The pink tax refers to the invisible cost that women have to pay for products designed and marketed specifically to them while similar product categories for men are available for a lesser price. It’s not a literal tax. Sometimes it’s called gender pricing or price discrimination. This tax is applicable worldwide. It applies to the items that span a woman’s entire life, from girls’ toys and school uniforms to products like razors, shampoo, haircuts, clothes, and more.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Irrespective of the fact whether government tax policies and interventions are there or not, women-specific products are costlier than men’s products. There is one major problem with pink tax, that it is not easily identifiable. Some products that seemingly gender-neutral like cotton shirts and leather boots have female versions that are subject to higher tariffs than comparable male items. One of the most common examples that we see of pink tax is among salon services, where men’s hair cut costs less than woman’s haircuts. But in the Indian context, it would be appropriate to say that we do not have any pink tax levied on women's products but, we have gender price discrimination in products and services because as per researchers, there is credible data available to support this.

The reason it is of concern is because it affects the purchasing power of women, with an already existing wage gap, it is economical inequality while making women spend more for the same goods and services. This puts man in a position of holding more purchasing power with them already earning more. many femisits and activists have pointed it out before and companies have justified the act with bizarre reasoning. While the policies around the same has to change, it is also important to make informed decisions.

Contributed by Tanya content writer at Mitti Ke Rang

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