The other day I headed into the local sporting goods store to buy some boxing gloves (it’s about time – I’ve been using the public ones at the gym and those smell so badly that I have to put latex gloves on underneath or I’ll smell like skunk for weeks) and as I checked out all the varieties, I noticed something interesting: despite being smaller, all the women’s gloves were more expensive. I couldn’t see any difference between the women’s gloves and the small men’s gloves so I asked a sales associate. His answer? “You’re paying for the pink.” This irritated me, and not just because I don’t love pink and I hate that everything marketed to women has to be pinkpinkpink. I was also irked because I wanted the yellow gloves and those too cost more money.

Some fitness items like sports bras are uniquely female* but having two X chromosomes doesn’t necessarily mean we like everything to be pink. (I don’t hate pink but I also don’t need all my gear pink either. I know I’m a girl and I’m not going to forget it if my jump rope has blue handles.) With so many new fitness products being targeted directly to women, is it worth buying the girly version? Especially if it costs more? As I sit here typing while wearing a pink fitness watch, I try and break it down for you:

Weight Gloves

Men have bigger hands so you’d think their larger weight gloves would cost more but generally the opposite is true. For instance, with the most basic brand a plain black unisex pair costs $9.99 but stamp a cutesy logo on them and turn them pink and now they cost $14.39. This is true even with fancier gloves. One of the most popular brands offers their “pro” men’s gloves for a full $10 cheaper than the pink “pro” women’s variety.

Worth it? Unless you have extremely small hands or just really like pink, there is no advantage to buying the girly version.

around the web


  1. Pink is a hustle. Susan G komen proved that to us all earlier this year. Companies love that women will pay extra to look good in the gym.

  2. While I enjoyed reading the article, and I believe to some extent it is true that women are willing to pay more and companies can take advantage of this, as the article notes, the yellow gloves were also more expensive. You often pay more for a product that is colored rather than standard black. I recently bought an espresso machine and paid $50 more for a red one. Plenty of guys I know pay more for color.

  3. Sigh… I actually bought the pink boxing gloves!!! And I love them. However, it does irk me that women are charged more for products in general. Maybe someone will start an online petition to send to the companies and stop the madness!!!

  4. The Mighty Quinn

    I have to admit I LLLOVE the pink!!!! I have had my pink boxing gloves for about 8 years now (imagine how much they cost back then). I have always been a tomboy and was a jockette growing up. When I came into my girliness, I wanted something feminine, I already have a big foot so could not get the cute girlie anything, so when equipment started coming out in pink , I snapped it up. As a SCUBA diver, I started off with pink accessories but could not find a good pair of pink fins in my size. Sure I could get them if I wanted to order about 200 pairs in an XL size. One thing I do find with pink accessories is as a diver, it makes other women comfortable trying the sport that is dominated by men.

  5. I too hate pink and find it insulting that for it to be for a women, it has to be pink. I also think it is a racket. But if pink makes you move, more power to you.

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