Recently we had an interesting reference question at work regarding cognitive dissonance and shoppers — it’s complicated, but essentially addresses the two conflicting feelings a recent purchase can cause, sort of like buyer’s remorse, making a shopper hesitant to buy the product again. Marketers spend lots of money and effort trying to make sure this won’t happen, obviously.

I recently got a haircut with magic bangs. (They are magical because they have the ability to disappear completely. I was slightly embarrassed when I asked for the bangs, loudly declaring, “Can you bang my hair, please?” I was appropriately mortified when I realized the double meaning of my request. ) I love them. I sorta thought I’d like them when I asked for them, but as the stylist was cutting my hair, he kept saying little things like “Sweet!” and “Rock and Roll!” under his breath. Seems this guy knows a bit about cognitive dissonance because with every little comment I got more and more excited about my magical bangs, especially when he said “This is the best idea ever!” Geez, dude. There is such thing as overselling it. But frankly, I ate it up with a spoon and bounced out of there like a be-banged rock star.