Binders

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A binder is a piece of fabric or clothing that reduces the appearance of your breasts, for reducing disforia. Wear it under your clothing.

How to use binders

Some long binders (which cover the upper body) can have the tendency to roll up on themselves. A possible solution is to stuff the binder in your pants or underwear.

Binders should be manually washed and left to dry outside and using cold water to wash them is recommended. This is not essential for using the binder, but it can increse its durability.

Binders made from more rigid materials can be more effective at first, but usually last less than ones that are more flexible.

In case the binder material is uncomfortable ou causes skin irritation, you can use a t-shirt under the binder without it becoming less effective.

Binders that adjustable (ex: binders with velcro on the side) can be easier to remove but harder to put on. The best way to put them on is adjusting the binder before you put it on.

In case you can’t wear the binder as you would with any other top (over your head, by putting your arms in first and then moving the binder down so you cover your chest and upper body), try wearing it from below your body: turn the binder inside out and upside down, and go in the binder with your feet and then pull it up untill it reaches the lower part of your upper body, pull the straps up and put your arms in the right places (visual explanation in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR4qfN5pQvk)

To test the binder effectiveness, it’s ideal to look at yourself in a mirror. If you try to evaluate by looking down on yourself to check out your chest, it will always seem bigger than reality.

While buying a binder in case you find two different sizes, your safest bet is to buy the size above your own. With a smaller size than your own, you run the risk of getting a binder that is too tight, uncomfortable or even impossible to wear.

Cis men don’t have (or rarely have) a perfectly flat chest.

Things to avoid

Binders, independentely of the method or fabric used, cause stress in your body because your ribcages are being compressed. For that reason, it’s advisable to never use a binder for more than 8 hours staight.

Elastic or compression bands should never be used as binders, as well as tape. These are methods are easily accessible to the general population, but are a horrible idea to use: they restrict breathing, don’t allow your thorax to expand, compress the bones in your back (they can even break those bones in the process, in extreme cases), bruises, etc.

Even when using the correct type of fabric, you should never use a size below the recommended size for your own body shape. Using a smaller size can be tempting, but it will end up being uncomfortable and will likely cause damage to your body.

Another bad idea is to use two binders at the same time. The extra compression of the second binder will, again, end up being uncomfortable and cause damage to your body. These same problems apply to bandages and tape.

Long term use of binders (for several years straight) can alter ou damage the breast tissue permanently and can affect future breast removal surgery.

Stores

Underworks

http://www.f2mbinders.com/ USA Prices: 23-30€, or your country’s equivalent Really popular among trans men for being one of the stores with the best price/quality ratio and for being efficient in providing for all sizes and body shapes. They have good customer support and are trans-friendly. They have all kinds of binders, including binders meant for swimming.

Sometimes they accept codes like “under10” or “aj4uw10” so you can receive a 10% discount. Most popular model: Tri-top Chest Binder, Ultimate Chest Binder Tank

GC2B

http://www.gc2b.co/ USA Prices: 30-32€, or your country’s equivalent

T-Kingdom

http://www.t-kingdom.com/ Taiwan Prices: 23-52€, or your country’s equivalent Really popular among trans men, mainly those who have tiny breasts. They have adjustible velcro or zipper zippers.

Love Boat

http://www.lesloveboat.com/shop/index.php?language=en Taiwan Prices: 17-78 euros, or your country’s equivalent They sell a variety of other products aimed at the trans and LGBT community. They have a big selection of models (adjustible, strapless etc) and a lot of different brand, including swimming binders. They have a “Plus size” section aimed at people with bigger breasts.

Mansculpture

http://www.mansculpture.com/ USA Preços: 30-52€, or your country’s equivalent

Danae

http://www.danae.info/en/female-male/tops The Netherlands Preços: 37-59€ or your country’s equivalent Includes adjustible models with velcro or zipper zippers and a swimming binder. It has other products that might be of interest to both trans men and women.

Esha

http://www.esha-taipei.net/en/gallery-4.html Taiwan Prices: 20-41€, or your country’s equivalent

To remove your breasts, see read this page.

Homemade methods

Sports bra

This is the most accessible method. It consists in using one or two sports bras at the same time, sometimes using one of these with a smaller size than your own.

Elastic or rubber straps

These can be found in sports clothes shops, farmacies or charity shops.

Binder exchange programs

Free/cheap ftm binders @ Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/groups/freeftmbinders/ Facebook group for selling, buying and exchanging binders.

FTM Garage Sale

http://ftmgaragesale.livejournal.com/ Community for selling, buying and exchanging binders, over at LiveJournal, as well as other devices that might be of use to trans men.

In a Bind

https://www.transactiveonline.org/inabind/ Only avalaible to residents in the USA. Restricted to people under 21 years old.

Replace The Ace

http://replacetheace.wordpress.com/binders/ Only avaible to residents in the USA.

Pay It Forward

http://binderprogram.ftmaustralia.org/ Only avalaible to residents in Australia and New Zealand


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