Aussies Paying Up To 200% More For Cosmetics July 29 2014, 0 Comments

Breaking The Price Monopoly


Australians are paying up to 200 per cent more for lipsticks, moisturisers and colognes than overseas customers, a consumer group has found.

A Choice study of the prices of popular makeup brands such as Revlon, MAC and Clinique revealed that the same products bought in the United Kingdom and the US were costing Australian customers as much as $20 extra.

For example, a Revlon Colourstay Ultimate Suede Lipstick costs $25.92 on the David Jones website, while the same lipstick is priced at $15.09 on the website of UK chemist store, Boots, and $7.89 at Walmart in the US. 

A MAC lipstick costs at least $10 more in Australia than in the UK or $20 more when compared to US prices. 

The emergence of online shopping has made Australians more aware of the price differences between products sold domestically and overseas. 

Choice journalist, Kate Browne, said it was ‘‘easier than ever to run a price check online to compare product prices’’. 

‘‘Many Aussies don’t like what they’re seeing,’’ she said.

Consumer and local retail pressure has led to some brands recently lowering their prices by as much as 40 per cent. Brands such as Shu Uemura, Lancome and Clinique have announced lower prices, but Choice warned that the reduction of only a couple of flagship products could be a marketing ploy. 

Browne said ‘‘there is no way price differences this size can be explained by the usual arguments we have about supposedly higher costs of doing business in Australia’’. 

Price discrimination is an issue Aussie consumers face in many markets’’.

The review followed an earlier study conducted by the consumer group, where Choice compared more than 200 prices and identified "an approximate 50 per cent price difference between what Australians and US consumers pay for more or less identical products", such as music downloads, games, software and computer hardware.

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