Here is a quick guide to some of the most common flags used in the LGBT community (and beyond) to describe gender and/or sexuality related identities. While definitions are provided for reference, please know definitions of many of these terms are evolving and changing all the time. I encourage you to explore these identities further to learn more.
Asexual Pride Flag
An aromantic is a person who experiences little or no romantic attraction to others. Where romantic people have an emotional need to be with another person in a romantic relationship, aromantics are often satisfied with friendships and other non-romantic relationships.
An asexual person may or may not experience romantic attraction (see aromantic) but will feel no need to act out that attraction sexually.
In the Summer of 2010, a number of asexuality sites, led by users on AVEN, came up with a number of designs for an asexuality flag, then held a multi-stage vote to determine the winner. The selected design was created by AVEN user standup,
Aromantic Pride Flag
An aromantic is a person who experiences little or no romantic attraction to others.
Where romantic people have an emotional need to be with another person in a romantic relationship, aromantics are often satisfied with friendships and other non-romantic relationships.
There are two different versions of the Aromantic Pride Flag. This is the one currently most commonly used.
Bisexual Pride Flag
Bisexuality is romantic attraction, sexual attraction or sexual behavior toward both males and females, or romantic or sexual attraction to people of any sex or gender identity; this latter aspect is sometimes termed pansexuality.
The bisexual pride flag was designed by Michael Page in 1998. The first bisexual pride flag was inspired by his work with BiNet USA.
Bear Pride Flag
In male gay culture, a bear is often a larger, hairier man who projects an image of rugged masculinity. Bears are one of many LGBT communities with events, codes, and a culture-specific identity. In many communities bear clubs” have been created to provide social and sexual opportunities. Many clubs are loosely organized social groups; others are modeled on leather biker-patch clubs, with a strict set of bylaws, membership requirements, and charities.
Craig Byrnes created the Bear pride flag in 1995.
Genderqueer and Non Binary Pride Flag
Genderqueer describes a person who does not subscribe to conventional gender distinctions but identifies with neither, both, or a combination of male and female genders.
The Genderqueer and Non-Binary Pride Flag was created by Marilyn Roxie in 2011. This flag has also been adopted by many in the Gender Non-Binary community. While some currently use these two terms interchangeably, others maintain genderqueer and gender non-binary have overlapping, but separate definitions.
Intersex is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.
There are two distinct flags commonly associated with intersex identities. The first one (not pictured here) is derivative of the Trans Pride flag and is not used as commonly these days.
The flag shown here was created by Intersex Australia in 2013.
Leather Pride Flag
Leather culture is most visible in gay communities and most often associated with gay men (“leathermen”), but it is also reflected in various ways in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and straight worlds. Many people associate leather culture with the consensual exchange of power in romantic and/or sexual relationships.
The leather flag was created by Tony DeBlase in 1989. He first presented the design at the International Mister Leather event in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. on May 28, 1989,
Pansexual Pride Flag
Pansexuals have the capability of attraction to others regardless of their gender identity or biological sex.
A pansexual could be open to someone who is male, female, transgender, intersex, or agendered/genderqueer.
Poly Pride Flag
Polyamory is the philosophy or state of being in love or romantically involved with more than one person at the same time. Polyamory is the practice, desire, or acceptance of having more than one intimate relationship at a time with the knowledge and consent of everyone involved.
The flag was by Jim Evans.
The Rainbow Flag
This is the inclusive flag most frequently associated with the entire lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, & questioning communities. The original gay pride flag flew in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade on June 25, 1978 and was designed by Gilbert Flag.
The original Rainbow Flag had an additional hot pink stripe that is no longer used today.
Transgender Pride Flag
Transgender is a term used to describe people whose gender identity differs from the sex the doctor marked on their birth certificate. Gender identity is a person’s internal, personal sense of being a man or a woman (or someone outside of that gender binary). For transgender people, the sex they were assigned at birth and their own internal gender identity do not match.
The Trans Pride flag was designed by Monica Helms in 1999.
Straight Ally Flag
A straight ally or heterosexual ally is a heterosexual and/or cisgender person who supports equal civil rights, gender equality, LGBT social movements, and challenges homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.