I don’t know if Madison is asleep, but there is only silence in the darkness of her room. Cole is face down in the playpen in our room. Avery is passed out, surrounded by a small sea of diaper cloths in her crib. Abby has retired to our bed for the night. I am shirtless and strewn on the couch. Lynnette enters the living room and shuts all of the lights off except for one. She lowers herself onto the couch next to me. There are faints sounds of rain banking off the roof, windows, and pavement outside. It’s late. Relatively late. Late for parents of 1-year old twins, I mean. I have to go to bed soon, but this is it: quality time. Lynnette cues up her phone and starts watching – along with 50 other people – a Facebook Live session. That’s right. Lynnette and I spend the last conscious moments of our night together watching women unbox LuLaRoe clothing.
It wasn’t always this way. Lynnette heard of LuLaRoe long before she purchased her first pair of fox leggings to wear at Cole and Avery’s first birthday party. She simply wasn’t interested. “$25 for leggings,” she recalls thinking. It was easier to continue buying cheaper, single-color leggings from retailers like Old Navy and Gap, she concluded. “But then I tried on a pair and the material is so buttery and then $25 didn’t seem so bad anymore,” she says.
Lynnette and I have had some pretty decent conversations about LuLaRoe. I mean that with no hint of sarcasm. We’ve talked about the business model, the marketing, the psychology of distribution. We’ve come to the basic conclusion that they’re a variation on Air Jordans (but waaaay cheaper) in that they have brand prestige and have artificially created both scarcity and a hierarchy of products that is unspoken and cannot be understood by anyone other than the initiated enthusiasts. Some people have grails like Space Jam XIs. My wife is chasing a unicorn of frosted doughnut leggings.
If you didn’t know, Lynnette is a hypebeast. She falls in love with trends and fads, gets all-in on them, then realizes she simply doesn’t have time or money or energy or two or all three of the above to keep going. Then she moves on to the next thing. She was once an mildly-extreme couponer. For a time she hunted down the hipest makeup brands and items. I give my love credit; she’s made only a couple of modest purchases and has shown remarkable willpower to his point. In fact, she text messaged me yesterday before buying some LuLaRoe products. She shot me a picture. She told me the price. She asked if it was cool. I told her she was an adult, that she didn’t need to ask permission, she said she valued my “feedback and wisdom”. Eventually I typed the words “just get it” to which she responded “Thanks, that all I needed to hear.” Well, then.
In truth I don’t mind spending down time with Lynnette like this. She runs the gamut of emotions (as pictured here) as each item is revealed, then spoken for by someone else – just as breathless, I am sure – watching the Facebook Live stream. She doesn’t know what she wants until she sees it. Admittedly, it is kind of fun to see the items and comment on the designs, colors, etc. There is also the sophomoric hope that Lynnette and I will be treated to a LuLaRoe design blooper live, as it’s happening. I don’t know how we got here, honestly, and yet here we are. There’s a very real chance that you will bump into us and our kids at a LuLaRoe event near you this holiday season. See you then!