Culture

Here’s Why One Latina Helped To Create A Queer-Friendly Clothing Line With Underwear For Everyone

tomboyx / Instagram

I first heard about TomboyX from a podcaster who claimed they were the most comfortable, queer-friendly underwear to ever exist. And then my girlfriend bought us a pair of matching holiday patterns, one in bikini and one in boy shorts. I was sold.

Trust, these underwear are already super comfy and make you feel like the most comfortable you you can be. What you’re about to find out about the Latina co-founder, Naomi Gonzalez, and the kind of company you’d be supporting will make you feel like an actual modern day hero. Except you’re sporting heroic underwear under your streetwear.

They have an agenda. It’s not feminist. It’s not gay. It’s human.

CREDIT: “MicroModal Neutrals” Digital Image. Tomboyx. 7 September 2018.

They create bras, underwear, sleepwear and activewear for all bodies, all genders, and basically, just all people. Their definition of good underwear is one that “any body could feel comfortable in, regardless of where they fell on the size or gender spectrum.”

Known as “Fran + Naomi,” these tomboy founders have shaped a company they’ve dreamed of.

CREDIT: “Tomboyx founders: Fran and Naomi” Digital Image. Tomboyx. 7 September 2018.

In an interview with GO Mag, Gonzalez made it clear that what she’s doing is fulfilling an unmet need for the queer community.

“I’m a first-generation Cuban who grew up in New York City. We were working class and my parents always struggled to make ends meet, working all the time. I knew at an early age that I was going to do whatever I could to find a way to fulfill my dreams of doing something different and meaningful with my life.”

Obviously, there’s hella gay pride.

CREDIT: Untitled. Digital Image. Tomboyx. 7 September 2018.

This is literally just the tip of the iceberg. You can choose to have underwear with a white elastic band or a rainbow. You could get them all and just wear what you want depending on the mood.

And TomboyX customers help shape the brand Fran + Naomi set out to create.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

In their mission statement, they admit, “In trying to fill a need, we unwittingly unleashed an outpouring of emotion. The comments and conversations, emails and letters that we’ve read from our customers told us long ago that we were onto something bigger. At the heart of it all, we’re still us, the same founders since the beginning, with the most supportive and thought-provoking customers we could’ve ever hoped for. You helped us to create what TomboyX is today. ”

One thing’s for sure: TomboyX is showing us breathtaking beauty we don’t see in the mainstream.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram
Just follow their social media channels and you’ll feel affirmed in every single way. People all across the gender spectrum, physical abilities, shapes, sizes, skin colors, everyone is proud to wear a brand that is proud to feature people that look like them, like us.

Plus, their values start at the source of production: women-owned factories.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

Everything they make is ethically produced and sweat-shop free. They even make frequent visits to their factories across Canada, China and the United States to ensure the conditions align with their values. Those visits are weekly, and even sometimes daily. Their exact words: “We have chosen to work with women-owned facilities, who share our values of taking good care of their workers and reducing their environmental impact.”

Their cotton is completely toxin-free.

CREDIT: @roseybeeme / Instagram

Apparently, it’s all “Oeko-tex 100 certified”—which basically means that it’s top-quality worldwide. If you’re vegan, you might want to avoid the activewear since they use crab and shrimp shells instead of synthetic chemicals to give it a quick-dry, antibicrobial and moisture-wicking properties.

And it’s sustainable for the environment.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

Their luxury MicroModal fabric is made out from sustainably harvested and processed Beechwood fibers. According to their values, their “Signature Prints use a water-based, earth-conscious method, recycling water well above the standards required. We are always looking for the greenest, cleanest method for everything we make.”

So go ahead and ditch laundry this week. Shop away. ; )

The staff even takes Earth Day as an excuse to get a little dirty.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

“For #EarthDay, we spent some time volunteering in a local park. Check out our story for more and tell us what you are doing to celebrate 🌏”

Can you spot Naomi + Fran?! Tan cute.

Their activewear has an activist message.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

You can also find briefs and trunks that are quick-dry and moisture-wicking, that way you don’t have to have a weird mesh underwear thing that you find in men’s trunks, and you can feel fly while swimming, working out, adventuring, etc.

Oh, and make that statement, mami.

You might have guessed that the brand isn’t afraid to make political statements.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

You’d be right. “We stand with the students and supporters fighting to make their communities safer. People have a right to be safe at school, at a movie theater, at a concert, and everywhere else. #EnoughIsEnough Who’s marching tomorrow? ✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿”

The founders marched at Seattle’s Women’s March in support of immigrants.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

“What an incredible day. We brought our friends, families, and partners and took to the street in Seattle with many other incredible humans. Let’s keep fighting! #powertothepolls”

And the company made a PSA in support of Puerto Rico, donating $10,000 to relief efforts.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

“We’ll be donating 10% of our sales to United For Puerto Rico until we reach our goal of $10,000. As fellow US citizens, as humans, as sisters, brothers, and family, we are called to stand by them.”

Plus, people seem to genuinely feel themselves in TomboyX.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

The testimonials are all over the internet, and never have I ever seen such a troll-free, supportive comment feed in all my life. I mean, look at that gorgeous princesa with her cute af teacup and cozy rosy sweater on deck!

Including Vicki Martinez, rising star from “Orange is the New Black.”

CREDIT: @vickimartinez / Instagram

Her and her girlfriend (recognize her as the CO who had crazy PTSD this season?), walked the runway at New York Fashion week this year sporting TomboyX and looking like female warriors.

TomboyX let’s queer people demand to be seen in intimate-wear that actually feels good in our power.

CREDIT: @m00nyeka / Instagram

One very clever Instagram user (@m00nyeka, i.e. muñeca) wrote, “As womxn, we’re fed so many messages that strip away our inner strength, so the times that I get over my nerves, demand to be seen, and then tap into my ancestors and myself to be in my power….it’s surreal.”

Sounds too good to be true? They will also let you try your first pair free.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram
You can get a full refund or exchange within 30 days, no questions asked. That’s how confident they are in their quality, fit and inclusivity. All their underwear has no back seams, which means the likelihood of a wedgie is nill, and their quality fabrics means they’ll last for a long time. 

“One day I decided to stop apologizing for my body…

CREDIT: @sheisalwaysenough / Instagram

“… I decided that I didn’t have to change in order to be loved and wanted and worthy. I decided that the idea that I could be successful and inspiring just as I am was going to be a reality. I decided that I was going to speak or even yell my truth, and the truth of thousands who are constantly told they aren’t enough. There is so much that makes up the wonderful person that is you than what’s society sees through its distorted eyes. @tomboyxthank you for giving people a chance to make their voices heard, for being so inclusive, and making a new 🔥 neutrals line that everyone can feel like they are slipping clouds onto their bodies.” -@sheisalwaysenough

The brand just released a neutrals line for all skin tones.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

This should not be a game-changer in the industry, but it honestly is. Most neutral underwear you find at Victoria’s Secret is a pretty white. “You are not one thing. You are everything and quite something. #MoreToMe #TomboyXNeutrals”

But they also have some rad prints.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

OK, these underwear are not made for dogs and I have questions for the person who plans to wear those underwear at some point. Mostly, “Why?”

TomboyX proves that when Latinas run the show, everybody can feel welcome.

CREDIT: @tomboyx / Instagram

Maybe it’s a gift we have, or maybe it’s the sincere intentionality behind a brand that has taken up the white space in the underwear industry. My fellow gays, we finally have underwear that’s going to celebrate us on literally every single one of their ads.

While I do enjoy TomboyX underwear, this post was not sponsored by TomboyX, though if you’re reading this, Fran + Naomi, you can sponsor me anytime. ;P 


READ: Every Hairy Latina Can Relate To These 7 Stages Of Grief

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Puerto Vallarta Has Long Been An LGBTQ-Friendly Travel Destination And Here’s Why

Culture

Puerto Vallarta Has Long Been An LGBTQ-Friendly Travel Destination And Here’s Why

ThatGayGringo / Instagram

Puerto Vallarta is one of the favorite Mexican tourist destinations of the LGBT community. There are hotels, bars, nightclubs, beaches, and even drinks specifically for LGBT travelers, and due to the safety and welcoming environment for these guests, it is the first city in Mexico to receive the Gay Travel Approved distinction by GayTravel.com.

But why PV? What made Vallarta Mexico’s top gay destination?

Let’s start back at the beginning.

Credit: thatgaygringo / Instagram

In the south of Puerto Vallarta you will find the “Old Town,” also called “The Romantic Zone,” the tourist area favored by expats and foreigners who want to soak up local traditions. The Old Puerto Vallarta is also considered the gay neighborhood since 1980, when the gay community and retired Canadians and Americans bought land and properties in order to create gay-friendly businesses. Today there’s a wide variety of attractions with this focus, including bars, restaurants, stores, nightclubs, and both budget and boutique hotels.

In this zone is nestled the popular beach Playa de los Muertos, which, although not exclusively gay, for the last 20 years has been known as a gay-friendly beach (also called Blue Chairs, because of the many blue chairs placed by a gay resort which bears the same name), mainly in the high season, from November to March.

Why is this pristine beach the LBGT meeting point? Because the gay-friendly beachfront hotels in the area causes—and guarantees—a concentration of LGBT tourists, bringing a multicultural ambience where members of this community will be respected without discrimination. In the morning they can socialize and enjoy the party atmosphere, and in the afternoon walk holding hands under the dazzling sunset, in a romantic atmosphere free of hostility. Such is the high demand for LGBT-friendly vacation spots that the area has been extended to include the green chairs and as far as the north coast, in the elegant Oceano Sapphire Beach Club, owned by gays.

But it’s about more than just the beach.

Credit: David Stanley / Flickr

Unlike certain countries, laws against homosexuality never existed in Mexico. There is, however, a strong macho culture and religious influence which disapproves it—nonetheless the locals show respect. Under these circumstances, the growing community has led LGBT organizations to work to promote a change of culture in the pursuit of equality. Their work has gotten results: they have achieved recognition of gay rights, and implemented laws against the provocation and incitement of hate or violence against LGBTs, and also to guarantee equality in employment and public accomodation and services. Even more, in 2013 Puerto Vallarta legalized civil union between LGBT couples, followed by same-sex marriage in 2016.

This city organized its first Gay Pride March, and has hosted the Pink & Proud Women’s Party—the equivalent lesbian celebration—for the last four years, with assistance from the local Canadian and American communities. The multiple events in support of the LGBT community have marked out Puerto Vallarta as the “Mexican San Francisco.”

Now, there’s a giant and flourishing LGBTQ tourism industry that welcomes people from around the world.

Credit: Kristopher Roller / Unsplash

For the last 10 years, the number of LGBT visitors has increased in Puerto Vallarta and Jalisco, and in order to meet demand, the number of LGBT-friendly resorts and touristic attractions has also increased. Now three of every 10 hotels in Puerto Vallarta are LGBT-friendly, and most also offer weddings and other symbolic ceremonies.

Bars, nightclubs and other amenities are already focused on this market, and there are also tours—like the Gay VIP Bars Tour—and even drinks—like the Gay Tequila and the Gay Energy Drink—to make these guests feel extra welcome. As a result, Puerto Vallarta now hosts International LGBT Business Expos, with important conferences and events, including fashions shows, beach parties and music festivals to celebrate this booming market.

Puerto Vallarta remains the gateway to Mexico for many LGBTQ travelers.

Credit: kwhigam / Flickr

Some other cities have recognized the demand, and are now attempting to attract LGBT tourism to their destinations. Puerto Vallarta is not letting it happen: diverse businesses—no matter the sexual preference—are joining forces to create organizations to promote this targeted brand of tourism. The market gives consumers what they want, and they have identified this growing target and will not let it go.

Beyond the marketing, Puerto Vallarta became a platform to support gay rights, and the LGBT community knows it and feels welcome here. What really keeps the LGBT community hitting Puerto Vallarta is the activism, respect, and freedom they find in this beautiful paradise.

It’s Romance Awareness Month And These Latino RomComs Are Perfect For Your Next Netflix And Chill

Entertainment

It’s Romance Awareness Month And These Latino RomComs Are Perfect For Your Next Netflix And Chill

FlixLatino / YouTube

Did you know that August is Romance Awareness Month? We’re guessing that, even if you didn’t, you probably felt it in your gut – and that’s what led you here. To get into the spirit of things, we’ve put together a list of ten latino rom-coms for you to watch through the dying days of summer. Just don’t blame us if you end up on a movie binge, babes.

1. Maid in Manhattan

Instagram / @malumatfurusco

Jennifer Lopez captures our hearts in this 2002 fairytale-like movie that would put the original Cinderella story to shame. Lopez stars as a hard-working single mom stuck balancing parenting duties with her long hours at a ritzy hotel in, you guessed it, Manhattan. Ralph Fiennes – the guy who is actually Voldemort in the Harry Potter films – plays JLo’s rich, handsome, and effortlessly charming love interest. 

2. Doña Herlinda y Su Hijo (Dona Herlinda and Her Son)

Instagram / @beyazgarga

Would it be possible to have a list of Latino rom-coms without a movie about a mother overly invested in her child’s love life? Welcome to the kitsch 1985 film, Doña Herlinda y Su Hijo. Dona is determined to see her son give her the grandchild she so desperately wants. The catch? He’s gay. And, not only that – he’s head over heels for a student in Guadalajara. So what happens when Dona arranges a marriage, to a woman, for her son? Guess you’ll just have to watch to find out.

3. Hitch

Instagram / @jocksnbeats

If you haven’t had the pleasure of watching this one before, then don’t be surprised to find out that Will Smith hasn’t even aged since this 2005 banger of a romance. Smith plays Alex “Hitch” Hitchens, who’s basically a dating coach crossed with every sleazy pick up artist you’ve feared swiping right on. His smooth game is disrupted when he meets Eva Mendes’ Sara, a career-driven, sassy Latina. Hijinks ensue as both of them eventually discover the value of a real, connected relationship.

4. Tan de repente (Suddenly)

Instagram / @marcelo.denicola

This 2002 black and white film begins with what seems like the start of just another workday for salesgirl Marcia. Of course, it’s anything but. She somehow ends up propositioned by two aggressive, dagger-wielding lesbians – Mao and Lenin. Even though Marcia isn’t interested, she’s abducted by the two, and is spirited away to the Lenin’s estranged aunt’s house. It’s there that Marcia learns that the two women aren’t as tough as they originally seemed.

5. From Prada to Nada

Instagram / @coronetfilms

Loosely based on Jane Austen’s classic novel, Sense and Sensibility, From Prada to Nada revolves around the trials and tribulations of two spoiled sisters left penniless from their father’s sudden death, who are forced to live with their estranged aunt in East Los Angeles. The two girls figure out pretty quickly that they’re going to have to work hard to get their standing back – whether it be by chasing careers, or chasing boys. 

6. Chasing Papi

Instagram / @fifiandromeo

This 2003 rom-com, starring Roselyn Sánchez, Sofía Vergara, and Jaci Velasquez, centers around three women who discover that they’ve all been dating the same man. Surprise surprise, they’ve all affectionately nicknamed him “Papi”. The movie twists and turns into not only chasing Papi, but also avoiding the cops and some shady criminals.

7. Elura, Te Daría Mi Vida Pero Lo Estoy Usando (Elvira, I would give you my life but I am using it)

Instagram / @holamexicoff

Released in 2014, this film follows 40 year old mother of two, Elvira, in her quest to find her husband, Gustavo. Even though all signs point to the likelihood of Gustavo having an illicit affair, Elvira doesn’t rest until her husband is found.

8. ¿Qué Culpa Tiene el Niño? (Don’t Blame The Kid)

Instagram / @morancasting

Our fave Karla Souza from How to Get Away With Murder stars as Maru in this Mexican film about a one-night stand that goes awry. After discovering she’s pregnant after a drunken night of fun, Maru decides the only way to move forward is by moving in with the father of her soon-to-be child. Naturally, things ramp up after she decides to move in with a complete stranger – but isn’t that the beauty of a classic rom-com?

9. Fresa y chocolate (Strawberry and Chocolate)

Pinterest / BFI

Considering this was the first Cuban film to be nominated for an Oscar for the best foreign language film, this 1994 gem begins with hints of a cute gay rom-com, before transforming into something else. The romance in this film is set against the political complexities of the Castro regime.

10. Corazón de Leon (Heart of a Lion)

Youtube / FlixLatino

This 2017 rom-com starts with the protagonist, León, discovering a lost cell phone. Naturally, he decides to call the owner, Ivana. Feeling their mutual attraction, León asks her out on a whim. But, he’s left out an important detail: he’s 4.4 feet tall. From there, Corazón de Leon explores how their mutual attraction could overcome shallow societal expectations.

So which movie are you going to watch first? Or, have you already seen them all? Tell us about it on our Facebook page – you can find it by clicking on the logo at the top of the page.

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