Since luxury goods are economically replaceable, why do people still spend "unjustly" money on luxury consumption?
In addition to the pursuit of constantly rising levels of pleasure and prosperity, another important reason is the "irreplaceable symbolism" of luxury goods. The more products that can be obtained or purchased by most people, the less they are considered luxury. Luxury is called "luxury" because of the "difficulty of acquisition" determined by its "price threshold" and "scarcity". It is precisely this "difficulty of acquisition" that can isolate luxury consumers from ordinary consumers, revealing a unique social identity and status. It can be seen that luxury goods have a super practical and additional value, namely "symbolic value". And this symbolic value is difficult to replace with ordinary products. In many cases, people pursue luxury goods primarily not for their value in use, but for their "status declaration" function (i.e. symbolic value). In the eyes of luxury consumers, the use value of luxury goods is merely the "carrier" and "excuse" of their symbolic value, and luxury goods have in fact become symbols and "language" for them to show off their wealth, status, and lifestyle. As Van Buren said, in order to achieve the purpose of showing off one's identity, it is necessary to engage in wasteful, non practical, and ostentatious consumption. The more a person can afford to waste, the more they prove their financial strength, status, and identity.