The snob effect refers to the desire to own exclusive or unique goods. These goods usually have a high economic value, but low practical value. The less of an item available, the higher its snob value.
In the instance of designer clothing, it is arguable whether the item in question fits the snob value criteria, which in itself may vary from person to person. A person may reasonably claim to purchase a designer garment because of a certain threading technique, longevity, and fabric. While this is true in some cases, the desired effect can often be achieved by purchasing a less-expensive version from a reputable brand. Often these high-end items end up as closeout items in discount stores or online retailers where they may be offered at deep discounts from original price, bringing into question the true value of the product. Ultimately, wealthy consumers can be lured by superficial factors such as rarity, celebrity representation and brand prestige.