

Mere Exposure Effect

The sense of comfort one feels from knowing exactly what they will wear differs from person to person. Some may find comfort in the clothes their family and friends wear, and would dress similarly, just because they can expect how they will look and feel in that outfit. This is a phenomenon called the mere exposure effect, where being exposed to a certain thing will affect your inclination towards it. This happens subconsciously but are backed up with reasons that may be sentimental. They have an encompassing role of bringing about the feelings of security and familiarity, which are qualities we try to incorporate in our everyday.


The underlying justification to all these reasons is simple – it makes us feel comfortable. There is comfort in knowing how it will look on us. The cognitive thought behind a closet of repeats has something to do with feeling a sense of emotional security in the clothes you own – a sense of ease when it comes to understanding your personal style. There’s no shame to choosing comfort over trends, especially not when we know it is deliberate and not an act of despondency. In the end, fashion is a form of self-expression, and comfort doesn’t go out of style.

Let us know in the comments below if we’ve missed anything out, or a reason you would like to share.

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