This Hair Salon Is Fighting The 'Pink Tax' By Introducing Gender Neutral Prices

"Why is it that a female with short hair pays more for a haircut than a male with long?"

"Client 'A' has long hair and pays $40 for a haircut, while Client 'B' has short hair and pays $70 for a haircut. Client 'A's haircut takes 20 minutes longer, but Client 'B' still pays $30 more. Makes no sense, right? Have you figured it out?" 

Hair Junkie, a hair salon in Ottawa, Canada, recently shared this riddle on one of their Instagram posts. The answer to why Client B pays more than Client A is, of course, because Client B is a woman. Take one look at most hair salons that serve both male and female clients and you'll notice there's a huge price discrepancy between men and women's haircuts. 

This is one example in a long list of products and services that are subject to the sexist "pink tax," the colloquial term for arbitrarily charging women more money than men. For example, deodorants marketed toward women are often more expensive than those marketed toward men, despite being made with the same ingredients. 

Back in 2015, the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) did a formal study on gender pricing in NYC by comparing nearly 800 products from more than 90 different brands that had clearly labeled male and female versions. They found women's products were more expensive than men's products 42 percent of the time. On average, women were being charged 7 percent more than men for similar products. 

Hair Junkie announced they'd be fighting this sexist practice in their salon by offering gender neutral pricing. Currently, women's haircuts ranged from $41-$76 while men's cuts were between $30-$65. On September 1, when their new prices go into effect, haircuts will depend on hair length instead of gender. Short barber-style or pixie cuts will start at $31 for everyone while "mid-to-long" cuts or a drastic style change will begin at $46 for all, according to CBC News

"Hair Junkie is about to apply a FIX which is long overdue," the salon wrote. "Gender Neutral Pricing is about to hit our salon floor! You pay for the time and products we use for your service and if that time is the same as the MAN or WOMAN in the next chair, then it will cost you the same price! Of course, if you want a labour intensive Up Do, (or anything at all) we still do that too~! Prices are transparent. Prices are fair. Prices are neutral because Hair has NO gender!" 

Hair Junkie announced gender neutral pricing on on Aug. 27, Ottawa's Pride Day which aims to creates a safe and inclusive space for the LGBTQ+ community through advocacy, education, and celebration. 

"We are SO PROUD to be initiating this policy at Hair Junkie and we could think of no better occasion than our annual celebration of diversity and equality; so on August 27th, PRIDE DAY in Ottawa, we will officially introduce the inclusive, equal system that is gender neutral pricing!" the salon wrote. 

Hair Junkie may be the first salon to introduce gender-neutral pricing in Ottawa, according to CBC News, but many other salons around Canada and the United States have already implemented this practice. The more that do, the closer we'll be to eliminating sexist pricing in salons. 

GET SOME POSITIVITY IN YOUR INBOX

Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest news and exclusive updates.