For 2024, the quiet luxury trend is out and ‘loud budgeting’ is in — here’s how to make the most of it

Wealth

Just months ago, we were coveting Loro Piana cashmere baseball hats and $300 Smythson notebooks in the name of “quiet luxury” and justifying such expensive purchases using “girl math.”

But in 2024, there’s a new idea taking hold that overtly rejects the urge to overspend and promotes speaking up about saving money — welcome to the era of “loud budgeting.”

What is loud budgeting?

TikTok‘s loud budgeting trend encourages consumers to take control of their finances and be vocal about making money-conscious decisions, rather than modeling purchase decisions after celebrities and their bottomless pockets — and financial experts love it.

The idea making waves on social media is centered around the everyday person, or the “average Joe,” according to Lukas Battle’s viral TikTok video.

“Let’s send a message to corporations about the national inflation level. Let’s take a stand,” Battle said.

“It’s not ‘I don’t have enough,’ it’s ‘I don’t want to spend,'” Battle explained.

In fact, the truly ultra-rich are less interested in conspicuous consumption, he argues. In that way, loud budgeting is “it’s almost more chic, more stylish, more of a flex.”

‘Being loud can be empowering’

“Being loud can be empowering,” said Erica Sandberg, personal finance expert at CardRates.com. “With this process, you become proud that you bring a bag lunch, make your own coffee, or take the bus.”

Further, being open about your financial constraints can also help reduce anxiety and crowdsource solutions, she added.

“Not only can consumers find commonality with budgeting concerns, they can also find community to achieve broader goals and cut down on impulse purchases,” Sandberg said.

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Although a majority of all Americans say they are living paycheck to paycheck and feel increasingly strained by higher prices, consumers routinely spend more than they can afford on impulse purchases, many studies show — particularly on sites like TikTok, Instagram and Facebook.

One report by online lender SoFi found that 56% of consumers said that more than half of their online purchases are spontaneous, driven largely by changing habits post-Covid and the surge in online shopping.

More from Personal Finance:
Stylist Allison Bornstein: Forget quiet luxury
Quiet luxury may be Americans’ most expensive trend to date
Shoppers embrace ‘girl math’ to justify luxury purchases

In fact, there are a growing number of catchy phrases, such as “bougie broke” and “de-influencing,” which aim to consciously stop overspending on social media and adhere to a realistic budget.

“When opening Instagram and routinely seeing photos of that friend who travels to Europe every month, or near daily dinners in $100 per person downtown restaurants, it can become easy to feel that doing the opposite, putting more into savings for a single annual vacation, isn’t really ‘living,'” said Yuval Shuminer, CEO of budgeting app Piere.

Yet, Battle is spot-on, Shuminer said.

“Deprivation isn’t the goal or the outcome,” she said. “It’s the creation of a lifestyle that creates real individual value. It’s about spending money and allocating resources on what you prioritize in life, and cutting ruthlessly on what you don’t.”

How to jump on the loud budgeting trend

Quiet the noise altogether, consumer-savings expert Andrea Woroch recently told CNBC.

“The most simple way to dodge temptations is to get off the list by unsubscribing from emails, opting out of text alerts, turning off push notifications in retail apps and unfollowing brands on social,” she said.

In addition, deleting payment details stored online helps create a “purchase hurdle” that forces you to think through your buying decisions, Woroch said.

Otherwise, Jacqueline Howard, head of money wellness at Ally, recommends trying “the 48-hour rule,” which requires waiting a full two days before buying making a purchase, even if it’s on sale.

“This small window of time allows you to calm your emotions from the urgency of the sale and helps you decide if you really want or need the item,” she said.

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