10 Instagram-Perfect Things You Shouldn’t Feel Pressured to Own

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For those who grew up before social media, trends were noticed and followed in-person. We saw a classmate wearing a pair of cute boots, or a certain type of jeans, and suddenly it felt like everyone was wearing those clothes. We couldnt help ourselves from wanting those items too — its only human to want to be like other people, to want to fit in.

Today, we notice trends differently — and sometimes its much more subtle than we think. Social media particularly Instagram — plays a huge role in how we view fashion, décor, and accessories. Wed all probably be lying if we said we never contemplated purchasing something with the intention of posting it on Instagram later.

Of course, the desire to create a pleasing Instagram aesthetic is totally normal. But a good Insta-hack to know is that you dont have to go out and actually spend money in order to achieve those double-taps. There are plenty of apps out there that will make your photos look ~fancy~ regardless of the content. With that, here are ten items that you dont need to own just because everyone else on Instagram seems to.

1. Matching coffee mugs.

Its cool if your coffee mugs dont match, or if they have chips on them, and they certainly dont need to look like the ones on the shelves of Anthropologie. If you dont have endless cash to spend on coffee mugs, thats understandable, and nothing to feel weird about.

2. A juicer.

Heres a secret: most of the people who are posting photos of their green juice are buying them from a store or bodega. You definitely dont need one of those Vitamixes or fancy juicers to make kale juice every day if you dont want to.

3. An endless supply of cute fall and winter clothes.

Considering that so many clothes can be layered and paired with other things, you definitely dont need an entire wardrobe filled with infinity scarves and boot socks. (Even though they do look pretty adorable in a Juno filter.)

4. A pet.

Pets are pretty cute, often therapeutic, and they get a lot of attention, but theyre also hard work and expensive AF. Getting a pet is definitely a big decision, and not one to make lightly just because you found out about munchkin cats, and now need one.

5. Tons of high-end makeup.

We get it; selfies look pretty good after youve applied a solid layer of Glow by Anastasia, but you dont necessarily need name-brand stuff to achieve the same effect. Drugstore brands are often just as fabulous.

6. Expensive office supplies.

Its easy to be tempted by the adorable binders, notebooks, and stationary at stores like Paper Source, but that stuff adds up quickly. And, lets be honest, at the end of the day, all notebooks are the same. They are paper. The cute ones are just nicer to look at.

7. A collection of Apple products

Obviously we live in a digital age, and theres no fighting the fact that its hard to live life without a cell phone or laptop. But Apple itself has a way of making us feel like were missing out when we dont have the latest iteration in a series, and it can easily seem like every Instagrammer has at least one iPhone, iPad, and MacBook — all in rose gold, of course.

8. Lots. Of. Food.

No judgment, but have you ever ordered something outlandish mostly to snap a picture of it? If youve ever caught yourself thinking, Yeah that ice cream cone would make a good Instagram post,youre not alone. But ultimately we should make food choices based on what we actually want.

9. A steady stream of gel manicures.

Which of the following seems more likely: Your favorite Instagrammers ALWAYS have perfectly manicured hands, OR they only post photos of their hands when their nails are freshly painted? Its probably the latter, but it sure can seem like everyones nails are painted except for yours, right? Dont feel pressured to visit the salon every two weeks — give your nails (and your wallet) a break.

10. Useless decorative items just because theyre cute.

It can be tempting to purchase that little sign with the perfectly grammable quote, or that tiny cat statuette. And if you really want it, by all means, get it. But if youre listening to that soft voice thats urging you, Run that through VSCOthen gram it,maybe youre making this purchase for the wrong reason.

De is a New Yorker turned Bostonian and lover of all things theatrical. She’ll never turn down a cup of gingerbread coffee, and she’s the owner of the fluffiest cat imaginable. De is on Twitter and Instagram.

Image via Unsplash

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  • nicolacash

    I disagree with the Juicer/Vitamix point – if you’re the type of person that loves buying smoothies/green juices daily or weekly (between $6-$10 each), then spending the money on a high-quality blender upfront & learning how to make your favorite smoothies yourself will eventually end up saving you money in the long run

    • Jack

      hear hear! I make a smoothie and a juice most days, as well as my boyfriend. We have a vitamix and an omega juicer and they are our prized possessions!

  • Antoinette

    This post is a really nice summary of the “Instagram lifestyle.” Definitely concur with you on a lot of the items– it’s good to control your consumerism and put what you buy in the perspective of what you really need/what really makes you happy versus stuff that you might be influenced to buy.

  • Zandypop

    Or for #10 you could do what I do and take a pic of the super cute item in the store and upload it to the ‘gram without buying it. I do this to super weird stuff I find at thrift stores.

  • Lia

    As someone who doesn’t use instagram, this is a strange list. Most of them seem like they belong more in a catalogue than someone’s daily life. Point 10 stands on its own though. Over my first few years out of my parents’ house I spent probably several hundred dollars on cute decorative items. It took me a long time to recognize that most cute things are most enjoyed the first few times you see them, and then they fade into the visual background. Now I just enjoy them in stores and save my shelf/wall space for more personally meaningful items. (Mostly at least.)

    • Mj D’Arco

      i love this comment! i just moved into a new place and i need to be careful with how i spend money trying to make my place feel warm and cozy!

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