By Cady Lang
July 31, 2017

It wasn’t the Spike Jonze-lensed, larger-than-life livestream screens or the surprisingly intimate platform stage that he gave a heartbreakingly vulnerable performance on that was the most captivating visual during Frank Ocean‘s headlining set — his performance at the Panorama Festival in New York City.

Instead, it was the simple white tee shirt with a powerful message in a black, all-caps sans serif font that the infamously elusive Blonde singer sported during the show that might have been the night’s most poignant (and certainly most-Instagrammed) image. The statement tee’s caption, which read “Why be racist, sexist, homophobic, or transphobic when you could just be quiet?” paying homage to a now-viral tweet by Twitter user @avogaydro, instantly became a web sensation, with the Internet soon discovering that an online store called Green Box Shop and its 18-year-old CEO was responsible for the $18.99 tee shirt.

According to Green Box Shop’s website, founder Kayla Robinson, an 18-year-old entrepreneur who identifies as Afro-Latina and bisexual, started her company, along with a crew of Internet savvy teenagers, to make social justice tee shirts that she wasn’t finding elsewhere. The company focuses on selling sustainable and environmentally-friendly shirts and accessories with positive messages. The good vibes statements on the shirts extend to the company’s sales as well, with Green Box putting their money where their mouth is — for example, 50% of the proceeds from their “Climate Change is Real” shirt is donated to the Honeybee Conservancy.

In a statement to Complex, Robinson shared that she’s grateful for Ocean’s support and willingness to use his platform to start conversations about social justice issues.

“It’s very exciting to see a queer icon like Frank Ocean giving a voice to marginalized groups and using his platform to raise awareness about social justice issues using one of our shirts,” Robinson said. “My business is essentially my life message. I want other companies to know that they can use sustainable/ environmentally friendly business practices (fair trade and/or organic fabrics) and still thrive as a business. The fact that Frank Ocean is contributing to this reality is surreal for me and I am eternally grateful.”

This isn’t the first time that Ocean’s sartorial selections have made waves; at a concert in Manchester earlier in the summer, Ocean wore a shirt emblazoned with Brad Pitt’s face on it after the actor noted that Ocean was an integral part of his post-divorce playlist.

For those that want to buy the same shirt as Ocean’s, they’re still available on Green Box Shop for a hot $18.99 in four different colors and in sizes S-3XL.

Write to Cady Lang at

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