It’s no secret to queer women that lesbians are the true tastemakers in the world of style; but it’s time we got some freaking credit you know?
Which is why I decided to highlight a different iconic queer woman each week and talk to her about her fierce style in our new GO mag column “Fashion Icon of The Week” (Message me if you’re interested in submitting!).
I’m not going to lie (because I never lie to my gorgeous GO readers) but I’ve been feeling a little bit burned out and let’s just say “underwhelmed” regarding the art of the personal essay, as of late. I’ve been bored with writing long-winded pieces regarding my own boring thoughts and feelings, and simply tired of reading variations of (what feels like) the same article over and over. As a person who has built a career on the personal essay, I’ve been kind of questioning my existence, truthfully.
And then Dayna Troisi came along. Troisi sent me a pitch called “Finding My Lesbian Life Raft In A Sea Of College Bros” and my bloodshot, weary eyes lit up like Christmas lights. Purr. This piece sounded interesting!
And then I read her essay. And I within the slender span of three seconds, I remembered how utterly important, life-affirming and wildly entertaining the art of the personal essay is, when executed creatively, with voice, honesty, and candor.
Troisi is a brilliant writer and if you’re not stalking her work, you’re missing out. Trust me! My staff and I get excited every single time she sends over a pitch or an essay. We are perpetually in awe of her self-deprecating, honest, poetic prose. Like, when is this girl going to publish a fabulous lesbian book?
Not only is she a super talented lez, she also happens to be a gorgeous entity, with fantastic taste in both style and makeup. In fact, if you want some makeup inspiration check out this amazing style video she made for “Racked” titled “How This Bionic Babe Embraced Her Prosthetic Arm.”
So that being said, darlings, it is our highest honor to feature Dayna Troisi as our “Lesbian Fashion Icon Of The Week!”
GO Magazine: Who are you and what do you do?
Dayna Troisi: I’m a freelance writer who has written about sex + dating/ fashion + beauty for Buzzfeed, VICE, Racked, SELF among others. Like most other artists, I have to do something else as well. I work on a farm during the week, which is super off-brand for a princess like me but I really love animals. (Yes, I’m extra as hell and wear makeup and jewelry to the farm). During the weekend, I teach creative writing at an enrichment center for middle and high school kids, then I pour wine at a vineyard.
GO: Who are your greatest fashion icons?
DT: LANA DEL REY is my literal queen, but I don’t really try to emulate her style—it’s all her own. Plus, knife-sharp stiletto nails don’t work for obvious reasons. *sheds queer sad girl tear* Zara, I know you feel my pain!
Growing up, I was really inspired by Gwen Stefani’s don’t-give-a-fuck style. Now, I take inspiration from Banks, Sevdaliza, and Kim K. I love brands that I can’t afford like Zana Bayne, Creepyyeha and Cristina Aielli. My style is influenced by artists like Amber Carr, Colin Christian, Ilse Valfré (I have two Valfré tattoos!) and Jel Ena. Also I’m totally here for Rihanna making wine glasses an accessory.
GO: Find ten adjectives that fully describe your personal style?
DT: Dark, strappy, unapologetic, lacey, expressive, striking, luxurious, slutty, chic, playful.
GO: How do you feel about makeup? Love it, hate it? What products do you use? Do you have a signature makeup look?
DT: LOVE IT. Maybe a little too much—I’m on a first name basis at Sephora. I’m addicted to self-tanner and bronzer (I’m from Long Island, we all are). Since getting lash extensions, I wear a lot less makeup. My signature look is my huge-ass lashes, dewy bronzey skin and Kat Von D Bow and Arrow lipstick.
GO: Where do you shop?
DT: Mostly Amazon. I hate shopping IRL. (Sephora being the only exception!) I even order tampons and hair dye online. If I’m not ordering on Amazon, I’m ordering from independent insta-boutiques like Thistle and Spire, Alien Outfitters and Little Black Diamond. If you like slutty goth meets Stevie Nicks like I do, check these shops out!
GO: What was your most embarrassing fashion phase? Or have you been perfect and cool forever?
DT: I have been going through embarrassing fashion phases forever; it’s hard to pick one. My scene phase was ridiculous—pink side bangs, colored skinny jeans and vans. My raver phase was equally as disastrous—fluffy boots, bedazzled bras, and plastic bead bracelets. Towards the end of college, I shaved my head and wore black lipstick and collars. I don’t even know what I was going for with that one. I’ve experimented with endless looks. It’s just so much fun! Now, I finally feel like I’ve grown into my own personal style. I think my prosthetic has a lot to do with that. I used to be wildly insecure—I still am sometimes—but I no longer feel like I have to take on an “identity” to feel at ease. I finally feel like I have my own identity, as myself, dressed in black with my badass bionic arm.
GO: Describe an outfit you would wear to slay a job interview.
DT: Black jeggings (fuck yes jeggings), black blazer, black turtleneck, black stilettos.
GO: Describe an outfit you wear on a date with a woman you were wildly attracted to.
DT: If I like a girl, I get super stressed trying to impress her. Sometimes I panic and end up wearing something totally weird. To play it safe, my date outfit is usually the same—in colder months, black crop top (I have an endless supply of these), black jeans and a leather jacket. Always a strappy bra underneath. In warmer months, my black tube dress has never let me down.
GO: Describe an outfit you would wear if you wanted to feel insanely sexy?
DT: Combine my bionic arm with lingerie and I feel unstoppable. I feel the sexiest when I’m wearing my prosthesis and unapologetically showing off my body. I’m definitely not the “leave something to the imagination” type. I regularly wear a bra as a shirt. I have this over-the-top sugar baby lace pajama gown that I love to wear out to clubs. Being disabled, I’m used to people staring at me, so I get a rush out of controlling the gaze and keeping people staring because of my style. I also really love off-the-shoulder tops. I find collar bones soooo sexy.
GO: Is there such thing as lesbian style?
DT: We’re all so different! I think when you’re first coming out, there is this invisible pressure to look queer. And then there’s the added pressure on femmes to “prove” their queerness; so, in the past, I’ve definitely dressed a certain way to convey that I liked women, but I looked terrible (flannel does not work for me). Now when I really want to lez it up, I wear a clip-on septum ring. I also have this fabulous black crop top that says Dykes Against Trump. That’s probably my gayest article of clothing, and I love it.