Everybody knows someone who is *That Girl*. She’s the sort of person who buzzes with confidence and aspires to be the best version of herself. She’s self-assured and manifests her goals. She eats avocado toast and does yoga. She regularly journals and maintains control of her life. She knows how to rollerblade and looks good doing it. She’s chic and classy and can pull off the perfect dewy makeup. She’s the girl you see on social media and think, “I wish I could be her.”
Someone who knows all about this is Maxine. Signed to trailblazing trans-focused modelling agency, Wimp, she has appeared in beauty campaigns for the likes of Avon & Schwarzkopf. Her Instagram features loads of chic and fashionable moments, although she always makes space for her activism and more low key moments too. In essence, she embodies the *That Girl* persona. And as *That Girl*, she’s aware that it involves more than fashion or your aesthetic. As she says, it’s about investing in yourself and knowing your value.
Of course, the thing about *That Girl* is that you can be her too. Being *That Girl* is more about a state of mind than drinking matcha smoothies, shopping in Aesop and having the right lip gloss. Being *That Girl* is about vibes and confidence. It’s about harnessing a certain kind of energy, one that anyone can wield to shape themselves into the person they want to become.
Queer people know all about this. It’s true that unlike our cis-het counterparts, we often have to mould ourselves into various different identities throughout our lives. While initially this can be traumatic, keeping parts of your identity secret from those around you, when you fully step into your queerness you are able to create form a version of yourself that feels wholly authentic to who you want to be. In other words, you become *That Girl*. That mentality is something that we all could benefit from. That’s why GAY TIMES, in partnership with Klarna, sat down with Maxine to curate a clothing wishlist and to find out about her inspirations, how she began to embody the *That Girl* persona, what shapes her style and how you too, can become *That Girl*.
Hi Maxine. How did you first get into being *That Girl*?
When I think about the *That Girl* persona, I immediately think of Maddy Perez in Euphoria – she really is the *That Girl* blueprint. As she says in season 2, “90% of life is confidence, and the thing about confidence is that no one knows if it’s real or not.” Because of that I think we’re all a little *That Girl* sometimes – it’s more of an energy we cultivate, than specific to a certain hobby or interest. For me, I’d say being *That Girl* comes in waves. It’s something I embody more on some days than I do on others. I went through a very confidence-knocking breakup last year, so I’ve been tapping into my *That Girl* energy reserves a lot more since. A big part of it to me is investing time back into yourself and that can look like anything. I’ve realised how much easier I find it to make that time for myself now I’m single again. Getting back out to queer nightlife has been one of my saviours. It always presents a space or a moment to step out of my comfort zone style-wise or level up my makeup.
Who are the people you take inspiration from and what do you love about them?
It’s probably a bit cliché for a trans woman to start listing all the trans people who inspire her, but truly it gives me a lot of hope to see trans people changing the world around them with their work. This can be seen with the incredible success of Shon Faye’s The Transgender Issue, with Yasmin Finney’s performance in Netflix’s Heartstopper, and soon Doctor Who, with Janet Mock’s bestselling books and writing on FX’s show Pose, with literally all that Charlie Craggs does with absolute comic value, candour and relatability, and with Freddy McConnell – even I, as a trans person, have learned a lot from his work, some of which was driven by the need to normalise and celebrate trans parenthood. There are so many more people from within the community that inspire me daily, many of whom I’m lucky to call my friends. Unrelated, but I’m also a big Princess Diana stan. Need I go on?
How do your interests and hobbies influence your style?
My main job is actually very fab – I’m a Marketing Manager for a vegan, gender-free makeup brand that began with makeup lessons for trans women: Jecca Blac. Yes, that’s a shameless plug because, yes, I do the marketing and also, yes, you can shop our products on Klarna – thank me later.
Wardrobe wise, it’s great because I can wear whatever I like to work. I can also wear my work attire to whatever evening plans I might have lined up. My usual silhouette is something fitted up top, flared on the bottom and flats – almost always trainers. My outfits are usually very London public transport friendly. On days when I’m opting for something with a skirt, I tend to wear cycle shorts underneath, purely my preference for keeping my womanhood under wraps when ascending the underground stairs or faced with a stiff breeze. I can’t stand ironing, so pretty much everything I wear is comfortable enough to stay in for 12+ hours, won’t crease and can be taken from day to night with ease.
What’s your favourite purchase you’ve ever making you feel like *That Girl*?
A while back, I discovered water-activated liners and kept hearing about Glisten Cosmetics. I noticed their Pride Palette contained 11 colours and was very reasonably priced, with 100% of profits from every Pride Palette purchase going to a different LGBTQ+ charity every three months. This truly has been one of my best ever makeup purchases – I use it almost daily and I absolutely love that I’m now one of the girlies, people will stop in the smoking area to say how much they love my eyeliner. Honestly one of my best purchases ever, although my more advanced graphic liner shapes are still a bit of a work in progress.
As a Klarna app user, what’s your favourite shopping feature on the Klarna app?
I’m someone who tries to shop ethically or pre-owned as much as possible, particularly when it comes to clothing. It’s why I love that there’s a CO2 tracker on the app so you can keep on top of your carbon footprint. When opening the Klarna app, three of the first suggestions are to browse eBay, shop pre-owned luxury or see second-hand finds. All of the above makes it simple to find inspiration when trying to shop sustainably. It’s easy to save multiple items for later using the “save” button to avoid impulse purchasing and the “spending” tool helps budget and keep on track of your outgoings with ease. We can make sure we’re investing in pieces we really want for ourselves without harming the planet.
With the freedom to shop anywhere within the Klarna app, what are your favourite retailers to shop at when you’re embodying the *That Girl* persona?
I recently discovered a clothing brand called Sisterhood that specialises in working with sustainable materials, from garments to packaging. Really simple, chic, environmentally conscious pieces.
I’ve also recently fallen in love with lingerie. I love Savage x Fenty – everything I own from Savage is really comfortable and they have an extensive style and size range. It’s unbelievable what a difference a nice set of lingerie can make for my confidence. On days when I need a little extra push, I wear a matching set and it helps me start the day by celebrating my body a little in the knowledge that I’m doing so just for myself, which at times can feel a little challenging. For beauty, Jecca Blac’s Glow Drops Primer in Rose Pearl is my daily base-brightening staple in literally every makeup look. I’m also loving the rise of shapewear – Postergirl is incredible with its one-size-fits-all range and Niihai is very fun to wear too, without being too expensive. Also, I love eBay for anything pre-owned. The scavenger hunt on second hand sites is so rewarding, especially when you find something you know is going to a good home.
What advice can you give to someone wanting to become *That Girl*?
Start with a mood board on what you think *That Girl* looks like to you. I used Maddy from Euphoria as an example before, but I think a big part of the trope is working out how you can project your most authentic self into the world and knowing you’re doing so for yourself and on your own terms. When shopping, set an intention by asking yourself if what you’re considering purchasing will bring you confidence or take you out of your comfort zone. Do you have anything like this already, or is this going to empower you in a way previously unexplored? I find asking this question helps me only buy things I know will add value to my life. Being *That Girl* is all about knowing your value, so it’s important to me to know the value of the things I invest in for myself, too.
Shop Maxine’s *That Girl* wishlist in the Klarna app. With the Klarna app, you can create your own *That Girl* wishlist, get price drop notifications and can even spread the cost into 3 interest-free payments when you do decide to checkout via the Klarna app.
Klarna’s Pay in 3 instalments credit agreements are not regulated by the FCA. Use of these and any missed payments may affect your ability to obtain credit from Klarna and other lenders. 18+, UK residents only. Subject to status. T&Cs apply. https://www.klarna.com/uk/terms-and-conditions/