20 non-binary people breaking boundaries and making the world a better place

As representation permeates more aspects of society, more non-binary people are starting to take centre stage and advocate for the community. 

Gender, like sexuality, is a spectrum. Many people can fall to one side or the other, fluctuate in-between or beyond the binary all together. 

Non-binary is an umbrella term for people who identify as genderqueer, genderfluid, agender, gender non-conforming and androgynous just to name a few. Many, but not all non-binary people feel they are trans too. 

Being part of such a beautiful, diverse community that has existed for thousands of years is truly a wonderful thing. It is also a privilege to live in a society where non-binary people can express themselves freely and openly. 

International Non-Binary People’s Day is a day to celebrate the wide range of people worldwide who identify as non-binary and their communities. (Mark Kerrison/In Pictures via Getty)

With the advent of the internet, more people have been able to discover terminology to describe themselves, connect and build strong networks of support. But it is a sobering reality that the community still faces stigmatisation, discrimination and deadly violence.

International Non-Binary People’s Day, which falls on Thursday (14 July), is a perfect opportunity to celebrate beauty and diversity of the non-binary community. 

It is a time to encourage people, organisations and the media to recognise and uplift non-binary people as well as to call for us to collectively make society more welcoming and supportive for non-binary people across the globe.

These non-binary celebrities, writers, musicians, broadcasters, actors and activists are breaking down barriers with their powerful visibility and inspiring advocacy that is changing the world for the better. 

Alok Vaid-Menon is a leader in the movement to degender the fashion and beauty industries. (Getty/ Hippolyte Petit)

Alok Vaid-Menon. Writer, performer, poet, public speaker and leader in the movement to degender the fashion and beauty industries.

Demi Lovato. The superstar singer has openly discussed their journey with fans since coming out non-binary in 2021.

Dua Saleh. Musician, poet and actor who appeared as Cal Bowman in the third season of Netflix’s Sex Education.

Emma Corrin. The Crown star quietly came out as non-binary in 2021 by updating their pronouns on Instagram. They’ve since opened up about how their “gender just isn’t something that feels fixed” and felt like “there might always be some fluidity there” for the actor.

Hikaru Utada. The Japanese-American pop superstar – who is known for their work on the Kingdom Hearts’ soundtracks – came out as non-binary in 2021 during a livestream with fans

Hikaru Utada came out as non-binary in a heartfelt livestream with fans. (Kevin Mazur/Getty for Coachella)

Indya Moore. The Pose star, model, actor and fierce trans activist

Jamie Windust. Writer, public speaker, iconic model, author and broadcaster.

Jonathan Van Ness. The Queer Eye icon has spoken multiple open about their diehard support for the LGBTQ+ community, broken barriers on TV and denounced anti-trans sentiment whenever possible. 

​​Janelle Monáe. Singer-songwriter, actor, fashion icon, author and all-around superstar. Monáe came out publicly as non-binary in a beautiful interview on Red Table Talk in April, saying the artist is now “beyond the binary”.

Janelle Monáe feels “beyond the binary” and falls in love with a person’s “energy first” rather than their gender identity. (Paras Griffin/Getty for BET)

Kae Tempest. Powerful spoken word performer, playwright, artist and novelist.

Kizzy Edgell. Non-binary actor who plays Darcy Olsson in Netflix’s beloved LGBTQ+ hit Heartstopper.

Liv Hewson. Actor, playwright and star of hit show Yellowjackets. Hewson was honoured with the Human Rights Campaign’s Visibility Award in 2020 for their advocacy in uplifting and including LGBTQ+ voices and narratives.

Mae Martin. The comedian came out publicly as non-binary in a heartfelt post on social media, saying their “gender identity is ongoing and evolving”. The Feel Good star has tirelessly advocated for the LGBTQ+ community and even joined protests outside the BBC against its infamous anti-trans article in 2021.

 

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Mauree Turner. The first non-binary state lawmaker in US history after being elected to the Oklahoma state House in 2020. Turner has continued to fight for LGBTQ+ rights in the US despite getting death threats for their tireless advocacy.

Owen Hurcum. They made history as the “first-ever openly non-binary mayor of any city anywhere” after they were elected mayor of Bangor, Wales. While they’ve since decided to stand down from office, they continue to advocate for trans and non-binary rights in the UK

Quinn. The Canadian professional football player went down in history as the first openly trans Olympic medal winner during the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2021. Quinn fights against anti-trans legislation with Athlete Ally and was recently named on Forbes’ influential 30 under 30 list.

Team Canada’s Quinn reacts with their gold medal after becoming the first openly trans athlete to win Olympic gold. (Getty/Naomi Baker)

Quintessa Swindell. Starred in Netflix’s Trinkets and can be seen on the big screen in forthcoming DC film Black Adam alongside Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. They told GLAAD in 2019 that “fighting for the underrepresented is both a duty and privilege at the same time”.

Dr Ronx. Inspiring trans, non-binary doctor, mentor, TV presenter and activist.

Tom Rasmussen. Fearless performer, writer, author and singer who uses their music to access their “transness”.

Vico Ortiz. Actor who plays beloved non-binary pirate Jim ‘The Menace’ Jimenez in HBO Max’s Our Flag Means Death.

 

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