Let’s face it: transition ain’t cheap. Fees for updating ID, chest binders, packers, blood work, testosterone, surgery… it can add up fast! Often overlooked are the costs of overhauling your wardrobe. This is especially true for guys on testosterone: fat redistribution and muscle and/or weight gain require sizing up. Thrift shops and having some skill with a needle and thread will get you far in terms of expense, but the shopping experience can be intimidating for some guys. Enter: The Trans Clothing Swap.
“Clothing swaps are a much more comfortable and safe place to try out different styles or try on clothing, which can be very stressful to do in a store if you are not gender-conforming or if you have a ‘non-standard’ body.” — Wiley, Clothing Swaps Can Be a Lifeline for Queer and Trans People
Tumblr’s community-driven design has made it the platform of choice for a number of trans clothing swap services that have launched over the past several years. The Tumblr Transgender Clothing Exchange (est. 2012, NY, US) and The Transgender Friendly Clothing Swap are hubs for trans people to sell/give away and buy/receive clothes with other trans people.
Reddit’s transtrade is another active online trans clothing exchange.
Offline, trans clothing swaps have popped up as pop-up and regular events in the U.S. and Canada:
- Transform – Cincinnati
- Transgender Clothing Exchange – State College, PA
- SWITCH — Trans* Clothing Swap – Las Vegas. Free weekly swap; Thursdays and Fridays 3-5pm.
- Queer and Trans Clothing Exchange – Seattle
- Genderqueer Chicago’s Annual Queer Clothing Swap
- MTHC Transguys’ Trans Masculine Clothing Exchange – Minneapolis
- Out Youth’s Clothing Thrift and Swap – Austin
- TRANS: THRIVE Drop-in Center’s Clothing Closet – San Francisco
- The Well’s Trans Clothing Drop-In – Hamilton, ON, Canada. Twice a month.
If you’re looking for a similar service in your area, check with local community and campus LGBT groups. If they don’t have a trans clothing swap, consider volunteering to help make it happen! Here’s some information to get you started:
Not only are trans clothing swaps are a great way to shop without spending a dime but they’re also an easy way to keep textile waste out of landfills.
Do you know of other trans clothing swaps? Leave your comment below!
CLICK HERE to read – A TESTOSTERONE SHORTAGES: WHATCHA GONNA DO WHEN THEY COME FOR YOU?
CLICK HERE to read – IS A LONG-TERM TESTOSTERONE TREATMENT SAFE?
CLICK HERE to read – GOVERNMENT-OWNED HOSPITAL REFUSES TO TREAT TRANSGENDER MAN