This year, we had Patricia Arquette eschewing a traditional acceptance speech at the Oscars in favour of speaking out against the wage-gap. Then we had the Tampon Tax backlash. Evidently, it's still tough – and a damn sight more expensive – being a woman in 2015.
According to research from the New York Consumer Affairs Board – which looked at 800 products and compared both male and female versions – women are paying 42% more for exactly the same items. The largest price discrepancy emerged in the hair care category, where women, on average, paid 48% more for goods like shampoo, conditioner and gel. Razor cartridges came in second place, costing female shoppers 11% more.
In 2014, The New York Times' editorial board dubbed this phenomenon "the pink tax," in response to a petition against France's Monoprix supermarket chain, who were openly charging more for women's products. Unfortunately, gender inequality in retail pricing isn't unique to French supermarkets.
In the UK, wether you’re aware of it or not, if you’re buying beauty products targeted at women, you’re effectively paying “woman tax", which – over a lifetime – means that women may spend tens of thousands of pounds more on certain goods and services than men. When you take into account that women earn roughly 78% of what their male counterparts take home, it really is infuriating.
A simple method of protest would be to boycott female-targeted toiletries if a man's version can be bought in its place. But what then of fragrances and body creams? People are getting involved in the debate by sharing on social media examples of products that are priced higher for women than for men by using the hashtag #genderpricing.
The above report has come from an American body, so to prove a point we’ve taken five comparable products from online and compared the men’s and women’s versions. The results speak for themselves.