Ah, marketing studies: no matter how much the world changes, they blossom year-round, hearty perennials on the withering vine that is the news cycle. They are a small source of much joy, particularly their ability to reveal to us subcultures, alternative lifestyles, and demographics, from the merely absurd (Toto-toilet loving millennial HENRYs, or “High Earner, Not Rich Yet”) to the gently fictional (normcore).
Today, a study called “Nine By Nine,” produced by a retail media research firm called Future Commerce and an email marketing platform called Klaviyo, introduces a new group of consumers—and an all-time acronym. Joining the prestigious ranks of HENRYs, DINKs (Double Income, No Kids), and the still-prominent Yuppies (Young Urban Professionals), are C.A.R.L.Y.s. Meet fashion’s biggest new thing: the “Can’t Afford Real Life Yet” generation.
“Wow,” you might be thinking, “sounds like me and everyone I know, probably for the rest of time, haha,” but