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How Much Americans Spend Treating Themselves


Americans spend $143,280 to “treat themselves” in a lifetime, according to new data, but it’s not all chocolate and spa treatments. In fact, three in five would prefer to indulge in an “IRL” luxury experience (like a backstage pass to see their favorite artist) over a luxurious item (like a designer handbag). And the average American will fork over as much as $368 on a special, one-time experience. This is based on findings from a new study conducted by OnePoll in conjunction with Eventbrite to explore the average “treat yourself” behaviors of 2,000 American adults. According to the study, the average American spends $199 a month, or about 22% of their disposable income, on non-essentials for themselves, including both traditional “self-care” treats and restorative or luxury experiences. Findings include:

  • People under age 25 spend an average of 33% of their disposable income treating themselves
  • People age 55+ estimate they spend 13% of their disposable income on things that make them happy each month
  • 75% of those polled say they feel guilty after spending on themselves (and they were nearly twice as likely to feel guilty about buying material goods, compared to guilt over spending on experiences)
  • 60% of women admit to feeling guilty after buying material items, versus 47% of men polled
  • 62% of all those polled say they want to treat themselves more often than they do now
  • 40% say they’ve developed meaningful new relationships as a result of an in-person or live experience like traveling or attending a concert