LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The list of product shortages is growing, with a lack of feminine hygiene products being added to the list.
The so called “pink tax,” when an array of items targeted for women are more expensive than identical ones marked for men, also adds to the issue.
It’s pricier right now for women to buy products. If you walk into the feminine hygiene aisle and find empty shelves, the pink tax will also make it more challenging and expensive to get the products you need.
“It’s a little frustrating not to be able to find something that is a basic necessity,” said shopper Cynthia Smoot.
Tampons and other period products are the latest items to be hindered by the country’s struggling supply chain. Major manufacturers have blamed the pandemic, recalls, and even the war in Ukraine for the shortage.
Kristin Myers is the editor-in-chief of the personal finance website The Balance. In her company’s latest study on gendered items, price discrepancy sometimes reached 25% or more.
“It’s a very well-known secret that if you want to save money when it comes to shampoo or soap or especially razors,” Myers said. “Razors is the area where it’s always the worst. You just hop over to the men’s aisle and you can find some savings.”
The price difference in gendered items can be staggering: for a pack of razors, men can get six for $11, while women can get four for $20. Men’s jeans, they’re often priced in the $20 range, compared to the $60 range for women. Even protein bars marketed for women can be more expensive and half the size.
“Why? Because they know we will pay for it. And it’s all about the marketing. It’s not necessarily that the product is different, the quality is different, it’s all about the marketing and the branding,” Smoot continued.
The Balance’s gendered marketing study looked at four major national retailers and compared 128 products, including haircare, body wash, and lotions, and all cost more for women. Anti-aging products for women also had higher prices, some as much as 100% higher.