The casting day was absolutely incredible. From walking straight through the door I was made to feel so welcome. I looked around to see all these smiling, happy, welcoming faces. We all listened to each others stories of our lives, our backgrounds, our reasons as to why we wanted to be a part of the campaign, it was really special. Snacks and drinks were available to us throughout the day and Tash and Chesca were so lovely, talking us through the process and being so supportive throughout.
I had a moment before going in for our casting with Ines where I got the chance to sit down with Hannah and Tilly and explain the reason as to why I was here and what I wanted to do for the trans community. It felt like a safe space and that we were all there to support each other and feel listened too. Meeting Laura and Montana was the highlight of the day, they welcomed each and everyone with praise and tenderness and really listened to our reasonings behind wanting to be part of the campaign. Standing in a bikini is a liberating experience and can be daunting for anyone not confident with their body but I’ve never felt more comfortable and confident. I wouldn’t have been able to wear a bikini in public if it hadn’t been for that day. I left feeling on top of the world and celebrated with friends afterwards in London and I’ve been riding that high ever since.
As a transwoman, loving your body is one of the hardest things. From an really early age I was really self conscious about my appearance, checking my reflection in every surface, keeping my jumper on so people wouldn’t see my big chest, slumping down so I could be short, making no hair was out of place, using every skincare product under the sun. My weight fluctuated a lot, from being overweight to being severely underweight in my college days. I struggled a lot with my identity until I found out who I was meant to be in 2016. Hormone replacement therapy started in that September and I legally changed my name by the winter, I began to start falling in love with parts of myself that I was so self conscious about. My friends and family have been nothing but supportive to me and I thank them whole heartedly. Here today, I am a strong, confident woman, who loves her body for its entirety and have worked hard to get to to this place. I recognise my privilege in the support network I’ve had and also recognise that I only represent a small part of the whole community. My aim in this campaign is to be small light for transwomen, to stand along side CIS women and represent trans bodies.
Trans bodies are valid, Women’s bodies are valid, everyone’s bodies are valid, no matter shape, size, colour, gender identity or sexual orientation. Swim Society is setting an example for all brands to be inclusive, diverse, and a safe space for people to feel comfortable and confident in swimwear, and for that, I will support them till the end. 🤍