Pushing limitations comes with the job description of being an artist in the spotlight.
But this just might set a new standard. Dphill Spanglishman is the innovator behind the “XY” movement, a new breed of straight male artists who rock lipstick and tight, colorful clothing to blur gender lines. They aim to challenge what is considered normal for menswear.
The provocative form of self-expression is not just a gender-bending strategy to amass more listeners. In April, rapper Lil B did when he released his album titled I’m Gay as a way to express his joy in making music as opposed to professing his orientation.
Prince and Boy George are also throwback examples of male performers who used their feminine side to stick out as artists.
The 19-year-old rapper, first featured in the October issue of S magazine, is now leading a younger generation to do the same.
“I had to just break down those barriers in my mind to where I was just confident to do it,” he recently told local news station CW33 in Dallas, wearing floral leggings, bright pink lipstick and Jordans.
Not only does it take an extreme sense of self-comfort, but his girlfriend also supports him. “It’s fine. I wear lipstick, he wears lipstick, we share lipstick,” Joy Nguyn said.
The “XY” leader, whose real name is Darryll Phillips II, has also turned to social media, finding male followers on Twitter who also wear lipstick in support of the movement. However, not everyone approves the statement Dphill is trying to make.YouTube users “TheNikbagtvZone” and “TheBloodprint” have publicly called him gay after his story generated a buzz on World Star Hip Hop.
Even if his girlfriend gets negative reactions as well, there’s no changing this guy’s fashion sense anytime soon.
“A lot of people feel like a lot of colors and tight clothes is homosexual,” Phillips said, “ I feel like that it’s more of an expression to me.” — Adelle Platon