Apparel Consumption and Experiences of Gay Men and Transgender Women in India

  • Vishakha Chauhan (Indian Institute of Technology Delhi)
  • Kelly Reddy Best (Iowa State University)
  • Mahim Sagar (Indian Institute of Technology Delhi)
  • Arbuda Sharma (XLRI Jamshedpur)
  • Karan Lamba (Indian Institute of Technology)


In this study, we examined LGBT individual's experiences with the consumption of fashion and clothing specifically in India, a country where identifying in the LGBT community was illegal up until 2017. Using a phenomenological, qualitative approach, we asked (1) What are LGBT individual's experiences with fashioning their body in India? (2) What are LGBT individual's impressions of and experiences with the current offerings in the fashion system in India? To be eligible for the study, participants had to meet three criteria: 1) 18+ years old, 2) live in India, and 3) Identify as LGBT. Participants included 3 gay men and 7 transgender women who ranged in age from 26-50. Analysis of the data revealed that participates described their experiences with fashioning their body with much ambivalence. Through an understanding of their bodily experiences, we disentangle how biological characteristics create ambivalence about what is offered in the fashion system.

How to Cite:

Chauhan, V., Reddy Best, K., Sagar, M., Sharma, A. & Lamba, K., (2018) “Apparel Consumption and Experiences of Gay Men and Transgender Women in India”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 75(1).

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Published on
01 Jan 2018
Peer Reviewed