Do Consumers Want Gendered Products?

Sarah Steimer
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Key Takeaways

​What? A new survey found more people are comfortable with a-gender products for children.

So what? More retailers are offering neutral product lines or including other genders in otherwise one-gendered products.

Now what? Marketers may consider broadening their target markets and responding to consumer preference by making products and services gender-neutral.

​Oct. 9, 2017

Views of gender are shifting dramatically, and more parents are raising children without traditional gender roles

International marketing firm Havas surveyed 12,000 people across 32 countries to find 61% of women and 46% of men believe children should be raised in a gender-neutral manner to avoid rigid gender restrictions, compared with 39% of women and 54% of men would prefer to see girls and boys raised with gender-specific toys, clothes and other products.

These rates also varied by generation, with Gen X survey respondents the most in agreement that girls and boys should be raised with gendered activities, playthings, clothing, etc.

Marian Salzman, CEO of Havas PR North America, told MarketWatch that the retail landscape is beginning to change perspectives on what is considered male or female products. For example, Target released a gender-neutral kids collection in July and U.K. retailer John Lewis is removing gender labels from its children’s clothing. H&M also launched a genderless line and Cover Girl hired its first male model.

“We are a country in transition,” she said. “The groundswell is toward this a-gender lifestyle where gender is something people can pick and choose.”

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Author Bio:

Sarah Steimer
Sarah Steimer is a staff writer for the AMA's magazines and e-newsletters. She may be reached at or on Twitter at @sarah_steimer.

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