Japanese Street Style

Two weeks ago I went to a presentation about Japanese street styles and the differences between the way Americans and Japanese people dress. It was really interesting, so I thought I would share a few of the styles I learned about.

1. Lolita: Usually people who dress in Lolita style wear frilly dresses and girly clothing. There are sub-cultures to this style: there’s Gothic Lolita, Punk Lolita and Sweet Lolita.

2. Ganguro: Ganguro girls wear dark makeup to make themselves look tan. They usually bleach their hair and wear white makeup around their eyes, heavy eyeliner and false eyelashes.

3. Cosplay: Is short for Costume Roleplay. These people dress up as their favorite anime or video game character, Japanese band member or fantasy movie character. Some Cosplay enthusiasts (men and women) dress as maids or butlers and work in Maid or Butler Cafes. If a man walks into a Maid Cafe, the workers must respond by saying, “welcome home, Master!” and vice versa for a Butler Cafe. A Maid Cafe is not a brothel!

4. Harajuku: You’ve probably heard of this culture through the unfortunate Gwen Stefani. Harajuku girls mix bright colors, patterns and anime characters.

Each of these fashion cultures define what is “pretty” to the people that participate in them. To Ganguro girls, tan skin and bleached hair is beautiful while Lolita girls like wearing feminine, frilly clothing. In the presentation, I was introduced to a Japanese clothing line called AMBUSH. It was founded by couple Yoon and Verbal. Their bright, witty designs have been worn by Kanye West, Rihanna and even Lady Gaga! Their online store doesn’t have a wide selection of clothing to choose from, but you can check it out HERE.

What do you think of Japanese fashion cultures?