The cheaper sweater saves me money, right? In the long-term, not exactly. Here's why...
In Scenario 1, the cost per wear in the first year is $17 (200÷12) vs $6 (75÷12) in Scenario 2. This is what we’d expect. Without taking into account durability or utility, the cost per wear of the less expensive item is lower than the more expensive item.
Now let’s take durability into account. Looking at the same scenarios, in the third year the cost of Scenario 1 drops below $6 to $5. While the bad quality sweater in Scenario 2 will remain around $6 in perpetuity due to replacement, the high quality sweater in Scenario 1 becomes increasingly more cost effective per wear over time.
Now let’s consider utility. When we own higher quality clothing made from higher performing materials, we can wear them more often. If the higher quality sweater in Scenario 1 is worn only 1 extra time a month, the cost per wear drops below $6 to $4 in the second year.
Quickly the cost/wear of long lasting clothing becomes cents, which is a low price to pay for a high quality sweater that we love to wear.