For a while now we've been throwing around the idea for a ftm/masculine swim top. Years of personal experience with heightened dysphoria during the summer and seeing others struggle to find an appropriate top to wear while swimming and not seeing any adequate options have spurred us to create a solution.
Our solution is the Bareskin Top. We've combined the silhouette of a traditional half binder and compression sports bra to create a comfortable top that binds but still lets you get a tan and feel closer to being shirtless than anything else out there. We plan to offer this top in a range of skin tones so that the wearer can have a passably topless masculine aesthetic, this is less visually triggering than wearing a bikini top, sports bra, binder, or shirt and allows for more confidence and comfort.
Not only is this innovative because you can wear the top to swim in and feel shirtless, but it also comes in multiple skin tones making it less noticeable for everyday wear -- allowing you to feel more confident from the gym to the bedroom and everywhere in between.
We've created a prototype ourselves and had multiple created since, we are currently working with a consulting firm seeking manufacturers to mass produce the top (our release goal is Spring Break 2016) and that is where you come in. We need help to get this project off the ground and to bring this top to the community that so desperately needs it, help us help people feel more comfortable and confident.
No other binder on the market provides you the option of something as simple and subtle as matching your skin tone. The solution of creating a binder in skin colors was a simple one -- the point of a binder is function, not to be seen, so why not make it "invisible"? Not only this, but nude skin tones are often not inclusive of anything but a light peach or caucasian skin color and we strive to be as inclusive as possible in every aspect of our brand.
We've combined the silhouette of a traditional half chest binder with that of a compression sports bra for maximum comfort as well as function. Because this top was created with the intention of giving nonbinary people a swim top option, we wanted to make mobility a priority as well as minimal skin coverage to allow for the wearer to tan as much of their body as possible.
Our goal is to have these tops available by Spring Break 2016 so that nobody has to deal with another dysphoria filled summer.
Comparison of a compression sports bra, another half binder on the market, and our Bareskin Top on a person with an A-Cup sized chest.
Comparison of a traditional bra, sports bra, and our Bareskin Top on a person with a C-Cup sized chest.
Comparison of the front and back silhouette of two of the most popular binders on the market with our Bareskin Top.
FLAVNT Streetwear sticker pack.
Gender Roles Are Dead tote bag.
Never Before Seen FLAVNT "Give & Make" t-shirt. A little about this design: In this world there is a lot of give and take, but we think that giving is the most important thing you can do -- followed by making a mark on people, making a difference, and making things that are worthwhile.
FLAVNT Streetwear Bareskin Top.
FLAVNT Streetwear peacock five panel hat.
FLAVNT Streetwear is an Austin based independent clothing brand for men, women, and everybody in between. Started with the goal of creating clothes that promote confidence, especially within the LGBTQ community, FLAVNT is all about being proud and comfortable with who you are and flaunting that to the world. We try to promote this message of self-love and confidence through our designs and actions by supporting the LGBTQ community as a whole, as well as impacting individual lives.
FLAVNT Streetwear began with the intention of giving the LGBTQ community something it didn't have already: a brand to call home. The LGBTQ community as a whole encounters hate and exclusion on a day to day basis and it is the goal at FLAVNT to combat that by allowing anyone and everyone to feel confident and comfortable in our clothes. We promote self-love and self-confidence through our ideals, branding, and designs. FLAVNT yourself. FLAVNTing yourself is about pride; be proud of who you are, how you look, and what you do. This basic idea became our mission, but it wasn't enough. We wanted FLAVNT to be a brand by the people, for the people.
Our solution to this was to give back to our community, we wanted to help out the community that we are not only a part of, but the community that makes up a majority of our customer base. So we started fundraising partnerships. These partnerships are a means for nonbinary individuals to fundraise with our help in order to help finance gender confirming surgeries. We think it's significant to help individuals one-by-one because it lets the whole community get behind individuals and lift them up, we like to think of it as a grassroots movement of sorts. Our first partnership lasted 3 months and we raised $1,000 for that individual's top surgery, our next partnership began in February of 2015 -- 5 months and $1,600 later we completed that fundraiser and he got his Top Surgery in August. Now we're hoping to be able to continue these partnerships and help more LGBTQ people even faster, and we're on to our third fundraiser! Great clothes for a great cause, everybody wins.
We are a brand by the minority for the majority. We don't believe in men's or women's clothing, we just make clothes that promote self-confidence and self-love. Be proud of who you are. FLAVNT it.
We absolutely believe that everyone should give back to their community as much as possible, however they can. We use our social visibility to show the world that not everyone fits into the gender/social binary and nobody has to. We feature gay, straight, queer, and trans models in an attempt to feature a community that is often overlooked. This paired with our fundraising partnerships are just a couple ways that we try and give back to the people who help to support our brand and our vision.
Current Fundraising Campaign:
Our current fundraising partner is Tyler, he can be found on instagram and tumblr under the username @tyince and on youtube @tylerjvine. Tyler is saving up for RF phalloplasty on December 9, 2015 with Dr. Chen in California. He needs to raise $3500 in the next 2 months and we're hoping to make that goal a reality. If you would like to help Tyler reach his goal, make sure to type "YES!" super enthusiastically when prompted as you add an item to your cart and 15% of your sale will go to Tyler.
As of November 2015 after 3.5 months of fundraising we have helped Tyler raise almost $1500 for his bottom surgery fund!
Who We Are:
Courtney and Chris Rhodes are identical twins who both went to school for graphic design. They started FLAVNT Streetwear in 2014 as a creative outlet but things took off and they dove into the company headfirst. After a stint in Brooklyn, NY they have relocated back to good ol' Texas and live in Austin where they run FLAVNT full-time. Courtney identifies as a lesbian and Chris is trans (8 months on T) making FLAVNT and this project more than just a business venture to them, but something that is near and dear to their hearts.
Please please please donate and share this project and follow us on social media! We need your help to make The Bareskin Top a reality!
Special thanks to Yoomi Park for shooting our video, Kellan Rhodes for her badass seamstress skills, and Courtney Risinger, Anna Hickman, Kayla McCracken, and Amber Rausch for drinking beer at 9 am for our video shoot.
*Please note that the Bareskin Tops seen in the video/graphics are prototypes and the final product will be tweaked to have lay-flat seams and a perfected construction*
Risks and challenges
FLAVNT Streetwear is a small, independent, queer-owned business that genuinely cares about and gives back to the LGBTQ community. The nature of our brand is putting our fundraising partners at the forefront and making sure we can impact individual lives. Because we donate and help with these gender-confirming surgeries, we don't have the funds to finance a huge undertaking like this swim top on our own. We really are just a couple of super motivated young people with big dreams and the drive to make the world a better place. While we have made exponential growth in our first year and a half as a company, a custom garment like this is a huge step that requires a lot of capital and support. We have always been a brand that is for and about the people, so we couldn't think of any better way to come up with the funds than involving crowdfunding.
Having never produced a custom garment provides a unique set of risks and challenges, but we have personal experience with chest binders, a huge amount of community input, and a consultant to walk us through any part of the process that we don't have the answers to. We absolutely believe in our ability to produce the best product possible for y'all and won't stop until the Bareskin Top is perfect.
The biggest challenge we foresee comes with sizing and ensuring an inclusive and effective size range for our customers. We are looking towards other products on the market to use as a starting point for sizing but are going to make adjustments where we have seen issues or complaints. With our first run, we plan to tweak our current prototype even further before final production and once we have produced our first run we will be beta testing and asking our customers for direct feedback and ways to improve/expand on our product.
A secondary challenge will be inclusivity in colors as we are only going to be able to offer 4 colors in our initial run, but we do hope to expand to a wider and more diverse set of colors as time goes on.
If you are in between sizes, we recommend sizing up. If you are in between colors we recommend you go with the lighter color because the color will darken when the top gets wet but keep in mind that your skin will tan the longer that summer goes on.
Much like with any chest binder, there are safety risks involved when binding. We urge our customers to swim/do physical activity at their own risk. You know your body better than we do and please take breaks and never bind for more than 8 hours at a time.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)