Do Women Really Pay More for Deodorant Than Men?

They say "beauty is pain" but it seems it can be quite a pain in the wallet, too, especially for women. Common products such as deodorant, razors and face cream cost significantly more for the versions marketed at women rather than their male equivalents.

Often these products are the same formulations and simply have a different scent and different marketing campaign. They are often the exact same product yet the "female" version is marked up by up to 66% more.

The NYC Department of Consumer Affairs found that female consumers are paying more for a range of products including a 48% difference in the cost of shampoo and conditioner alone.

Not only do women pay more money for the same product, they often receive less of it. Women's versions of popular products such as Eau de toilette and anti-aging creams were found to be offered in smaller sizes than their male counterparts, making them even more expensive when compared by unit price.

Here I have gathered together a virtual basket of drugstore products to keep you looking and smelling sweet -- but check out the price differences between the products aimed at men at women.

Drug Store Price Comparison


When it comes to controlling sweat and smelling good, deodorants formulations are essentially the same, especially when comparing the same brands as I have done here.

Yet notice how the female version is $2.76 more expensive for 0.2oz less product.

Image Credit:

Eau de toilette

I compared Eau de toilettes from the same brand and the same signature line and found that the "Homme" version was $7.43 cheaper for 0.5fl oz less product.

Image Credit:

Anti-aging cream

Unfortunately, aging can't be stopped. That's precisely why the wrinkle cream industry is worth $191.7 billion globally!

It seems no one wants to grow old gracefully after all, but keeping your looks as you age is cheaper for men than women. In this example $7.42 cheaper and for that lower price they actually get 0.4oz more product.

Image Credit:

Shaving Cream

Shaving cream is basically just oil, soap and water, so it's quite brazen to attempt to charge more for such cheap ingredients just because the consumers are women. In this example, $1.40 more -- and again for a whopping 3oz less product!

Image Credit:

Razor Blades

I've saved the best for last in terms of total injustice.

The manufacture and production of razor blades have literally no difference whatsoever in terms of who is using them to have a shave. There should be no price difference at all, yet I found the biggest price discrepancies, with women paying a full $12 more for a 6 pack of blade replacements. Men get fewer in a pack, at 5 blades per container, but the $12 savings, certainly make up for that.

Image Credit:

These examples show that women's products are routinely marked up with inflated prices and are a clear indication of the so-called "pink tax". So what can you do about this unfair gendered pricing?

Vote with your hard earned cash and refuse to buy brands that unfairly overcharge women. Write to your elected representatives urging them to take gendered pricing seriously. To date, California is the only state which has banned the practice of setting prices based on the consumer's gender. One down, 49 to go.