The Orion

The ‘pink tax’ is making me pink in the face

Getty Images by Monica Schipper

Getty Images for Refinery29

Getty Images by Monica Schipper

Brooke Martin

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College kids hate taxes. Income taxes, grocery taxes, any tax – you name it we hate it. It makes sense why most taxes exist, but the ‘pink tax’, however, does not.

Women and men, for the most part, require the same things to live. We all need food, water and shelter. We all use certain things less crucial for our existence, but items that are still important, nonetheless. Some of these items include deodorant, razors, shampoo and dry-cleaned shirts. Now for some reason, those four items are priced higher for women than men. Why? Is it not enough that we already have to pay taxes on feminine products?

In a survey of about 800 products, it was found that 42 percent of the time women paid more than men for the same item.

So, not only are women making less money, but we are also paying more for the same products as men.

What does the color pink have to do with anything? Why should a ‘feminine’ color increase prices?

Some states, including California, have banned gender-based price differences when it comes to some services, such as dry cleaning or going to a hair salon.

However, there are still lots of products that charge more for feminine versions. Go to a grocery or a drug store and look at the items on the shelves. The feminine versions of products are often pink and cost more. I don’t even like the color pink that much. Why would I pay more for a product that’s ‘prettier’ and ‘more girly?’ The male version of products are the same and work perfectly fine.

Another thing I hate is having to pay for the stupid products that come along with monthly menstrual cycles. Isn’t the pain that we get from our periods enough? Why should we also put our credit cards through the pain of being taxed on those products?

As of now, 36 states still apply taxes to menstrual products, including California. This is in part because tampons and other feminine hygiene products are considered a ‘luxury tax’. A ‘luxury tax’ comes into play when a product is not considered a necessity. Menstrual products are 100 percent a necessity. I’m sure no one wants girls walking around with blood stains on their pants.

Furthermore, since when is having a period a luxury? The only reason most women I know enjoy getting their period is through the satisfaction of knowing they aren’t pregnant. Once we know that we are not expecting, we go back to hating our periods and all the pain and cramps that come with them.

The fact that we are still taxed on tampons, pads and other feminine hygiene products is ridiculous. Women can’t control periods.

Being charged more for the feminine versions of products is frankly insulting. As is having to pay taxes on menstrual products that we need. This is the 21st century. I’m tired of paying those few extra dollars men get to pocket.

Brooke Martin can be reached at [email protected] or @bmartin471 on Twitter.

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The ‘pink tax’ is making me pink in the face