Essential items shouldn’t cost more for women

Natalie Sanko, Takeover Trending Editor

According to award-winning financial advisor Victoria Devine, women will spend $1,300 more than men in a year. Not on makeup or jewelry, but on essential items like razors, period products, deodorant and shampoo. 

This is due to the “pink tax,” a gender-based pricing system. This means traditionally feminine items cost more than masculine ones just because they’re pink or girly.

A 2015 study by The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs found that women’s razors and lotion both cost 11% more than men’s. Shampoo and conditioner cost 48% more and body wash cost 4% more.

The pink tax doesn’t stop in the hygiene aisle either. The study also found toys marketed towards girls cost 2%-13% more than toys marketed towards boys. 

People still claim the pink tax isn’t real. They say the cost difference is justified because “pink things cost more to make.”  While different colored plastics can affect the manufacturing price, it’s not a great enough difference to justify making a product $5 more.

You can try to avoid the pink tax by buying the ‘men’s’ version. However, periods are strictly an issue women face, so that argument doesn’t work to avoid the pink tax. In 37 states, menstrual products have a luxury tax put on them even though people don’t choose to menstruate. They’re a necessity yet they’re not tax-free like toilet paper. 

On Oct. 1, New York became the first state to ban the pink tax. Businesses that don’t comply can be fined up to $4,000. This ban has helped many people especially who previously had trouble affording essential items. 

More states need to recognize the problem with the pink tax, because the issue isn’t just “women’s items cost more,” it’s the fact that these billion-dollar companies think it’s okay to price items differently based on gender.

The ‘pink tax’ is not a myth or a conspiracy. It’s misogyny built on the idea that women are “bougie” and will spend more money because “women only care about looking pretty.” It’s ridiculous and needs to be stopped.