Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Questions and discussions about gender, gender roles and identity.
Issac
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Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Issac » Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:38 am

I want to identify as male but I like female clothes (because honestly, they are more fabulous than guy clothes imo but I still wear guys clothes) and I like makeup every now and again, but I was wondering, can I still identify as Male or does this make me less trans :(

Heather
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Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Heather » Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:56 am

I'm going to save this one overall for one of our guy-staffers here at Scaleteen who loveslovesLOVES makeup, as I think he can do best by you.

But I do want to just basically say that makeup isn't something that anyone can use, and that ultimately doesn't tell us a thing about someone's gender. Personally, I came of age in the 80s where many of the boys in my peer groups were wearing makeup more often than the girls, so for someone like me, makeup was actually pretty normalized as being something almost anyone and everyone seemed to enjoy. :)
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Mo
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Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Mo » Fri Jan 26, 2018 4:23 pm

Hi there! As the staffer Heather mentioned above, I want to say: it is 100% fine to be a guy (whatever that means to you!) and wear makeup or women's clothing. It doesn't make you less male or less trans to do that at all. For context: I'm a nonbinary trans guy. I wear nail polish pretty much always and makeup a good amount of the time, and it's become something that's really important to me and brings me a lot of happiness.

Something I've noticed that bums me out a lot is that there's a certain type of person who seems to hold binary trans people to a higher/stricter "gender standard" than they would cis people: they see femme or femme-leaning trans men as not really men at all, but applaud cisgender men experimenting with makeup or participating in drag without questioning their gender. Certainly butch trans women experience this sort of thing too! It feels particularly miserable to be trans, go through whatever social or medical transition process works for you, and then feel like you're stuck in another set of restrictive gender roles just as rigid as what you left. Even if they're related to your actual gender, those roles and guidelines can still feel stifling.

One of the things that feels extra special to me about being trans is that it's forced me to really examine my thoughts on gender and think about what it means to me, what sorts of gender "rules" I want to feel bound by or freed from, and what my ideal gender expression is. I realize that there are plenty of people with their own (wrong!!) ideas that there's only one way to be trans, or to be a particular gender, but more and more I think the beauty of the trans community is that most of us are examining these things more closely and forging our own paths in the gender wilderness.

If you want to incorporate makeup and feminine clothing into your presentation, I think that's great! No matter how anyone else may react - and I can't promise everyone will be cool about it, sadly - that can't change who you are, and doesn't reflect on the validity of your gender and your presentation.

Issac
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Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:23 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I am awesome at Sewing stuffed animals and hats :D
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/him or They/them
My sexual identity and orientation: Pansexual :)
Location: Canada

Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Issac » Fri Jan 26, 2018 10:06 pm

Hi Mo! Thank you so much! and I agree, gender norms for both genders suck ;n;I know that not everyone will be accepting. My sister suggested that I wait until I start T before wearing makeup and girl clothes so that way I look more masculine until I start get masculine features, that way I don't confused people, which I understand because then I feel like people would respect it more? idk what do you think?

Mo
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 1285
Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2014 2:57 pm
My Awesomeness Quotient: I'm always wearing seriously fancy nail polish.
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Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Mo » Sat Jan 27, 2018 6:35 pm

The question of when to wear makeup etc. is pretty tricky. I hate that this is true, but it IS the case that some people won't take trans people seriously if they present in a way that's associated with their assigned-at-birth gender. There are situations where you would probably feel safer, or more likely to be gendered correctly, if you held off on skirts or makeup.

I think, though, that it's fine to assess these situations on a case-by-case basis; you might not want to wear makeup when talking to a doctor about hormone access, for example, but maybe you have social spaces where you know it will be accepted and embraced by the people around you. You'll probably get a sense, at some point, for how you'll feel about presenting in different ways in different social spaces.

One of the things that can be tricky about being trans is having to weigh all these options carefully and sometimes making choices not based on what feels most comfortable and authentic, but what feels safe, or just likely to avoid questions or conversations you don't have the energy for on a given day. It's ok to make different choices around this at different times, or in different situations.

So: I get why your sister is encouraging you to wait a bit. I think it might make sense if you decide to do that in some settings! But I don't want to just tell you to hide a part of you that makes you happy, either. I wish I had a better and easier answer, here.

Issac
not a newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:23 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I am awesome at Sewing stuffed animals and hats :D
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/him or They/them
My sexual identity and orientation: Pansexual :)
Location: Canada

Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Issac » Sun Jan 28, 2018 7:39 am

It's okay, I get what you're saying n.n I'll probably hold off a bit, as im going to be seeing a specialist in the next couple of months to talk to about me being trans, and hopefully they can let me start hormones! (not sure yet but I hope so!) and I will just wear a little bit of make up here and there :P nothing too fancy tho, lol. My sister also says maybe when I transition, I could do some drag n.n I think that would be a good outlet for my makeup skills (even though they aren't the best). I'm also going to go buy some more brighter and more colourful guys clothes because that is what I like: bright and colourful, popping colours! girls clothes are usually more colourful than guys clothes and I think that's the main reason as to why I want to wear girls clothes sometimes. I just have to find the right clothes for me n.n (also most of the girls clothes I want to wear are t-shirts or sweaters, sometimes leggings but meh lol)

Jamesjardin247
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Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Jamesjardin247 » Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:11 pm

my personal opinion is that men should be like men,i mean no offense though....

Heather
scarleteen founder & director
Posts: 6480
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:43 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I know every word of The Lorax by heart.
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My sexual identity and orientation: queery-queer-queer
Location: Vashon Island, WA

Re: Identify as Male but wear Makeup?

Unread postby Heather » Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:43 am

How isn’t this “like men?” Issac, Mo and other men who wear makeup *are* men, after all, so the things they do are necessarily “like men.”
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead


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