Women, how many of you like the color pink? How many of you like the color pink because it represents us and separates us from men. How many of you like the color pink on your bike? After spending three days on the trade show floor at Interbike in Vegas, I think I found just about anything and everything for a bike — mainly women specific products — in pink. Clothes, shoes, bikes, bars, grips, shocks, bells, bike wash, locks... you name it. So why are manufacturers using so much pink? One has to wonder, does pink create a space for women in cycling, a way to identify us amongst men or is it providing eye candy, a marketing paint job in this (currently) male dominated sport?
My mission was to talk to both men and women in the industry to discover how they felt about the use of the color pink as a fair representation for women in cycling. Here's what they had to say...
"I don't think it's necessary. I don't think it has to be pink to be feminine."
—Becky Walter, Apparell Designer
"I think it individualizes us and makes it fun... girls love pink."
—Lisa Hudson, Feedback Sports, Golden Colorado
"I think it represents breast cancer support which is a big concern for women. Women also want to dress like girls, we don't want to look like men when we ride. I like it (Pink) why not! I think there is opportunity to impress women with more than just pink... like technical aspects, weight, ergonomic designs..."
—Prudence Cordt-Bloom, Spyder Active Sports Inc.
"It's pretty widely used. I think it's overused. I'm not a fan of pink myself. I know there's women who love it but I think they (manufacturers) need to broaden the spectrum a little bit."
"Pink's a cool color, it's bright, it's flashy, people notice it. I think a lot of people who see pink think of breast cancer (awareness) more than anything (Does it represent women?) In my shop, pretty much, the guys don't wear pink."
—Shop Owner, Simi Bike Works, Simi Valley, CA
"I think pink is like the best color ever to represent a girl. It's very girly, very chic and its my favorite color.
—Samantha Schneider, Mesa Cycles Race Team, Junior rider
"I love pink and it actually represents the femininity. It's an awesome color"
—L. S., Director of Ops, Umbrella Girls USA, San Rafael, CA
"Breast cancer awareness... Women... I think (pink) it's a good idea. It differentiates male products from female products."
—Keri Anne Dudlext, Joel's Bicycle Shop in Thousand Palms, CA
"I always find everything being pink denoting 'for a female' to be somewhat patronizing."
—Peter Donato, Special Assignment Inc. Toronto, Ontario
"It does not matter what color it is as long as it makes you feel good about yourself. So, if pink's a good color for you, you should go for it. I don't think any product should be created by color. The design is important and that's what matters for women specific (products). It's that everything fits to a woman's body and a woman's mindset, it's not about the color so much."
—Meg Gill, Skirt Sports, Boulder, CO
"I think pink is awesome. I think pink isn't necessarily a girlie girl color. There's a lot of baddass women that love pink. Like Meg said it's all about the product and whatever will make you feel how you want to feel and accentuate what ever you want. There's nothing wrong with that. I love pink."
—Sarah Vernon, Inventory Manager, Skirt Sport Boulder, CO
"Pink has it's place. I just don't think everything needs to be pink. If I was looking for a serious ride right now I don't think it would be in pink."
—Jennifer Steketee, president, Harlot Clothing Company, Sante Fe, NM and a member of Pedal Queens.
"All the good shit's inside. Peter made geometry specific for women and didn't just paint it pink."
—Rep from Teschner Technologies
"I grew up hating pink because it was too girlie. Now I love pink because it's so girlie. You know you go through sort of a shift."
—Kimberly McElhinney, Head Wrangler, Dude Girl
As you can see, thoughts on pink are very polarized in the cycling industry. I have my ideas, you have yours, it would tickle me pink to know what you think about this topic, please email me at
pink@pedalpushersonline[DOT]com to share.