Peter Minkoff discusses how to be out loud and proud.
If you’re waiting for the perfect time to come out as queer to the entire world and show your colors publically, you will be waiting for a long time. There’s no perfect time to be yourself—you simply live day by day as authentically as you can, and one day, you won’t even remember the time of hiding your identity. So how can you be a “better” queer and express who you are every day, both subtly and loudly?
FamiliariSe yourself with the term
Education is very important in our community, so before you start expressing your queerness, make sure you know all about the term and its history. Being queer means more than just labeling your sexuality—it ties you to the whole LGBTQ+ community. It’s an umbrella term that says: I’m not straight, but I don’t want to adopt any other label. It’s a term designed for everyone who doesn’t belong in the heterosexual community, and it radiates acceptance and inclusivity. It’s also important to remember that this word was once used as a slur (not so long ago, actually). However, the community managed to reclaim it, and identifying as queer is now celebrated all over the world.
Let your coloUrs fly
The easiest way to show the world that you’re queer is to incorporate it into your fashion style. While straight people often stay away from too many colors, the queer community loves being bold with hues. Even if you often opt for minimalist combinations, you can incorporate the colors of your favorite LGBTQ+ flag into your outfit. For instance, you can opt for colorful bracelets or break your muted outfit with rainbow socks. The idea is to break free of all the brakes that prevent you from experimenting. If your favorite designer just entered their neon phase and you’re scared to give it a go, do it for all your queer friends who might not be lucky to enjoy the freedom of expressing themselves freely.
Incorporate queerness into your image
Your haircut and your facial hair can also be a great way to stand out and show your uniqueness. If you’re a man who always wanted to try having long hair, you can now live your fantasy with ponytail hair extensions that are easy to put on and take off. These also work for women who want to experiment with shorter hairstyles but still be able to ruck a ponytail when they feel more feminine. By shaving, not shaving or even dying your facial hair, you can also show your individuality and stand out from the crowd of haters.
Support a brand
As we established, our queer identity can shine through your fashion choices. However, if you’re planning to wear branded clothing, make sure to dig through the brand’s history and see whether they deserve your support. Can a queer person be associated with that particular brand? It all depends on the causes the brand is fighting for, as well as their sustainability, fair wages, no animal cruelty policy, etc. Whenever you can, try to support queer-owned businesses and those with ties to the LGBTQ+ community. By supporting brands that alight with your values, you will be able to love your queerness even more.
Become an activist
To show everyone how supportive the community can be, you can learn about current activists and start your activism career to help many of the people affected by inequality. Activism is crucial for the LGBTQ+ community and it can advance the fight for our rights in all fields of life. To show your queerness in the best way possible, consider joining or even starting a local LGBTQ+ group, organizing events and setting up educational workshops for queers and allies.
Your queerness is beautiful, it’s unique and worthy of respect and admiration. So why not show it off every time you have the chance?
Follow Peter in Twitter @minkoffpeter
3 thoughts on “How to express your Queerness”
Activism is, of course, the key element. As for what to do when out and about in your city or town with your partner or friend, I recommend that you simply hold hands. Yesterday, I espied two young men on Commercial Drive in Vancouver doing just that. Being an old activist from the early struggle in Toronto, I called out a “right on boys!” as they passed by and received two warming smiles in return.