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Why Is Chanel So Expensive? The 6 Main Reasons

Read on to find the 6 main reasons why Chanel is so expensive and why they can keep increasing their prices without loosing revenue

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WHY IS chanel so expensive
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Chanel is an iconic luxury brand that is known worldwide. For over a century, the brand has been a household name in the fashion industry, courtesy of its products made from high-quality materials that can last a lifetime. Their handbags, clothes, and accessories are coveted by fashion collectors worldwide.

But why is the brand famous, and how did their handbags become so popular? Why is Chanel so expensive? If you have been asking yourself these questions, you have come to the right place. We will discuss the reason behind Chanel’s popular and expensive handbags. Keep reading to learn more.

Read also: Chanel’s Prices Through The Years

The History Of Chanel

One of the reasons why Chanel is so famous and expensive is because of its rich history. Coco Chanel founded the brand at the age of twenty when she began selling hats in Paris. She was inspired by menswear and modified them to be comfortable for women (at a time when women’s clothes were pretty uncomfortable).

In her 20s, she was a mistress to a powerful and wealthy French man who helped her start her first shop. Through the man’s circle, she met wealthy women with status, who also became her first customers. 

She did not get into the handbag world until the mid-20th century. By then, she had established her label as a brand for upper-class women in Paris. When she started selling her flap bags, many wealthy women, including local celebrities, flocked to the boutique to purchase one.

So this is how Chanel became a popular brand in the fashion industry. People could see wealthy women and celebrities carrying Chanel bags. They produce their items in limited quantities, and most of their handbags are hard to get.

After Coco passed away, Karl Lagerfeld took over the company and made it become what we know today. He was beloved by upper-class women, celebrities, and models worldwide. 

High Quality Materials

chanel leathers Why Is Chanel So Expensive? The 6 Main Reasons

Chanel produces items with the best quality materials and leather. Of course, this is one reason why their products are so pricey. Most of their handbags are made of either caviar leather or lambskin leather, although tweed, goatskin and other materials are also used. Let’s have a look at their most popular leathers:

Caviar Leather – Caviar leather is a super durable calfskin leather with a coating. You can easily identify it as it is more pebbly and grainy. It is more resistant to tears and scratches, making it a great materials for handbags and acccesories.

Lambskin Leather – Chanel uses lambskin leather that is smooth and appears shiny. You can see a lot of vintage lambskin Chanel bags as well as most of the brands’ seasonal pieces. Chanel’s lambskin is truly beautiful and buttery soft which exudes quality and luxury.

We have a complete guide of all Chanel’s leathers here.

The hardware that Chanel uses is also top notch although the brand stopped using 24K plated hardware in 2008.

The materials the Maison uses are of course more expensive than the average boutique, but in no way justify why Chanel is so expensive. They are however, part of the reason why manufacturing a Chanel bag costs more.

Chanel Bags Have A High Resale Value

Like other luxury brands such as Hermès , Chanel has been increasing the prices of their handbags year in and year out. In recent times, the cost of production, labor, and raw materials has meant that supply cannot keep up with market demand.

The Chanel Classic Flap has had many price increases over the years. While the price for Chanel’s Medium Classic Flap was $1150 in 1990, the same bag now retails at $8800 today. The price increases can be beneficial to those who want to invest their money in the luxury market. Since the bag retains its value well, you will be guaranteed to get your money back if you decide to sell it in the future.

You might think that a high resale value does not impact the brand, as they are not the direct beneficiaries of the second-hand market. And indeed, in the recent years it seems like Chanel is trying to prevent resellers from buying and immediately reselling their brands.

However, one of the reasons why demand is so high for Chanel – and thus why Chanel is so expensive is that people know that if they want to, they can resale their Chanel bags and get most of their money back and sometimes even make a profit! Thus, having a high resale value does influence the brands’ value and can justify paying a high price for a Chanel bag.

chanel super expensive

Popularity: Is It The Reason Why Chanel Is Expensive?

The Chanel Classic Flap is one of the most popular bags in the fashion industry, mainly because of its exclusivity and iconic status. Like most other fashion lines, Chanel has been relying on social media to market its brands and reach new customers. Many celebrities have also been spotted with Chanel pieces, including the Classic Flap.

Chanel is one of the most influential brands in the fashion industry. They have generated a huge following on social media, with more than 50 million followers on Instagram. The brand seems to have a cult following that will continue buying their products despite their frequent price increases.

Therefore, it is true to state that Chanel’s popularity is one of the reasons why the brand is so expensive.

Exclusivity: The real reason why Chanel is so expensive

Chanel has maintained its reputation solely because of its exclusivity. The brand has ensured that its luxurious handbags are admired by many but only owned by a select few at high prices. 

They target to give their customers a feeling of status and exclusivity. Their products are intentionally expensive to ward off the not-so-wealthy individuals.

Another layer to Chanel’s exclusivity lies in the fact that they do not sell online. Even though their main competitors including Hermès and Louis Vuitton sell bags online, Chanel has chosen not to. Excluding consignment stores, you can only buy Chanel at their stand alone boutiques or boutiques in some Nordstrom or Saks department stores.

Furthermore, Chanel does not do any sales or discounts for their handbags. While the brand does have a bi-annual sale (read all about it here), they never have any handbags on sale which makes the brand even more exclusive as there is no way to get a “deal” for a new bag.

This way, people who own a Chanel bag can feel special and belonging to an exclusive circle.

This might be the real reason why Chanel is so expensive: if they don’t give their wealthy clientele the feeling of exclusivity, then they are just another brand that makes great handbags.

Warranty And Bag Care

Chanel bags purchased after April 2021, come with a 5-year warranty, so you can invest your money confidently. You will have peace of mind that the your bags will not fall apart and still look brand new over time (as long as you take care of them).

In addition to their warranty, they also guarantee that your Chanel bag will be taken care of even after the warranty has ended. Therefore, you can still use their repair service to keep your item in good shape or to fix them as needed. The repairs are done by dedicated and highly trained artisans, usually in Paris. Please note that this service is not free of charge and there are some thing that can void warranty or service.

Read more about Chanel’s warranty and bag service here.

why is chanel so expensive

Manufactured In France And Italy

Chanel bags are made in France and Italy. The two countries are known for their craftsmanship as well as high-quality leather products. For instance, Italy is renowned for having exquisite artisans that specialize in leather goods.

Fashion lines made in France and Italy have become a favorite for leather lovers worldwide. Their glamor and design impeccability come at a cost, and that is why they are pricey. Besides, production in Italy and France is more expensive compared to other countries due to the high cost of living.

Conclusion: Top Reasons Why Chanel Is So Expensive

We hope we answered your question of “why is Chanel so expensive”. Here is a quick recap of the top reasons why the brand is so pricey:

  1. The brand’s rich history and heritage is one of the reasons why its bags are so expensive.
  2. They manufacture high-quality products made from high quality materials
  3. Their bags have a high resale value which encourages people to buy more and encourages Chanel to charge even more for their bags
  4. Chanel’s popularity is one of the reasons why their bags are very expensive. Celebrities, socialites and Chanel die-hard fans love the brand and will continue buying despite price increases
  5. All of their products come with a five-year warranty. They also have highly trained artisans who do repairs.
  6. Their bags are manufactured in France and Italy. The two countries are renowned for their high-quality leather products and craftsmanship.
  7. The high prices can also be attributed to the brand’s exclusivity. Usually the more expensive Chanel bags are, the more exclusive they feel.

What Are The Most Popular Chanel Bags?

If you’re looking to buy a Chanel bag, we recommend you have a look at the following:

  • The Chanel Classic Flap (it comes in 4 sizes from Small, Medium M/L, Jumbo and Maxi)
  • The Chanel Reissue – which is the first Chanel bag designed by Coco Chanel herself
  • The Chanel 19 Bag – designed by Karl Lagerfeld, the 19 is a more edgy and casual version of the Classic Flap

How Can I Buy A Chanel Bag For Less?

Since Chanel does not have any discount codes or sales for their handbags, the only way to get a Chanel bag for a cheaper price is to buy pre-loved. We recommend you try online resale platforms such as Fashionphile, Rebag and 1st Dibs for authentic Chanel bags. If you’re feeling brave, you can also use eBay but keep in mind that you need to be extra careful not to buy a fake bag.

Is Chanel Worth The Money?

So, is Chanel worth the money? Yes! Although it is an expensive brand, the quality of its products is usually outstanding. In addition, they offer bag repairs and their products come with a warranty.

Furthermore, if you buy a Chanel bag you know that the resale value is typically good which means that you can just resale it should you get bored of it or if you want a new bag.

Read also:

Why is Goyard so expensive?

Why is YSL so expensive?

Why is Loro Piana so expensive?

Why is Prada so expensive?

Why is Gucci so expensive?

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