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5 Products That Are More Expensive for Women (& How You Can Save on Them)

HelloFlo is a womens health company committed to normalizing the conversations we have about womens bodies so that we can all live healthier lives.

The 'pink tax' is frustrating AF, but there are ways around it

Somehow, a Target run gets a significant markup simply because the products you’re buying are marketed for women. A pink razor is more expensive than a blue one, but gets the job done in the same exact way. There’s no sense in that. Here’s how you can work around the heftier price tags.

Razors

People have been calling it the “pink tax.” Too often, the female version of something is more expensive than the male version. They’ve found examples with shampoos, jeans and kids’ toys. But one of the most widely used examples is razors. Some of them, usually disposables, are pretty much the same thing in pink or blue plastic. Yet, the pink one costs more.

Instead, just use razors meant for men. There are very slight differences between the two, mainly related to the angle of the head of the razor. But they both do the job. Many women have said they like using guys’ razors better. As long as the razor works well for you, that’s all that matters.

More: Reusable sanitary pads are becoming a thing

Tampons & pads

Feminine products are not cheap, though they’re pretty much essential. Depending on how many you use during a normal period, you could be spending $125 or more a year just on period products. Just think about how much that adds up over the amount of time you’ll have a period.

Instead of the usual pads, tampons and panty liners, try a menstrual cup. The small cup usually costs between $20 and $40 and you can buy it easily online. While it’s recommended that you get a new one every year, consumers usually change it out once every five years. Even if you do get a new one each year, that’s still around $100 a year you could be saving.

Face masks

Face masks are currently one of the biggest trends on social media right now. Check out Instagram and you’ll probably see at least one of your favorite celebs posted a face mask selfie. But as with most beauty products, these things can get pretty pricey, especially if you want to get the fancy name-brand ones. Some of them can be loaded with chemicals too. Do you really want to pay to slather chemicals on your face?

Luckily, there are a lot of DIY face mask options that you can make with ingredients that are probably in your fridge or pantry right now. Things like oatmeal, honey and yogurt are all important base ingredients in many of them, and they’re much better for your skin than chemicals. Purchasing those three items combined is probably cheaper than a good face mask. And having those three means you have the base products for a ton of face masks, not just one.

Maternity clothes

There’s no getting around it. At some point in your pregnancy, you’re going to have to purchase some maternity clothes. Everything gets bigger and you don’t want to stretch out all of your old stuff. But do you really want to buy a whole new wardrobe that you might never wear again?

It’s time to get thrifty. Check out garage sales, thrift stores and those yard sale pages on Facebook for used maternity clothes. There’s a good chance they’ll be in pretty great shape and almost like-new quality. If you have a friend or family member that was recently pregnant, see if they have any clothes they want to get off their hands.

With the rest of your body getting bigger, your boobs definitely will too. Instead of buying regular bras for your pregnancy, get nursing bras instead. There are a ton of different types so you can definitely still find something stylish and comfortable. And you can get more wear out of them by using them throughout your baby’s nursing cycle instead of just while you’re pregnant.

More: How to find inexpensive maternity clothes

Makeup

If you’re buying makeup, you probably want it to work well and look awesome. But some of the must-have products everyone talks about are insanely pricey. Who wants to spend a small fortune just on some blending sponges and mascara?

Luckily, the internet is full of people finding cheaper alternatives that work as well as the name-brand stuff. Before you bite the bullet and buy that $30 blush you’ve had your eye on, do some intense Googling to see if someone has found a comparable alternative that’s cheaper. And let’s face it; no one is really going to be able to tell that you bought a cheaper version of makeup once it’s on your face.

As far as the health of your skin goes, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend all of those inexpensive brands, as some of them sacrifice the quality of the product for the dollar value. Do your research and cross-reference which brands come up as the least pricey with the brands that come up as healthy options for your skin. Makeup options that are both inexpensive and healthy are out there — we promise! You can also try making your own makeup and skin care products!

Being a woman doesn’t have to bankrupt you. Shop smart and save on being a lady.

By Kate Harveston

Originally published on HelloFlo.

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