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Pantene Wants Youth That Are Trans And Gender Non-Conforming To Go Home This Christmas And Celebrate Their True Selves

A third of Americans travel home for the holidays —and for many, those visits are tense, uncomfortable and downright unbearable. 44 percent of people in the LGBTQ+ community find these family reunions unsettling, dangerous, some even impossible. You’ll want to have tissues close by for this: Pantene just won the holiday ad game with this loving representation of what trans joy can look like.

Pantene just released a Christmas campaign featuring trans people and their Christmas experience. 

A new video series from Pantene tells the stories of four members of the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles heading home to their families —biological and chosen— for Christmas. The heartwarming campaign explains how each year, over 130 million Americans travel home for the holidays, but for people in the Trans community, it may not be as simple as that. 

Hair is such an important part of a person’s identity, and Pantene knows it. 

Hair styling is so tied up in gender norms, identity and self-representation that for a hair care brand to focus on trans and gender people is a huge step in the right direction. 

44 percent of LGBTQ+ people feel they can’t go home as their true selves. 

Pantene and GLAAD —the American non-governmental media monitoring organization founded by LGBT people in the media— teamed up on this special commercial series to tell the stories of actual trans and gender non-conforming people. The commercial features the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles singing “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and shows us several members of the choir preparing to do just that. 

The series of five videos are optimistic even as they acknowledge that going home isn’t something that all LGBTQ people feel optimistic about. 

The commercial features the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles singing “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and shows us several members of the choir preparing to do just that. Subsequent videos feature Crystal S. of Woodbridge, Va.,  Steven H. of Torrance, Calif., and Miliana S. of Haines City, Fla. all heading home for the holidays.

“I love you Crystal, my granddaughter.”

“The holiday season has drastically transformed for me since coming out as trans,” one woman, Crystal, tells us. She talks about how her family needed some time to learn how to accept her and appreciate her for who she is, but says they have started coming around recently. Her relationship with her mother was once fraught, but now even her grandmother has immortalized her new identity for posterity in the form of a quilt.

Miliana’s father said he would never accept her, now he calls her “my babygirl.”

“Whenever, wherever, however you come home. Coming home should be #BeautifuLGBTQ,” the ad reads.

MJ survived rejection and homelessness to find a new family that they can be their true self with.

“The importance of finding chosen family, I think is key in the trans community,” they say. “For youth going home who are trans and gender nonconforming, let the holidays be a time that they can remember you as your authentic self. Let it be a celebration like it is.”

Steven is bringing his boyfriend home to his family for the first time. 

The rest of the Trans Chorus joins the four to sing “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” in an anthem spot made in partnership with GLAAD. Pantene’s collaboration with GLAAD for this campaign also includes a pledge to donate $100,000 to Family Equality, a group dedicated to making sure LGBTQ people have the same opportunities and parental rights as heterosexual couples.

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