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Purse Envy Syndrome (PES)
by: Mary Helen Sanders
A dictionary meaning of envy is “a feeling of discontent and resentment aroused by and in conjunction with desire for the possessions or qualities of another.” People have feelings of envy for many reasons. A new emerging form of envy is what I call Purse Envy Syndrome (PES). PES has taken on different facets for different people and taken on various meanings over the last several years. PES has been a male dominated syndrome, though few will admit to it. Men are fascinated with women’s purses from the time they are boys. As boys they pull at their mom’s purses for attention and sometimes search through the bags searching for the goodies she has stored inside. As they get older, they do the same process with their girlfriends and then their wives. They not only are fascinated with what she carries in her bag, but often ask for her to carry their items in the bag!

Men are not the only ones with PES. Women can have it too! In fact, they get it even worse than men! Women fantasize about carrying designer label purses or one’s similar to celebrities. Who wouldn’t want a Kate Spade, Louis Vuitton, Brighton, Coach, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, or Dooney and Bourke? Most women aren’t lucky enough to be able to afford the designer labels, but lucky for us, there are very good replicas on the market. If you decide to splurge and buy an authentic designer purse, please buy it from a reputable source. Unfortunately, there are sellers that try to sell replicas as the real thing. There are many reputable sources for buying replicas as well. Replicas should not infringe on the rights on the authentic purse. They should in no way pass themselves off as the real thing.

Women comb through fashion magazines looking for what celebrities are wearing and what accessories they are wearing and carrying. Everyone wants to be able to sport the latest fashions. It seems that one of the best ways for us to do that is to watch the stars and try to mimic their style. It seems each star tries to make their own statement by wearing and carrying different designers, shapes and styles. So how do we keep pace? Again, we luck out! We don’t have to keep pace. We choose the styles we like best and go with those.

Women also look to their friends and people they see at the mall or restaurants to find new trends. How many times have you seen someone with a purse and said to yourself, “I wish I knew where she got that purse?” Sometimes you may be brave enough to approach the woman and ask. You should not be afraid to ask someone where they got their purse—it’s very flattering! Don’t you love it when someone notices what you have on or the shoes or purse you are carrying? Most women are more than happy to tell you where they got their purse. If they won’t tell you, try searching the internet—you may luck out and find it yourself!

Women fret about matching their shoes with their purse or finding the right purse to match an outfit. After all, the right purse makes the outfit complete! Rest assured, that in today’s world, the purse no longer has to match the shoes! You can be wild and crazy, calm and sedate, conservative or classy—it’s all about what makes you feel good about yourself that counts. Your purse says a lot about yourself, so use it to express the many nuances that make you YOU. Carry different purses for different occasions that allow you to show the many sides of you.

So, what is the answer to PES and how do you overcome it? There is no quick answer to this ongoing syndrome. Most men are not going to buy a purse—if they did, they are afraid they would be called a sissy. The man purse is gaining popularity in Europe and Australia, but not likely to gain popularity in the US. Women will always want to look their best and have the latest fashions. PES is here to stay and most likely will grow to overwhelming proportions. My suggestion is to give in to the syndrome and go buy a purse!

About the author:
Mary Helen & Ernie Sanders are current retailers of purses for the last 3 years. They spend numerous hours researching trends and styles for women. You can find the perfect purse for you at their website:

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