Drawing on the escape theory, we propose that emotional intelligence is negatively linked to materialism and compulsive buying. Our research demonstrates that the ability to manage one's emotions is associated with lower levels of materialism and compulsive buying. We also show that materialism functions as the mechanism underlying the emotional intelligence–compulsive buying relationship. Similarly, the ability to understand one's emotions was found to be negatively related to compulsive buying. Contrary to expectations, the path between the understanding of one's emotions and materialism was found to be non-significant, suggesting that the link between emotional intelligence and materialism might not always be direct. As expected, materialism was positively linked to compulsive buying. Our research contributes to the relevant literature with a new antecedent of materialism, namely emotional intelligence.