People selling and buying and marketing.
The majority of it is targeted towards insecurity, not having self-confidence, a sense of self-worth, or low self-esteem.
And it works. Temporarily. Imperfectly. But it works, and it can work for a long time. Like functioning addiction.
But the real thing is like, self-confidence, self-esteem, a sense of self-worth. The real thing is socializing. People buy things for compliments, positive attention, and because they think they will be treated well.
You can have those things more directly.
People want to be happy. To have a good life. Material goods are definitely a part of it. But they would have you believe that you do not already have them.
Humans and needs change rarely. The human has been a human for thousands of years. There is an abundance there that is there.
And you would have yourself miss it.