I did a simple experiment - I beautifully packed new everyday items for my 2.5-year-old daughter - new tights, a ripe mango fruit, a box of juice. Instead of just giving them away, I put them in a fancy box, wrapped them in tissue paper, and tied them with a satin ribbon. And you know what, she appreciated those simple things as much as other really big gifts. As much joy as the gift that was hidden in the package gave her, even after seeing what was inside, her smile did not disappear. What does this mean?
Some will say that this means that 2.5-year-old children do not understand anything and are easily deceived. Others will say that maybe the packaging is very important in creating the impression of the gift and giving more value to the item inside. So how is it really?
Historians believe that gifts have been wrapped since the invention of paper in China in the 2nd century BC. Gift wrapping paper as we know it now was invented only at the beginning of the 20th century, but even then it was fixed with tape or wax, because adhesive tape was only invented in the 1930s (source here ).
Generally speaking, gifts are wrapped to hide what's inside, but in fact, gift wrapping has a much greater effect. Dr. Daniel Howard conducted experiments showing that given the opportunity, people are more likely to choose nicely wrapped items and, most importantly, to rate the gift itself more positively if the wrapping was impressive (source here ). The doctor explains that this is because, from childhood through many life events, we already have an association between wrapped gifts and joyful emotions. This automatically affects all gifts received. Also, a beautifully wrapped gift gives a lot of positive emotions, so psychologically, in order to maintain that emotion, even after unwrapping the gift, we will evaluate it more positively.
This proves that the beautiful packaging of a gift really affects how we value the gift itself, so it's no wonder that a beautifully packaged and presented mango seemed tastier than lying in a fruit basket. So, the next time you want to give a gift in a bag, because "they will throw it away after wrapping", remember this post.