Folks who haven’t been through this probably see trans women from the point where they’ve come out and are full time. They may be polished, or not, but I guaranty that this is not her first time appearing in public “en femme” as it is known, or in “female mode” (as opposed to male mode).
I spent a few months getting some relief from dressing in private but eventually wanted to buy normal women’s clothing and to be myself in the world, not to sit home an vegetate. One day, early in the Winter of 2013 I managed to get my courage up and I traveled to a shopping mall to take my first steps.
A mall might seem an odd choice, but it affords both some safety (you are really not likely to get beaten up if someone reads you as trans) and a great deal of anonymity. Unfortunately I mostly couldn’t dress at home, so I put on my underwear and jeans and male t-shirt and headed up with a gym bag with the makeup, breast forms and female top I needed to pass at some level.
I parked as far away as I could and changed my shirt, stuffed the forms into place and put on the very heavy makeup required for someone who is pre hormones and who hasn’t started electrolysis to hide a beard. The result was sorta female looking. I left the car and walked toward the mall.
What I discovered that day is worth sharing. At least in my corner of the US in the North East most people just don’t care. These are followed by people who see what they want to see. Even though my makeup wasn’t all that good, my jeans were baggy and I was wearing sneakers, I was still able to go shopping and not be hassled including using changing rooms. I caught a couple of hostile stares from men and I’m quite sure I wasn’t very passable but I was out and about and happy.
I repeated the experiment the next weekend in a small town with shops. There I was able to arrive dressed (I can’t remember how I managed that) and again I wasn’t hassled and life was good.
In the early Spring a girlfriend brought me to a spa for a real live makeover and I had my first real cosmetics lesson. He made me look fabulous. I have no idea how he managed that. At that point I had been out for a couple of months and was passing decently well, I was even able to use a public restroom without causing a riot. I was thrilled to my toes having a dignified adult lunch with her and being referred to as “ladies”. It helped that I had normal female clothing at that point – the stuff from the specialty stores for cross dressers was all put away, never to be taken out again (ever).