Women and their debt highlighted again for contributing to “Shopaholic Britain”

Research from uSwitch is giving the impression that the UK is full of a shopaholics. We look at the case for people who aren’t shopaholics and are working to reduce their debts.

As women’s spending habits are hit by the media again this week, we ask are women in the UK really all shopaholics?

Research carried out by comparison site uSwitch reported that four million women are shopaholics with average debts of £3,353. This time however, men’s spending habits were also looked at and the report found that there a three million male shopaholics with average debts of £3,425 each.

uSwitch’s Ann Robinson blamed “today’s celebrity obsessed society” for the shopaholic behaviour, but as we’ve discussed in some of our recent blogs, such as our discussion of the increase in bankruptcy among women, it’s all too easy to make a sweeping statement about women copying the celebrity lifestyle at the expense of credit cards and overdrafts without looking at the bigger picture.

Sure, there are lots of irresponsible spenders out there, both male and female, but there are also a lot of people who are making conscious efforts to manage their finances and deal with their debt problems. We know because we’re helping them to do so with IVAs and Debt Management Plans!

A few months ago ClearDebt’s Jacqueline Cohen took part in a feature for the Daily Mirror where they looked at the cost of a woman’s daily wardrobe. We ran a poll along with that blog, with somewhat of a smaller sample size, and found 65% of voters said they had cut down on their shopping habits since the start of the recession.

I’m proud to say I’m part of that 65% and even though there are still some shopping urges I can’t resist, on the whole, when I’m out shopping I find myself putting things back before I make it to the till! Another example is Piper from Frugal living, who has been blogging about her experiences of shopping on a budget.

Are you a reformed shopaholic? What are your top tips for resisting the urge to splurge? Leave a comment and let us know!

Alternatively if you’re a shopaholic who needs help with their debts, take the ClearDebt analyser and see what debt management solutions we can offer you:

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  1. I used to buy clothes to cheer myself up, and went shopping for something to do.
    Since, Ive had less money, I feel I’m more stylish because I really think about what I buy, spend time choosing things, and appreciate what i have bought. Now, i never buy something unless i know i’m going to wear it. I also look after the clothes i’ve got and make sure i keep my boots heeled etc.
    I accessorize to make outfits look different, and try different items on with each other.
    I try and make the most of the sales, and have had some brilliant unwanted clothes past on to me by a friend.
    I still do have my moments though , and can feel sorry for myself , that i have to be so careful. Sometimes it does you good to have a bit of self indulgence, and a splurge on something just for the hell of it.
    However, having said all that, i think women can use shopping to fill an emotional gap, and not having much money has made me find other interests. Also, I have to think of my priorities, if i buy a new top , i might not be able to go out for a drink with a friend, and longterm priorities like trying to save for a holiday or mini break.

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