Instead of organizing clothing into “men’s” or “women’s” sections the way many retailers and designers do, gender-neutral fashion (also referred to by gender-fluid or gender-inclusive fashion and unisex or non-binary clothing) posits that any item of clothing doesn’t need to label itself for only a certain group. Whether it be a pair of jeans, leggings, a blazer or a dress, it’s all about the clothing that a customer wants to wear that works for their body, with a fit and style for them.
Leading the way in creating amazing gender-neutral clothing are indie brands that focus on, and understand, the needs of their customers, Laura Moffat, co-founder of Kirrin Finch, tells RetailMeNot. Kirrin Finch is a brand that she describes as “menswear-inspired clothing made to fit female and non-binary folks.”
“For big retailers, they are so entrenched in ‘this is the men’s department and this is the women’s department’ that they can’t really figure out how they could sell a product like ours even though they know there is a huge opportunity with Gen Z shoppers wanting more genderless shopping experiences,” Moffat says.
But, while change is slow, it’s on the way, per Moffat.
“This is an evolving area and lots of retailers know they need to change, but big organizations have lots of layers of bureaucracy and moving parts so it just takes time,” Moffat says. “I believe we will get to a point that there are physical genderless or gender-inclusive shopping spaces where people can be free to shop whatever they want without having to worry whether it is menswear, womenswear, gender neutral, unisex and so on.”
Moffat suggests finding a brand that designs for your body and also gets you as a person.
“Every brand uses a fit model that is a specific shape and size and designs their clothes or a specific fit around that person,” she says. “I think gender-neutral brands can work for some people, but it all comes down to what fit model or body type the clothes were designed for, and if you feel good about the ethics and values of that brand. Consumers have so many options to choose from now with the ease of online shopping, so they can find the brand(s) that works well for them and then stick with them.”
Shoppers are increasingly looking for affordable gender-neutral clothing, particularly Gen Z, 56% of whom shop outside of their gender. Obviously, you don’t have to ask permission to wear whatever you want and can shop in any department you choose, whatever the label or store says about it. However, if you want to find stylish clothing and beauty products that are deliberately gender neutral, check out the six amazing brands for options for all people.
7 Best Gender Neutral Brands to Shop
What It Sells: TomboyX started when the founders challenged themselves to make underwear everyone would love, “regardless of where they fell on the size or gender spectrum.” Their gender-fluid bras, underwear, swimwear, loungewear, sleepwear, tees and tanks are available in sizes from 3XS to 6XL and tons of fun colors and patterns.
Why We Love It: The queer-founded brand makes comfortable, quality clothing that’s designed for many kinds of bodies, with a size-inclusive approach. They support organizations including Youthcare, the Freedom Fund Network, Safe Space International and the Natural Resources Defense Council. They’re also working hard on sustainability, by making sure anyone involved in their supply chain has the best labor practices possible and creates the least waste possible. Shop more queer-owned retailers and brands.
Price Range: Underwear starts at $20 per pair, bras at $32, swimwear at $49 and up.
2. Human Nation
What It Sells: Together, business partners and spouses, Russell Wilson and Ciara launched Human Nation, a gender-neutral streetwear line offering layerable and stylish leggings, bike shorts, tees, tanks, hoodies and coats. The brand’s sizing goes from 1 to 7, which they explain should fit people from XS/XXS up through XXL/XXXL.
Why We Love It: This Black-owned brand uses 100% organic cotton and recycled polyester, biodegradable or recyclable packaging and partners with retailers (check out their collection at Kohl’s) that are also working toward more sustainable business practices. Human Nation gives back 3% of each purchase toward Wilson and Ciara’s own nonprofit Why Not You Foundation, with a focus on supporting youth.
Price Range: Underwear and tanks start at $14, organic cotton bike shorts are $34, tunics cost $48 and coats are $178.
3. Boy Smells
What It Sells: Launched in 2015 by business and romantic partners Matthew Herman and Kien Herman, first as a candle company and then expanding to fragrances and their Unmentionables jersey underwear line, Boy Smells makes “full-bodied fragrances and lounge-able intimate wear for the genderful.” Sizes range from XS to XXL, candles and fragrances for all!
Why We Love It: The company makes their candles in California using natural oils and all-natural coconut wax and beeswax. Through their Pride products, they’ve raised funds for The Trevor Project, a suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ+ youth. Shop other brands supporting the LGBTQ+ community.
Price Range: Fragrance starts at $28 for the exploratory set, while full-sized bottles are $98, candles are $32, underwear $25 and bras $34.
4. Kirrin Finch
What It Sells: Menswear-inspired fashions like blazers and button-downs made to fit female and non-binary people, in sizes 0 to 24 or 3XL. Laura Moffat, co-founder of the brand, says when they first started working with their factories, “it was a challenge for them to think outside the binary of womenswear and menswear. For example, one potential pattern maker insisted we needed darts in our shirts, but we were adamant we wanted to avoid the feminine aesthetic they gave our clothing. However, over time, we’ve found many great people to work with who not only ‘get it’ but embrace it!”
Why We Love It: Gorgeously made clothing with a thoughtful approach to details and style. If you love menswear but haven’t found the right fit for you, check out Kirrin Finch!
Price Range: Caps are $35, tailored chinos for $160, button-down shirts start at $105 and a black evening suit is $575.
What It Sells: Launched in 2018 by retailer ASOS, Collusion is a unisex collection of trendy and affordable clothing that’s animal free and offers inclusive sizing.
Why We Love It: To be authentic, inclusive and forward thinking, the brand collaborates with a diverse group of young people on every aspect of the looks and line.
Price Range: Jeans are $48, sweats for $24, tanks are $16; even their most expensive offerings, such as blazers and coats, are well under $100.
6. The Phluid Project
What It Sells: The company, first with a physical shop in New York, then as an online store, works with brands that “celebrate the non-binary” and that offer gender-free apparel and accessories.
Why We Love It: There’s a focus on queer, trans, Black, Latinx and women-owned brands here, and through The Phluid Phoundation, the company gives money to organizations and individuals that help underrepresented, vulnerable and marginalized members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Price Range: This varies by designer, but you’ll find beanies for $30, tees for $35, hoodies for $65 or a side collar crop top for $298.
What It Sells: Pan means “All-inclusive, especially in relation to the whole of a continent, racial group or religion,” while Gaia means “Mother Earth.” And that’s how you get the Pangaia brand. From superfoods to men’s and women’s apparel, Pangaia commits itself to “doing as nature does” to offer items made from innovative materials.
Why We Love It: What’s not to love about this brand? Pangaia sells good things that go into your body, matched with good things that go on your body. The brand is super transparent with everything that goes into their products.
Price Range: You can get a T-shirt for $75, a hoodie for $175 and $35 Super Super Bar pack, to name a few.
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