5 Easy Ways to Support Your LGBT Client Base, and Some Pride Flag Inspired Lash Maps
Pride Month may be (nearly) over, but that doesn't mean we should stop celebrating our LGBTQIA+ clients and doing what we can to ensure that we are providing spaces where they feel safe and cared for. Here are some simple ways that you can let your LGBT clients know that they’re in safe hands, and some super cute lash mapping styles inspired by Pride flags!
A Little Bit of History
In case you don’t know why we celebrate Pride in the first place, here’s a very quick overview of the origins of Pride. In June 1969 members of the LGBT community began a protest against the unfair treatment of the community. Until then, the Stonewall Inn in Manhattan had been a safe space for the LGBT community. When that sanctity was threatened during a raid (after many similar instances), the community responded. The rebellion lasted from the 28th of June until the 3rd of July and paved the way for the Pride parades we see today which, although decidedly more celebratory, are still an act of protest.
How Can You Support Your LGBTQIA+ Clients?
There are a few things you can do as an individual and as a business to show your clients support – note that this list isn’t exhaustive, but if you’re not too sure how or where to start, this is a good first step.
- Have a statement on your social media that says your salon is LGBT+ affirming. If you’re not in the community, you’ll be surprised how far that one small thing can go!
- Don’t make assumptions about the kind of look someone wants – let them lead and simply advise what kind of treatments you can offer them.
- Give clients the option to list their pronouns. This doesn’t take anything away from anyone, and actually goes a long way to show someone that you care about the way they feel when they’re around you. Then, make an effort to use those pronouns.
- Seek additional training or resources to help you get to grips with how you can be trans affirming in your practices, even if just to understand how to advise trans clients on the ways that HRT (hormone replacement therapy) can affect the outcome and longevity of some treatments. This article by Beauty Professional (while being tailored to a UK audience) is full of really great ideas for looking out for your trans clients in particular.
- Be open to listening. Simply by providing someone the opportunity to speak to someone who will listen to them without judgment, you’re putting some good into the world.
Now to Add A Touch of Color…
Feel free to unleash your creativity with these maps – we’ve gone for bold color choices for illustrative purposes, but you could opt for coloured spikes, smaller segments within a set, or a mixture of flags to represent different identities your client holds.
It’s worth saying as well that while we’ve added some color to some of our existing lash map infographics, you can pick any lash mapping style your client would like, or which would best suit them. If you do want to recreate these shapes exactly, note that any time there are numbers along the top of the lash line, it’s where we’d be adding spikes.
You could also check out this blog post to find out 4 different ways that you can apply colored lash extensions for different effects, if you’re looking for even more inspo!
Style 1 – The Rainbow Flags
The original flag designed by Gilbert Baker in 1978 had 8 stripes which represented sex, life, healing, sunlight, nature, magic & art, serenity, and the spirit of the LGBTQ people. Pink and Turquoise were later removed due to issues with mass production of the dyes needed, which is why the 6 stripe flag has been the main community flag since 1979.
We’ve gone all out for this one with full color sections, but this would look super cool with just colored lashes in spikes throughout the set, or applied as a top layer with black lashes on the bottom, so you just have the rainbow peaking over the top!
As we’ve said, the 6 stripe rainbow flag became a symbol of the community as a whole in 1979. Since then, it has been updated a few times to be more inclusive of different identities within the community. In 2017 a black and a brown stripe were added to represent people of color within the community. In 2018, blue, pink and white lines were added to represent the Trans community, and in 2022, the intersex flag was added too.
As the 6 stripe flag became a symbol of the entire community, new flags began to be designed over the years to represent specific identities within the community. While this may seem like exclusion to those outside of those sub-groups at first glance, what these flags actually serve to do is start conversations and hold space for those who may otherwise be overlooked.
By celebrating the differences in each of those identities, a sense of community and belonging is given to those who may have otherwise felt that they didn’t fit into the community, which is very common among those who haven’t been around the community growing up.
Here are some lash maps which have been inspired by some of the Pride flags which exist today.
In 2019, Tumblr user @gayflagblog created a flag to represent gay men, with colors symbolizing community, healing, joy, gender nonconformity, pure love, fortitude, and diversity. We’ve opted for a Manga Lashes map for this one.
Also in 2019, Twitter User Emily Gwen posted the current version of the Lesbian Pride flag, with colors representing gender nonconformity, independence, community, unique relationships to womanhood, serenity & peace, love & sex, and Femininity.
The Trans Pride flag was designed by Monica Helms in 1999, and includes the colors typically associated with boys and girls, with a white stripe in the center to represent those who are transitioning or questioning their gender. This flag was designed to be symmetrical so that any way it was displayed was the right way up. As a little nod to this, we’ve mapped it into a Doll Eye lash map, but like with the others, you can style this however you like!
The Bi Pride flag was designed by Michael Page in 1998 to give bisexual people more visibility within the community. As Pride-flags-turned-lash-maps go, this one is quite subtle and very wearable!
The Pan Pride flag was first posted by an anonymous Tumblr user in the 2010s, and represents Pansexual people who are attracted to any and all genders, where gender doesn’t factor into the attraction. The colors in this flag are sure to turn heads if you follow the map exactly, which is certainly not a bad thing! To make it a little bit more wearable on a day to day basis, you could add some coloured segments to the outer corners instead of lashing all the way across using colored lash extensions.
Last but not least, the Nonbinary Pride flag was designed by Kye Rowan in 2014 and symbolizes those who exist outside of or move between gender binaries.
These are just a tiny selection of flags which represent the community, so seek out the flag which best represents you/your client(s) and let your creativity run wild! The point is that by offering something which might seem trivial, you’re showing your clients that you celebrate them, and value their inclusion.
Pride events are still taking place all over the country up until September, so there's still plenty of time to get creative with your Pride lashes. If you create any Pride inspired sets, we want to see them! Tag us in your Instagram posts so that we can celebrate with you!