pink tax, gender-based discimination


For thirty-some-odd years, scholars and consumer advocates have called for the elimination of gender-based price discrimination, also known as the “Pink Tax.” Efforts to address this issue have included studies demonstrating the phenomenon’s existence, social movements incited to garner public support for the cause, consumer attempts to bring the issue before courts in hopes of judicial intervention, and legislative undertakings at both the state and federal level to craft legislation prohibiting the practice. Yet, gender-based price discrimination has proven evasive of regulation, outside the scope of judicial reach, and difficult to isolate in terms of hard proof. Even agreeing on a definition of the Pink Tax has proven challenging, as the waters surrounding the issue are muddied by other recognized discriminatory practices such as the Tampon Tax and the gender wage gap, which all contribute to the additional financial burden imposed by society onto women. The last several decades reveal the elusiveness of the Pink Tax and demonstrate that, thus far, documented efforts to address the practice are individually insufficient to eliminate the practice. Still, each attempt constitutes a vital step, or misstep, in the path to a final solution. This Comment explores the path to the current state of the issue of gender-based price discrimination.