Saturday, August 30, 2008

Why I’ll Never Smell Like a Spring Breeze

Just back from the drugstore to stock up on some my personal care items. We all know men and women are different – but when it comes to personal care products, you’d swear it’s all in the scent and color.

I actually will stop and read labels when I shop – I know, it takes a little longer, and I probably annoy everyone else, as I stand there in the isle, and everyone has to go around me. But I like to know what I put in, on and around my body and home. To me, that’s important.

So, I’m shopping for the usual suspects, body wash, liquid hand soap, shampoo, deodorant and so on. Like most people I assume, I have my favourite brands, but sometimes I like to mix it up and try different things.

Before I try something new, I’ll read the label. Maybe I had too much time on my hands, or maybe I’m just a nut, but I thought I’d compare similar male and female personal care products.

First thing I noticed right off the bat – price. Women’s products are all more expensive than those sold to us men. And often the ones which are marketed to women, are in smaller containers, so you get less, but pay more.

Colors and scents were also different – products geared towards women are usually in bright, pinks, blues, greens and yellows, with flowery scents to match the flowery colors. Scents like Summer Breeze, and Spring Showers, and my all time favourite play on words, Warm Mud Bath – great – I’ve always wanted to smell like crap.

The male versions of these products are less colourfully packaged, and have strong, manly names for their scents, like Mountain Rush, Sport, High Endurance and Crisp (whatever that smells like).

But if you actually read the ingredients on these things – not that they put many on – for the most part they all are the same. First ingredient is water, next was sodium something or other (salt-based cleaners) sulphates (the stuff that makes it stick to your body and grab on to dirt when mixed with water) and right down the list to fragrance and color last.

Granted, the fragrance and color are different from men to women – but everything else is identical.

In the female lines of products, there were the occasional “other” additives – but most of these are just weasel words which sound “girly” but mean little. Things like “added moisturizers” if they are added, how come they don’t say exactly what was added? Or when they are mentioned, if you do your homework, you’ll learn that it really hasn’t been proven effective – something like “rose extract” is supposed to “cure” wrinkles, but there hasn’t been any scientific research on this.
Deodorant is exactly the same from men to women, only difference is size and scent – men’s are generally wider and longer than women. Women’s scents were things like “baby fresh” and “Lilac” while the male versions were “sport,” “rush” and so on.

I’ve always wondered what “sport” is really supposed to smell like? And how come one product’s “sport” doesn’t smell like another company’s “sport?”

I think a lot of these personal care products – though necessary – are pure marketing.

So, I’ll never smell like a rose or a spring breeze, but I’ll still be just as clean as any ‘gal.’ And I pay a lot less – for more.

1 comment:

  1. It's true!! Women's beauty & healthcare products are more expensive than that of men's.