London, Sep 19 (ANI): Men have long complained about their wives splashing out on luxury items. Now, a new study has revealed why females over indulge in retail therapy at certain times of the month.
The study has revealed that women's tendency to shop is directly linked to the stage they have reached in their menstrual cycle.
Psychologists who conducted an online survey of 450 women aged between 18 and 50 discovered that women spend more than 250 pounds on impulse buys at certain times of the month.
The research is the first to establish a link between shopping and female hormonal changes, according to the report's authors.
Purchasing habits among those who took part in the poll fluctuated throughout the month, with unplanned buying of luxury items peaking when the women were most likely to be suffering from pre-menstrual tension.
Spending dropped when they were at their most fertile.
The trend among women at a later stage in their biological cycle, however, was to buy considerably more than they intended.
Nearly 60 per cent of participants admitted spending 25 pound more than necessary, while six per cent reported overspending to the tune of 250 pound on non-essential items such as handbags and shoes.
One third said they were left with feelings of remorse at having bought more than they could afford or at going out to buy a particular item and coming back with something different.
Others felt guilty or angry with themselves for not having stuck to their budget.
Researchers from the University of Hertfordshire questioned participants about their spending habits in the previous week and at the end of the survey asked for the date of their last menstrual period.
From this information, they were able to identify a connection between consumer patterns and phases in the menstrual cycle.
"It is empowering for women to be aware of the factors that can affect their behavior. In this way they can be more in control of their spending," the Daily Mail quoted report's main author Karen Pine as saying.
"Women may now decide they won't go out clothes shopping when feeling pre-menstrual because it's a time when they are more likely to overspend or buy on impulse," said Pine.
One theory raised is that consumer behavior may have its evolutionary roots in expeditions to obtain food.
"Shifts in spending may have arisen from pressure to forage more after the reduction in food consumption that accompanies ovulation," said the report.
The study appeared in the journal Personality and Individual Differences. (ANI)