GG Baxter is a transgender Ni-Vanuatu woman and LGBT rights activist. After appearing in Wan Smol Bag’s ‘Love Patrol’, GG has become Vanuatu’s most widely known transgender woman and is continuing to break barriers and challenge stereotypes through her work with Vanuatu’s first LGBT organization Vpride Organization.
Fashion is not just about flaunting how much money you have or looking good – to GG, it is much more than that. Fashion has been a platform to express her identity as a transgender woman and to reclaim her space. In this photoshoot, we chose to shoot in public spaces as an affirmation to all persons identifying as LGBT that they are free to assert who they are, wherever they are, whenever they want.
That’s a secret.
Executive Director to VPride Organization.
Where are you from?
How would you describe your style?
Style isn’t always about money as most people would assume. Style defines me as a person and allows me to be me, for me.
Can you expand on this and let us know how your style has evolved over the years?
My fashion style is my power that paves my way through stormy and smooth waters. Fashion has been a platform that has accredited my sexual orientation as a transgender woman. The uniqueness of who I am is reflected in the style that I embrace and allows me to celebrate myself.
Fashion is important to me because it enables confidence in me to BE ME. My inner beauty is expressed through what I wear externally.
Fashion is often associated with money but that is not what it is all about. It is also not about pleasing other people or conforming to societal expectations. Fashion is a creative thought process and as individual, it allows you to be beautiful for you and empowers you in your own way.
What was the theme of this shoot?
The theme of this shoot was African as I have always loved African colors and fabrics. I know what works well with my look so I love colors that show off my beautiful ebony or black skin. Bright colors compliment it and the contrast is attractive. When I wear bright colors, I see myself in the midst of the crowd, shining brightly as a unique and beautiful soul.
Where do you buy your clothes from?
Locally, I buy most of clothes from second hand shops such as Stret Price and Stanley Imports. When I am travelling overseas, I got to Kmart when I’m in Australia and I go to Warehouse when I’m in New Zealand. If I’m in America, I go to Marcy’s and when I am in Thailand, I go to Platinum. If I am in Fiji, I go to Tapoos.
Who influences your style?
I love the classy look. I would say that Kim Kardashian and Michelle Obama are two people who embody class and inspire my style. But all in all, I love setting my own fashion trend as it embarks journeys and victories in life claimed and yet to claim…hehe…
What beauty products do you use?
I am a supporter of local products and love any local soaps made out of coconut. As an alternative, I like to also use Pure Fiji products. It moisturizes my skin leaving behind that sexy feel of touch. When I use the rights products and feel good, it empowers more confidence as I have an enduring feeling of beauty within myself.
Any fashion advice? Particularly for trans Ni-Vanuatu?
Don’t fear yourself when it comes to fashion. Transform that fear into empowerment and allow fear to speak to the beauty within you and express it through fashion.
#Fashionista #FashionPower #FashionIsPower #BeautyFromWithin
Photographer: Nicky Kuautonga
Hair, makeup and nails: Body and Soul
Assistant stylist: Patricia Stafford
This article was originally published in the August edition of the Vanuatu Daily Post’s Life and Style magazine.