Opinion

LOANHOOD's approach to gender has changed

Jade McSorely
November 1, 2022

After speaking to our community we decided to approach gender a little differently and give our Loaners and Borrowers the opportunity to not always have to pick a box...

Gender will now be optional on the LOANHOOD app - Fashion is not about gender, its about how you wear it!

Why did we make this decision?

At LOANHOOD we wish to be as gender-inclusive as we can be. After talking to our community, it was important our app reflect our community's approach to gender and fashion, creating a platform that celebrates personal style, mood and identity without the need to feel categorised. Therefore, unlike most fashion brands, we don’t want to make you choose between menswear or womenswear.

What does this mean for my experience on the app?

When uploading your item, items will be available to ALL by default, unless you specify either Women, Men or Fluid. It is down to you, the owner and/or maker of the item, to state which gender you feel is best suited to your item - or don't assign a gender and leave the item available to everyone.

How is it different to other approaches by fashion brands?

Usually a customer will have to chose a gender, followed category and then size to find what they are looking.

On LOANHOOD, we lead by category and size, and gender is a separate and optional choice. Therefore, no matter what gender you define yourself as, you will still be able to search for whichever type of clothing you wish to wear that week - from dresses to corsets to suits to shoes.

Will I still be able to find my perfect fit?

Definitely! All sizes are available to search, including UK, EU, US and S/M/L and One Size. You can still filter by a size 14 or a shoe size 5 but they won't be attached to any particular gender, unless stated by the Loaner. Many of our items are one-off peices from emerging designers that are usually uploaded as a S/M/L. Make sure to read the description for more details about the size/fit of the item.

Also, we haven't removed gender options fully as we know many of our Borrowers use gender as a means to find the right fit. You can find gender options in the filter.

Have we got this right?

Probably not... but we are listening and learning from our community, always. Many of our emerging designers create items to be worn and enjoyed by all, and not dependant on the gender of the person who wears it. We are trying to reflect this in the way we build our app as its important to us and to paving the way for a more inclusive and sustainable fashion industry.

We would love to hear your thoughts on this! Please email us any feedback and suggestions by emailing info@loanhood.com

UPDATE LOANHOOD NOW TO SEE OUR NEW APPROACH TO GENDER IN YOUR APP

Cover image: @alokvmenon wears hand knitted "Can you see yourself?" dress by @whatlydiamade, available to rent via LOANHOOD.
Read more about Lydia Morrow's approach to design here.

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