Isis King

Isis King, the first transgender woman to compete on “America’s Next Top Model,” has been making inroads since her groundbreaking appearance on the show, most recently appearing in an episode of HBO’s “Equal.” Her picture is below:

A Transgender First for New Zealand

A transgender Filipino woman has made history after being the first to achieve the highly coveted title of Miss Intercontinental New Zealand 2020.

Arielle Keil, 26, who was born in Davao City, Philippines as a boy named Andrew, but grew up in Auckland, New Zealand, underwent gender reassignment surgery earlier this year. 

The glamorous trailblazer, who is the first post-operative transgender contestant to compete in the Miss New Zealand beauty pageant.

Another Top Transgender Model

Easily one of the most talked about models of 2019, Brazilian-born Valentina Sampaio made history as Victoria’s Secret’s first-ever transgender model. Victoria’s Secret aside, the 23-year-old has quite the CV, having previously been a spokeswoman for L’Oréal and appeared on the covers of ELLE U.S., Vanity Fair Italia and Vogue Brasil.

Talulah Eve Brown

 Several years ago, transgender model Talulah Eve Brown made LGBTQ history by becoming the first transgender woman to be named to “Britain’s Top Model” contest. 

Here she is in 2018:

 As she grew up though, Talulah encountered the same problems many of us faced:

The year was 2004 and somewhere in Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, a troubled 13-year-old was saying a special prayer — a ritual repeated every night before going to sleep.

‘I used to look at the stars every night and pray “Please God, let me not grow too tall, so one day I can be a woman”.’

Today, the beautiful 26-year-old statuesque woman with feline eyes and forever legs feels she owes the cosmos a huge thank you.

‘I stopped growing at 5 ft 8 in,’ says Talulah-Eve. ‘A perfect height!’

Here she is today with her boyfriend. From the “Daily Mail TV”

Leyna Bloom

From Elle Australia:

“Along with being a pioneering model, Leyna Bloom is an actress, dancer and activist for both the LGBTQI+ and black communities. Her modelling career started in 2014, and by 2017, she was one of the few openly transgender models in the industry, walking at New York Fashion Week. In the same year she also became the first openly transgender model of color to appear in editorial for Vogue India. Adding to her collection of ‘firsts’, in May 2019, her feature film debut in Port Authority at Cannes Film Festival marked the first time a trans woman of color held a leading role in a movie featured at a major film festival.”

Shake and Bake

Connie referred to the previous post here in Cyrsti’s Condo called “Faking it till you make it.” as “Shake and bake.” 

The reference aptly describes many of my early attempts into the feminine world which were mostly unsuccessful. My wife was convinced I dressed too slutty and she was right. I was stuck in the concept that revealing clothes validated my femininity when truthfully my choice of outfits was doing exactly the opposite. 

In essence my skirts were too short or tight and I was having a difficult time adjusting to what my feminine image should be. Looking back now, I feel as if I could come up with a reasonable fashion statement if I stayed in the professional fashion image. I owned a black jump suit I loved and wore repeatedly to upscale shopping malls in the area complete with my black heels and long honey blond wig. The problem I began to run into was when I began to encounter the same people over and over again, I needed other outfits to wear. I remember vividly several outfits I managed to come up despite rigid budget constraints which fit the late 1980’s and 1990’s fashion scene. Since for the most part, big hair was in, my wigs fit right in as did my shorter skirts if I wore them with flats or low heels. Also there was quite a bit of Demin and Boho influence in the 1990’s which I loved. Check out the picture below.

With all of that, I still couldn’t fulfill my wife’s standards of how she thought I should look. In my defense, she was a very natural person and didn’t wear much make up at all. Every now and then though she would still consent to going to a nearby town to go out and eat. To dress to her standards would have been difficult for me. So being the determined person I was (and am) I did the best I could to wear what I wanted. So in her eye’s I was still a “shake and bake” person.

As with any transgender woman or man and/or cross dresser, we are all survivors. So if we are faking it or baking it, we find a way to get by.

Sneaking Out

These days, thanks to the continuing affects of Covid 19, it seems every night Liz and I decide to go out, it is an adventure. First, we don’t get to do it very often and second, we have to make sure we can do it as safely as possible. For example, I can count on one hand the number of times we have been out in the past several months. 

Last night we returned to our favorite Mexican Restaurant for a pitcher of margaritas and a bite to eat. We like the venue too because it has a nice sized patio we can eat on and stay more socially distanced. We managed to stay reasonably away from everyone except the pesky owner who kept drifting past our table.

For the evening which was slightly warm and humid, I chose a black pair of my favorite leggings along with a white tank top along with my lightweight black and white patterned blouse which comes down to my hips. Finishing off the outfit were my black flats. What I am most proud of is being able to go without foundation these days. The most recent picture I have shown you all here in Cyrsti’s Condo, is an attempt to show the natural me. With no fancy photo filters and wearing just eye makeup along with lip gloss. Of course, most of the time, I am wearing a face mask so no one would notice anyhow. Back to the evening… 

I was comfortable,  accepted and as always, immensely enjoyed the food and my night out with Liz. 

Rumor has it I might have a birthday coming up relatively soon and Liz along with my daughter may be coming up with a surprise. So who knows? Maybe another evening to sneak out.  

A Day Away

Yesterday, my partner Liz had one of her group meetings at a small nearby local park. The day turned out to be a wonderful harbinger of what is to come as far as fall weather around here. Sunshine, blue skies and mellow temperatures made it the perfect day for me to go along, wait in the car and relax. It’s always very difficult for me to relax, so yesterday was a very rare day. 

As my mind wandered, I thought of the two main things I have coming up before my birthday in early October. I need to get my driver’s license renewed, putting up with a probable insane socially distanced date at the Department of Motor Vehicles and I have decided to get rid of my old car. In my mind it has become nothing more than a tie in to a past I’m trying to forget. Liz wants me to try to sell it but I just want to junk it as it barely runs and is ancient. One way or another I have to do it before the license plates expire in October/ 

Finally, I put all of those thoughts out of my mind and started concentrating on something important, like a fall wardrobe. Even though I will overwhelmingly be staying in and not seeing anyone, I still need to break down and get my hair done. It is getting so long, even Liz is threatening to cut it for me. In partner speak, she is telling me nicely the hair is out of control. I have someone in mind to attack the beast, if she is accepting new patients :). She is the former wife of a transgender woman acquaintance of mine.  

I also began to think of what portion of my fall wardrobe still existed and was wearable. I figured I will need a new sweater or two plus maybe a pair of leather look leggings I saw on Fabulous AFTER 40. For some reason I am craving them! I have added a picture below. 

All to soon, my morning shifted back to reality as Liz finished her get together and my day away from life was over.

Teddy Quinlivan

Michelle was kind enough to respond to the post concerning the first transgender Sports Illustrated swimsuit model by reminding me of the time Chanel hired it’s first transgender model back in 2019. Her name is Teddy Quinlivan 

 At the time, she remarked:
The model and activist has announced she is the first openly transgender model to be tapped by ChanelBeauty for an advertising campaign. Quinlivan shared the news on her Instagram account, posting a video and image from the campaign along with a heartfelt quote on the significance of this role.

She then went on to detail the familiar pain most transgender people go through growing up:
“I find I don’t cry anymore when things are sad, but isn’t it interesting when we shed tears in moments of triumph?” she wrote. “This was one of those triumphant cry moments for me. My whole life has been a fight. From being bullied at school consistently, kids threatening to kill me and going into graphic detail how they were going to do it, my own father beating me and calling me a f–got, to receiving industry blowback after speaking publicly about being sexually assaulted on the job.…This was a victory that made all of that s–t worth it.”

Thanks Michelle!