It’s the six-figure gift the one percent keeps on giving.
Hermès Birkin bags, some of the most expensive handbags in the world, are priced anywhere between $9,000 to upwards to about a half a million dollars. They were the Christmas present carried by everyone from Mariah Carey to Kim Kardashian West’s six-year-old daughter North West.
Carey toted around a black, $115,750 arm bag in Aspen; the youngest of the Kardashian-Jenner clan Kylie Jenner unwrapped not one, but five different styles of exclusive Birkin bag for Christmas; and her niece North was photographed carrying around a $10,000 snow white Hermès bag out in New York City. And designer Victoria Beckham reportedly owns more than 100 Birkins.
But the expensive accouterment is more than just a flashy accessory. Aside from being a status symbol of wealth and affluence, a Birkin is said to be a better investment than gold and the S&P 500 because its value has increased by more than 500 percent, and has never dropped in the past 35 years, according to a 2017 study from Baghunter.com. The Birkin has maintained an average annual value increase of 14.2 percent, according to the report. And the price of a bag is forecast to double in the next decade, Baghunter estimated.
“High-end, rare and sought-after luxury items such as Hermès Birkin handbags have never dropped in value, even during times of recession and economic difficulty,” Baghunter founder Evelyn Fox told Luxury Daily.
Fox said that while the luxury market could suffer during dismal economic times, Birkin bags, which have less supply and ultra-high demand, are unaffected because the resale price of the bag continues to go up since it’s so exclusive. The Hermès bag can command more than 80 percent of its original price on the resale market, Carles Gorra, Rebag founder of luxury handbag resale site Rebag, told FOX Business in Oct.
Indeed, the Birkin bag, crafted since 1837 in Paris, is Hermès’ most sought-after possession. Prospective buyers are able to buy online, but due to how rare they are and the limited availability, many buyers seek out second-hand luxury dealers and consignment shops to find an authentic bag. Jenner has an entire closet devoted to her luxury purse collection and called Birkin bags, in particular, an "investment." Her two-year-old daughter Stormi was also seen saying the word "Birkin" in a video posted on her billionaire mom's Instagram story.
While A-listers like Kardashian-West and Jenner have reportedly gifted their children the pricey bags, perhaps, as an investment, not everyone is on board with letting a kid carry around a $10,000 Birkin bag.
“Overindulgent parents raise kids with no concept of the value of money,” one Twitter user scoffed.
Others said it was “absolutely ridiculous and unnecessary” to gift a designer handbag worth thousands of dollars to a child.