Clicks responds after gendered hair brush causes huge Twitter debate
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A recent tweet directed at Clicks has caused an online debate among shoppers.
The health and beauty retailer was called out for selling a gendered item, namely a detangling hair brush for boys and girls. Both the items were packaged in pink for girls and blue for boys.
The presentation of the products and price discrepancy was brought up by Lesley Ncube who shared a picture of the detangling hair brushes as well.
“Tell us you hate girls&women without telling us you them: Retail edition. @Clicks_SA Whats the difference here? Also the wording on those products Neutral face How is ‘Pink tax’ still acceptable? On top of gender pay gap?,” tweeted Ncube, who also hosts a YouTube channel called Changing the Narrative.
Tell us you hate girls&women without telling us you them: Retail edition. @Clicks_SA Whats the difference here? Also the wording on those products 😐 How is ‘Pink tax’ still acceptable? On top of gender pay gap? #ChangingTheNarrative#FeministSpaces#GenerationEquality pic.twitter.com/zQzswF1UCH— 🌈PleaseRTPinnedPost🌈 (@IAmAForce_) June 9, 2021
Within a matter of hours, the post gained more than 700 retweets and 1K likes.
In a follow-up tweet, Ncube asked: “I would really like an explanation of why the same product is priced differently. How many more products are in your stores are like [email protected]_SA”
Many Twitter users were left just as confused. One user asked Clicks to explain why the same product cost two times more, “So the same product, cost 2 times more because the other one is for girls? Is there an explanation that makes sense because I’m genuinely at a loss for words keh @Clicks_SA?”
In response, Clicks said: “Hi Oratile thank you for contacting us. Both items were initially at exactly the same price but have been discontinued recently. The markdown of the one product was purely as a result of excess stock. The remaining discontinued stock has been earmarked for donations.”
Still, online users felt that the main question wasn’t being answered. @_musesi cut to the chase: “But marked down products always have a red sticker ??? and why is a detangling brush gendered ??”
IOL Lifestyle approached Clicks for a response.
“At Clicks, we do not endorse gender stereotyping of any sort. There are, however, many products in the market that reference gender such as deodorants, grooming products, etc. We thank customers for making us aware of this oversight and apologise for the offence caused,” said group corporate affairs director at Clicks, Bertina Engelbrecht.
Engelbrecht also added that the retailer has adopted the following price parity policy:
- We support pricing parity that does not differentiate by gender and does not seek to exploit consumers based on their gender. Gender stereotyping goes against our style guide and company values.
- We acknowledge that pricing differentials may occur during promotional periods or as a consequence of markdowns and commit to addressing any such differentials as soon as we become aware thereof.
“Our investigation into this matter has revealed that one of these items were recently discontinued.
“The rate of sale of the discontinued product resulted in the markdown % and a resultant difference in the price.
“In accordance with our policy, we have taken immediate steps to remove both items from shelf and earmarked them for donation,” Engelbrecht concluded.