It’s 2022 – that means, everyone is free to be themselves, and we love it! We wanted to acknowledge the brave front runners in Hollywood for becoming some of the first transgender celebrities thriving against all odds.

30. Nikita Dragun

Nikita Dragun

Influencer and makeup artist Nikita Dragun started out on YouTube in the later 2010s. Since, she has released her very own beauty line, Dragun Beauty, modeled on runways for BooHoo and The Blonds, and appeared on her own reality shows, Nikita Unfiltered and Hype House.

29. Hari Nef

Hari Nef​

Hari Nef is an actress, model, and writer who you may recognize from the teen thriller Assassination Nation and Netflix’s You. She was also the first openly trans model signed to IMG Models. As a result, you’ve probably caught her on the runway at New York Fashion Week.

28. Nats Getty

Nats Getty

Speaking of Gigi Gorgeous, her husband, Nats Getty began transitioning after they got married. In January 2021, the 28-year-old designer shared that he was transitioning and undergoing top surgery in a heartfelt Instagram post. “I am transgender, non-binary. I have spent my entire life not in sync with the body I was born with and confined by an outwardly appearance that did not match my mind or soul,” Nats wrote. “It wasn’t until recently that I was even comfortable admitting this to myself, once I was able to look inwards and truly reflect on my authentic self.”

27. Gigi Gorgeous

Gigi Gorgeous

YouTuber Gigi Gorgeous rose to fame when she started posting beauty and lifestyle videos in 2008. After gaining a following online, she began documenting her transition on her channel. Since then, she’s released a documentary about her transition, This is Everything: Gigi Gorgeous, and written her memoir, He Said, She Said. These days, she hosts a podcast called Queerified, where she’s transparent about her sexual orientation and gender identity.

26. Teddy Geiger

Teddy Geiger

Your favorite song was probably written by Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter, and producer Teddy Geiger. Teddy has helped pen songs like Shawn Mendes’ “In My Blood,” One Direction’s Where Do Broken Hearts Go,” and Caroline Polachek’s “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings.” She broke into the music scene with her 2006 song “For You I Will (Confidence)” and still writes and releases her own music.

25. Dominique Jackson

Dominique Jackson​

While Dominique Jackson is most known for her role as Elektra Abundance on FX’s Pose, she is also an author, model, and activist. In a 2020 interview with Marie Claireshe admitted that she related to her character when it comes to the fear and anxiety she faced. “I went through those traumas, so if I lie about it, there may be some person that needed that truth and didn’t get it. And that could’ve been a life I could have saved,” she said.

24. Trevi Moran

Trevi Moran​

Trevi came out in 2020 by posting a video to her YouTube channel, which has over 1.4 million subscribers. “I’ve dealt with this feeling my entire life, and I know that I’m a woman deep down inside. It’s just a feeling, you know,” she said in the video. “I hit a rock in my journey in 2017 when I thought I wasn’t transgender because I thought that people were pushing me to be transgender. I just had a lot of demons back then. A lot of eating disorder stuff, self-confidence issues. It wasn’t the time for me to come out back then. But now I’m here, and I’m transgender.”

23. Alexandra Billings

Alexandra Billings​

You may recognize Alexandra Billings as Mrs. Warner on Netflix’s hit series, Never Have I Ever. Before she played the college counselor at Sherman Oaks, she played Davina in the Amazon series Transparent and made history as the second openly transgender woman to play a trans character on television.

22. Nikkie de Jager (a.k.a NikkieTutorials)

Nikkie de Jager

In 2020, beauty mogul Nikkie de Jager came out as trans in a YouTube video and revealed she was blackmailed. “It has been so crazy and absolutely surreal seeing the world respond to me and welcoming me with open arms and showing me nothing but love and respect,” she said in her follow-up video, “Responding to My Coming Out.”

21. Leyna Bloom

Leyna Bloom​

Leyna Bloom is an American actress, model, dancer, and activist who got her start in the ballroom scene. She also became the first trans person of color to make the cover of Sports Illustrated‘s Swimsuit issue in July 2021.

20. Kylie Sonique Love

Kylie Sonique Love​

RuPaul’s Drag Race alumna Kylie Sonique Love publicly came out as trans during the season 2 reunion special in 2010. Since then, she went on to become the first openly trans woman to win the competition on the sixth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars. RPDR has featured other trans drag artists like Gia Gunn, Jiggly Caliente, Peppermint, and Gottmik.

19. Angelica Ross

Angelica Ross​

Angelica Ross is a singer, activist, and actress. She became the first transgender woman to have two recurring series roles with her work on Ryan Murphy’s shows, Pose and American Horror Story: 1984. Most recently, Angelica signed a television development deal with Pigeon and TransTech Social Enterprises, a company that helps trans folks network and build their careers.

18. Quinn

Quinn

“I want to be visible to queer folks who don’t see people like them on their feed,” they wrote. “I know it saved my life years ago.”

17. Kataluna Enriquez

Kataluna Enriquez

In June 2021, Kataluna Enriquez made history when she was crowned Miss Nevada USA and became the first openly transgender Miss USA contestant. “My community, you are always in my heart. My win is our win. We just made history. Happy pride,” she wrote in an Instagram post celebrating her win.

16. Josie Totah

Josie Totah

Josie opened up about her transition in an essay in Time Magazine in 2018. This is not a choice that I made,” the Glee actress said. “When I was five, long before I understood what the word gender meant, I would always tell my mother that I wished I were a girl. Since I could speak in full sentences, I was like, ‘Give me a dress!’ I always knew on some level that I was female.”

15. Indya Moore

Indya Moore​

Aside from starring alongside MJ Rodriguez on FX’s Pose, Indya Moore has consistently advocated for the trans and non-binary communities. They have also used their platform to speak out against racism and gather donations for sex workers, trans people of color, and those with disabilities.

14. Sasha Allen

Sasha Allen

“That was a really hard decision to make because you are showing a very vulnerable part of yourself to millions and millions of people,” Sasha, who transitioned while he was in high school, told Parade. “But seeing people’s support and responses and how that has impacted people really showed that it was worth it and the right decision even though it was a hard one to make.”

13. Jazz Jennings

Jazz Jennings

It was Jazz’s honesty in her docuseries, I Am Jazz, that inspired Josie Totah and many other young people to begin their own transition. In an essay for Seventeen in 2015, Jazz said that telling her story to the world wasn’t “hard or scary.”

12. Eva Reign

Eva Reign​

You may recognize Eva Reign from Amazon Prime’s coming-of-age rom-com, Anything’s Possible, but what you might not know is she was a writer and journalist before making her big screen debut. Her writing has been featured in Vogue, Them, HighSnobiety, and PAPER, and she served as a correspondent for Vice World News’ show, Transnational.

11. Chella Man

Chella Man​

Chella Man is an artist, activist, and model who has openly shared his experiences as someone who is deaf and trans. Most recently, he launched a jewelry collection meant to accentuate hearing devices and cochlear implants.

10. MJ Rodriguez

MJ Rodriguez

“I’m feeling so many emotions. I’m feeling joy, and I’m feeling accomplished. I finally feel seen,” MJ told Deadline after the nomination. “I’m a girl hailing from Northern New Jersey who had dreams and aspirations like Whitney Houston, child. I never thought this could happen for me. I told myself no matter what happens, I’m going to keep going and never stop.”

9. Lennon Torres

Lennon Torres

The former Dance Moms star came out as trans on TikTok in May 2021. She later told Seventeen that she decided to come out so publicly with the hope that it would help other young people who might be questioning their gender identity.

8. Emira D’spain

Emira D’spain

Emira D’spain —a.k.a @xoxoemira online — is a TikTok star and the former beauty director at Paper. She constantly posts “Get Ready With Me” videos on her TikTok where her bubbly personality shines through and became the first Black transgender model to work with Victoria’s Secret as a part of their Valentine’s Day social campaign in 2022.

7. Kim Petras

Kim Petras

German pop star Kim Petras made her way onto the mainstream music scene in 2017 and has gone on to create bops like “Clarity,” “There Will Be Blood,” and her No. 1 single with Sam Smith, “Unholy.”

Per MTV News, Kim was actually the youngest person to get gender reassignment surgery in 2009, when she was just 16 years old. Before the 2020 election, Kim joined forces with MTV, LogoTV, and Trans Lifeline to provide grant money for trans people to update their IDs.

6. Laverne Cox

Laverne Cox​

After she landed a starring role on Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, Laverne Cox quickly became one of the most visible trans actresses in mainstream media. In 2014, she became the first trans woman to win a Daytime Emmy Award as the executive producer for MTV’s Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word. Since OITNB ended in 2019, Laverne has continued to advocate for the transgender community and is now the host of E!’s Live From The Red Carpet.

5. Elliot Page

Elliot Page

In December 2020, Elliot revealed on social media that he is trans and goes by he/they pronouns. “I feel lucky to be writing this. To be here. To have arrived at this place in my life,” he wrote. “I feel overwhelming gratitude for the incredible people who have supported me along this journey. I can’t begin to express how remarkable it feels to finally love who I am enough to pursue my authentic self. I’ve been endlessly inspired by so many in the trans community.”

4. Zión Moreno De Pequena

Zión Moreno De Pequena

If you recognize Zión, it’s because she’s currently staring as Luna in the Gossip Girl reboot on HBO Max. Luna is actually the first trans character in the show’s history, but show runner Joshua Safran said Luna’s identity won’t come up in the plot this season.

3. Tommy Dorfman

Tommy Dorfman

After showing off photos of her changing style and appearance on Instagram for a year, Tommy Dorfman announced she’s trans in an interview with Time in July 2021.

2. Zaya Wade

Zaya Wade

Zaya Wade is the 15-year-old daughter of retired NBA player Dwyane Wade. After she publicly came out as trans in 2019, Dwyane told The Today Show that being her dad has helped him grow.

1. Hunter Schafer

Hunter Schafer

Hunter’s portrayal of Jules in Euphoria is an example of the importance of trans representation for teens. In the show, Jules is very open about her identity and is confident in herself.