Jonathan Van Ness: I feel most beautiful as my authentic self

'Queer Eye' star Jonathan Van Ness says he feels most beautiful when he's unapologetically and authentically himself.



Jonathan Van Ness feels most beautiful as his authentic self
Jonathan Van Ness feels most beautiful as his authentic self

Jonathan Van Ness says he feels most “beautiful” as his authentic self.

The ‘Queer Eye’ star – who came out as non-binary in 2019 – has learned to "express myself for me" and not for others.

Speaking to ELLE, he said: “Until my mid to late 20s I thought beauty was how people responded to me - I was beautiful if people responded to me in a certain way. Then it transformed into I feel beautiful when I present authentically, when I express myself for me. It was around then that my gender journey started. That was when I first started to buck the masc idea. I started wearing tights and crop tops and just feeling more comfortable in my femininity.”

The hairstylist - who is known for his trademark luscious locks - admits that there are still some unhealthy beauty standards out there for everyone no matter what their gender identity is.

He said: "The illusion of beauty, is really powerful for everyone - no matter how you identify or where you're from. I always hope that people are wielding their idea of beauty in healthy and uplifting ways. But it's not always the case.”

However, being unapologetically himself does come with animosity from others that feel threatened.

He shared: “I think some people can feel very threatened by queer people and the way that queer people express their beauty. I think when some cis gender people see people in the LGBTQIA+ community who are comfortable in their own skin and embracing who they are and don't abide by constraints of the gender binary, that can feel threatening.

“It can be very discombobulating when you assign your personality and your identity to this thing that you thought wasn't a choice then you see other people being themselves unapologetically, not conforming or compromising and there's a little bit of jealousy there.

“'You might see people that look courageous and fearless, and even though we're not, in fact a lot of us are really afraid, we look at that fear and we realise it's more important to be authentic to ourselves than it is to conform to what someone thinks beautiful is supposed to be.”