The first tucking swimwear brand has launched in the UK – and it’s on a mission to empower trans women to hit the beach in style.
The collection is now available from Zoah, an inclusive underwear and swimwear brand founded by entrepreneur and model Danielle St James.
The 30-year-old is on a mission to “support the unique needs of trans women, non-binary and gender non-conforming individuals”. She’s also got a great eye for design.
“As a trans woman, it is rare to find a product which has been designed specifically with you in mind. As a result you end up having to make do with what is available on the market,” explains St James, who splits her time between London and Margate.
“When it comes to swimwear, historically, that has meant coming up with makeshift solutions which often involve layering up multiple garments to ensure you feel secure. Not only is this stressful, as you can never be completely confident, but it is also really painful.”
To offer the perfect tuck, the swimwear line features a custom-made combination of ‘power mesh’ – a blend of nylon and polyester, which is both strong and durable – and Lycra, for its elasticity. “Together, these fabrics deliver a specialist fit to empower both pre-op and no-op trans feminine individuals to move freely and comfortably,” the brand says.
The collection has launched in two colour ways – a classic black ribbed design or a statement leopard print. It marks a style shift for trans-specific products, says St James.
“As a trans woman I want to be able to have access to products that meet my individual needs, that are comfortable and look great – rather than being overly sexualised or cliche in their representation of femininity, as products aimed at trans women so often are.”
Zoah founder Danielle St James (Photo: Getty Images)
When she’s not selling undies and bikinis, St James is chief executive of the charity Not A Phase, which supports trans adults across the UK.
She hopes her inclusive range – available in seven sizes from XS to XXXL, priced at £32 for a top, £34 for bottoms – will become “the go-to solution for trans people around the world”.
“It is reliable and made to last,” she says. “But most importantly it is designed to make the wearer look – and feel – fabulous.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.