Alright, at the request of a few members, I - as a regular on the scene since I was 16 (oh god thats 8 years) - have decided to post a 'Different types of Lesbian' thread - to help those lesbians with crappy Gaydar.
Now - this is a half serious/half tongue in cheek thread. The reality of it is that ANY woman you pass in the street could be a Lesbian/Bisexual. There are no rules/looks/styles that solely define a womans sexuality.
However - I have found that there are certain styles that scream 'Lezzer' to those in the know.
Hair is the crowning glory of any person - but particularly lesbians.
Lesbo Hair can often be broken down into three Categories.
Dyke Cut, Butch Cut, and Hard-to-tell-Girl hair.
Think Cooler than cool, Just out of bed, I dont even own a brush type hair - Stylistically - these can vary:
Usually seen on older/ butch lesbians. Often coupled with mens jeans and checked shirts. Less 'Carefree' and stylish than the dyke cut.
This can be anything from Fashiony - longer 'Dyke Cut' hair to full on hair extensions - Im a Femme/Straight girl hair.
Like I said - especially for Femme lesbians - hair means nothing - but is often an indicator, particularly for younger 'dykey' lesbians.
The Clothes/Dress Sense.
There are various styles you may be bombarded with on walking into a Gay bar. Some more common than others but useful to know and be able to identify outside of the 'Scene'.
The Butch Dyke.
The Masculine Lesbian
Think Sam from Lip Service.Power suits. Usually minus make up. Again often attributed to older lesbians.
a common younger style now, I see this alot among my peers. Usually defined from preppy straight girls by lack of makeup.
Think boxer briefs. On Display with vests/tank tops.
Femme lesbian are just like stragiht girls in their fashion choices. Dresses/Skirts/Heels/long hair. Harder to spot - Even in a gay bar.
Think Alice from The L Word.
Again, super popular among the younger lesbians and baby dykes. Basically you're unsure if theyre girls or boys. But theyre lesbians with shorter hair who like to shop in Topman.
Accessories are a regular occurance in Lesbians day to day outfits - and can help tip a decision as to wether someone is gay or straight.
Think hats/Ear plugs/bracelets (rainbow ones)/Tattoos/Sunglasses/ Piercings.
So that's it. Well, for now. If anyone wants to add feel free!!
Thank You Fairytalegirl for putting that together.
Of course as Lesbians we are not necessarily going to all agree on everything but I think we have something to work with in your broad brush strokes there.
As one of the older Lesbians mentioned in the Butch Cut and the Masculine Lesbian I would like to add my perceptions of the style.
I see you used some famous younger Lesbians to illustrate your points I will use some famous Older Dykes to illustrate what I mean.
(a note to readers remember ordinary people dont always look this good)
Other posters feel free to disagree with me or have a different perception.
Lesbians who came out in the 70s 80s and early 90s did not necessarily think a Dyke look meant you were Butch.
Ellen 54 Looking Dykey relaxed natural look
Melissa 51 Looking Dykey, very short hair here but a bit of femme about her as well, something about the eyes a bit of make up perhaps.
KD Definite Dyke but looking more Butch than Ellen or Melissa even in this prone position.
Many straight people or people who were not use to the subtleties of the Dyke look, just thought anyone not looking Femme and Straight looked Butch or Like a Man.
Some of us who looked Preppy or Gamine when we were younger with small or tall slim bodies now dont have that young cute look but we are not Butch either, if you know what I mean. Of course some of us just look even more Butch.
KD in her youth
KD now 2012 age 51
Not all of us who dont look Femme are Butch. Butch can be a way of being and something you identify with, or it can be a way you dress on a particular day, or it may just be that people mis identify you because they are not use to looking at older Lesbians.
Some people just say older Lesbians are going for a masculine style when this may not be so.
So this is my effort at increasing older lesbian visibility
Clare Balding 42
Urvashi Viad 53
Kate Clinton 64 Lesbian Comedian
Phyllis Lyon 79 and Del Martin 83 getting married after being together for 51 years
Absolutley love your post! Nearly got my tissues out for the last picture *soo cute*
Major thanks for clarifying bits I couldnt
And Im really interested in hearing whats going on in younger lesbians sense of style and identity. So thank you too for starting this thread.
Not too sure where it fits in, but there's also what I like to call "Dapper/Academic Dyke"- I don't identify as butch, and a lot of people don't immediately peg me as gay (!!!) but I'm also not femme at all, and personally I'm too old to be known as a boi or anything. Like someone else said, butch is often a whole identity, rather than a visual or aesthetic choice. I am pretty much the exact opposite of butch in my daily personality!!!
I get confused these days going out on the scene, I mean I'm only heading to 30 now but i feel sooooooooo old. That's neither here nor there, just a personal observation. Older lesbian style is very different to younger lesbian style- I think it comes down to knowing who you are in general- most women coming into their 30's and 40's have an innate confidence welling up that comes from being secure in themselves. What I wore in my early 20's is a million miles away from what I wear now- but I always wanted to be wearing the types of clothes I wear now. Does that make sense?
you'd recognise me as a lesbian by the way I wear boxershorts in bed
I want to do a mini pacman
Only in bed? Pffft, femme.
I'd stuff them into my pants if they weren't so puffy. (they're mens boxers, from the mens dept because I'm so hardcore )
actually don't really know what category I'd fall under, I can take from a little bit of everything of the above at different times. I'm told that I'm femme looking, doesn't matter if I'm sporting a mohawk and wearing12 hole docs, I still look tame. which is grand all the same.
Do ya just love the real l word they are all so hot.
Funny how concerned so many people seem to be about lesbians looking like men. I don't know how many times I have heard even gay men say things like they don't mind lesbians but they think a woman should look like a woman.
Gender role stereotypes can be really hard on people and not just trans people.
Just came across this video and though Id share.
gotta say girls, great idea for a thread!!
Them pictures are great.. really put a smile on my face!
I've been out for the last ten years and feel myself really embracing my femininity as i've gotten older. when i was younger i did adopt a more boy-ish look which helped me be identified as a lesbian. However, my outlook on this now has changed and the idea of looking gay actually bothers me. I get that some people are comfortable with a masculine appearance, but we don't have to dress like that anymore to be recognised as lesbians.
I have come across some friends who aren't overly feminine been mistaken for being straight and it frustrated them.
Why can't we just accept that us lesbians come in different shapes and sizes and that we shouldn't judge others??
Variety is the spice of life after all
How did I miss that video? It amuses me no end, at home I get a crap load of "girl or boy" and I actually quite enjoy it, the only thing that bugs me is people correcting others or answering for me, but I'm in London the past couple of days and quite literally everyone has gendered me male, don't know how to feel about that one, I blame hipsters...
As for if being masculine is some kind of peacocking attempt, nah, not here, I was boyish all my life, conversely I tried not to be for a number of years in some sort of a stupid "my sexuality doesn't define who I am" phase, turns out that wasn't a very good idea and my gender expression is actually considerably more important to me than who I screw, still trying to figure out how that works...