What exactly does gay look like?

I have a (lesbian) friend who I find to be nearly physically flawless. She’s sort of a more exotic-looking Rachel Leigh Cook , but with a shorter, dyke-ier haircut, a borderline boi/butch wardrobe, and a body that…I can’t even think about because we’re just friends.

Anyway, I’m searching through her facebook photos all creep-stalker-like one day because she lives far far away from me and I miss her. I go through a copious amount of photos of this girl with her short “alternative lifestyle haircut” covered by a beanie/skull cap or baseball cap. I see her in a different flannel shirt and cut-offs each time I click the “next photo” arrow. And she’s just looking straight up Hot Queer…until I reach some photos that date back to like 2009. Here, I find her in skirts, dresses, lipstick, high heel boots, eyeshadow, and with long, luscious, flowing hair down to the middle of her back. And she’s so strikingly beautiful. I mean, I obviously still think she’s strikingly beautiful as she is now, but it was such a drastic change that my jaw kind of dropped.

Then, I have a flashback of a conversation we had about a year ago. And I realize that the date on which her appearance in these photos seems to transition is right around the time she “came out”, I think, and everything starts to make sense. DUH! She started altering her appearance because she realized she was gay.

I totally understand where she’s coming from. Being more on the femme side of the scale myself, I realize it’s hard to have visibility as a gay woman when you look like you walked off the Betsey Johnson runway. The only weapon I have in fighting against invisibility amongst other (“obviously gay”) women is a Rainbow Delegation bracelet that I got from the LAQC.

Did any of you go through this? Did you change your hair, your wardrobe, your habits, to seem more gay? Did you stop carrying purses and instead start wearing cargo pants with giant pockets that held all your belongings? Did you hack off your ponytail so that the Prince Charmings of the world would stop being attracted to your Rapunzel locks? Did you throw out everything you owned that was pink, trimmed with lace, ruffled, or sparkly so that you didn’t look so girly?

Or, has your look always been more “tomboy”, less “chic”?

OR! Have you stayed extremely feminine without batting an eyelash at the idea that gay girls can’t be “pretty pretty”?

Again, I am by no means judging. I’m just curious.

This is definitely a topic I want to come back to, so maybe I’ll ask my friend for some feedback, and we can keep this convo rolling.


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