By David T. Valentin
Strands for Trans is a network of hair salons and barbershops whose goal is to create a safe space for Trans people to get a haircut that makes them feel comfortable and stylish at the same time.
Their website reads, “The barber pole is an iconic symbol for barbershops everywhere. Now, it can be a symbol for change. Inspired by the trans flag, the new design is a signal to trans people that they can feel safe, comfortable, and welcome in your chairs.”
Just below the statement is the iconic barber shop, though not in red and white but pink, white and blue for the trans flag.
On their website, barbershops can sign up by including their business name, address, email, and a statement of support for the Trans community. Although the statement of support is optional, it probably helps for Strands for Trans to vet out any barbershops just looking to find business without putting in the work to make Trans people safe.
“Haircuts are historically gendered: Salons for women. Barbershops for men,” the website says. “This leaves the Trans community feeling uncomfortable, unwelcome and unsure.”
Below the statement are testaments from actual customers who have used these barbershops and salons to get a good cut. Along with promoting an inclusive environment, Strands for Trans makes it easy to find participating shops with a simple Google map where you can click on the markers to find a shop near you.
With Trans rights under fire in multiple states across the United States, inclusivity and community are important now more than ever.