A new line by LGBTQ-owned and operated company GC2b is helping customers get a little more comfortable in the summer sun.
Earlier in May, GC2b launched a line of chest binders a type of compression garment generally worn by trans men, gender non-conforming individuals or those with chest-related dysphoria in five skin-matching tones, ranging from a pale beige to a deep brown. The offerings represent a massive expansion of accessibility for the company and the market.
For many people who experience chest-related discomfort or dysphoria, binding with an undergarment that compresses breast tissue is a pretty simple way to feel more comfortable.
But as the weather heats up, a common problem arises. Most binders are not easily hidden under summer clothing, given the garment’s relatively high neckline and thick straps. And visible binders can be a source of insecurity or even danger for wearers who are often straying from gender norms of dress.
“Take the worry out of fun in the sun… We got you covered.”
Prior to the release of the line, called “All Nude”, chest binders were most commonly available in white, black and gray. Some binders that mimic pale, white skin have also historically been available, often touted as nude.
When looking at the majority of nude undergarments on the market, people of color get left behind in favored of a white-washed definition of nude. Though some womens companies have focused on closing the gap in the nude undergarment market, major binder brands haven’t until GC2b’s new line followed suit.
Yet, binders that do blend in to skin have undeniable importance to their wearers. Having a relatively undetectable undergarment can be essential to safety, as many trans men and gender non-conforming individuals receive verbal or physical harassment when gender status becomes known.
Lines like All Nude” not only give these populations access to skin tone inclusive clothing, but relative security in a society that is often unwelcoming to those who challenge gendered expectations.
“Take the worry out of fun in the sun,” the company proclaimed in anannouncementof the line. “Goahead, take it off. We got you covered.”
The line is available in two styles: half size, which is slightly longer than a sports bra, and full size, which fits like a tank top. The binders run from size XXS to a 5XL, accommodating more body sizes than many existing lines. Undergarments from the line range in price from $33 to $35, and can be used when swimming for those who want to swim with the appearance of being shirtless.
Many people who bind regard the practice as a necessary evil. While essential for being comfortable in clothing, binding can have serious health impacts. Especially when done with ACE bandages or tape, it can put pressure on internal organs, cause fluid buildup in the lungs and even lead to broken ribs. Compression binders, like the ones in GC2bs All Nude line, are often considered the safest method of binding to avoid most health concerns.
GC2b recommends customers listen to their body and comfort levels when wearing a binder and remove it if they notice any pain or discomfort when breathing. For those who experience problems breathing when not wearing a binder, consulting with an LGBTQ-friendly doctor before binding is a good idea. Many who bind also recommend going without a binder at night, and only binding for 10 hours per day.
The collection is available on the GC2b website.
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