The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) conducted a study titled “From Cradle to Cane: The Cost of Being a Female Consumer” to research on gender-based pricing disparities in 5 industries of basic products, which are toys and accessories, children’s clothing, adult clothing, personal care products, and senior/home health care products. This is an effort of DCA to maintain a fair and vibrant marketplace.
After analyzing 794 individual products from 91 brands sold at 24 retailers (on line and in stores) in New York City, the findings shows a significant difference in pricing from 0.8% to 48%. DCA derived an average price for 35 different product types and then compared the prices of the male versions with the female versions of the products.
Researchers selected the products that had similar and were closest in branding, ingredients, appearance, textile, construction, and/or marketing approach. Detailed industry findings are as follows:
Toys and Accessories: o.8% (backpacks) to 13% (helmets and pads) with average 7% more.
Children’s Clothing: 2% (baby shirts) to 13% (children’s shirts) with average 4% more
Adult Clothing: 3% (socks) to 29% (underwear) with average 8% more
Personal Care Products: 3% (deodorant) to 48% (shampoo and conditioner) with average 13% more
Senior/Home Health Care Products: 4% (compression socks) to 21% (personal urinals) with average 8% more.
On average, female pay approximately 7% more than men for similar products. DCA calls for consumers’ action to raise awareness on this issue through social media with #genderpricing.