trans & gender non-conforming people of color have always been the vanguard of style, beauty, and fashion. it’s just that our aesthetics made it into the covers, not our actual bodies. our aesthetics are decontexualized from our (gender)queerness — whitewashed & ciswashed — to make “mainstream culture.” queer culture is not fringe, it is the mainstream darling! the ways we style & adorn ourselves are deeply and inextricably linked to our self-birthing & perseverance in a world that constantly punishes us for being. our fabulosity is a tactic to generate self worth in a world that regards us as disposable. rather than waiting for the white/cis beauty & fashion industries to acknowledge & tokenize us, fetishize us as *new* — even though we have always been there (behind the scenes as makeup artists, designers, stylists, hair dressers, mood boards, culture) — we are doing it by ourselves for ourselves!

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