I have friends like this too.
They both earn several thousand a year more than I do (the most of all our social group by far I would say) and like the finer things in life and are very very concerned about appearances. She thinks nothing of regular facials and massages at £60 a time whereas for me that is a special treat, not a necessity. They had a lovely spotless home, 3 bed/2 bath just for them but recently decided to trade up and move into the centre of town. How they have afforded it I don't know, it is in the most desirable post code and is insanely expensive, plus they are still not happy with it and want to extend because there is no master ensuite bathroom. Then they started complaining that buying the new house has really stretched their budget, they have no money to pay workmen and borrowed from their parents just to buy paint to redecorate and that his parents had been really kind and helped them buy a dining table as they wanted a new one to go in a new house. It cost £1000!!!!
They run 2 cars, even though they both work in the same company and can get pool cars if one of them needs to travel offsite, they eat out a lot, she is always buying new clothes or asking her husband for expensive jewellery. For example for her birthday she told me she had asked her husband to buy her a £400 ring and her family to club together to get her a £200 bracelet. I am just too practical to spend that amount of money on something that's not really useful too me. I just think of all the places I could go or the things I could do with that.
Now, I don't have a problem with them doing any of this. It's their money, spend it how they like, seriously. However they say they can never afford a proper holiday, or people think they have money (because they splash it so obviously) but really they don't and I am probably better off than they are, they wish they could afford trips etc like I can. At one point she was discussing taking a career break to think about what to do with her life and it was fine because they could live off her husband's salary. I had complained about my job at the time and she said well why don't you just quit and take some time out. I pointed out that I didn't have someone else to support me and even if I did, I liked to work and be in control of my own money. This is what frustrates me, they seem to have no real idea!
I am single, I live alone, am saving to buy a house, I run an 8 year old car, I don't shop that often but when I do I by from mid-range stores like Gap, Banana Republic, Fat Face etc because I like the stuff and it fits me well. I can't afford to shop there all the time but when I need something that is where I go and I get a few key things I can mix and match so i tend to look tidy and put together. Because it's just me I know it's easier to decide how to spend my cash. I can eat really really cheaply at home alone during the week and then it's no problem for me to go for dinner with friends when it's suggested so maybe it looks like I have more cash than I really do. I save up and budget for holidays because travel is really important to me, so once a year I visit a new country. However, I often stay in youth hostels or budget hotels and I do things my own way. My friends would not consider anything less than 4 star and yet have the nerve to say they are envious of my being able to afford such extravagant trips!
The last time she brought this up I simply said that I save, budget and don't have the same other luxuries as they do. Think of their beautiful house, I could never afford that and so choose to spend my money in different ways.