Ever since Veblen and Simmel, luxury has been synonymous with conspicuous consumption. In this conceptual paper we demonstrate the rise of inconspicuous consumption via a wide-ranging synthesis of the literature. We attribute this rise to the signalling ability of traditional luxury goods being diluted, a preference for not standing out as ostentatious during times of economic hardship, and an increased desire for sophistication and subtlety in design in order to further distinguish oneself for a narrow group of peers. We decouple the constructs of luxury and conspicuousness, which allows us to reconceptualise the signalling quality of brands and the construct of luxury. This also has implications for understanding consumer behaviour practices such as counterfeiting and suggests that consumption trends in emerging markets may take a different path from the past.