Consumers found that satisfaction with “experiential purchases” — from massages to family vacations — starts high and increases over time. In contrast, spending money on material things feels good at first, but actually makes people less happy in the end, says Thomas Gilovich, Cornell University professor of psychology and Travis J. Carter, Cornell Ph.D. ’10.

Science Daily: Shopping for Happiness? Get a Massage, Forget the Flat-Screen TV

See also: Transumers.

(Photo credit: Thomas Wanhoff / CC)