Mother smiling at baby on a changing table

States may get rid of “pink taxes” in 2024

“Pink tax” is a term broadly used to describe various forms of gender pay equality, from the gender pay gap to the fact that some products and services for women may cost more than similar products designed for men. More specifically, pink tax refers to the sales and use tax on menstrual products. This is also known as the “tampon tax.”

In recent years, numerous states have eliminated so-called pink taxes by providing sales and use tax exemptions for feminine hygiene products. Several states have also established sales tax exemptions for breast pumps, maternity clothing, and similar items related to pregnancy and childbirth, including diapers.

This trend is likely to continue in 2024. Since the start of the current legislative session, there’s been a flurry of bills seeking to exempt diapers, menstrual products, clothing for infants, maternity clothing, and more.

States looking to cut pink taxes

Kentucky lawmakers are considering a few different proposals to eliminate pink taxes:

  • SB 97 would exempt all diapers from sales and use tax on or after August 1, 2024.

  • HB 340 would exempt a number of products from sales tax, but only between August 1, 2024, and August 1, 2028. Items that would qualify for the four-year exemption period include breast pumps and related supplies; baby bottles; nursing bras, bra pads, and breast shells; diapers and specified incontinence products; and feminine hygiene products.

Maryland HB 0606 would establish a sales and use tax exemption for certain baby products, including but not limited to baby monitors, cribs, high chairs, infant clothing, strollers, and child safety and toilet training items.

Mississippi HB 727 seeks to exempt retail sales of clothing and shoes primarily intended for children age five or younger as well as baby wipes, diapers, diaper bags, and diaper rash creams. 

Missouri lawmakers have introduced several bills to eliminate one or more pink taxes. For example:

  • HB 2187 would exempt diapers, feminine hygiene products, and incontinence products from the state sales tax (but not local sales taxes)

  • HB 1579 and HB 1474 would reduce the sales tax rate for diapers and feminine hygiene products

  • HB 2112 would exempt diapers, feminine hygiene products, incontinence products, and certain vitamins

  • SB 1231 and SB 842 would exempt diapers

Nebraska LB 58 seeks a sales and use tax exemption for diapers.

North Carolina SB 741 would exempt diapers and feminine hygiene products but not “grooming and hygiene products” like shampoo and soap. 

Oklahoma HB 4126 seeks a sales and use tax exemption for diapers and baby wipes; baby bottles; breast milk pumping products; maternity clothing; postpartum care products; and feminine hygiene products.

South Carolina lawmakers introduced several pink tax exemption bills last year that are still in play. For instance:

  • H 3563 would provide a sales tax exemption for feminine hygiene products 

  • S 0149 would provide a sales tax exemption for diapers and feminine hygiene products 

  • H 3109 would provide a sales tax exemption for diapers, feminine hygiene products, and toilet paper 

  • H 3110 would add feminine hygiene products to the list of items qualifying for South Carolina’s annual sales tax holiday

Tennessee may permanently eliminate the sales and use tax on infant diapers, wipes, and formula. Alternatively, it may exempt infant diapers, wipes, and formula sold at retail between July 1, 2024, and June 30, 2025.

Virginia HB 540 and SB 110 would exempt essential hygiene products like diapers, sanitary napkins, and tampons as well as food for human consumption.

Washington is considering a sales and use tax exemption for clothing, products for children, and somewhat surprisingly, prepared food (SB 5136).

West Virginia HB 4474 and SB 518 would exempt diapers and feminine hygiene products from the state sales tax.

Wisconsin AB 399 and SB 388, both introduced during the 2023 legislative session, would create a state and local sales and use tax exemption for 1) baby cribs, baby playpens, and baby play yards; 2) baby safety gates; 3) baby monitors; 4) child safety cabinet locks and latches; 5) electrical outlet safety covers; 6) baby strollers; 7) bicycle child carrier seats and trailers; 8) child safety restraint systems designed for transporting young children in a motor vehicle; 9) baby exercisers, jumpers, bouncer seats, and swings; 10) breast pumps, baby bottles and nipples, baby bottle sterilizers, pacifiers, and teethers; 11) children's diapers, reusable diaper covers, and baby wipes; and 12) baby changing tables and changing pads.

Another bill introduced in 2023, Wisconsin AB 226, would exempt diapers and feminine hygiene products from sales and use tax. It would also exempt diapers and feminine hygiene products from the Unfair Sales Act, which prohibits retailers and wholesalers from selling merchandise for less than the cost of the merchandise to the seller. 

Could Congress put an end to pink taxes?

The United States Congress is even making a move to end some pink taxes. 

H.R.3352, the Improving Diaper Affordability Act of 2023, would list diapers as a qualified medical expense under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. Consequently, state and local governments would be prohibited from taxing the retail sale of diapers. The bill was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means and the Committee on the Judiciary in 2023. It hasn’t seen action since.


We’ll let you know if any of the bills listed above, or others seeking to eliminate the pink tax on diapers, menstrual products, and other items, make it into law. In the meantime, read more about the pink tax.

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