The Pink Tax: Why Women’s Products Often Cost More
by Susan Johnston Taylor, U.S. News & World Report
Since her teens, Muriel Vega, now 29, of Atlanta, has bought men’s razors and shaving cream. It’s partly a cost-saving strategy passed down from her mother, but she’s also found that men’s razors work better for her. “Over time, I started seeing more lady-focused razors, but I started trying them and they’ll dull out halfway through one leg,” she says. “I started going back to the male razors.”
Razors and shaving cream aren’t the only products subject to a gender price gap. According to a study of gendered pricing released by New York City Department of Consumer Affairs last year, shampoo and conditioner marketed to women cost an average of 48 percent more than those marketed to men, while women’s jeans cost 10 percent more than men’s, and girls’ bikes and scooters cost 6 percent more than boys’. Overall, the study found that products marketed to women cost more 42 percent of the time.
Women, who statistically already make less money than men on average, may pay a premium for items marketed to them simply because they aren’t aware of this so-called “pink” tax.