retail therapy

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retail therapy (uncountable)

  1. (humorous) Shopping purely for pleasure, especially as a distraction from personal difficulties or disappointments.
    • 2013 August 7, Derek Thompson, “The Loneliness Loop: Why Feeling Sad Makes Us Shop and Shopping Makes Us Sad”, in The Atlantic[1]:
      This vicious cycle, "the loneliness loop," has been studied by economists for more than a decade. But surely, if retail therapy can be medicine, there must be a way for shopping to make us feel less lonely, right?