I normally try to avoid any content posted on the Buzz Feed website because it is a site that I have classified as unhealthy for my information diet. This concept, which I learned from Clay Johnsons book The Information Diet, is essentially like avoiding eating at Five Guys if you want your blood vessels to remain unclogged, but with information sources. The saying you are what you eat, is very similar to the concept that you are what you read. Buzz Feed is traditionally littered with pointless articles, however every once in an extended while there is a diamond in the rough. One of these sparkly stones appeared as the article titled “23 Gendered Products that Will Make You Say “WTF?” Upon review of this article I could not help but laugh at the utter hilarity of some of the products. It seems beyond comprehensible why some items are made specifically for a particular genders. Beyond this comical first look one may come to the realization that unnecessarily gendered products is just an everyday reminder of society’s gender binary.
The content of the article revealed products from numerous countries, such as the United States, Germany and from the author Tahlia Pritchard’s home country of Australia. The globalization of gender based consumer products expands to a wide range of industries. The industries providing these constant reminders that men and women are different are primarily the food, health and fitness industries, but also oddly include the home organization and tool industries. I have had exposure to some of these products as a consumer and observer of what gender specific products others seem to buy. Companies making these various products capitalize on consumers who wouldn’t dare to bu...
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... black packaging that depicts a man ever so chivalrously allowing a women to enter the protection of his manbrella. These products, while seemingly innocent, are constant reinforces of gender stereotypes. A choice between the Dude Wipes brand and the Playtex Wipe is not just about splitting consumers into male and female buyers. This process bears implications of what it means to fall under the category of the male box and the female box. These products reinforce the gender related characteristics that our society has labeled as masculine and feminine. Men are not to show compassion or empathy, and women are not to be tough, or in charge. Beyond the inappropriate societal reinforcement of gender norms, the products targeted at women are often more expensive then similar products aimed at a male consumer. In a world of blue and pink packaging, women loose every time.
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