As a member of the LGBT community living in Brighton, Brighton Pride is normally the absolute highlight of my year. My friends and I plan the weekend meticulously, we have visitors from all over the country (and often overseas!), we talk about nothing else for weeks leading up to it, and seeing the city come alive in solidarity is one of the reasons why living in Brighton fills me with such joy.
This year, however, I’m – and I can’t believe I’m actually saying this – NOT GOING TO BE THERE. I’ll be living my best life at Bestival instead, which I’m kind of okay with because Bestival is amazing and I will have the best time. It just feels so strange, having never missed Brighton Pride since I moved here almost eight years ago!
Because I won’t be here in person, I’ve been looking for alternative ways to support Pride in this beautiful city, and I’ve found some pretty good ones. So if you want to show some love to the LGBT community whilst supporting some wonderful local Brighton businesses, this is a good place to start!
Pride wouldn’t be pride without colour, glitter and sparkle – but you know what’s even better? 100% biodegradable eco glitter that stays on all day long, with 10% of profits going to Allsorts Youth Project (a Brighton-based charity who support young members of the LGBTQA+ community), and a professional Glitta artist to apply it for you on the day!
Headblush have been sharing facts and statistics about the challenges faced by the LGBTQA+ community throughout Pride month, reminding us that Pride is about way more than just glitter. Their #morethanaparty campaign has been so refreshing next to the reams of corporate companies who just jump on the pride bandwagon to make more money, and give no fucks about supporting the cause in any meaningful way.
On Saturday, you’ll find the Headblush Glitta Bars at Jubilee Square from 10am-10pm, and outside the Mucky Duck just off St James’ Street from 3pm-10pm. If you’re sticking around, they’ll be outside the Mucky Duck again at the same time on Sunday too. Treat yourself to a rainbow Glitta makeover, a fabulous Glitta beard, or any one of their other showstopping glitter makeup looks. If you won’t be in Brighton this weekend, head to their website to pick up one of their pride-themed Glitta jam sets to use at home. The jam is self adhesive and can be painted on to create beautiful designs and effects, dries quickly and lasts all night long! And don’t worry – they don’t just come in rainbow; you’ll find the Trans Pride, Bi Pride and Pan Pride flag colours too, along with their limited edition Glitta mix, ‘More Than A Party’.
Brighton’s favourite loose leaf tea company, Bird & Blend Tea Co. (previously known as Bluebird Tea Co.), have really pulled it out of the bag this year with their Pride Tea Boxes. Not only do these colourful packs contain 4 of their most popular loose leaf blends, but an incredible 50% of profits from each one sold will go straight to The Albert Kennedy Trust – a national LGBTQA+ youth homelessness charity.
Inside each box, you’ll find:
“Shaking up tradition GBC has been blended with colourful rainbow sprinkles.”
“Giving your pride morning a kick start and good positive attitude, but it’s especially useful to help the morning after pride!”
“Kisses and love make us all grow closer! Now you can kiss all day (even if it is just tea).”
“Well the tea says it all really… Honey, bee beautiful!”
“Full of wonderful fruity flavours like the LGBTQ+ communiTEA, we love it and so should everyone else!”
They created the limited edition boxes to show support to the community both internally and within their customer base, along with those who are homeless or living in hostile environments through the Albert Kennedy Trust. The money raised will go towards providing safe homes, mentoring, training, advocacy and supporting vulnerable LGBTQA+ youth in many other ways. Head over to the Bird & Blend website to order yours!
If you ARE partying to celebrate Pride this weekend, you might be looking for something to help you get in the mood – and wouldn’t it be so much better if you could get drunk and help the community at the same time? You’d just be doing your bit, after all!
Queer-owned Brighton Gin have released a colourful selection of limited edition pride-themed bottles, inspired by this year’s Brighton Pride theme of ‘Colour My World’. 1,400 bottles have been released, with a minimum of £2 per bottle being donated to The Rainbow Fund – the Brighton and Hove based grant-giving fund for local LGBTQA+ and HIV/AIDS organisations.
You can purchase bottles individually, or – if you’re feeling flush (and need a huge amount of gin) – as a whole set that spells out ‘Brighton’, directly from the Brighton Gin website. If you’re in Brighton, individual bottles are also available from a number of stockists including Hisbe, Ten Green Bottles, Quaff and Mullhollands.
Of course, this is just a small handful of examples of local businesses doing incredible things to support the LGBTQA+ community. If you’ve spotted anything else, or if you work for a company who is doing something special, PLEASE make yourselves known in the comments/on my social channels so we can all show you some love!
And finally… stay safe this weekend, look after each other, be inclusive in your support, and HAVE A WONDERFUL PRIDE!