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Can’t understand why he moans when you’re shopping? Well according to a new infographic, women go through a staggering ten steps before they make a purchase.

For modern woman the quest for the perfect outfit requires meticulous planning that can take almost 40 hours to complete, says the study.

Researchers have discovered a generational shift in the way women browse, shop for – and buy fashion items.

The dramatic change in the way women shop amid the internet age was revealed following a study carried out on more than 1,400 females.

It found that style-conscious females utilise every available tool to seek out that dream dress or must-have item before canvassing the opinions of friends, close family and their other half.

The hunt for their ideal outfit is also likely to involve a solo mission to feel the fabric, try on the item in question – and then sens a fitting room selfie to a friend or partner.

But despite recruiting an army of fellow fashion fans before taking the plunge, it also emerged almost half of women still end up with clothing they don’t like.

The heavy reliance on social media was best illustrated by those aged between 16 and 34.

The results show that for one in three women – 32 per cent – in that age group, shopping begins with a trawl through a string of celebrity magazines – both in print and online – to look for inspiration and check out the latest trends.

Following that almost seven out of ten – 68 per cent – then visit online stores to ensure the item is available and, crucially, within their budget.

Another vital part of the approval process, as used by one in five, is sending links to details and images of the potential purchase, or purchases, to friends via email, text or WhatsApp.

For some, a close friend’s opinion is not enough with one in ten posting photos on Facebook to gain a verdict from a wider audience.

Another 12 per cent have a quick look on picture sharing site Instagram to ensure that none of their friends has been pictured recently in the same outfit, or something similar.

While 14 per cent insist on sending a link to mum and other close relatives, while 56 per cent make a special trip to the store to try it on, check out its actual colour and feel, and to ensure it goes with existing accessories.

While 71 per cent make the purchase there and then, a third head back home again to complete the process by ordering it online.

Experts estimate the total time from the minute the first celeb mag is opened to the moment card details are inserted on a payment page to be an incredible 39 hours – or around two-and-a-half days.

But the study also revealed that despite canvassing hundreds of friends and family via various social media channels, the opinion that carries most weight is that of their other half.

Forty-five per cent of all respondents who took part said they would be reluctant to make a purchase without the approval of their boyfriend, husband or partner. Mum was next, followed by best friend.

It also emerged the average woman buys 1.74 new pieces of clothing each month, or almost 21 per year.