DETROIT -

There is finally a good reason for why women have so many designer shoes and handbags. According to a study at the University of Minnesota, women buy designer shoes and handbags to prevent other women from stealing their man.

In a series of five experiments, with 649 women of varying ages and relationship statuses researchers found women’s luxury products often function as a signaling system directed at other women who pose a threat to their romantic relationships.

Researchers say they found when a woman is wearing luxury items and designer brands, she is perceived to have a more devoted partner and as a result other women are less likely to flirt with him.

The study found regardless of whom actually purchased the items, other women inferred that the man had something to do with it and is more devoted to her.

The research also revealed that when romantic relationships were threatened, women not only desired more expensive handbags, cars, cell phones and shoes, they also spent 32% more of their own money for a chance to win an actual luxury spending spree.