In contemporary times, more and more people including celebrities are becoming true to themselves about their sexuality. Gone are the days when coming out used to be a big issue, there has been a paradigm shift with transgenders who do not feel whole with their birth gender going all out for a gender reconstruction and coming out more sexually fulfilled with their constructed gender. This becomes more interesting when we learn that a lot of our idols are transgender celebrities.
Though there are a couple of known transgender celebrities like Caitlyn Jenner, Laverne Cox, and Janet Mock who all transitioned into their preferred genders before the public eye, there exist a crop of others who were not sexually what we know them as now. It is for this special category of celebrities that this article has been dedicated to.
Here we will bring you 12 of such transgender celebrities, a brief background detail of each, and their gender transitioning story.
12 Transgender Celebrities Nobody Knew About
1. Erika Ervin
Standing at 6 feet 8 inches in height, Erika is really tall for a woman, more so, she has been adjudged the tallest transgender woman in the world.
Erika was born on February 23, 1979, in Turlock, California, and grew to become an American actress, fitness trainer, and model known professionally as Amazon Eve. Her career has seen her play recurring roles in American Horror Story: Freak Show and American Horror Story: Apocalypse, just as she has appeared on the cover of Zoo Weekly; an Australian Magazine.
Ervin had her sex reassignment surgery (male to a female) in 2004 prior to which she went by the name William. News about it, however only went public almost 10 years later as she made the revelation on a Swedish TV show after she was encouraged by fellow actor Bill Skarsgård.
2. Dr. Marci Bowers
In the transgender world, Dr. Marci Bowers has made the dreams of many come true, but what many people don’t know about this surgeon with the courage, heart, and gifted hands to completely transform the sexual identity of a person, is that she was once a man.
The surgeon was born on January 18, 1958, and named Mark Bowers which she continued to identify with until her university days at the University of Minnesota Medical School. She graduated from college in 1986 after which she went to study under the famous sex reassignment surgeon Dr. Stanley Biber. She equally spent some time in the “Sex Change Capital of the World” – Trinidad, Colorado before moving over to Burlingame, California.
Bowers was married for 11 years to a woman before she had her surgery in 1998 to become a woman. With her spouse, they share three children together and are today “closer than sisters” as they no longer share a marital relationship.
3. Ines Rau
There are transgender celebrities who you will never believe went through gender reassignment surgery. These are those who became totally modified to their new gender through the reconstruction procedures they went through. Ines Rau is one of such and being that she is a model, you wouldn’t believe she was previously a male.
Ines was born on March 18, 1990, in Paris, France. She was born male and is of Algerian descent. As early as age 16, the model had her gender reassignment surgery but never disclosed it until she turned 24. Her career started as a dancer when she was 18, then she went into modeling at age 24 when she posed nude with Tyson Beckford in a French luxury magazine OOB.
Over the years, the French-born Algerian model has continually grown in the industry and even became a voice for the transgender community.
4. Lana Wachowski
Lana Wachowski became famous as one of the Wachowski brothers (Laurence/Larry and Andy) credited for directing films like Cloud Atlas and Jupiter Ascending. But following her transition from male to female, they now simply go by The Wachowski’s.
Lana was born as a boy on June 21, 1965, in Chicago, Illinois where she also grew up. She identified with girls as a kid and as she got older, social stigma and the discomfort of being in a body that was distinct from what she felt caused her to fall into depression and have suicidal thoughts. Coming into the new millennium, Lana began her transition journey and completed it in 2008.
5. Lilly Wachowski
Following Lana’s trans journey, her then-brother and now sister stood by her as she transformed to be what we now know her to be. What we didn’t know was that Andy, now Lilly was equally a woman in a man’s body.
Lilly was born Andy Wachowski on December 29, 1967, in Chicago, Illinois. She has seen as much success as her sister Lana has seen in her career. The duo is inseparable and whichever credit one has, the other equally has. She came out as transgender in March 2016.
6. Valentijn de Hingh
Behind her glamour and dazzle in the fashion industry, Valentijn was born as a boy. But like every other transgender person today, She didn’t feel comfortable in the body she was born in. Prior to fame, she was known back in Holland as a male but transitioned into a female in the year 2007. She has since then been enjoying her life and career as an IMG model.
7. Zeke Smith
Though it seems transgender celebrities are dominated by men becoming women, there are still a couple of them from the other divide who have never been happier ever since they began living as men. One of such is Zeke Smith (the Survivor contestant).
Zeke is a comedian, asset manager, and a two-time reality television contestant. Behind that mustache and those sea-green eyes was once a girl born in central Oklahoma on January 28, 1985. From an early age, Zeke knew he was gay and by age 15 he came out. During his days in college, he transitioned and has been living as a man since then.
8. Chaz Bono
Chaz Salvatore Bono is an American writer, actor, and musician born as a girl to Sonny Bono and Cher on March 4, 1969, and named Chastity Sun Bono. She regularly appeared as a little girl in her parent’s reality television program in the 70’s prior to beginning her music career in the year 1988.
Chaz began his transition journey unto a path of self-gender fulfillment in mid-2008. By May 2010, his legal transition was complete and today he is one of the biggest transgender celebrities speaking out for others. Going by the way he looks, many people who do not know him before now actually don’t believe he was previously a female.
9. Ian Harvie
There are not many transgender celebrities who are comedians and are good at their acts. We probably have Ian Harvie and a few others. Ian today is one of those who are vocal about trans people and would seize any opportunity he has to speak about them.
The comedian was born on May 28, 1968, in Portland Maine, and by his 19th birthday, he identified himself as gay. At age 32, he became a trans-man as he transitioned from female to male.
10. Buck Angel
If you crave surreal content in adult films, then you must have come across Buck Angel (born Jake Miller, 5 June 1972) famous as an adult filmmaker. Buck has not always been accepted the way he is now. Growing up and as he came to terms with his true sexual identity, the adult entertainer struggled to find a place in a society that does not welcome people like him. He first began working as a female model and over time grew more confident to look the way he really felt inside. Buck today looks male but has the genitals of a female.
11. Lucas Silveira
Lucas Silveira is a guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist from Toronto, Ontario. He was born female in the year 1979 and in his youth, he lived in Portugal for 6 years. For this reason, the musician considers himself a Canadian-Portuguese.
As a kid, Lucas knew he was a boy inside and at a time asked his mother to buy him a male genital organ. As he came of age, he first identified as a lesbian and in 2004 he became a transgender (female to male). In the year 2010, he began his hormone replacement therapy and has been living and looking more like a man since then.
12. Loren Cameron
This American author and photographer whose works are more popular than his previous sexual identity once was a female. Loren was born on born August 28, 1959, in Pasadena, California where he also grew up as a tomboy. By age 16, he came out as a lesbian and received rejection in his hometown. This then led him to travel out to the San Francisco Bay Area where he was well received by the lesbian community there.
As he got older, he felt an inner hunger to look more masculine than feminine and this led to his transition from female to male which she captured with her camera. His journey to self-discovery also marked the dawn of his photography career as he not only photographed himself but also the transsexual community.