Say Goobye!

This site sucks and it’s coming down very very soon.

When it comes to “tips and tricks,” I would much rather just show you end results and let you be impressed than to try to explain in words new things that I figure out for myself. As for trying to explore deeper levels of transgenderism, it’s simply not there. I don’t care about transgenderism. I care about femininity.

So, my friends, there is something much more interesting on its way.

Looking similar, but being way more interesting….keep your eyes on www.feminineconcept.com. It’s going to be far better than this shitty blog.

Why do we Dress?

friendjobIt’s been a while since I posted and I’m sorry for that. I’m also sorry for not replying to some of your emails. I have had a lot of weird and sudden changes going on in my life and so my time has been bankrupt.

Anyway…

I’ve been wanting to do this post exploring why we like to pretty ourselves up in fine dresses, make up, wigs and what not. The problem is that I can’t really speak for the entire transgendered community, as I am but a solitary young transvestite (or whatever) and can really only speak for myself.

I know some of us actually identify as women full time. These types may be inclined to take hormones, live full time as a lady and maybe even get their peepee sliced off. While I certainly feel for these people, and am well tuned into the notion of not fully being able to be oneself, this is not my case.

But was I ever confused?

Maybe a little bit. I’ve certainly never desired to lose the private places, but I have definitely had an affinity for crossdressing since I was a very young age. In fact, I can’t really remember a time when I didn’t want to occasionally sport spit curls and a light, airy Easter dress. Apparently, I would try on my sister’s clothes even as a toddler.

As I got older, I had a lot of additional fantasies. I was interested in trying to live as a woman for brief spurts of time. A weekend or so. Yet, I could never work up the balls to propose this idea to my parental figures. Alone in the bathroom, before showering, I would put on my mom’s makeup, try on a random bra or dress if it happened to be hanging on the back of the door, and do my hair up however I could with whatever hair enhancements I could find.

Older yet, enough to be left home alone, I loved raiding mom’s closet. There were a world of dresses to explore. Eventually, I began inheriting the dresses by way of a thinly veiled excuse that I wanted costumes for skit videos I would film. This seemed to be acceptable to my family and so it opened the door to wigs. Halloween was always the best of all reasons to purchase them, but I was often limited to costume grade bullshit. And of course, I did utilize these garments for far more Halloweens than were likely inconspicuous to my family and friends.

When ebay came, the flood gates completely opened. I went especially wig crazy. Private dressing continued when alone. Eventually, I made some very understanding friends who found interest in playing dress up with me. Slowly, this notion that I was, indeed, an occasional transvestite came to the surface. Now, I’d have to say that most of my friends are aware of it and those that are take it rather casually.

brunetteearout2And I have learned to as well.

The truth is, I do love being a girl, but I also love being a guy. It really just depends on the mood and what’s going on. Sometimes I want to dress and sometimes I don’t.

There certainly is a sexual element that I have as a female that I don’t have as a male. Masculinity does not make me feel “sexy.” However, to be completely submerged in femininity, to the point of complete outside saturation, is very appealing and exciting in a lot of ways. At these times, I do feel sexy. This is why I think so many of us are heterosexual according to our biological bodies. We appreciate femininity in ways that other, less in-touch straight guys can even imagine.

Also, I have certainly come to appreciate dressing as an art. If I can pass, I did a damn good job. Plus, with the body as a canvass, there is so much that can be done. Hiding the penis. Slimming the waist. Applying the make up. Styling the wig. This is all truly an art. Furthermore, it’s an art that not so many other guys are very good at.

And what about the sheer rush of actually purchasing a wig or dress in a store? It’s such a wonderfully taboo feeling. One that only we can really understand!

Though I came into my own as having a good personal grip on my transvestism, one thing that really solidified my feelings about it was the COGIATI, which stands for Combined Gender Identity and Transsexuality Inventory. My value on the COGIATI is a 70. This is a classification three, or androgyne. Despite the terminology, androgyne in this case does not mean that I am draw to appearing gender neutral (though sometimes it is great fun). What it denotes is that, like I said, I am as equally interested in appearing as a male as I am female, depending on the moment.

Nowadays, I certainly cherish and celebrate my transvestism. I recommend it to everyone, in fact, and would not change it for the world. It simply feels right, pure and true.

This is not the case for everyone though. If you are confused about dressing, I certainly encourage you to see how you score on the COGIATI by clicking here. And wherever you fall on its spectrum, accept it and embrace it. Transgenderism can be highly rewarding if you do!


New solution to the lingering eyeliner problem! (Kind of.)

mascaraeyesopenI did some experimental dressing the other night in hopes of figuring out a way of perhaps substituting eyeliner with something else that is more easily removed. Anyone who keeps up here knows I already posted a whole piece on removing eyeliner and I really think it’s an issue that plagues all of us. Lo and behold, I discovered something I should have thought of all along, which is definitely an improvement. It’s nothing novel, really. Any of us could have figured it out. It is simply black eye shadow worn as eyeliner.

Now it’s not any more difficult than applying eyeliner, itself, but I did feel like there was something missing from the experience. I mean, eyeliner is so classically enjoyable to draw into place. Brushing or padding it on is just meh. There is no room for detail and you practically have to put it in your eye to do the bottom lids.

On the other hand…

mascaraeyesclosedThe eye shadow was far easier to remove than the eyeliner. I am uncertain how much I was able to remove, as we all know that after wearing eye make up all night, our eyes look foreign to us once it’s gone…no matter what. The next day, though, it looked like it was mostly gone by 11 o’clock, after a five hour sleep and a single morning eye wash. I washed once more and by 5 o’clock there was certainly no trace of it. (Though it may have been gone sooner without my imagination being able to comprehend it.)

The key factor of the experiment is this: I never even touched the witch hazel. Had this been eyeliner, applied then simply washed without an astringent, it likely would have stuck around for two whole days. The conclusion here is that we ultimately have to weigh our options. eyeliner is great fun, but how long do you want to have it on and what do you have to remove it? If you want to play it safe for the office, your much better off to just go ahead with the black eye shadow. It’s not a cure-all, but it’s definitely less of a hassle.  Also, you should be able to tell from the pictures that the effect of the eye shadow on the lids really is just as good as eyeliner, itself.

On a side note, my readership has picked up here and I certainly appreciate it. However, I really want to start a community here, and share pictures of other girls…not just me all the time. So again, I’m asking for you to email to me pics you’d like to share here: holly@gendertrade.com

I’ve already asked for headband pics (and received none!). Those are still good to send! Email me some eyeliner pics also! Or whatever you have! Eventually, I’ll share them (with more of my own) when we have a good, categorically relevant gallery built up.

By the way, if you’re in the market for some eye shadow to play with, check this out.

But if you’re just looking for black eye shadow, may I suggest this?

Friends with Benefits

friendjobtAs someone who loves experimenting with transvestism, I can tell you that having a friend to play dress up with is an absolutely invaluable commodity. Personally, I have only dressed up with a handful of genetic girls and I definitely have my favorites in this regards.

Aside from an all around good time, a real advantage of playing dress up with another person is that you have a perspective different from your own. This is especially evident if your special friend will do your make up for you or style your wig. I have noticed that most girls will usually do my make up the same way they do their own. My favorite dress up companion can do all sorts of wonderful things with make up, as well as wig styling, so the result is always something fun and new.

In addition to your make up and wig, a dress up friend can also suggest different ideas with clothing and body form. The picture at the top of this post is one of my favorites. My friend did the make up, picked out the dress, styled the wig, posed me, added the boa and took the picture.

The dress up friend’s role in picture taking is also important. She can hold a camera and take a much more stylized and objective picture than you could on your own. This perspective outside oneself can have incredibly dynamic results for picture time.  She can find just the right angle and lighting  for the prettiest picture.  She can also take care of small details as necessary.

Here is another picture comparison.  This picture was taken myinterpsolely by me.  I did the make up myself, styled the wig and took the picture of the mirror.  (I cropped out the camera I held around waist level.)  It’s definitely not a bad picture.  I’m always a sucker for long hair hanging over a shoulder.  But check out my more dire look in the picture below.  It’s the same wig, but my friend has styled it differently, provided the make up, and also posed me and took the picture.  I look like an entirely different young lady!

herinterpSo how do you find a dress up companion?  That’s a tough question.  Obviously, you have to have someone who enjoys it, themselves, and is comfortable enough to do it with you.  I think it is definitely important and more fun to include them in the dressing up.  Share your wigs with them and trade off the camera with new looks.  Most nonreligious genetic girls seem to generally be down with this.  Girls love dress up by nature (or something).  As long as you don’t cross any lines regarding sex, a lot of them will entertain the notion, regardless of your birth gender.  Some of them may even find themselves enticed by it in ways they do not understand, in which case it can become a fun exploration for both of you.

If you plan on being discreet, and wish to avoid rumors and gossip, you should probably try to find someone you have known well for a while that can keep a secret.  Of course, most girls view this as a bit kinky or sexy, so as long as you make it known that you want your dressing to remain a secret, it’s no rare thing that it does.

For the more esoteric among my readers, let me suggest this:  Find a Libra girl to dress up with.  It’s been my experience that this kind of thing tends to appeal to them more than other astrological signs.

Now, as mentioned, all this has been in the context of dressing with genetic females.  I have no real idea of what it’s like to dress with other gendernauts or with men.  Anyone that can shine light on either of those topics should certainly send me an email at holly@gendertrade.com

Also, I know my readership is picking up.  Don’t be shy!  Say hello! 

Visit LoveIsSexy.com Today!

Headbands can do Strange Wonders for Wigs

hairbandI went to a concert a few nights ago and I saw a girl with the most wonderful hair. It was straight and chin length with bangs. Furthermore it was colored orange and yellow, and adorned by a thin black headband, positioned on her head like a crown. I could not help myself from looking in her direction periodically to take it in. When the lights came on, though, I realized she was actually wearing a wig. Not only that, but she was wearing a very cheap wig!

Being a wig connoisseur, I am generally not often fooled by even the most high end wigs. How could I have been, not only unaware, but in awe of this inexpensive costume wig? Simply put, it was the headband. In this case, said headband pushed up the hair coming from the back of the crown of the wig, causing this strange, unintentional and natural look. It proved to me in someone else, something that I was first aware of from experimenting on myself: headbands are an accessory that can enhance a wig very positively.

Even a somewhat poorly designed wig can gain a new life with the right headband. Decent wigs can, at least, gain a new look. Check this out… noheadbandIn this first picture, the wig is worn as purchased. It’s kind of cute. Not a bad wig. Then I added a simple, red, elastic headband, much in the style of the girl at the concert. I tied the hair up in the back of it and achieved the look in the second picture. withheadbandAs you can see, it looks like two completely different wigs. The headband held the hair tightly to my head, allowing for those great, sweeping bangs. All I did was experiment! Though though are no pictures of it here, I later untied the hair in the back and let it cascade down, leaving the headband in place. I then used a wig brush to elevate the hair that sat behind the headband, but in front of my crown. It gave me a very cute, bouffant, southern kind of appearance. So because of a single piece of red elastic, I was able to create three completely different styles with a single wig.

I am particularly fond of the headbands which are tied. The blue one in the picture at the top of this post is an example of that. For one thing, they are wide enough to obscure a part in the top of the wig that may look awkward. Also, though, because you are in charge of the degree of tightness of the band, you can use it for all kinds of practical things. One such thing is the ability to tighten it so that it pulls back on your forehead, lifting your skin for a more feminine facial appearance. You can also take the excess ends of the band (if it has any) and retie it into the wig like a bow, or something funkier.

If you have any pictures documenting what a headband may have done for you, then by all means, email them to me at holly@gendertrade.com. I will share the best ones here.

Eyeliner: The Blessing and Curse

eyelineropen2

Eyeliner is so rewarding in the short term, yet so frustrating in the long term. How many times have you applied it to your eyes to get a dramatic look…that ended up lasting about 24 hours too long? What is a crossdresser to do?

It’s a multifaceted problem, really. The initial problem is simply removing the make up. The broader problem is, after you are unable to remove the make up, going to work or a social function and having to answer to people who ask, “Are you wearing eyeliner?” It’s annoying, awkward and none of their business. Yet it can be expected that at least one person in a handful of peers will pry just the same.

We might as well accept that we will never remove all the eyeliner from our lids in a single night. We can scrub and scrub and rub and rub, but traces are going to remain well into the next day whether we want this or not. So the question is this: What can we do to remove most of the eyeliner?

There are make-up removing products out there, but frankly, we don’t need to shell out the money for these things in nice packaging when we can get the raw materials for much cheaper. See, the main ingredient, if not the only ingredient, in most of these products is an astringent called witch hazel. You can purchase it for roughly the same price as a bottle of rubbing alcohol. Dabbing it on a cotton swab and rubbing it carefully along the edge of the lids does the trick about as well as it can. Apparently, Vaseline has a similar effect and is less irritating if it gets in your eyes. I have yet to test this, though, and witch hazel is thus far unmatched to me.

It can be equally difficult to dealing with the nosy busybodies who ask questions about that eyeliner you didn’t quite remove the whole way. The simplest answer, which is rarely followed up on, is simply, “it’s a bedroom thing…you don’t want to know.” Most people, at that, actually do want to know, but will refuse to cross into the taboo of asking you to elaborate. The most likely case is that they will presume you to be “naughty” and shrug you off in their own embarrassment and sexual longing.

It is also helpful if you play music or are involved in theater. If you are involved in one of these trades, most people automatically assume that eyeliner goes with the territory. A world of answers extend before you in this case. Why are you wearing eyeliner? Because I played a show last night. Of course! What’s up with the raccoon eyes? I had a dress rehearsal. Oh, duh!

Now I’m not condoning that you lie to anyone. However, I sincerely recommend you stretch the terminology of your crossdressing. Maybe you didn’t rock out your guitar on a stage, but the terms “play” and “show” need not necessarily be referring to anything public. Likewise for a dress rehearsal. I have, myself, rehearsed several dresses in the past just to see if they look okay on me.

There is always the entire truth option, as well. Why are you wearing the eye makeup? Because I got into some crossdressing last night. Say it casually, with a smile, and the other party will likely feel foolish to question you further. “Was he being sarcastic?” they will wonder. And always keep this one thing in mind: Anyone who asks about something as subtle as eyeliner is obviously excited by it in some way. This can be used to your advantage. And you know…if they were not around to see what you were doing with all that eyeliner, what does it really matter what you tell them anyway? Exaggerate and fib to your heart’s content!

Yves Saint Laurent Eyeliner Moire (Liquid Eyeliner) - No. 25 3ml/0.1oz Yves Saint Laurent Eyeliner Moire (Liquid Eyeliner) – No. 25 3ml/0.1oz

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Thrift Store Shopping: No One is Really Watching You

thriftstoreThough it takes some digging, thrift stores can be inexpensive goldmines for lady’s clothing. Shopping online cannot hold a candle to the organic beauty of thumbing through a rack of gowns and blouses. There is a downside, however, depending on your level of comfort with being “out.” Basically, everyone else in the store can see you shopping for women’s clothing.

Whether or not this actually bothers you, varies by the person. As for me, my transvestism is known as fact to a few close friends, comfortably assumed by several others, and is yet completely hidden from many more people. I live in a midsized town where word travels relatively quick. More than anything, my exploits have lead to an abundance of ambiguity about my sex and gender related interests. I’ve been seen in drag on a good number of occasions, but to most people it’s merely a side note to my larger reputation. Said reputation involves some business, some entertainment and a hell of a lot of social networking. Running into people most everywhere I go, I generally keep my transvestism on a matter-of-factly, need-to-know basis.

So how comfortable am I shopping for women’s clothing? Generally it depends on who is in the store. Living in a red state, scary mullet headed rednecks are commonplace and so are neo-con fratboys. I don’t need either kind of person kicking my ass on the way to my car because I bought a new skirt. Recently, however, I had an eye opening experience at the thrift store.

I had recently taken a job that allowed me to travel around the state. Naturally, I spent my downtime visiting up whatever local thrift shop was nearby. Being in an unfamiliar city always makes it easier to browse women’s clothing because if no one recognizes me, there will be no one asking awkward questions later. I found a few items of interest for cheap. A blouse, a sweater, a wig, a hat, a clip on hair extension and some make up at a wholesale outlet. All for about $25 total. When I got back to my town, the thrift shopping bug was still inside me and so I ventured down to a one of our locals.

Already inside were each of the aforementioned stereotypes. Not one, but two mullet headed (and overall wearing) rednecks, and also a keenly dressed black dude who may or may not have been a neo-con fratboy, but I wasn’t taking any chances. And so I stayed around the perimeter of the women’s section, in between sifting through old records and, when the coast was clear, making quick jaunts into the gowns and formal attire hung on high racks that I could hide behind. All the while I kept my eye on the rednecks and the black guy. The rednecks didn’t seem to notice me at all, but the black guy kept looking over at me, which 1) was uncomfortable and 2) seemed to reaffirm the possibility that he was of the judgmental kind.

I returned to the records and got my head engrossed in the 45’s. I looked back to check if I had the proper browsing opportunities and suddenly, it became quite clear as to why the black guy was watching me: He was watching me because I was watching him. And now that I was hung up on the 45’s, he took his own opportunity to do exactly what I had been waiting to do. He began exploring the women’s clothing! It was the same section I was waiting for as well.

It all became clear to me. He was no frat boy. What would a frat boy be doing in a thrift store anyway? He was but another transgender, like myself, watching out for what I was watching, just as I was doing the same to him. He didn’t care if I browsed the gowns because he was there for the same reason. There was even a point when I was browsing the formal attire on the high racks when he came around the corner (dong his own browsing), saw me and quickly, awkwardly changed direction.

As for the rednecks, I’m not sure if they were ever aware I was there. They never looked in my direction, let alone made eye contact. So the lesson here is that, aside from be cautious when letting our gender identities out to the people we do know, we should really pay no mind to those that we don’t know. Most everyone is there to shop…not people watch. If you do happen to find yourself under the observant scrutiny of a stranger, there’s a good chance it’s for the same reason you are scrutinizing them.


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Welcome to GenderTrade!

introhollyThank you for visiting GenderTrade! Obviously, this site is in its infancy and there is not much more to learn than what you can read in the “About,” “Your Hostess” and “Contribute” pages. I will try to expound, though.

My name is Holly…at least for the purposes of this site. I want to build a fun community here. I want us to all have fun with our gender experiments and share them here. As a result, I’m hoping to get some theme picture postings going, once we have enough regular visitors to make that happen. To explain, this would be something where the theme would be something like…I don’t know…red heads. Once that theme was announced, all you lovely ladies out there could then have an excuse to put on your best red wig and take some photos. You could then send me your best one and I’ll post up some submissions.

On top of that, I’d really like to get some events happening once that readership is established. I figure we could get something very fun and engaging going on. Not a support group…but a true event with entertainment and good times. I have worked in the music scene long enough to make this a reality. I’ve simply just never done it strictly for a trans setting and I’m sure it would be well worth it for all.

But the community is key! That means I have to offer you a reason to be here and I will do my best!

On that note, I feel I must explain gravity. The one thing I do not want this site to be is excessively heavy. I know all of us have struggled at times with our gender identities. And while we should not discount those struggles in others, and should certainly help out anyone in need, the focus here should be on the joys of our gender expression…not the pitfalls. And in reality, the pitfalls are usually just in our heads anyway. Being able to do dress oneself up in the garments of personal choice is a very exciting freedom that many yearn for but few are actually able to bring themselves to do. If you have (or had) a penis, but also donned a wig, make up and Henry & June Lingeriebra…congratulate yourself! You transcend a constraint of modern society!

Finally, I want to make it a point NOT to discourage those of you who have never actually had a penis. Though F2M boys are, of COURSE, as welcome as anyone here, I imagine the majority of visitors will be M2F. In that case, we must acknowledge that our dressing up as we do is an extension of our appreciation of femininity and women, in general. And so, biological ladies out there, you are SO SO SO welcome to participate here. Men can put on a wig and make up. Women can do. Either way, do yourselves up and share it here! The point is a good time.

Thanks again for visiting. Do check back and do get in touch!


Don't forget to pack some sexy lingerie!