Updated: Feb 15
With more and more content gravitating towards 'soft living' and the acquisition of luxury items as the pinnacle of womanhood, what should our response be?
The ladies of leisure. The soft life bandits.
Round up! We're doing a roll call! Put your hand up if you're present!
Ladies in luxury has been a topic that's been cropping up again and again in popular culture - with more and more women embracing the call to the finer things in life. We're all for women enjoying themselves. But, in true TMS fashion, we're encouraging a nation of analytical, critical and thoughtful women in this generation.
When we think of luxury, many of us think of ostentatious, materialistic things. We think of big flashy cars, designer bags, 'bougie' restaurants and wearing towels on our head with a silk dressing gown. And, intrinsically, these things are not bad. Live your best life sis!
But sometimes luxury isn't a necessarily something super materialistic. The dictionary definition of luxury is as follows:
Luxury: a state of great comfort or elegance, especially when involving great expense.
What brings you great comfort? What involves great expense? It might not be as grandiose as a swanky restaurant or a birkin bag. It may simply be grabbing a few moments by yourself in front of Disney+ or Netflix after a ridiculously busy work day. It might be enjoying an ice cream or a chocolate bar after a week of mostly eating nutritious whole foods. It might even be treating yourself to a relaxing face mask as you slip into a bath in your house.
The bottom line? Luxury can be internally defined as much as it is externally defined.
Is Aspiring Toward 'Luxury' a Bad Thing?
As social definitions of luxury can be so overwhelmingly materialistic, it can feel incredibly problematic to desire towards luxury. Especially when faced with the reality that whilst luxury can often come at an expense, the expense might not be yours. In fact, sometimes what we find luxurious is actively exploitative. Think of the workers who produce fast fashion, or the waiters and waitresses who are paid minimum wage to work long hours at prestigious restaurants. Luxury can have the girls feeling a little helpless, as well as feeling responsible for these moral and social failings.
The answer? It's all about balance and perspective.
The reality is that we live in a majority capitalist society - that means exploitation is something that is likely to occur in various chains of market production. You set the terms and conditions of your luxury, and in this, we implore you to also think structurally in your quest towards luxury. When you go to the fancy restaurants - tip the staff well, and be on your best behaviour. When looking for clothes to buy, try to shop consciously and do your research to stay clued up on the companies you are investing in. When aspiring towards material goods, think critically about whether it is worth purchasing at this time.
Giving Back to the Community
One thing which isn't much explored in luxury is the idea of collective luxury - investing in comfort and elegance on behalf of a community. Tied into the heart of TMS and our point on examining your role in exploitation, actively giving back to your sisters is a way to ensure that, in your pursuit of luxury, you're building community and investing in the people around you. Sometimes it's not about taking yourself out or buying yourself nice things - sometimes it's you donating your money to a sister halfway across the globe who needs the luxury item of sanitary products. Or, sometimes it's taking your friend out for drinks after she's had a rough past few weeks.
Collective luxury is radical as it is underpinned by the notion that we all can win. We're rebelling against a society that pits women against each other, and leveraging our sense of sisterhood and community, to ensure that as many women can share in the soft life.
Which of your sisters are you going to invest in this week? That's our challenge to you!