Antiperspirant Pricing: The “Woman Tax” Stinks

shutterstock_215456812Many of you have read our two previous blog posts on antiperspirant pricing and the “woman tax”. We noticed that Dove might be giving women the middle finger on per-unit pricing, and we determined in a “highly scientific” experiment that men and women don’t use antiperspirant in appreciably different amounts. After both of those posts, we received feedback that we needed to do per-ounce pricing analysis.

Here it is. And it seriously stinks.

Using data pulled from the Indix Product API, we looked at the same brands we looked at last time:


For each brand or query, we looked at average minimum sale price and pulled out multi-unit packs/cases. We didn’t look at pricing outliers, and we filtered out any products for which we had no weight (thankfully there were very few).

Across the brands, the average price per ounce ranged from $0.82 for Suave at the low end to $2.54 for Almay at the high end. Most brands fell within the $1.50-$2.50 range per ounce.


As in our first antiperspirant post, when you see anything listed as +men or -women for the rest of this post, it means that the product name does (+) or doesn’t (-) include that word.


The question on our minds, of course, was whether Dove was applying the “woman tax” on a per-ounce basis. As we did in our first analysis, we magnified these to a $2 range so that we can better see the differences.


Looks like Dove still stinks a bit. There is a $.51/ounce difference between their men’s and non-men’s lines. And that definitely stinks, although nowhere near as much as Degree, which actually looked better than Dove on a per-unit basis:


Degree, despite being cheaper overall, has a $0.74/ounce difference between their products explicitly labeled for women and men. Not cool.

At least Speed Stick looks more reasonable. Much like we saw in their per-unit pricing, there’s very little difference between the ones labeled “lady” and those not—$0.11/ounce, to be precise.



Once again, we looked at pricing at the brands and sub-brands targeted at either or both genders:




Sadly, brands and sub-brands targeted specifically at women are simply priced significantly higher per ounce than those targeted specifically at men. They’re even priced higher per ounce than brands targeted at both genders.


When we set out on this process to confirm whether the “woman tax” applies to antiperspirant, we weren’t hoping for these results. We found, however, that it sometimes applies on a per-unit basis (we’re looking at you, Dove), and that it definitely applies on a per-ounce basis.

As we mentioned in the original per-unit post, these prices come from online retailers, so the brands themselves might not be involved. But in any case, applying the “woman tax” stinks.

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