LIFESTYLE
18/06/2015 16:34 BST | Updated 18/06/2015 16:59 BST

Ruby Rose And Miley Cyrus Identify As Gender Fluid, But What Exactly Does Gender Fluidity Mean?

After years of being stuck in a male/female binary, ideas and understanding around gender identity and traditional gender roles are finally starting to change.

First, Caitlyn Jenner opened up discussion about gender with her honest interviews on transgender issues. Now, celebrities are speaking out in order to raise awareness about another gender identity: Gender fluidity.

In a recent interview with Elle magazine, Orange Is The New Black actress Ruby Rose explained what gender fluidity means to her.

"Gender fluidity is not really feeling like you're at one end of the spectrum or the other. For the most part, I definitely don't identify as any gender," she said.

"I'm not a guy; I don't really feel like a woman, but obviously I was born one. So, I'm somewhere in the middle, which - in my perfect imagination - is like having the best of both sexes.

"I have a lot of characteristics that would normally be present in a guy and then less that would be present in a woman. But then sometimes I'll put on a skirt - like today."

ruby rose

Rose isn't the first famous face to speak out about gender fluidity.

Actress Susan Sarandon has said she is excited for society to get rid of boxes such as "man" and "woman" so that we can "get down to the nitty-gritty of, really, what a person is". And last month, Miley Cyrus told Paper magazine that both her sexuality and gender identity are multi-faceted.

"I am literally open to every single thing that is consenting and doesn't involve an animal and everyone is of age. Everything that's legal, I'm down with," she said.

"Yo, I'm down with any adult - anyone over the age of 18 who is down to love me. I don't relate to being boy or girl, and I don't have to have my partner relate to boy or girl."

Speaking to HuffPost UK Lifestyle, a spokesperson from Stonewall explained why there may be a rise in people identifying as gender fluid.

“People come in all different shapes and sizes, with different beliefs, backgrounds, experiences, sexualities, gender identities and gender expressions," they said.

"Gender fluidity is something that a lot of people will be able to associate with and it’s great to see celebrities speaking out about their lived experiences."

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The Stonewall spokesperson went on to say that the recent surge in celebrities talking about gender fluidity will help to improve public awareness about gender issues which will ultimately "enable more people to feel free to be themselves".

"We’d love to see more people – celebrities and others – come forward to share their experiences to help ensure that everyone, everywhere is accepted for who they are," they added.

One person who knows just how much celebrity discussion on gender can have a positive impact is mum and HuffPost blogger Melissa McLaren.

As the parent of a transgender 9-year-old girl, McLaren says Cyrus' recent discussions on gender fluidity have been beneficial to her daughter.

"I was excited to share that Miley is very aware of gender issues and embraces a life free from the boxes we traditionally put people into," she wrote in a recent blog post.

"My daughter didn't know who Hannah Montana was (we missed that by a few years) but she was very aware of who Miley Cyrus was. I wish I could have captured the grin that spread across her face when I shared the news with her.

"Though my daughter identifies strongly as a female, I have a heart for gender-fluid individuals and feel that they are desperately underrepresented and face even more barriers. I'm so happy that Miley has been open and rather candid about her wish not to be put into a binary box."

If you're still confused by gender fluidity, we'll leave you with these words from Ruby Rose: "The takeaway is that only you know who you were born to be. And you need to be free to be that person."

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