The Pink Tax - Argumentative Essay Example

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Middlebury College
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Argumentative essay
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It is apparent that the women pay more on the daily essentials and the feminine hygiene products than men. A study on gendered pricing that was done by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs in the year 2016 reveals that shampoo and conditioner that were marketed to the women cost 48 percent more than the same that were marketed to the men (Stevens, and Kevin 571). Other products that the study found to have gendered discrimination on prices were jeans, bikes and scooters among others. In this manner, the study found out that womens jeans cost 10 percent more than those of women, girls bikes and scooters cost 6 percent more than those meant for boys. In this manner, the study made the conclusion that female products are 42 percent higher than similar products meant for the men; this is due to pink tax (Bennett 183).

In addition to the higher prices of womens items, there are cases that womens items contain less of the products because the manufacturers feel that by making the items smaller, they become more feminine (Scholtens 17). Such an approach is dubbed, shrink it and pink it. It is because women, in most cases, need smaller versions of items thereby making it prudent for manufacturers to create womens items to be much smaller yet more expensive. Comparing womens and mens jeans reveals that womens items are smaller than that of women although studies reveal that feminine items have between 30 and 50 percent price hike. Such is because manufacturers have the feeling that that socialized culture has led the population to make womens items look and cost differently. In this manner, manufacturers claim that the price discrimination is meant to fulfill the needs of the female gender and ensure that they suit the needs of the females (Cirerol 129).

With regards to the gendered toys, the boys are inclined towards the blue-colored toys while the girls tend to like the pink-colored toys. It is because the blue version of the toys tend to look stronger and intellectually stimulating than the pink toys (Heider, and Alexander 685). The pricing discrimination is to be blamed on the retailers and this is because any attempts to shift the products towards a more de-gendered society, retailers tend to focus more on the public opinion leading to the changes in prices hence price discrimination. Despite the outcry from the women that manufacturers are inclined towards extracting money from women, manufacturers defend themselves and blame the price gap on the retailers for changing prices of womens items. Additionally, manufactures also defend themselves stating differences in the qualities of the items as the causes of differences in prices (Stevens, and Kevin 573).

Another reason why womens items cost more than the mens items is because of the difference in ingredients construction and branding leading to the difference in the cost of manufacturing. In this manner, the womens items are of a higher quality than those of mens (Bennett 184). In this manner, shoppers have no control over such factors and women have to purchase what is available at a higher cost. There are legitimate factors that cause price disparities and the women have no control over the same, and call for the female gender to acknowledge the differences in the quality of their items and those of men. Another issue that affects prices of both mens and womens items if tax, and this is because the value-added tax (VAT) considers some womens items as non-essential luxury items. In this manner, the VAT imposed on such items tend to have higher prices (Scholtens 21).

Moreover, the issue of additional design and performance features on the womens items tend to increase the prices of such its hence leading to pricing disparities in the modern society. In this manner, a review of the pricing strategies that manufacturers use considers various factors before deciding on the final prices of products for females (Cirerol 132). The high demand of the womens items also tends to affect their prices. It is another factor that follows the rule of supply and demand, this is because women tend to use more products in their items thereby leading to a higher demand of such products which in turn affect the prices. With the smaller sizes of womens items, they tend to buy such items on a higher frequency as compared to the men thereby necessitating a higher production from the manufacturers. In this manner, the high production that the high demand necessitates call for higher quantities of raw materials thereby leading to increase in the costs of raw materials (Heider, and Alexander 687). As such, the prices of such items then increase.

The final factor that leads to higher prices of womens products are the diverse tasks and preferences of females. Due to the diverse tastes and preferences of women and the challenges that manufacturers go through in the process of fulfilling the diverse tastes, manufacturers end up increasing the cost of their products and services to capture the time and effort resources used in the process of production of the same. Such results to higher prices of womens items (Stevens, and Kevin 575).

The other issue of contention is how women are paid less but expected to pay more for products, it is a general opinion that such a move is discriminating to the female gender. In this manner, such challenges expose women to additional problems of having to meet their needs (Bennett 190). The White House confirms that there is a pay gap and that a full-time working woman earns 78 percent of what men of the caliber earn. In this manner, there is realized gender discrimination in terms of payments. Due to the pay gap and the discrimination in pricing, women have devised various strategies to avoid the eminent price discrimination. One of the strategies is that women have resorted to buying mens version of similar products that do the same duties (Scholtens 24). In this manner, they avoid the extra cost associated with womens items have save them money.

Additionally, there has been a change of attitude on the female gender, and this is because of the need of the women to conform more to the items of the males. One example is that parents do not buy toys that are specific to either the boys or girls, and this helps the females to enjoy lower prices of items and help in the reduction in the costs of products (Cirerol 134). The third strategy that women, who already earn less but have to pay for more expensive products, do is to forego the luxuries and buy only the fundamental items that are basic to their daily livelihoods. By forgoing some items considered as luxury, the demand decreases thereby leading to the reduction in prices in response to the rules of supply and demand (Heider, and Alexander 691). There is a need for governments for form regulations and policies that can help in eliminating gender disparities on pricing of products.

The final effort that women have made is to highlight the issue and create awareness among themselves about the gender pricing. Advocacy groups have further sensitization programs mostly only with hashtags such as #genderpricing, #pinktax, #gendertax among others to call for help from the political side of the society. Voicing their concerns on various platforms call for both manufacturers and the political leaders to help in eliminating disparities such as on gendered pricing to create a uniform field for both the males and females (Stevens, and Kevin 577). As a result, regulation of prices of products has played a critical role in creating fairness in both the employment sector and purchasing of products. There is also a need to governments to enact necessary regulations that can ensure equal pay between the males and females and ensure that gendered discrimination in payment is eliminated. In this light, there would be realized uniform growth between the male and the female gender in the society (Scholtens 28).

It is apparent that women pay more on everyday essentials and feminine hygiene products than men which calls for the society as a whole, but specifically manufacturers, to address the plight of the females and advise on a better way of pricing products. Unless prices of products are levelled, there will be realized in-depth discrimination which will them exposed the women to greater financial struggle and lead to more dependence on men (Cirerol 136). There should be increased cases of advocacy so as to trigger actions from both the political class and the business class.

Works Cited

Bennett, Jennifer. "The Tampon Tax: Sales Tax, Menstrual Hygiene Products, and Necessity Exemptions." The Business, Entrepreneurship & Tax Law Review 1.1 (2017): 183.

Cirerol, Paige. "It's A Girl! A Guide to Your New Pink Tax." (2017).

Heider, Florian, and Alexander Ljungqvist. "As certain as debt and taxes: Estimating the tax sensitivity of leverage from state tax changes." Journal of Financial Economics 118.3 (2015): 684-712.

Scholtens, Jesse. "Brews." The Guardian 3 (2016): 16-2016.

Stevens, Jennifer L., and Kevin J. Shanahan. "Structured Abstract: Anger, Willingness, or Clueless? Understanding Why Women Pay a Pink Tax on the Products They Consume." Creating Marketing Magic and Innovative Future Marketing Trends. Springer, Cham, 2017. 571-575.

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