Over the last decade of writing for dapperQ, I have been thrilled to see new brands emerging (and thriving) that are designing clothing specifically geared to address the unique fit needs of diverse queer communities. Suits. Button downs/button ups. Casual pants. Underwear. But, few have dared to enter the choppy waters of swimwear. Enter Humankind Swim, a new swimwear company on the queer style scene that was developed to offer less gendered options so that people do not have to sacrifice so much of their personal style when shopping for the perfect suit. I chatted with a Haily Marzullo, a 25-year-old queer woman based out of West Hollywood, who is the CEO and visionary behind the androgynous swimwear brand.
dapperQ: Tell us a bit about yourself and the Humankind brand.
Haily: As a lesbian, I have always struggled to find clothing that made me feel comfortable and confident. I looked for brands that provided good fits and simple designs. When I couldn’t find it, I created it. The mission of Humankind Swim is to provide the LGBTQ+ community the ability to “wear what suits you.” Giving customers a way to shop effortless fits, minimal designs, at a fair price. Comfortable, functional and stylish swimsuits are hard to find for almost everyone, especially for those in the LGBTQ+ community. Resulting in a demand for a brand that supports comfort and confidence without gender.
As an LA native, I spend a lot of time outdoors and near the water. And as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I was done settling for swimwear that required so much effort to style, yet still didn’t deliver on comfort or function. When I was at the pool with friends, the last thing I wanted was to be uncomfortable in my own skin, or to be forced to choose gender-specific designs that weren’t true to my style.
And I knew I wasn’t the only one. I wanted to create carefree clothing that removed this burden and allowed everyone to enjoy the warm weather whatever way they feel their best – in the water, on land, and in everyday life. That’s why I created Humankind Swim – so that what you’re wearing can be the last thing on your mind.
dapperQ: How would you describe the Humankind aesthetic? What inspires your designs?
Haily: Our aesthetic is minimal pieces with a touch of color designed to be apart of your every life. My designs are inspired by the LA lifestyle.
dapperQ: Many of our readers have problems finding masculine, androgynous, and/or gender neutral swimwear that fit them properly. How does Humankind address this issue for readers not familiar with your brand?
Haily: We focus on creating effortless fits and have sampled our product on hundreds of different body types. It is important to us that our products make people feel comfortable and confident at the beach and in their daily life.
dapperQ: How has your experience in marketing for the beauty industry informed your approach to marketing and designing specifically for LGBTQIA+ communities?
Haily: Working in the cosmetic industry and being a part of the LGBTQIA+ community, I was able to get a closer look at how makeup can be used as a tool to show self expression. When given the right tools it becomes easier to show your true self and just like the right highlighter gives you that perfect glow, Humankind swim gives people the perfect suit. We want the same thing the cosmetic industry does, for the products you wear to make you feel comfortable, confident and good about yourself.
dapperQ: How would you describe your personal everyday style?
Haily: My everyday style is a mix of beach meets minima consisting of jeans and a tee. I look for fabrics that keep their quality over time as well as great fits.
dapperQ: Has it been a journey defining your own personal style?
Haily: I’ve struggled to determine my own personal style, trying to find a balance somewhere between masculine and feminine. Not feeling like I fall into either one of those categories, because I feel as though you shouldn’t have to, I have found comfort in keeping it simple typically shopping staple products like jeans and a T-shirt.
dapperQ: What is the one article of clothing you cannot live without?
Haily: Buck Mason tees have been and continue to be the staple to my wardrobe. They focus on great fits in natural hues.
dapperQ: What can we expect next from Humankind?
Haily: The growth of Humankind is endless, but for now, we plan to provide as many swimwear options as possible to give people the ability to wear what suits you.