How to spot a lesbian*

This post is NOT only for lesbians. If anything it’s inspired by all the straight people I’ve met recently who’ve assumed I have a husband, asked what he does (etcetera). In actual fact, I’ve never used my own (until recently) very poor Gaydar for pulling so maybe I’m not an authority on this. But yes, if you meet someone, I think it’s polite to avoid your own hetero normative assumptions and the inevitable exchange “my wife does x,y,z” “oh, I’m sorry” [we’ll assume you’re apologising for your own ignorance, not that I have a wife not a husband] “no, that’s okay. No problem.


Photocred: Instagram (@rubyrose or @phoebe I can’t be sure, in honesty)

So, how to tell.

Use your ears: If the person uses she/her pronouns about their partner or says partner (not boyfriend or husband) always take their lead. This is basic manners, isn’t it?

Short hair: Is a red herring. Androgyny is fashion now and also you can be gay without having short hair so beware.

Short nails, sometimes unpainted: Yes, the L Word taught me this, and valuable advice it is too. If that girl’s got acrylics she’s straight.

Flat shoes: note, flat shoes are not ugly, they’re comfy. She won’t be shredding her feet on the way home from a night out.

Piercings: Certain piercings are a good indication. Look out for tongue and upper ears.

Plaid shirts: Or boys clothes. Not her boyfriend’s hoody cos she’s hungover though, we’re talking tees from the men’s section (sometimes paired with a skirt or print trousers if you’re me).

Phone screensaver or photo on desk: No, it’s not her best friend, because she isn’t twelve. Why would she be in the Maldives with her bestie? Come on, use your noggin here.

A thumb ring. Needs no explanation.

A lezzy quote or symbol tattoo. Also matching tattoo to the woman in the photo mentioned above. She’s 26, she lives in the UK this isn’t a sorority thing and you watch too much 90210.

Oh yeah, also the lesbian will be the coolest fucking woman in the room because she doesn’t listen to what Cosmopolitan Magazine tells her. 

*In case you didn’t realise, this post is tongue in cheek from a femme lesbian who is sick of constant assumptions, not helped by her wife’s name being one of those pesky names that can be for a boy or a girl (Sam, short for Samantha). 


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