This Emmy Winner Is Unapologetically Herself (and Loves Zara's Men's Department)

Gina Marinelli

Call us a broken record, but Zara is pretty much the holy grail for finding of-the-moment designs, amazing footwear, and even an outfit to wear to City Hall to tie the knot. It’s arguably hard for anyone to leave empty-handed, including one actress whose star has truly made a meteoric rise this year.

Lena Waithe is the Emmy-winning writer and star of Master of None, and in a recent podcast appearance on Queery With Cameron Esposito, the emerging star spoke about owning her identity, despite the pressure to dress a certain way, especially for someone who now finds herself in the Hollywood spotlight more and more.

I just realised I’ve got to be myself unapologetically all the time,” she tells Esposito of her experience with dressing for industry events in a way that’s perceived as traditionally masculine. “It’s comfortable and it makes sense for me, but also it’s about showing others who might be more tempted to wear something more feminine … [to] wear what makes you feel comfortable, makes you feel you.”

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Waithe also spoke to an experience shared by many who read this website: her habit of hitting up one of the most reliable stores for affordable, cool finds. “When I go to Zara with my stylist, Tiffany Johnson … we go to the Zara men’s department and figure it out and make it work.”

Waithe expresses that for her, pantsuits have always been in her comfort zone, while Esposito brings up the point that there is a major difference between ones made for a woman’s body compared to ones made for a man’s—the former essentially accenting the areas of the bust and waist, while menswear lends itself to a boxier fit that may feel more authentic to women who don’t identify with traditional clothes made for women.

The actress, who’s currently behind Showtime’s series The Chi as well, also expresses how her identity—a queer woman of colour who dresses in clothing made for men—is part of how she’s “casually changing the norm” of how gender is viewed on TV and in Hollywood. And for those seeking to blaze the trail with her, perhaps it’s comforting to know that it can start by simply rewriting the rules of what department you can find your personal sense of style in.

Explore: Zara, muses

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