"I went to go price engagement rings in November years ago with the intention of waiting until the next April to propose. Instead, I bought the second ring I saw and proposed that night."
—Ari V., 40
"On a trip with my mom when I was 14, I stumbled across a Hollywood memorabilia store. Hanging from the ceiling was a black-framed movie poster from Ocean's 11. It had been signed by almost the entire cast and glistened with beauty, practically electric from being handled by such titans of the industry. I had to own it.
"After a lot of convincing, my parents FINALLY agreed I could use my entire life savings of $700 to pay for it. My account recovered, and I'm still glad they let me make my first big purchase.
"In the 13 years since, that poster has come with me to every place I've lived, including my current home in Brooklyn where, ironically, $700 doesn't go that far."
—Amanda P., 25
The Medieval Mace
"I once found a small, genuine medieval weapon. It was hanging on the wall of this antique shop in upstate New York, and it seemed like it was either a very believable movie prop or something that actually brought a lot of pain years ago (yikes). I thought it would look cute in my room among my collection of kitschy '50s toys and dolls, so I bought it. And as predicted, it looks really cute. I love it!"
—Mandy C., 26
The Doggy Pajamas
"A few months ago, I bought pajamas for my dog Harley after seeing another Frenchie in them on Instagram. Such a random buy, but there is so much pressure on social media to share cute pics of your pets! We treat our pets like children these days. She looks so cute in them, and she actually likes them (I think), but I'm not entirely convinced they were necessary. I don't regret buying them though!"
—Courtney H., 28
"I bought black sports sunglasses back in high school, and 14 years later, they are still one of my most prized possessions. They've been with me through it all. They were my good luck charm during high school cross country and track races, earning me the nickname 'Top Gun.' 😎 They masked my tears when I said goodbye to my parents on the first day of my pre-college orientation hike. They've helped me through multiple half-marathons and marathons.
"They are not trendy or remotely fashionable, and they are covered in dust and sweat half the time, but they've given me comfort and confidence in so many situations. I don't think my love for another material item could ever come close."
—Tory G., 27
The Tiny Babies
"For my office's holiday gift exchange, I bought my co-worker a jar filled with tiny, plastic babies — plastic babies the size of your pinky. It's super weird, but it has meaning behind it. My co-worker always refers to everyone on our team as her babies, and at some point, she started saying, 'Big mom, tiny babies.'
"The look on her face when she opened the gift was enough to tell me I'd made the right call. It was hilarious!"
—Ben R., 32
"For my company holiday party, I went on a full-fledged mission to purchase something that would really make a statement. And so, I decided to buy a suit. But not just ANY suit — an all-white lady suit.
"I searched for weeks and finally found the perfect one with just days to spare. It was that LAST suit in my size. Someone even had to undress the mannequin for me. Not only that, but it was 50% off. I was swimming in a sea of luck!
"When the party finally came, it felt like prom all over again. Except instead of a floor-length, gnarly, bedazzled dress, I was in my white suit, feeling the most confident I ever have in my life."
—Tara P., 29
The Dragon Fountain
"As a senior in college, I somehow found myself on a website selling sculpture fountains. It was weird, but I went for it.
"A week later, a water fountain arrived in the mail, complete with a color-changing, misting crystal ball with a black dragon with its wings spread looming over it all. Despite my friends insisting that I return it, Dragon persevered and has followed me to four different apartments over the last seven years.
"Last winter, after years of joking about doing so, I brought a boy back to my apartment with tales of Dragon. This summer, that boy is moving in, so...worth it!"
—Amy S., 28
"When I first moved to L.A., my very cool boss gave me a bit of advice: to go ahead and make some dumb luxury purchase, buy something I wanted but didn't need, as a reward for doing this huge, stressful, life-changing move across the country.
"So I bought myself a Doctor Who-themed watch. I'm a HUGE fan, and when I saw it, I knew it was for me. And lemme tell you, it changed my life. I LOVE wearing a watch. You can tell time without having to look at your phone, and as someone who doesn't wear any accessories, it's kind of nice having this beautiful thing on your wrist. I'm so grateful I listened."
—Kirk D., 34
"A few years ago, my friends and I decided to visit my uncle in Vermont. I was coming from Massachusetts, and even though he told me not to listen to my GPS, I thought, He'll never know if I listen to my GPS. I was very wrong.
"Long story short, I got stuck in a ditch and almost totaled my car. I couldn't get in touch with my uncle, needed to meet my friends somewhere, and was really shaken up, so I pulled over at an antiques shop.
"I waited there, walking up and down the aisles until I could get in touch with someone. I felt so bad for loitering and felt like I needed to buy something. That's when I saw a $55 needlepoint that said 'CATS ARE PEOPLE TOO' and told the owner, 'I'll take it!' It now sits above my dresser, and I laugh whenever I look up at it."
—Ashley C., 31
With the Chase Freedom Unlimited℠ card, you could get 1.5% cash back on everything you buy — to spend on your next must have.
What's the best purchase you've ever made? Share it in the comments below!
All illustrations by Dan Blaushild for BuzzFeed.
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