Stop Trying So Damn Hard to Look So Damn Ugly


I agree. But really, whatever floats your boat.

I am just coming out, and would never adopt the bitchy look just to be recognized as a lesbian.

Actually, the chick with a vintage punk band T-shirt, a DIY skirt, and a shoulder-length layered hair that you described? That's me. People wouldn't guess that I am gay.

All I do is wear a little rainbow thread bracelet, to give other hidden lesbians a clue ;)

I agree. But really, whatever floats your boat.

I am just coming out, and would never adopt the bitchy look just to be recognized as a lesbian.

Actually, the chick with a vintage punk band T-shirt, a DIY skirt, and a shoulder-length layered hair that you described? That's me. People wouldn't guess that I am gay.

All I do is wear a little rainbow thread bracelet, to give other hidden lesbians a clue ;)

what an ignorant piece. people should be allowed to present themselves however they want, regardless of how appealing it is to you.
Amy, I totally understand and agree. Putting a little effort into your appearance can also enhance confidence, which is definitely sexy. Rock your own style, ladies!
ok a few things:
1- you can be butch and still be put together well. it's possible, really it is.
2- yes, dressing like a furry lumberjack is often done as a signifier, but for a lot of women it is not a simple choice- they just don't feel comfortable being femme. i know that since coming out, i just don't feel comfortable wearing a slinky dress and heels, and it has (almost) nothing to do with the patriarchal nature of that outfit- playing that game doesn't feel natural anymore.
3-also: can i make out with your girlfriend?
Of course, SOME of us might be dressing this way because we've been taught since we were small that we are so completely and utterly disgusting that the only acceptable mode of dress is one which renders our gender unrecognizable. Since, you know, we're too ugly to be deservably called a woman anyway.

Just sayin'

This article is rubbish. I don't wear tight, feminine clothes or shave my legs because they don't make me feel COMFORTABLE. I have short hair because every time I try to grow it out it feels wrong and when I finally give up and shave most of my head, I feel like I'm on top of the world.

I don't really care what men think of me, and I certainly don't care what you think of my appearance, no matter how 'hot' you are, if you are going to judge me based solely on it. With that said, I have been very lucky to find amazing, attractive people to date- people that even the author would find attractive. I hope she enjoys hooking up with straight girls until one day she starts looking a bit older, less thin, whatever, and people judge HER for it.
Amen sistah!
whatever dude... maybe i dress like i do to ensure that people aren't trying to pull me just to rekindle some strange relationship?

I think you are being a tad unfair here... there are plenty of non butch or whatever lesbos out there! Maybe you aren't looking in the right place... or perhaps where you live they are in hiding. Hmmm from who? nobody will ever know I'm sure :P.

Anyways, Just want to say this is maybe a little narrow minded.
Narrow minded, shallow, ignorant, yes. Still, I'm glad somebody wrote this. I will always feel more comfortable in my big cargo shorts and skate shoes than i do in tight pants, it has a little to do with identity and feeling tough when i walk and a lot to do with just being able to skate without tight jeans stuffed up my butt. That said, I look like a cute straight girl most of the time and I've had the hardest time meeting girls. I've always been bi and never had trouble meeting boys but i've only ever even been with a few girls because i'm just not quite ready to shave my head and get weird tatoos. I just moved to santa cruz for chrissake and i still can't figure out how to get with girls because in order to be a real lesbian here you have to be super hardcore and butched out. Which i have tons of respect for but, sigh, am just not that attracted to. So how to meet cute, mainstream-pretty looking girls (who like girls) while being cute and mainstream-pretty myself? No fucking idea.
And I'm tired of lipstick lesbians who assume we should all have the same image.

Look, yeah, some young women are stupid enough to adopt what they think is the "lesbian uniform", even when it patently doesn't suit them. They normally grow out of it by their 30s.

Some of us are butch, we aren't going to grow out of it, and hey our (femme, lipstick- and frock-wearing hot) girlfriends think we're hot too.

And seriously? I haven't seen a woman in a mullet since the 80s. Maybe things are just that bit more retro in the US.
Author: not sure how you've missed this idea in your long years in the lesbian community, but ever thought that not everyone's idea of a cute dyke is the same as yours? I'm guessing that tomboys and butch girls don't do it for you, but I'm also prepared to bet that some of those women you're dismissing as fugly have girls vying for their attention.

Also, look a bit closer at those haircuts and clothes. Sure, in an old-school lesbian bar you'll see a few old-school mullets. But for a goodly proportion of butch girls, at least where I'm from, those choppy haircuts will be trendy creations. That just-got-out-of-bed look takes longer to put together than it does for a femme girl to do her make-up and straighten her hair. And that surfwear is designer - and moreover, it might be baggy, but her butt will look great in it. Don't believe me? Check out Shane and Moira/Max from the L-Word, televisual crush-objects to dykes around the world, and the epitomes of the hot butch thing I'm talking about.

So: show the butches some respect. Not only are they dressing (as other posters have said) like they wanna, not only are many of them pretty damn hot, but being visible as gay 24/7, they take a lot of public flak from assholes that us girly, mistaken-for-straight lesbians don't get or can easily avoid. You can choose let go of your girlfriend's hand on the street if there are drunk assholes around. A butch girl just has to walk on by and continue to proudly be who she is.
I don't think lesbians try to look ugly, they just feel so much more secure dating other women who are less superficial and unlikely to leave them or be drawn to them in the first place because of the way they look....(although initially important for a nanosecond) Straight women are terrified that their fella will leave them for a better looking woman because men are pretty shallow, so they feel that they have to make a huge effort to hang onto their man.
Most lesbians dress for comfort and practicality and love eachother for their personalities. Characteristics such as intellect, kindness, loyalty, honesty and humour are way more important than looks which become fairly insignificant in the long term.
To the author: Judging by the sham of a relationship that you and your alleged girlfriend have, the appearance of other lesbians should be the least of your troubles...sort yourselves out - you're obviously not right for eachother or else you wouldn't be prowling the gay scene together like a couple of miserable, bitter desperado's in search of something you clearly do not have in eachother.
Perhaps had you chosen more carefully in the first place - based on personality rather than looks you wouldn't be so unfulfilled and disenchanted by eachothers company which has resulted in your pityful search for a quick fix with a stranger every now and then.
If after five years together you call this 'innocent fun' you are only fooling yourselves. You should cut the fragile thread from which your 'relationship' hangs and stop wasting eachother's time.
You have a very peculiar idea of what constitutes 'cheating'. It seems that you are just using eachother for fear of loneliness until you meet the right person, it's quite sad really.
No wonder you're not fulfilling eachother fully and feel the need to seek one night stands with girls who tick all the 'wrong' (shallow and superficial) boxes', i.e. the ones who look 'cute' or 'hot'.
Who are you kidding if you think this mutual unfaithfullness is what keeps you together?
Has it not occured to you that lesbians dress to please themselves and because they have stronger, more secure relationships built on real trust and real love, they don't feel the need to totter around in clothes which feel 'wrong' in order to stop their girlfriend from straying?
I'm beginning to suspect that you're actually a guy who's just taking the p*ss, because you don't sound like a lesbian at all!
Like it or no, looks DO matter, and "inner beauty" does not count for jack diddly squat in reality. In an age of cheap makeup, fitness clubs, and plastic surgery there is NO excuse for ugliness.
I wish more gay girls were shallower! I do understand that some girls find the butch look attractive (and I can see it sometimes - eg. Randy in The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love), but whatever you want to say about personality etc, if a person isn't attractive then there's no reason whatsoever to not just be really good friends... I absolutely realise that all girls aren't desperate to have me, but from an utterly selfish point of view, I wish more were less... dykish.

Having everyone of one group all dressing the same is a bit of an irritant as well.
I agree with you on this issue. In our big LGBT family, we are the least ''groomed'' letter. I think we can put the dyke/butch/unkempt stance aside for a second and zoom in on a point of more gravity: Weight.

Weight. If you work-out, do your yoga, run your 5K or do whatever type of exercise you want--no matter what style you have, it still shows you care about your body, you respect yourself etc.

I came out at 22 and now, at 31, refuse to allow myself to ''let go'' on a scene that I must admit, does not take enough care of health, body fitness etc.

Honestly, we can totally afford to take a leaf out of our gay boy friends books. Grooming is the key!
Personally, I think people should be able to have whatever style makes them feel comfortable. If you aren't attracted to them, don't hit on them. There will certainly be other people that are attracted to them.

Though it bugs me that a couple of commenters have mentioned that casual flings in nightclubs means the relationship is a failed sham. People need to realise that relationships shouldn't be about OWNING another person and controling their actions, and that person can't automatically stop being attracted to other people just because they have a boyfriend or girlfriend. I believe it's much more healthy to be open and honest about this, have flings with others with the consent of their partners, rather than "cheating" (cheating, by my definition, meaning betraying the trust of the other person with no consideration of their feelings).

Having an open relationship might not be for some (issues such as jealousy can arise, even when people are being honest) however, for some people it's a valid life choice. To say that the love of someone in this kind of relationship is somehow inferior or invalid is exactly the same as heteros saying gay love is inferior or invalid. Which, of course, is untrue.

Sorry to be a bit off-topic, but I felt that needed to be addressed. Monogamous does not automatially mean a stable, healthy relationship. Polygamous or open does not mean a failed, loveless relationship.

what i want to know is why fem girls dnt really go for other fem girls and why tommys think that 2 fems in a relationship is just for their entertainment. its not all about dressing in a certain way! i think it is more about the change in attitude along with it.
i am so glad someone has said this. alot of "butch" women are just hiding behind their baggy cloths and bad hair cuts, u dont feel comfortable in a mini skirt and cute top? thats because you are not comfortable/confident enough in your own skin and body. we are women that love women, show of those georgous bodies we love!! i am 100 percent lesbian and i exercise get my hair and nails done and go shopping for a hot little black dress to wear out. im a confident woman and i never have troubles meeting likewise women,( and yes men hit on me, its not the end of the world, u just say ur gay and not interested) i just feel sorry for those women that sit in the back being ignored or make a specticle of themselves....come on girls! im not saying turn into miss universe just work what you have. xxx
#10 & #19 are right on!

Seriously: If there had been a broader spectrum of lesbian looks when I was younger--rather than the monolithically frumpy image that predominated--I might have come out of the closet 20 years ago. But unfortunately, my admittedly superficial view of "the lesbian scene" (being overweight and unfashionable = fighting patriarchy? Puh-leez!) looked *more* alien to me than did the prospect of pretending to be straight. (OK, that and I'm a chickenshit who was engaged in a losing struggle against internalized homophobia.) I'm glad for the more recent visibility of a variety of lesbian styles rather than any one uniform image that I wouldn't want to confine/define me. I'm hoping that there are niches of lesbian life where I can relax and won't be regarded as a freak. That would make the prospect of emerging from the closet less daunting, I have to say. I've got a gym-toned body, wear my hair shoulder-length, go to the salon occasionally, wear lipgloss and nail polish, pay attention to fashion, both for my own comfort and personal sense of style (kinda low-maintenence, easygoing tomboy femme). I'm no slave to patriarchal heteronormative dictates: when I dress to impress, it's to attract the ladies!
this is very true. most lesbians really don't care about what they look like. there aren't many attractive lesbians out there. unlike gay guys, which most are attractive, because they hit the gym and care about their appearance. i'm not saying you should wear clothing you don't feel comfortable in but at least care about your body and health. you will feel better and look better.
this is very true. most lesbians really don't care about what they look like. there aren't many attractive lesbians out there. unlike gay guys which most are attractive, because they hit the gym and care about their appearance. i'm not saying wear clothes that you don't feel comfortable in but at least care about your body and health. you will feel better and look better.
This is true big clothes, manly features, and ugly hair is such a turnoff. I love this article thank you for putting it out there!
This is so judgemental. If all lesbians wore mini skirts I would be really sad, since I don't think they say confidence. I see a woman in a miniskirt and I think "obnoxious". Let people be who they are. They don't dress or do there hair hoping to be picked up by a horny, snotty old dyke couple that needs help keeping it interesting in bed. I have no problem with open relationships, but it's really cocky and assuming of you to think that other woman who are not part of your agreement are not dressing the way that you want them too. I love a woman with the confidence to be herself, who doesn't need to jump on the next fashion bandwagon.
I agree with your article! It's so stupid that with everyone else in the world making the GLBT factor political, why in the hell are lesbians making the way you dress, act, who you find appealing, and love political? When I look at a butch woman the first thing I think is she is choosing that style to attract women who deep down inside are physically attracted to the masculine aka MEN! Sorry, no femme will ever admit it but if you walk into a club and the women you are ogling have their boobs strapped down or shoved into a snug sports bra, have clothes on to try and conceal their hourglass figures, (every woman is prone to one in some form) have there hair cut short and styled like a man (even nicely coifed butch hairstyles look like a metrosexual man) then you may be attracted to a woman on the inside, but a MAN on the outside! It's so sad that in the town I live in, the femme/butch dynamic is so prevalent that a regular gal like me cannot get flirts/dates with women that look like women! Not superfemmes who only wear dresses but just regular looking gals! I'm the type who ONLY wears COMFORTABLE clothing(untight but women's jeans and tshirts when I'm just hanging, nice slacks and a great button-up or blouse and NEVER heels but women's boots/clogs/sneakers and maybe a simple piece of jewelry/watch. Only on RARE occasion do I put on a skirt/dress.) I have a pixie cut that I style like Halle Berry or Emma Watson. Hmm, no skintight clothes, no tons of makeup, and short hair! But when I try to flirt with regular/femme lesbians they look at me like I have three heads. One girl even flat out said "Do you usually dress butchy? You look too much like a woman for me." What????? Since when has being a lesbian meant being attracted to guys? Because that's what it is. A lot of lesbians (for the most part of what I've seen) are:
a) Women who don't mesh with men as far as emotionally/personally or they just plain think they're mean so they find women that they are physically attracted to (butches, because they look like men) and can relate to because they think like women.
b) Truly lesbians and attracted to what women really are (beautiful, smart, empathic, sexy, soft, boobs, bottoms, legs, arms, tummies, smiles, and many other wonderful things that we are genetically inclined to. sorry if you don't like being one.) so they get involved in the lesbian scene and see that they have to adopt these masculine traits to get the womanly/ regular/femme women. Usually the more masculine they go, the more femmes they attract. And sorry, but from what my lesbian circle of friends has taught me, part of the butch dynamic means adopting an "I'm a tough-ass butch who don't care 'bout no one but myself and is a "playa", too". Hmm, where have I seen that attitude before? Oh yeah! ON MEN! *eyeroll* Give me a break, ladies. Real women who love women??? Love women who epitomize women!!!
Which one is the Husband in that Relationship?