We reached out to Jamie, founder of LGBTQ+ retailer Unisex Unity, to talk about his journey, his plans, and how businesses can be less binary.
I socially transitioned (from female to male) just over a year ago, but I first noticed signs of dysphoria when I was just five years old and compared myself to other boys. When you are five years old your bodies are quite similar, but during puberty I realised that I was not the same. Now, looking back, it makes sense that I was transgender, but I didn’t know what those feelings were until I was much older – I didn’t even know that transgender men existed until I was 21. I’m so grateful to the brave YouTubers who shared videos about top surgery. It was these that led to my first huge realisation; I cried with relief for hours. Now I’m two months post top surgery, I’m 25 years old, and I feel more like myself than I ever have before!
I was lucky enough to have friends and family who contributed donations towards my surgery. My father and stepmother even took out a loan to achieve the final goal, and I feel so blessed for it. But I wish I had had more support when I was a teenager, and I wish I had known I was transgender sooner. I had some tough teenage years, and I feel like I was anxious and depressed because I couldn’t express myself in the way that I wanted, and because I had no idea what the feelings I was feeling meant. I’m glad that younger generations have more information, and hopefully they’ll receive more support than ever before. But we must keep pushing for more change, and for equality for the transgender community.
I am currently studying chiropractic, but I’ve also opened an online store: Unisex Unity. I was frustrated by how many toys and clothes are gender-specific, and wanted to provide a service that the whole LGBTQ+ community can use. I sell clothing, LGBTQ+ accessories, and 18+ products, with a focus on providing goods without a traditional gender binary. I use drop shipping to provide my products – the same method used by top online sellers like Amazon.
I also wanted to find a way to give back to the trans community. On my website there is a tipping option, with all tips from customers are going to GenderGP’s fund in support of transgender youth. Businesses like GenderGP are saving and transforming lives, and they have helped me tremendously.
My dream for the future is to open my own unique clothing brand. I want to bring my ideas to life with the help of LGBTQ+ designers so that queer people will have a brand where they feel accepted and seen. It is challenging and expensive to open a store and work as a student at the same time, but I’m passionate about the concept and I’m so excited to share it with the world – I hope others will be excited by what they see!
We’re always looking to hear from more creators, innovators, and entrepreneurs from the trans and non-binary community, so if you’d like to be featured on our website or to support our charitable fund then please do get in touch.