The Problem

These coffee stands originated in Seattle with a business model based on sexual objectification. Young women wearing only pasties, thong underwear, other lingerie, or bikinis ostensibly serve coffee. However, the pornified working conditions result in frequent sexual harassment of staff, have been associated with indecent exposure and prostitution, and are an affront to public decency and health. Sexpresso cafes bring strip club atmosphere to the neighborhood coffee shop.

Sexpresso Cafés are coffee shacks that originated in Seattle, Washington, with a business model based on sexual objectification where young women serve coffee wearing bikinis or lingerie. These pornified working conditions result in frequent sexual harassment of staff and have been associated with indecent exposure and prostitution arrests. Sexpresso Café chains have expanded to other states including Maryland, Texas, North Carolina, Colorado, and Florida. Referred to by some as “Bikini Baristas” and “Bareistas,” prominent chains include CowgirlsEspresso, Foxy Lady Latte, and Devil’s Brew Coffee. They represent a new form of sexually-oriented businesses which are introducing a sexually toxic, strip-club atmosphere to the community coffee shop.

 

As hyper-sexuality is used for commerce, a new class of women is formed that is no longer protected from sexual harassment in the workplace. Sexpresso Café employees have reported being verbally harassed, propositioned for prostitution, and having men approach the drive-thru window with their genitals exposed. Sexpresso Cafés foster an environment where once a woman puts on her “uniform” she is deemed fair game by the men in the drive-thru to be treated in a way they would never treat a coworker in the office.

 

Sexpresso Cafés are easy targets for stalking, sexual violence, and robbery because their structures are often only large enough for one or two female employees to work there at a time, and there is little to no security. In 2013, a man wielding a knife robbed Twin Perks Espresso in broad daylight. That same year, a twelve year old boy held up a Sexpresso Café, called Hillbilly Hotties, with a revolver. And in 2011, in Lakewood Washington, three teenagers robbed four of these cafés, and eventually sexually assaulted a barista.

 

Coffee shops that employ the “bikini business model” not only foster sexism and objectification as acceptable social practices, but they also do so while putting their employees at risk.

 

Proof

WARNING: Some of the language and images (though blurred) is graphic and may be a trigger for some.



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Use these prepared Tweets (Trigger Warning if you look at their feeds):

  • @FoxyLadyInc @CowgirlsXpresso #bikinibaristas business is based on sexually exploiting women.
  • Real men don’t go to @FoxyLadyInc @CowgirlsXpresso because they’re businesses based on treating women like sex objects #sexploitationfreecoffee
  • @FoxyLadyInc @CowgirlsXpresso Please change your business strategy- just sell good #sexploitationfreecoffee, not women’s bodies!

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Sexpresso Cafés, also known as Bikini Baristas or Bareistas, are coffee stands where women in hyper-sexualized bikinis and lingerie serve hot beverages. This promotional trend began in the early 2000’s in Seattle, and it quickly spread to other states, such as North Carolina, Colorado, Maryland, Texas, and more. Pornified culture is personified in these isolated […]

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