Dry-clean Your Clothes the Feminist Way

Photo: Corbis

Oh, the things you must look out for as a woman seeking equal treatment in the world! For example: Dry cleaners and launderers often engage in price discrimination by gender, charging women more than men to wash their clothes. It’s true. Noreen Malone at the New Republic writes that while price discrimination by gender is illegal, some laundering companies claim that women’s items are more labor intensive than men’s.

Now a dry-cleaning chain called ZIPS is promoting a gender-equal business model (a flat $1.99 per garment) in its advertisments. Using feminism is a dubious advertising game — but using advertising to highlight a gender-equal, clean-clothes-for-everyone stance is a more palatable strategy.