Non-binary models for a bikini brand – the internet responds with shock

A brand decided to include a non-binary model in their campaign for beachwear but it was not entirely well received by their audience. Keep reading to know what people took issue with!

Bonds is an iconic Australian underwear brand that recently launched their latest campaign; the 2023 Pride Collection. One of the models included in the campaign was a non-binary model named Mikey Sakinofsky, who sported a bikini.

While Pride month is typically June, it seems like Bonds wanted to be early in their celebration of the LGBTQ+ people. The month signifies an important time for the LGBTQ+ community as they celebrate themselves and how much they have achieved.


To partake in this celebration, Bonds launded their UnGENderwear Project. The brand is “stripping back the gender stereotypes” with this campaign. The company’s official website said of their campaign: “[We] left only the freedom for you to wear our pieces however feels right.”

“We’ve consulted with the community, our partners at Minus18, and our UnGENderwear advocates to carefully curate an assortment of products to inspire the way you shop & think about clothes.”

It went on to say, “There’s room for everyone here, so go on and make yourself comfy.”


Mikey was photographed wearing the Bonds’ “Retro Rib™ Seamless Tonal Hi” bikini set in a vibrant fuchsia pink color. 

However, it seemed not everyone was happy about the inclusion of a non-binary model to wear these clothes. Soon, disparaging remarks about the campaign started rolling in on X (formerly known as Twitter).

One X user wrote: “Just another company to never buy from again.”

Another person commented on X, “Go woke, go broke, come on people!” Another upset person wrote, “I used to buy Bonds, [but] I will no longer do so, seeing a man wearing women’s garments is seriously off-putting.”


Bonds took to Instagram to promote their campaign, urging people to donate to causes that help the LGBTQ+ communities. Unfortunately, people who did not appreciate the campaign found their way to the Instagram page as well. One user commented on the post, “I will never buy ‘bonds’ again! Bye bye!”

“Just another step in the wrong direction. Will never support again,” another person wrote.

While there were those who did not appreciate this campaign, others were more supportive. One person wrote, “Thank you Bonds for showing your support and the diversity of those of us who wear Bonds.”

Another commentator added, “Thanks for celebrating diversity, Bonds.”


Model Mikey, who identifies as a proud non-binary person, has since then uploaded a video in which they respond to the negative reactions their campaign has gotten. They posted a video of their response.

“Gender diversity doesn’t look the same. I like to say we [are] like shades of green […], they are infinite,” the model shared his perspective, adding that previous media coverage of their campaign for Bonds has “championed voices of ignorance and hate” instead of celebrating the “love, kindness, and acceptance,” there has been as well.

Mikey’s analogy of using the color green to explain gender diversity stems from the fact that shades of green are “infinite.” “I’m a shade often left out of mainstream media,” they went on. “And I’m a shade definitely not tolerated by the conservative lens,” they reiterated.

“I’m valid,” Mikey went on to remind everyone in their video. They explained that they were not wearing ‘women’s clothing’ in the video but were merely wearing clothes!


What do you think about Mikey’s inclusion in the campaign? Let us know in the comments!

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