news & progress

Pour Me Another! Beer for Women (and Pay Equality)

If it takes brewed strength to get pay equality – then so be it.

BrewDog Releases Pink IPA to Support Pay Equality – People Get Very Angry When Talking About Paying Women Equally

In a very thoughtful and well-intentioned campaign, BrewDog UK, a Scottish craft brewery released their flagship ‘Punk IPA’ as a ‘Pink IPA’. There is no sarcasm in that last sentence, unlike their campaign. Their campaign was laden with sarcasm so loud that it broke Twitter. First, let’s look at BrewDog’s campaign with the attention it’s due.

BrewDog UK’s Pink IPA Campaign

BrewDog crafted this campaign with the intention of bringing light to the huge pay discrepancy in the UK. On average in the UK, men are paid 20% more than women. To start the campaign, BrewDog announced a four week sales period in which they will be selling the Pink IPA. The sales are to start this Thursday, March 8 in honor of International Women’s Day.  With the initial announcement of the campaign, they clarified the following:

  • the campaign was created with lots of satire and sarcasm
  • the beer is no different – they are swapping out the Punk IPA label for Pink IPA because they acknowledge that women like it as-is
  • 20% of the proceeds (a number to honor the pay gap) of sales from both the Punk IPA and Pink IPA will be donated to charities that support women and fight inequalities
  • any one who identifies as female will be able to buy the Pink IPA in BrewDog bars for 20% less
  • it’s lazy to market to women with pink and ‘pink’ and sparkly

Like the hoppiness of IPA, some people just can’t sit with the taste of sarcasm.

People Were Very Angry to Talk About Pay Equality & Pink Things

Cue the Twitter rants and social media implosions. This campaign was hotly debated and much less thoroughly read. Across Twitter, facebook, and reporting sites that have names ending with words like “Daily” or “Enquirer” people responded very angrily with the main complaints being:

  • the campaign was poorly researched
  • people ‘don’t like sarcasm’
  • they shouldn’t have used the color pink because women don’t actually like pink
  • it’s just a marketing stunt and they just want to break into the women’s market because it’s a cash cow (it really is, despite this awful wage gaps and pink taxes women have a huge amount of capital)
  • didn’t they see the Doritos???

It was very clear that the majority of the people reacting had not read the intentions clearly written by BrewDog UK. Or they don’t realize that companies who they buy from every day actually patronize women AND instead of giving them discounts charge them more. The table of people in the BrewDog UK marketing meetings said the opposite of ‘shrink it and pink it’. And their campaign did too. The only thing they could’ve done better would be to shrink the bottles – but then we’d just be getting less beer.

Cheers, BrewDog

BrewDog also released a wonderfully put statement here in reaction to the reaction to their Pink IPA campaign:

What do you all think? Was BrewDog’s campaign a hit or miss?

Now They’re Designing Stale Doritos for Women

No, this is not an Onion article. It’s an article about Lady-Friendly Doritos that are in development in PepsiCo’s cutting-edge and very imaginative labs. The PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi declared that women “don’t like to crunch too loudly in public. And they don’t lick their fingers generously and they don’t like to pour the little broken pieces and the flavor into their mouth.” Interesting.

To answer this calling need for a femme-chip, Doritos is creating a chip that is “low crunch” and keeps the same “taste profile”, but less Dorito dust will stick to our lady fingers. Hallelujah. They are also graciously making the pack smaller (WHERE HAVE WE SEEN THAT BEFORE) so we can fit it into our purse.

Because apparently we’ve just been way too loud lately and our snacks must be silenced.

We already have a number of questions: How loud is too loud of a crunch? How generous can a finger lick be? Is it still flu season? Is a woman ‘in public’ if she is in a room full of other women? Or does a man have to be present to create a ‘public’? If a woman crunches a man-Dorito in private, did she even have a snack? Will the inside of the tiny bag be reflective enough to reapply my lipstick post mini-purse snack? Will these Doritos also freshen our breath? Will they make man-Doritos that are even crunchier and powdery-er because I mean we’re all on a spectrum? Could we get the same effect by opening a bag of man-Doritos the day before we want to consume them?


UPDATE: A spokeswoman for PepsiCo has informed the world that this is all one big misunderstanding, that women can still eat gender neutral Doritos, and that development of a Doritos product specific for women is not underway. She then added, “At the same time, we know needs and preferences continue to evolve, and we’re always looking for new ways to engage and delight our customers.”

Then, slightly more suspect, the spokeswoman did not elaborate on Nooyi’s tease of mentioning “snacks for women that can be designed and packaged differently,” saying, “I can’t yet give any more details beyond what Indra relayed in the podcast. However, I will be able to in a few months.”

So…what IS coming down the PepsiCo pipe? We shall wait with bated and Dorito-y breath.

pay inequality williams salary

All the Money in the World – That’s Gender-biased

Let’s talk about pay inequality and the justification for it (there is none).

Michelle Williams’ Reshoot Salary

So this is probably the 3rd or 4th time I’ve groaned at my computer screen today, seeing the news that actress Michelle Williams was paid inordinately less than Mark Wahlberg for her work and time reshooting scenes for the film All the Money in the World. This could be kind of funny, considering the title of the film. But it’s the tired kind of funny, like we’ve heard this joke a million times before and it’s not a joke to begin with. Pay inequality based on race and gender exists and in some industries and locations it’s huge.

Let’s look at a few examples. In this instance, Michelle Williams was reportedly paid less than $1,000 for her work reshooting a film while her male costar was paid $1.5million. He was paid 1500x more than she was.

Hoda Kotb’s NBC Deal

Ok. Also in the entertainment industry we currently have the issue of Matt Lauer (and his salary) which was last reported at $20million a year. Hoda Kotb has been hired as the new co-anchor of the Today Show replacing Lauer. Kotb’s deal is reportedly $7million a year. He was paid $13million more a year than she was. Now, I understand many people are saying that in this case of the Lauer vs Kotb’s salaries that Kotb needs to put in her time at NBC and then she’ll really start making the big bucks. Kotb is currently 53 years old, she landed her first on air job in 1986 right after graduating from Virginia Tech and has been highly successful in the industry since (like Emmy awards successful). She first began working for NBC in 1998 – that’s 20 years ago now. Does she really need a trial period to earn that higher salary?

Both of these examples of pay inequality use huge salaries and very public figures. Still, they do highlight an inequality that women of a number of industries in our country face. The National Women’s Law Center has put together a convenient and very sad map that shows us pay inequality in the US by state. It also has a drop down menu from which you can see how pay inequality is further divided by race.

Check it out:

We have a lot of work to do.

Justification for Pay Inequality Based on Gender & Race

There is none. Over and over again in articles reporting pay inequality I see attribution to ‘negotiation skills’ or ‘maybe she simply didn’t ask for more’ or that since women take time off for children it skews the overall numbers because then her raise/promotion track will be… Quite simply, women are paid less because the payers can and have gotten away with it.

For Us!

In case you missed it, there were some loud moments at the Golden Globes. Debra Messing called out E! for not paying their male and female cohosts equally (Catt Sadler’s male cohost reportedly made almost double Sadler’s salary).

Natalie Portman had a solid one-liner while introducing the nominees for best director, introducing them as the “all-male nominees” because they were just that. All male.

And there was a phenomenal showing of support for the Time’s Up movement. A movement with a fantastic mission and quite a ring to its name…

pink tax money saving tip and Dr. Jen Gunter article

A Quick Money Saving Tip & A Phenomenal Read

First, how to save a ton of money, time, and your health. All of those products that boast they will clean your vagina? Don’t buy them. Leave them on the shelf. Your vagina cleans itself. If you’ve noticed a change in odor, discharge, coloration, or sensation that you have concerns about, go see your OB/GYN.

Now, go read this fantastic article by Dr. Jen Gunter, a practicing obstetrician and gynecologist in California who is probably fully booked for a few straight years now. Teaser: the article opens with, “There is a rash of men explaining vaginas to me.”

“My Vagina Is Terrific. Your Opinion About It Is Not.”

Billie - a razor subscription service without pink tax

Billie – A Shaving Club Designed for Women

Billie is working to pinch out the pink tax for razors in an oh-so-convenient delivery subscription service [with free shipping and all]. They offer simple and sleek razors with reusable handles, replacement heads shipped to you on your schedule, and a magnetic holder so you always know where to find your razor.

The designers over at Billie have put a lot of thought into their razor ergonomics, so we don’t have to. Taking into account the surface area that most of us shave and the curves that we’re following, the Billie designers created 5 sharp-as-can-be blades surrounded in an aloe soap, with optimized spaces to prevent clogging so we don’t have to be tapping out an SOS in morse code with every swipe of leg hair.

To get started, you take your pick of handle color – coral, periwinkle, a lovely light blue, or blush. Then, let Billie know how often you shave, then they’ll let you know how often they’ll ship you 4 replacement heads. Honestly, I never really know how often I should be swapping out my razor and probably push it a little far sometimes. Then add any extras, check out, and your razors are in the mail!

The pricing is $9 for the welcome kit, which includes the razor handle, 2 replacement heads, and a magnetic holder. Sets of 4 replacement blades (shipped on a schedule you can change any time) are $9 as well. Check them out here to get your welcome kit and set your plan.

Billie also offers shaving & shower sudding accoutrement including shaving cream, body wash, and body lotion made with premium, natural ingredients that are free of toxins and smell delicious – like sage, aloe, coconut, rosa canina, grapefruit, and shea butter.

Think of the Possibilities of Pink

It might seem like pennies in the store, but pink prices can add up to $1,351 a year for an average woman. Meaning, we’re paying $1,351 more for products comparable to those marketed to male consumers. What would you do with that extra money in your pocket? Rent and groceries? A vacation? Or better yet – put that little pink nest egg away and let it compound?