How Genderless Fashion Has Been Rewriting the Binary Concept of Clothing

How Genderless Fashion Has Been Rewriting the Binary Concept of Clothing

Genderless fashion has been gaining designers and stores’ attention. But, in the streets, its power has been shining for a while now.

The idea of having boys’ clothes separately from girls’ clothes is out of date. Freedom of choosing and expression screams strongly in genderless fashion. 

But, what is this style? Why is it being so discussed and how is it rewriting the binary concept of clothes? Keep reading to learn everything about it. 

What Is Genderless Fashion?

Gender roles are socially constructed. The way women should act and dress, as well as how men should behave, was established long ago.

Fashion is one of the biggest ways of assigning gender. But, because now we have more freedom to expose our desires, style, have more space for conversations about sexuality and gender identification, the genderless fashion topic has been more constant.

A great promise for the future of fashion is the breaking of the division between feminine and masculine. So that we can use it even more as a representation of ourselves, than a label imposed by society.

The truth is that these pre-established definitions of how men or women should behave have fallen apart. Fluidity and freedom have become words of war when the topic is fashion. 

Therefore, genderless fashion is nothing more than the freedom of people to choose how they want to dress. It is not an adaptation of designers and brands to make clothes with a straight cut and unisex. Quite the opposite! It’s the possibility of giving consumers the chance to choose what kind of clothes they want to wear, either in the boys or girls session. 

The Rise of Genderless Fashion

The genderless movement started to appear at the beginning of the 20th century, more precisely, in the 20s. At that time, women like Coco Chanel began to use pieces from the men’s wardrobe in their clothing. That meant a lot, not only for the genderless style but for feminism. 

Society has been playing with the feminine and masculine concepts in fashion for a long time. But, in the past years, the movement has started to gain strength. Society has been changing its mindset and its conceptions regarding genders.

The fashion industry slowly embraced the movement in different moments. An example of the neutralization of genders in clothing was when the model Andrej Pejic began to parade on catwalks for men’s and women’s collections. Andrej (now Andreja), opened the door for several other transgender models that came representing the community. 

But, don’t miss understand: genderless fashion is not only for transgenders. It is for everyone who wants to embrace it. As we said, it’s related to simply treating clothing as neutral. It is about freedom of choice and freedom of being. 

With time, big brands started to incorporate this idea into their collections and smaller brands got more attention because they were already rocking gender-neutral clothing. 

Asians Are Masters in Genderless Fashion

In countries like Japan and China, genderless fashion is more than a trend for a while. Brands like Comme des Garçons and Yohji Yamamoto pioneered in this area. 

As stated by Fashion United, the youth movement in Tokyo has been against fashion’s definition of sexuality since 2016. Through makeup, clothes and even Instagram filters, fashionistas communicate the idea of eradicating binarism and giving people complete freedom of choice.

Guided by the anime’s fluid beauty standards, they’ve been pushing the boundaries and exploring genderless fashion as masters. 

Get Inspired! 

If you haven’t dug into genderless fashion yet, hopefully, we can get you inspired by these ideas. 

Celebrities like Billie Elish, Harry Styles and Jaden Smith have been rocking in this scenario for quite a while now. 
But as you may know, the streets can give us rich insights when it comes to fashion. Pinterest and non-binary influencers do this work masterfully. Check out some personalities and we suggest you press the follow button:

1. Rain Dove

Photo: Instagram @raindovemodel

Rain Dove was born in New York and grew up in Vermont. Since a kid, Dove knew that there wasn’t such thing as gender definition. The model has done a lot of jobs presenting as a boy and as a girl.

2. Vittorio Franco

Photo: Instagram @lavickybeauty

Vittorio proudly speak about their diversity. Describing themselves as fashion lover, music producer/songwriter, artist and model, their Instagram is full of color, genderless inspiration and experiments.

3. Alok Vaid-Menon

Photo: Instagram @alokvmenon

Alok is an Indian-American writer, influencer and performance artist. With gender non-conformists ideas, Alok’s creative work has been presented in different countries around the World and they are internationally renowned for their progressive art.

4. Andreja Pejic

Photo: Instagram @andrejapejic

Remember the pioneer model we mentioned at the beginning of this article? Well, here she is. Before coming out as trans, Andreja Pejic was best known for being one of the first androgynous supermodels. She still works in fashion while adventures herself in the acting world. Her social media is full of social activism.

5. Jamie Windust

Photo: Instagram @jamie_windust

Non-binary creator Jamie Windust is a must-follow. With colorful looks and vibrant makeup, the writer has Ted Talks in the curriculum and is an activist for the non-binarism community spreading the word on social media.

As we said, genderless fashion is all about cutting off labels. Setting the imagination free when choosing clothes. So, if you want to make a men’s collection with skirts, go for it. If you are a woman and found cool trousers in the men’s section, buy them. 

Identity is all about being who you are and fashion is just a way of expressing it to the world. Clothes shouldn’t be treated as a squared box with a lot of rules, but as a personal microphone that gives people the possibility to speak for themselves.

Did you like our article? Read our article about LGBTQ+ Pride Month

By Júlia Vilaça

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