TRACE app praised for creating safe space to support transgender and non-binary people

Users praised TRACE for being a trans-owned, trans-run space to get encouragement, support, and realistic advice. 

Person gazes at phone representing TRACE app for transgender and non-binary users
Image: Eren Li

Transgender and non-binary people are praising the TRACE app for being a positive source of encouragement, support, and realistic advice for people who are transitioning.

TRACE stands for Transition Recording And Community Engagement, and it was founded by Aydian Dowling, a trans activist who transitioned 12 years ago. He created the app so that users can document their gender transitions while building community and gaining support. It encourages users to reflect on their personal growth by celebrating milestones and acknowledging progress, even after difficult setbacks.

The trans-owned, trans-run app helps users track important dates and reminders during their transition process. Users create customisable reminders for photo tracking, HRT, and anniversaries. The app also has a journaling feature to document milestones, like how voices change over time. TRACE also includes a countdown feature where users add upcoming events into a calendar.

The app launched in July 2022 initially as a date tracker. With the added community feature, the app became a space for transitioning individuals to document their experience, “and be affirmed and supported by their community.”



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The app aims to provide a space for people to talk about their transitions openly and find the support and connection that don’t exist is other online spaces. Users can pose questions publicly or opt to send each other private messages.

Sharing private information on apps and social media services can be worrisome. A social media safety index conducted by GLADD found that 49% of trans and non-binary adults feel unsafe on social media, and concluded that major social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and YouTube, fail to protect the safety, privacy and expression of LGBTQ+ users.

Thankfully, since it was designed exclusively for LGBTQ+ people, TRACE has safeguards in place to protect users including a trans lawyer on the team.



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Since its launch last year, TRACE has expanded to include resources and reminders so allies can better support their friends and family members during their transition. It is now being used in over 90 countries.

One user said: “Being able to look back and see my progress has been key to dragging me out of those dysphoria pits. It is easy to get wrapped up in what I look like that day and I lose all perspective on how far I’ve come. Thank you for giving us a platform to document and interact with this gorgeous trans community.”

Another user talked about the importance of the TRACE app, saying: “As a Transgender therapist who specialises in gender-affirming care, I know the importance of having a safe space to connect with others and track your own journey. The TRACE app is life-changing for people who may not have that support in their day-to-day lives.”

The TRACE app is available to download here.

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