KV: Bringing Inclusivity to the World of Fashion

Kontroversial is streetwear that strives to create change and allow everyone to be their most authentic selves. Our gender-neutral clothing features creativity and specialises in unique pieces designed for a lifestyle where no justification is necessary.

Our clothing is for everyone, and therefore, never priced up depending on who is wearing it.

On average, it still costs more to be a woman than a man. Not necessarily because of what women are buying, or how much they are buying of it, but because feminine-branded products that are aimed at women are often more expensive, and women are expected to spend more money on things that men are not.


Equality Tee - Back Design

Then there’s the gender pay gap, which sees full-time workers who are women earning on average 8.9% less than their counterparts who are men. The gender pay gap is even bigger for women of colour. According to recent research available by the Fawcett Society and Manchester University, for Bangladeshi and Pakistani women, the aggregate gender pay gap with White British men stands at 26.2%, while for Black African, women the gap is 19.6%.

It is also widely known that feminine hygiene products are often marked at a higher price point than like-for-like products which are aimed at a male audience. Often dubbed ‘the pink tax’, several analyses have found that on the UK high street, female branded razors cost 49% more than the male equivalent. Meanwhile, The Times reported that Tesco sold five own-brand ‘female twin-blade disposable razors’ for £1, compared to 10 almost identical blue razors for the same price. Many supermarkets seem to have introduced gender neutral razors since.

And it’s the same across other brands. At Argos, identical children’s scooters are £5 more expensive, just because they’re pink. Levi have also been singled out for costing their 501 jeans at 46% more expensive for women (with the same length leg and waist).

Across the high street, the same pattern occurs. A women’s roll-sleeve white t-shirt cost £12 in Topshop, compared to a virtually identical item which cost £8 in Topman. In fact, on average, women’s clothing costs nearly 8% more than men’s.

While some discrepancies are often explained away by differences between how men’s and women’s clothes are constructed, retail prices are set by retailers - not manufacturers. Price differences are generally due to business considerations, and because women are generally pushed, or willing, to pay higher prices for their clothing than men.

Drawing on this important need for inclusivity across all genders, shapes, sizes, races and classes, we’re proud to have created a collection of clothing that all genders can wear - and where no product is marked up simply because of who is wearing it.

As a brand, Kontroversial wants to disrupt a generation that fixates on what you should wear and what path you should take. All of our clothing is inspired by real life contexts, as well as aspects of personal life, relationships and reactions to what is going on in the society around us.

Our vision is of a society where clothing is less gender-specific and more focussed on freedom, so that people are not socially charged into wearing what they think they should. Or spending whatever they are unfairly pushed into paying.

For us, to show different genders wearing the same clothes but worn in totally different ways, shows people the variety of possibilities within the same product - while also looking to inspire people to think outside the box of the gender norms and stereotypes that are associated with it.


Unity Tee - Long


Unity Tee

Our goal is to challenge the issues connected with identity and stereotypes, empowering all ages, genre and size.

Our founding and creative director, Kate Friar explains;

“Despite the fact that women are the majority consumers and designers of fashion, it is still men who are at the top running it all.

"The way I see it is that women come into fashion/retail at entry level and work their way up, whereas men get involved with other projects or work, make a lot of money and then enter fashion already on a pedestal.

"This goes back to the inequality of pay, which is something that is still very much a real problem across many industries.

"This is why we, as a brand, are trying to blur that line of the gender stereotype with our clothing, so that everything will always be the same price for everyone, no matter the product.

"If I can design and create clothing that inspires people to be unapologetically true and comfortable within themselves then I would have achieved what I set out to do."


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