Passing Is Possible: Follow The Women

| Oct 10, 2016
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Before I get to the actual tips on passing I should tell you how I define passing. Passing is the ability to be accepted while crossdressed without being hassled whatever the surroundings. Notice that my definition does not include being taken as a woman 100% of the time which is how many would define passing.

In my travels I have met hundreds of crossdressers and seen thousands. The truth is that most of us could never pass all the time in any situation as a woman. What everyone can do however is present an acceptable, feminine and even pretty image. Though that image might not always get you taken for a woman, it will let everyone know that you are real person and should be taken seriously regardless of your gender.

Tips on Passing

* Dress properly for where you are going. This is one of the easiest to do but hardest to accept. Most of us like wearing skirts or dresses, but many times to pass you have to wear jeans and blouse with little makeup. When I first started going out the look I found that I could really pull off was a sort of business woman look. What I realized about that look in practice was that going out during a weekday it allowed me to pass very well, but the same look would get me read in a second if I wore it to a mall during a weekend or week night. You might be thinking “But I have seen women in business suits at the mall at night and on weekends”. Though that is true ask yourself how many women you see dressed that way and why you even remember seeing them? It’s because they stood out and that is exactly what you don’t want to do if you are trying to pass. That means no high heels and short skirt to go grocery shopping no matter how sexy you look. The best thing to do is to visit the place where you are planing to go while crossdressed while still in drab. While there be very observant of what all the women are wearing. That is your best guide. Be sure and visit at about the same time you plan on visiting while crossdressed. In my case, the same look at the mall during a weekday would have worked just fine.

* In the same vein as above, wear the proper makeup for the setting. Huge false eyelashes and glamour makeup while out at the laundromat won’t cut it. More often than not this will mean very toned down makeup. Again, check out what the other women are doing and follow their lead.

* If you are tall for a woman wear flats, not high heels. Many crossdressers I know like wearing high heels and the higher the heel the better. The big problem with this — aside from the fact that heels aren’t for everywhere — is that the average woman stands 5’4″ tall making her 5’6″ with two inch heels. The average U.S. male is 5’9″ so adding height is most likely going to work against you passing. I’m 5′ 8.5 ” so in flats I am still a few inches outside the range, but thankfully, so are lots of women. If I wore just two inch heels I would be pressing six foot, taller then 95% of all women. The important thing here is to downplay your height if you are tall. Next time you are out make a point of looking at what kinds of footwear tall women wear. I am betting you will find that most of the time they are wearing some sort of flats or very low heel (one inch). Also I should add that women rarely, if ever, wear heels higher then 2.5″-3″.

Keep Calm

* It is OK to be afraid or nervous. Almost everyone is, but try not to show it. People can sense when someone is nervous by their body language and how they act. Being nervous will definitely draw unwanted attention to yourself and make you look out of place. One nervous habit I have to always remind myself to avoid is walking too fast. Moving too quickly makes you look like you are in a rush or nervous and either will draw extra unwanted attention to yourself.

Confidence is a key factor in passing, though I would disagree with those that say it makes up 90% of the task. It is much closer to the 25-50% range in my experience.

* If you wish to present yourself like a woman then act like one! If you act like a guy in a dress people will treat you like one. Watch how women stand, walk, talk and move. Once you can emulate a woman’s moves and feel comfortable doing them they will come natural to you. That sounds easy, but as a male I was reluctant at first to really let myself act like a woman and I didn’t even realize it. As boys we were taught to never act feminine and were no doubt teased if we did anything remotely feminine. It takes a while to free yourself from this thought process. Also because men only ever wear pants we are much less conscience of how we sit or stand. When sitting keep your legs together or crossed. Don’t stand with your legs apart and your hands on your hips, or crossed.

* Don’t stare at people to see if they are looking at you. You know how you can always tell when someone is starring at you? What do you do when you realize it? You stare back and check them out, right? If you really want to know how you are doing get a friend to watch you from a distance and have them note people’s reactions or lack of one. I have to mention here that not staring does not mean not looking around. Be sure to notice your surroundings and watch crossing the street.

* If you plan on speaking at all you must develop a feminine sounding voice. This can be very difficult, but even if you look perfect your voice can give you away in a second. Their are a few speaking methods you can find out on the web.

If you can’t do this or are not very good at it keep your talking to a minimum. I knew I had reached the point where this was now my biggest obstacle to passing when one Sunday morning Mary and I went out for breakfast at a busy diner. We went in through a crowd, waited for our table and were seated without anyone as much as batting an eye. Once were seated our waitress came over and said “Good morning ladies. What would you like to drink?” Mary told her coffee then she looked at me. I answered “Decaf coffee for me please”. The waitress was very visibly startled! We could just see it in her reaction and sudden nervousness that I blew it.

* Know the place you are going and the surrounding area well. That way you are far less likely to run into trouble. If you do have a problem you know where you are at and where to get help. This is especially true when you are just starting to venture out while crossdressed.

* Use your common sense when choosing where to go to crossdressed. If you truly pass 100% then you can go anywhere. If not you have to set limits so you do not get yourself into a bad situation. Myself I go most places dressed without problems, but though I would go to a bar like TGI Fridays or Bennigans, I would not go into a small pub unless I was sure of the type of patrons that went there. If you feel you don’t pass well stick to the trans or gay clubs.

* If you do get noticed don’t panic. Remember that you are doing nothing wrong and if someone has a problem with you it is their problem. The absolute worst reaction the majority of people will usually have is to laugh. More often than not though all you will get is a smile or a long glance.

Oh and one last tip — remember to have fun out there girls!

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Category: Transgender Body & Soul, Transgender How To, Transgender Opinion


About the Author ()

Diane was born and raised in New Jersey. She has two fully grown sons and a husband of thirteen years. Diane runs a two small businesses and in her spare time enjoys strategy board gaming.

Comments (3)

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  1. Linda Jensen Linda Jensen says:

    Bennigans? Oh how I miss Benigans and their ribs cooked in Jack Daniels.
    Great advice then and now. Dress to fit in to your surroundings.
    About eye contact – you are a female; do not make eye contact with a stranger unless you are already in conversation or being introduced. Ever.
    About the same time as this article was originally posted to TGF I wrote one of my first TGF articles The advice was that passing was not about being seen as 100% female but more about not offending the people around us when they saw us. It seems now it is only in Walmart that we can expect to see the outlandish. (Google Walmartians and prepare to be amazed)

    • tasidevil tasidevil says:

      Hi Linda. Outlandish is an understated description for what is seen at Walmart. I’ve collected over 200 pics of crossdressers at Walmart and you can see many of them on my Sister House Pinterest page here Living in Mexico where the average height of women is 5-1 makes my 5-10 height without heels only too obvious. I just grin and bear it thankful that my city is very gracious towards those not from here.

      I was talking to my daughter who lives in Colorado Springs about CDs a few months back and she commented on the number of CDs in her area. I asked her how she knew and she said they were the tall ones. My daughter is as tall as me so I’m guessing she was thinking 6 ft plus.

      For Dana, Observing feminine movements is helpful but not all CDs are quick to pick up on the nuances. I suggest getting some tapes like those sold by Denae Doyle on feminine movements and studying and practicing them.

  2. GR8LegsNJ GR8LegsNJ says:

    Hi Diane,
    This was a very interesting article. Some of your comments made me smile. “That means no high heels and short skirt to go grocery shopping no matter how sexy you look. ” One very important fact I would like to point out. Have you ever seen anyone walk into a supermarket wearing formal clothes? Everyone just looks and stares, so what you stated is very true. However I have had to stop at the market on my way home after the workday. I have not garnered much attention. Many women shop on the way home. I am 5’8″ and I wear from a 2″ to a 4″ heel to the office. You know, many of the women I work with are way taller then me. However as a point of information I transitioned over 20 yrs ago.

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