Author Topic: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB  (Read 718 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline ToriJo

  • Friend
  • ****
  • *
  • Posts: 430
  • Reputation: +38/-0
  • Gender: Female
I'm terrified. Be easy on me. :) I'm literally shaking as I write this. I've written and erased it probably 20 times.

I came here to these forums years ago as an SO (my wife transitioned years before I married her). I hinted around at being non-binary once here, but then left the forums for a couple years or so - I was scared I think. The ironic thing is that my SO told me that before she met me, she didn't think she could love a guy.  I've hinted at being non-binary to her, but still haven't opened up fully to her yet and said, "You still haven't loved a guy!" but will make myself do so soon (likely this week).

I'm not sure if I want to be ambiguous or if what I actually want is to present as a woman, although some of that might be the doubts I have about being able to look feminine. Regardless, what I *do* know is that I hate looking like a guy. I hate that person I see in the mirror. I have to do something. And that something right now is to start some steps towards at least not being completely unquestionably masculine looking.

I've grown a lot as a person and finally decided I need to like the face I see in the mirror. I'm not brave enough to post my actual picture but I have a masculine appearance and am middle aged. I'm cursed with thick, dark facial hair that I can shave but the stubble is always visible on my fairly light skin (I do tan).  I don't like looking masculine. But I've also got very little style-sense (I typically have dressed as a stereotypical straight guy).

Yesterday, I cleaned up my eyebrows just the tiniest amount, getting rid of 5 or 6 hairs above my nose. I also shaved the part of my hairy chest that's visible while wearing an open collar shirt.  Nobody else would notice I did these things, but it was amazing how liberating they were. I've never cared about my appearance because I never thought I could look like who I am. I couldn't walk out the door today without taking some extra care - that pretty much sealed the deal for me, I need to find ways to express myself, even as I am terrified of the path I'm on. The other option is hating myself. I liked how I was standing a little taller these last couple days - for something so incredibly insignificant. I have to wonder what it would feel like to make a change that is actually noticeable, but right now I'd settle for small minor changes.

What are some small things I can do to at least look slightly less ultra-masculine without jumping into the pool head-first?

Offline Dena

  • (S) Global Moderator
  • *
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 12,105
  • Reputation: +95/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2017, 01:23:11 pm »
Dealing with the facial hair makes a big difference and can be passed off as a solution to skin problems. You might have your eyebrows shaped while still leaving them relatively bushy. Other than that, you could rethink your hair cut and select fashions that are more unisex. It really comes down to just how far you want to go and what you are comfortable with.
Rebirth Date 1982 - PMs are welcome - If you are helped by this site, consider leaving a tip in the jar at the bottom of the page or become a subscriber.
Use dena@susans.org only if you are unable to PM

Offline Elis

  • *
  • Posts: 1,972
  • Reputation: +18/-1
  • Gender: Male
  • Agender/Male
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2017, 03:12:51 pm »
Certain clothes help. I'm a fan of men's longline tshirts and jumpers. I have a long line pink jumper that looks almost like I'm wearing a dress. I've also had both ear lobes pierced (always get it done by a professional piercer at a piercing/tattoo shop). Also had my navel pierced. And am just growing my hair out now. Additionally I shave off any body hair. All this things have helped me feel a bit less dysphoric.
They/them pronouns preferred.




Offline ToriJo

  • Friend
  • ****
  • *
  • Posts: 430
  • Reputation: +38/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2017, 07:15:30 pm »
Thanks both of you - that helps, and it's such a relief to discuss this without anyone saying I'm faking this stuff.

I'm definitely thinking about how to grow the hair out, although I'm trying to figure out what to do in the transitory stage and if I can get myself to get enough courage to talk to a good stylist about how to do what I want because I'm horrible at artistic stuff (I know someone who does outstanding styling work and would be open to my gender, but it's still another step for me).

I definitely want to get rid of the facial hair - I hadn't thought of explaining it as skin problems, but that's perfect.  I suspect when I see my face without hair, I'll really, really like the improvement that gives me, so I probably need to start researching that.  I don't know why I didn't at the very least think about shaving the arms - I've literally been thinking about how to start to transition for years and that simply never occurred to me. I bet that would help a lot too, and is something I can do quickly.  I bet I'd even be willing to show my face here after that.  :)

I also like the suggestion on the body hair.  Why didn't I think of that?! I used to shave it as a teen, but I had a lot less hair then! But I might start with my arms. I wear almost all long sleeves today because I hate the way they look - and I'd love to show them, because they are the one part of my body which have a less-masculine shape.

I also like the long line shirt idea - I don't know how it will work with my body type, but it may be worth a try.

Offline Dena

  • (S) Global Moderator
  • *
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 12,105
  • Reputation: +95/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2017, 07:53:43 pm »
Many hair stylists work on both men and women so find somebody you are comfortable with and have at it. Barbers are the ones who restrict themselves to male cuts only so unless you get one who knows how to style hair, you want to stay away from them. Just look for a hair style and when your hair gets so long you can't stand it, have it trimmed using the style as a guideline as to what not to cut. An example is the bangs might need trimming but the rest of the ends just cleaned up.
Rebirth Date 1982 - PMs are welcome - If you are helped by this site, consider leaving a tip in the jar at the bottom of the page or become a subscriber.
Use dena@susans.org only if you are unable to PM

Offline ToriJo

  • Friend
  • ****
  • *
  • Posts: 430
  • Reputation: +38/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2017, 11:50:38 pm »
I shaved a bit more of my body - the shoulders basically - and I LIKE what I see, and i'm seeing possibilities.  For the first time in my adult life I actually think I could be seen as other than ultra masculine (I might not know what I am, but I am 110% sure that ultra masculine is not it). For the first time I actually *want* to spend time to get m appearance ready for the day.

But I need to have some conversation with my wife before I go too much further - I really want to shave my arms, but I know my wife will notice that, and she absolutely deserves to know what is going on because the longer I wait the harder that conversation will be.  Wish me luck - I'm used to supporting her, not the other way around.  I'm not worried about our relationship being hurt by this, but it still terrifies me.

Offline Kendra

  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 873
  • Reputation: +112/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2017, 12:44:36 am »
I think your fear and hesitation is genuine and I believe you will completely overcome it.  The reason I am certain is you thought about it and took your well being seriously enough to write it down.  You are asking questions and coming up with answers, discovering things that make you feel better about yourself.  This is good.  You are a great person and supported your wife's earlier decision. 
Assigned male at birth 1963.  Decided I wanted to be a girl in 1971.  Laser 2014-16, electrolysis 2015-17, blepharoplasty 2016, HRT July 24, 2017.  Currently part time, will be FT 2018.

Offline WhatAmI?

  • Neighbor
  • ***
  • Posts: 79
  • Reputation: +1/-0
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2017, 05:56:45 am »
I'm new to a lot of the lingo here. What is AMAB?

Offline ElizabethK

  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 3,560
  • Reputation: +22/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • Trying out a few looks
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2017, 06:03:04 am »
AMAB Assigned male at birth

AFAB assigned female at bith
"You have the right to live an authentic life!"Alex Jolly

Transition Begun 25 September 2015
HRT since 17 May 2016
Fulltime from 8 March 2017

Offline WhatAmI?

  • Neighbor
  • ***
  • Posts: 79
  • Reputation: +1/-0
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2017, 08:05:39 am »
AMAB Assigned male at birth

AFAB assigned female at bith

Thank you.

Offline ToriJo

  • Friend
  • ****
  • *
  • Posts: 430
  • Reputation: +38/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2017, 01:56:10 am »
My wife proved, yet again, that she is the most awesome person on the planet.  (Yes, I talked to her tonight - honestly it was the hardest thing I've ever done, but the fear was fortunately not based in actual reality)

Offline Lady Lisandra

  • Neighbor
  • ***
  • Posts: 81
  • Reputation: +1/-0
  • Gender: Questioning
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2017, 03:20:51 am »
You could let you hair grow. You can play a lot with plain long hair instead of getting a specific haircut. You can style it to look masculine or feminine, so you could still present as a male. Shapre your brows, file and paint your nails. Try different clothes.

You could take a look into japan. The oriental concept of beautiful man is very different from the occidental. It's okay for a man to try to be more feminine and delicate.

Also, work on your gestures and body language.
- Lis -

Offline markie

  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 565
  • Reputation: +2/-0
  • Gender: Androgyne
  • Easy does it
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2017, 07:20:45 am »
I found having both ears pierced  and some onyx  studs put in made me feel good they are unisex so they are borderline  females love them and the men at work don't seem to put attention  on them.... I also turned to Goth  clothing let's me wear a kilt  etc again unisex even getting a manicure  and clear polish can feel good even foundation  type sunscreen  is good it's hard to notice... and protects  your skin too
Lets get this party started

Offline Kendra

  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 873
  • Reputation: +112/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2017, 11:01:06 am »
My wife proved, yet again, that she is the most awesome person on the planet.  (Yes, I talked to her tonight - honestly it was the hardest thing I've ever done, but the fear was fortunately not based in actual reality)
Wow - Slanan, this is a really big deal.  Congratulations!  Although I'm not married I can understand how this was the hardest thing you have ever done. 

Last month as I was trying to build up the courage to tell my parents who I really am, the distraction and disruption to my sleep was far worse than anything else with transition.  More difficult than 200+ hours of electrolysis.  And when I had that conversation I felt an incredible weight lifted off my shoulders.  So now HRT can help shape my arms more correctly.  ;)

You did the right thing.  And you just made my day. 

Kendra 
Assigned male at birth 1963.  Decided I wanted to be a girl in 1971.  Laser 2014-16, electrolysis 2015-17, blepharoplasty 2016, HRT July 24, 2017.  Currently part time, will be FT 2018.

Offline Julia1996

  • Family
  • *****
  • Posts: 807
  • Reputation: +14/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2017, 11:25:46 am »
If your hair is quite short I suggest not cutting it at all. The inbetween stage of growing your hair out is awkward but if you still present as male you don't really have to worry about it. Guys can get away with their hair looking a little wild. Once your hair has grown out just trim the ends. If you want a short but feminine cut then just tell your stylist you want a FEMALE cut that flatters your features. Don't be shy about it. I seriously doubt the stylist will have any problems with you being trans. The whole industry is pretty much LGBT friendly. But as someone suggested you do want to stay away from a barber shop. Unless she wants a buzz cut or butch cut a barber shop is not a good place for women to have their hair cut. Once your hair grows long enough if you still need to sometimes present as male ponytails and manbuns are quite acceptable for guys.

You might want to rethink shaving your arms. Everyone has some hair on their arms even if you can't see it. If you shave them they will have an unnatural shine. If you want to make the hair less visible I would suggest first using clippers to trim it and then bleach made for body hair. You don't need expensive clippers.  Just get one that has guide combs with it. Snap on a guide comb and hold the clippers to your arm against the hair. Don't turn them on yet though. Look at the length of the hair showing over the edge of the guide. That is how much will be cut. Once you find the length you want trim the hair. When using clippers you clip against the direction the hair grows. Then bleach the hair. Keep an eye on how much you lighten the hair. You want it lighter but not platinum white. What little body hair I have is platinum white naturally and when light hits it it's as noticeable as it would be if it was black. The bleach will also soften the hair a little bit.

Unless you plan to have permanent hair removal I suggest waxing your body hair. A body wax isn't that expensive and it lasts longer than shaving.

I hope this helps you a little.
Julia
Julia


Born 1998
Started hrt 2015
SRS scheduled for 2018.

Offline amandam

  • Friend
  • ****
  • Posts: 163
  • Reputation: +1/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #15 on: August 16, 2017, 12:14:18 pm »
I wonder if those Tria machines would help. I heard they work but take more time.

Offline Julia1996

  • Family
  • *****
  • Posts: 807
  • Reputation: +14/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2017, 12:22:39 pm »
I wonder if those Tria machines would help. I heard they work but take more time.

My mom has one. She uses it on her legs and underarms. It seemed like it worked because she stopped having to shave but I don't know if those results are like permanent without continued treatment. I would have loved to use it on my legs but the hair is snow white so it would be useless for me.
Julia


Born 1998
Started hrt 2015
SRS scheduled for 2018.

Offline Tessa James

  • Family
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,010
  • Reputation: +75/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • Enjoying this self liberation
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2017, 01:47:09 pm »
I see that you posted in the non binary section and currently identify with an A. Your journey has already begun and small steps make very good sense.  Fear is a huge part of our lives and I think there is an acronym for it: FEAR is False Evidence Assumed Real.  My fears became hugely exaggerated after decades in the closet.  So smart of you to face them down and be real with your partner too.  With a partner who is trans I assume you are well informed already.

There are people who have completed GCS and still identify as non binary.  Like any umbrella term your unique life and feelings of gender identity are unlikely to be summarized by a single label.  Some folks know themselves to be simply male or female while others will continue to reveal their unique gender identity along some spectrum.  We often talk about living as our most genuine self and transition being a journey in that direction.

Our transitions often come with new revelations and changes in direction along the way.  I tried a transition in the 90s and found no support for anything but a binary narrative.  Restarting transition in 2012 i found myself unwilling to jump from a binary male box to the binary female box.  Anatomy and clothing do not make the man or woman.  I encourage you to simply set yourself free from the dominate paradigms.  Self acceptance is key.

Hair removal can be an expensive effort and I suggest waiting on laser or electrolysis if you anticipate doing HRT too.  My dark body hair disappeared after the first year on HRT.  Add more color to your wardrobe and fun to your outlook, smile! ;D
Open, out and evolving queer trans woman with HRT support since March 13, 2013

Offline KathyLauren

  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 1,894
  • Reputation: +33/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • Casting off dull certainty
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2017, 02:04:11 pm »
My wife proved, yet again, that she is the most awesome person on the planet.  (Yes, I talked to her tonight - honestly it was the hardest thing I've ever done, but the fear was fortunately not based in actual reality)
Congratulations, Slanan!  I know fisrt-hand how hard this step is to take, even if you suspect the outcome will be good.  Good on you for breaking though the barrier!
2015-07-04 Awakening; 2015-11-15 Out to self; 2016-06-22 Out to wife; 2016-10-27 First time presenting in public; 2017-01-20 Started HRT!!; 2017-04-20 Out publicly, beginning full-time; 2017-07-10 Legal name change

Offline ToriJo

  • Friend
  • ****
  • *
  • Posts: 430
  • Reputation: +38/-0
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanted: small steps to look the slightest bit more feminine for an AMAB
« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2017, 09:54:43 pm »
Thanks for all the advice everyone.

I was basically on cloud 9 all day today, and I did shave my arms, but I'll consider other options as the hair grows back.  As it is, walking outdoors, even wearing clearly male clothes (but very colorful!), the lack of hair on the arms made me feel really, really good.  I had an ear-to-ear grin all day.  I doubt anyone noticed much about me, but *I* noticed!  Having such a weight off my shoulders and actually liking something about my body made me feel just wonderful.

But I definitely have to do something about my facial hair. I don't know if I'll do HRT or not (honestly I'm a lot more open to it and the more feminine side of possibilities now that a weight has been lifted).  But I really need to do something now about the dang hair on my face.

Tags: