In honour of the ongoing Pride Month, brands are showing their support for the rainbow community. However, when it comes to deciding which initiatives are worth backing, it's important to do your due diligence and invest (money and time) in brands that are going beyond rainbow-emblazoned products and catchy phrases.
Thankfully, there are several fashion labels that are committed to giving back to queer communities, while offering shoppers fashion-forward options for their closets in the process.
Many brands back down in the fear of getting trolled, while there are brands that take a bold stand on social issues. There has been a noticeable shift in the advertising trends. Big brands have been adapting to a similar pattern of shifting from stereotyping to normalising.
Recently, Myntra tried normalising and celebrating the pride community by highlighting transwomen and transmen in their social media posts and blogs.
The posts faced trolling, but Myntra didn't chicken out. Instead they took the bold step to troll back the trollers. In an Instagram post Myntra said, "We've always loved to #ChangeTheConversation".
As a luxury brand, Myntra took an out of the box approach with pride for pride. Earlier renowned fashion brands like Zara, H&M and Moschino have also been taking part in this trend. Zara released its 'Ungendered' collection, and more recently H&M followed suit with its unisex 'Denim United' range.
Brands like Mankind, selling prega-news, have been stereotyping the concept of pregnancy by depicting that getting pregnant is always a piece of good news to a woman. The brand, with a tagline that says "prega-news means good news", is now coming up with ad-campaigns that tend to normalise women not getting pregnant and that motherhood is not restricted to a particular gender.
Kamla Bhasin, a developmental feminist, activist, poet, author and social scientist said in an interview with CitySpidey that she is happy that brands are recognising that their consumer base includes people from all genders.
She also mentioned that big brands are concerned about the buying portion of the population, and all they care about is sales. She added that the brands have realised that modern women are capable of making their decisions on their own.
"Jaha se paisa ayega, brands wahi ke geet gayenge (The brands will sing whichever song gets them money)," Bhasin said. People are more likely to buy their products from a brand that empowers them, and not stereotype them," she added.
In recent years, brands have been more willing to unveil collections and collaborations that directly benefit the LGBTQIA+ community. With time and education, the rainbow flag may fly higher, but it is no longer a taboo to belong to a community that gives you the freedom of living life and celebrating one's identity.
The Pride Month was not born out of a need to celebrate being gay, but for having the right to exist without persuasion, for being proud of it. If you're truly an advocate of the freedom to live life as one wants, just be supportive and help make the society more accepting and loving.