Zion Moreno

Zion Moreno

Transgender model/actress Zion Moreno is about to become a household name.:

Zión Moreno stars on the new Mexican Netflix series Control Z, which follows a group of high school students who unfortunately get their secrets spilled to the whole school by a mysterious internet hacker. 

One observant but “socially isolated” student, Sofia, attempts to find out who is behind her classmates’ secrets being leaked.

More Magic

Photo: Cyrsti Hart

Georgette wrote in and commented on my recent “Makeup Magic” post which delved into powerful memories of shopping for and trying to use my own makeup which I had saved up for from my meager allowance as well as my paper route money:

“I remember those days of going thru my mother’s dresser drawers, And wondering what some of it was for, My mother hardly ever used much makeup, I don’t know what they put in them but the red lipsticks didn’t easily wash off, I developed a habit of biting my lips to have an excuse of why they were reddish.

My first time buying something for myself was in the mid 60’s. My mother only wore stockings and so many of the other girls in my age were into some of the newer pattern pantyhose. That first store bought item of MINE. I had also gotten a plain pair of flats shoes. I was so happy and proud as they were mine and not borrowed from my mother. “

Thanks for the comment! As luck would have it, I was able to find a pair of women’s shoes which fit and I cherished them for as long as I could before sadly I outgrew them. 

I also distinctly remember having my own wig was the impossible dream and it would be years before I could do anything about it. In fact, there were several “impossible dreams” I conquered on my path along the gender divide which I will write about in another post.

Makeup Magic

 Most certainly one of the most bewildering ,yet on occasion fun part in a transgender woman’s transition is making yourself up. Of course, very early in the transition game, the importance of attempting to align your external source with your authentic self becomes very important. 

I remember back to the earliest days of rummaging through my Mom’s makeup drawer and “borrowing” certain items I had seen her use such as lipstick and eye shadow. The challenge always was to use the items and put them back so well she would never notice. She never mentioned it, so perhaps I was careful enough to get by. 

All of this took place during the 1950’s and I lived in a rural area where I was able to deliver news papers for extra money. I saved my paper route money and combined it with the small allowance I received for doing chores around the house and actually had enough money saved to purchase my own makeup. Having the money was one thing but finding a place to spend it and buy makeup was another.

Those days were way before the advent of any makeup specialty stores. The closest I could afford and find away in town to go to were a couple of the old “five and dimes” department stores. They featured a small selection of many items (including makeup) a lunch counter as well as other items. I was even able to find me a pair of women’s shoes I cherished on one of my shopping excursions. 

Another problem I encountered was how was I going to get to the stores I wanted to shop at plus once I was there, having the courage to actually go in and search for makeup. I was able to overcome the transportation issue by spending the night at my grandma’s house. She lived very close to downtown where the stores were located. I could walk and pick out my hard earned treasures. 

As I wrote, I vividly remember the fear or out right panic I felt the first time I gathered the courage to go in the store and shop. I ended up feeling very relieved when I finally reached the makeup section…until I saw the selections which were available. I thought, now what? My plan had been to briskly walk in, pick out a couple makeup items, head back to the checkout counter and leave. My plans did not include a lengthy stay to shop. 

Through it all, I stayed the course and purchased a couple of items. I was certain the whole world was staring at me but they weren’t. I survived the checkout counter and headed back to my grandma’s.

Little did I know  from my humble beginnings at the makeup counter, I would have many more occasions to feel nervous. Over the years I would have much more error than trial when it came to applying my own makeup. Finally the internet came along and I was able to study makeup tutorials and improve my craft. 

Ironically I became so skilled my two wives (who wore very little makeup) would come to me for advice when they wanted to dress up. 

When I became very serious about transitioning was when I attempted to take my makeup to another level,. During this period I was desperately trying to blend in with the professional woman and proper makeup was a necessity. 

These days I have basically gone full circle with my makeup. Thanks to the results of hormone replacement therapy and age, my skin has softened and the angles of my face have rounded, Naturally, I need less makeup when we go out although I still wear more than Liz. Since Liz is a former “Avon” makeup sales person, she still retains a knowledge of the artform.

She has been threatening to do a makeup job on both of us before we go out. I can’t wait for her to work her magic. 

Bond Girl

 This week end my partner Liz and I are planning to see the newest James Bond film. Thinking of going has brought back memories of the “Bond girl who was born a boy”:

Caroline Cossey, also known as Tula, made headlines as the first transgender model to pose for Playboy magazine. Prominent throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s, 

Cossey worked with major fashion magazines and small brands, even appearing topless in denim ads. Her big break came with a cover spread for Playboy in 1981, which led to her role as an extra in James Bond’s film For Your Eyes Only

After being outed by a British tabloid in 1991, she made a comeback by posing for Playboy again, this time in a solo spread that dubbed her a “beautiful woman who was born a boy.”

Of course I couldn’t wait to grab a copy of “Playboy” to get my glimpse of this impossibly beautiful transgender woman.

No Easy Path

Leyna Bloom

Everyone assumes paths to being a well known transgender icon is a quick easy one. Read on about Leyna Bloom’s path:

Leyna Bloom  moved from Chicago to New York City in 2008 at the age of 17, ready to make something of herself.

 Finding a place of acceptance in the underground ballroom scene and taking inspiration from models such as Tanay Pendavis and Tracey Africa, Bloom served face in Harlem dance halls   

From there, she appeared in a cover shoot for Candy alongside other trans icons including Janet Mock and Yasmine Petty. In the past few years she’s starred in major fashion campaigns and walked runways, and in 2019, she made her on-screen debut in the Martin Scorsese produced Port Authority. It’s submission to the Cannes Film Festival made her the first trans woman of color to star in a movie in its 70-year history.

Of course also, there was her famous “Sports Illustrated” cover!

Loss of Status

I have written numerous times here in Cyrsti’s Condo concerning how crucial it is to be careful when you first begin to explore the feminine world. 

You lose many things when you cross the gender frontier and lose your male privileges.  The most important one to consider is your own personal security. In society, the feminine gender is simply the one which becomes the target for physical and emotional abuse.

My idea’s on the subject were brought up again when I read a post from Mandy and her experience in a coin shop. To make a long story short, she encountered a questionable man who was trying to buy her coins instead of the store. Mandy has her own very long hair, painted nails and has no problem “passing” as a woman. On this occasion, perhaps “passing” could be the least of her problems. Fortunately the store clerk got rid of the man in question and Mandy even noted his license plate when he left.

Over the years I have noted my own close calls with the public when I first began to come out. In particular, I wrote about the near altercation I had with two men outside a gay bar late one night in downtown Dayton, Ohio. I paid my way out of that with the last five dollars I had in my purse. The next time I went to the same area in my long black skirt with a deep slit, matching sleeveless tank top and long straight flowing dark wig, I asked for support when I left. I was meeting two lesbians and I asked them to walk me to my car. Which they gladly did.

All transgender women should learn quickly to park in lighted areas, as close as possible to your destination. In other words, do not make yourself a target. It’s a double edged sword because if you look too good you could be a target. Or, if someone clocks you as a transgender woman, trouble could erupt again.

Some trans women I know, as well as cis women too go to the drastic step of carrying self protection. From pepper spray to fire arms I have heard it all. My partner Liz (who has martial arts training) has purchase long pointed objects to go on our key chains in case something happens. 

Also, bars and taverns around the country are placing warning signs in the women’s restrooms to provide possible help to women in need.(above)

How sad is it any of this has to happen. Or sadder yet I have to write about it.

Just be aware when you transition, your greatest privilege loss could be your personal security. 

Fall has Fallen

Old Denim Skirt Photo: Credit Cyrsti Hart

Finally it looks like what is called Indian Summer around here has come and gone. Indian summer describes the last gasp of summer like weather. It’s always been a pleasant time for me, as it’s the time I take to re-assess my fall wardrobe of light weight sweaters, leggings and even boots.

Early looks into my wardrobe tell me it’s time to do some shopping. Not only do I need some new key pieces, I need some new jeans in a smaller size. The diet is working plus my hips are continuing to change due to hormone replacement therapy. Since my very early days of transgender transition, I have never liked the idea of extensive shapewear, Relying totally on the what you see is what you get theory. For the most part I think it worked. Plus my favorite outfit was a long patterned top paired with a jean skirt. Since everyone told me I had good legs it made sense to show them off.

Even back then, I was doing dieting and managed to shed nearly fifty pounds from the 275 I weighed when I started to seriously transition,

All of this takes me back to my current dilemma of having a fall wardrobe deficit. Thanks to my cats claws, she has effectively ruined several pairs of leggings which I wear. Leggings fortunately, are a relatively inexpensive replacement item. After deeper inspection, I found I could use a couple more sweaters to wear. Since I am a big thrift store shopper, it may be time for another trip.

Seasonal wardrobe changes have always been fun for me. One of my favorite times to be a transgender woman. Being full time as long as I have been now just adds to the challenges.

Another Transgender Crush

A central figure in many episodes of RuPaul’s Drag Race, Carmen Carrera first appeared on the show in its third season, and was the second contestant in the show’s history to rejoin the cast after being eliminated.

She also appeared as a drag “professor” in the spinoff series RuPaul’s Drag U. Carrerra presented as male during the third season of Drag Race, and came out as a trans woman the following year, in 2012.

Since then, she has appeared in many magazines, including the cover for the fifth anniversary edition of Candy, and is involved with AIDS activism and advocacy.