Can I Be Gyaru If…?


Recently I’ve noticed that those new to the wonderful world of gyaru are forever asking questions like, “Can I still be gyaru if I can’t wear circle lens?” or “Can I be gyaru with [x] colour hair?” Because of this, I have decided to create a big post on the most popular questions asked in our community.

updated: 22.09.2021

I don’t wear circle lens?

Yes, yes yes! Although circle lens really help complete the look, it is possible to work without. I’ve been doing it for goodness knows how long and there are a few other gaijin gyaru such as Pin who really rock it without them. It just takes a hell of a lot more work, and I know from experience that it does take a while to get used to wearing dramatic makeup to make-up for the lack of lens but it’s all about working with your eye shape to make your eyes look bigger. Here’s my makeup tutorial on how to do gyaru makeup without circle lens.

Gaijin gyaru Pin
Gaijin gyaru Pin looking flawless without circle lens!

… I am plus size?

Definitely! Gyaru isn’t about being a certain size, it’s about accepting yourself and “get wild and be sexy!” The main thing is to be happy with the way you are. This applies to all fashions, not just gyaru! If wearing something makes you feel down about yourself then chuck it straight in the bin and wear the things you love. I spoke to one of my circle sisters (and fellow co-leader) Danielle about her experiences being plus-sized in gyaru.

Plus-sized gyaru at campus summit
This chick is badass! image source

… I wear glasses?

I actually don’t know many people who do gyaru with glasses but it’s definitely possible. It’ll be a good idea to look at makeup tutorials online on what kind of makeup to wear with glasses according to their lens (i.e. if they make your eyes look bigger or smaller) and then apply that knowledge to when you’re doing your gyaru makeup.

Here’s a photo of a Ageha mag scan (I believe)

How to do gyaru with glasses

… I have [insert colour] hair?

Gyaru is one of the most versatile styles I’ve seen when it comes to hair (thank goodness) and although black isn’t the most popular colour it’s still do-able, and anything other than black is completely fine! All I would say though is that dark-hair doesn’t exactly come to mind when you think about gyaru, so you might have to do things like go for more dramatic makeup and hairstyles. I don’t know if I mentioned it before, but gyaru is the overall aesthetic; it isn’t just limited to one thing.

Other than that, vibrant hair colours are very popular in gyaru! Just take a look at Black Diamond.

… I’m over 20?

HELL YES! I’m going to be a gyaru granny, haha. There are plenty of gyaru who still do it even when they’re 30 years old! There’s even one gyaru on Instagram who’s 50! Age has no limit, and I actually talked about my insecurities about being “too old” for gyaru in the past.

Sakurina is one of the most well-known gyaru and is over 20!

… I have children?

Gal mamas are the best! There was even a whole magazine dedicated to them called “gal mama” (surprise surprise). I have heard that some gyaru who do become mothers do tone down their look a little bit but I guess it all depends on how you feel about it! Here’s an article where someone interviewed a gal mama.

… I have tattoos and piercings?

Definitely! I see quite a lot of gyarus sporting tattoos, and those are mainly from oraora/tsuyome gals. I’m pretty sure there are more who aren’t into that substyle, but those are where I normally catch a peek of a tattoo.

That goes the same with piercings; it’s totally doable, and looks great for the more “darker” styles like oraora, tsuyome, rokku and gothic gyaru. Mayuyun is a perfect example of having tattoos and piercings!

That’s not to say that people outside of those substyles don’t have tattoos/piercings, it’s just my observation.

… I have short hair?

Much like the “can I be gyaru if I have [x] coloured hair”, I’ve seen gals rocking both long, medium and short hair! It doesn’t matter what length it is, as long as it’s styled and looks fabulous then it’s all good. Kanako Kawabata always comes to mind whenever I think of a gal rocking short hair! There’s also other people like Okarie, Sakurina (although in her old photos), and Chie & Chika often wear short-haired wigs. I’ve done a whole guide on how to do gyaru with short hair right over here.

… I’m not Asian?

Hell yeah! I’ve seen a lot of Western gyaru looking absolutely flawless in this style. It’s all about adjusting the gyaru makeup & clothes to suit your features. Just take a look at the gaijin gyaru community; there are tons of great inspiration for you there! Here are some amazing gyaru makeup tutorials for Western features you’re stuck.

… I am [certain race]?

Yes! You can be gyaru regardless of where you’re from.

… I don’t do gyaru everyday?

I’ve noticed this question cropping up more and more in the community and on my social channels and the short answer is: No. You cannot label yourself as gyaru if you don’t look gyaru.

Take me, for example: I have eczema on my eyelids and around my eyes so it’s not possible for me to wear makeup everyday which is essential in gyaru, and I’ve long made peace with that. What I do instead is incorporate gyaru into my life in other ways; whether it’s through having a leopard print bag, getting my nails done, putting more effort into making my clothes look fancy, and ensuring my phone case is always super over-the-top. At least that way when someone looks at me, they might not think I am gyaru, but they can definitely tell that I’m gyaru-inspired.

There are lots of ways that you can incorporate gyaru into your daily life – e.g. through accessories, stationery, clothes – and you’ve just got to find a way to make it work.

… I wear [certain type] of clothes?

Luckily here are so many styles to choose from that your clothes are bound to fall into one of the gyaru substyles. If you’re already into, say, punk, then rokku gyaru would be perfect for you and if you’re into wearing tracksuits, then oraora. I used to say “oh it doesn’t matter what you wear as long as your hair and makeup is perfect” but to be honest… There are certain rules within gyaru. For example, the clothes are a lil’ bit sexier. There’s just a certain “aura” that gyaru has.

Take Emika Kanda for example; she frequently mixes gyaru together with fairy kei (the gal on the left in the pic below) she still looks super gyaru. Because even when she’s wearing pastels, there’s that wild and sexy vibe to it rather than being childlike and cutesy. Oh and, of course, her makeup and hair is SO GYARU.

You’ve just got to ask yourself: “does this have a wild and sexy vibe?” If the answer is yes, then you’re safe. Again, it’ll be easier to spot gyaru-able items once you do your research and use your favourite substyle as a base.

fairy kei, gyaru, emika kanda

… If I don’t wear lashes?

I used to think it was impossible to do gyaru without lashes, but scratch that – it is totally possible HOWEVER you can only do this if:

  • You have naturally long lashes and wear a sh*t ton of mascara
  • Are doing old-school gal (lots of eyeliner involved)
  • Have a noticeable tan

If you’re a lil’ bit stuck, I would recommend looking at 90s gyaru and anything that’s maybe pre-2007.

… If I don’t wear makeup?

No – you can’t label yourself as gyaru if you don’t wear makeup.

Because, throughout all eras of gyaru, the one thing they have in common is the makeup. Whether it’s the dark tan and contour, or large false lashes, all gyaru wear at least some sort of makeup.

Here is a screenshot from an interview with Harutamu, who was one of the key people in Black Diamond GAL Unit:

diamond rose divider

And that’s all for today! I know that there are probably loads of more questions to cover but I thought that these were the commonly asked ones in our community. All I can say is – if you’re missing one aspect of gyaru, you’ve got to emphasise in other areas. Take me for example; I am quite pale and I have dark hair, so I make sure that my hair is always styled and my eye makeup is dramatic af.

If you have any more questions, please ask, and I’ll do my best to answer! 😀

Until later, cuties!

Love,
Lizzie xx


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74 Comments
  • Mary Lee
    April 12, 2019

    Love this post xo!

    illustrious-mari.blogspot.com

    • hellolizziebee
      March 19, 2020

      Thanks so much!

      • HONK
        September 1, 2021

        Is it ok to do the droopy eye makeup if I’m white?

      • Mochiwren.
        December 11, 2021

        I actually have a question. I’ve been in gyaru for a long long time. I’ve thrifted outfits, watched videos on it, read magazines, and interacted with other popular gals online.

        I have one issue. I can’t wear make up. I mean I can wear very very few make up. Donut make up causes my skin to turn to rashes and all red. The discomfort can last a few minutes to hours.
        I’m really into gyaru but I almost never wear the typical make up or at all due to the discomfort it causes to me. I’ve had people tell me I can’t be a gal because make is a requirement but I’ve seen others say it’s about style and preference. I feel like I’m stuck. I really like the style but hearing this makes me feel discouraged.

        My question really is: Can I still be gyaru without make up? Is make up really a requirement or is it based on style and preference? I’ve noticed as the years go by the make up in gyaru has changed alot. I’ve seen gals use natural make up or lighter make up.

        • hellolizziebee
          December 11, 2021

          Unfortunately, I’m so sorry but even the more toned down gyaru look required makeup 😰 I feel like the only way you could perhaps get away with it is to go old school and have a tan and bleach blonde hair and eyeliner….

          I’m actually going through a really bad eczema flare up on my face atm so haven’t been able to wear makeup for the past month so have been calling my looks gyaru-inspired rather than gyaru. But I’m gonna start experimenting to see what makeup can work with it!

          • Mochiwren
            December 12, 2021

            I can wear lip gloss, lip sticks, some mascara, some eyeliner, and highlight. I can’t wear eyeshadow because my my eyes start to burn up and causes very bad discomfort. I haven’t tried out fake eyelashes due to being afraid of a reaction.

            Basically almost any powder like substance causes discomfort around my eyes and nose.
            Is there anything I can do with the limited amount of make up I can use?

          • hellolizziebee
            December 12, 2021

            Hmmm what about using cream eyeshadow instead of powder eyeshadow? And there are definitely ways to go about it without false lashes but it depends how long your natural lashes are when you wear mascara and if you can wear circle lens

  • queenithh
    April 18, 2021

    Is it alright to do gyaru if im around the age of 12-14 because im worried im too young!

  • Sophia
    May 8, 2021

    I LOVE this!!!

  • lele
    May 9, 2021

    i love gyaru so much but i’m a bit worried to do it because i don’t want it to be considered asian fishing or japanese fishing?? is putting white eyeliner under my eye asian fishing or any of the sort because i don’t want to do anything that could be offensive to anyond

    • hellolizziebee
      May 10, 2021

      Doing gyaru or any sort of Japanese fashion is not Asian fishing, so don’t worry! And for gyaru we don’t put whitw eyeliner on the waterline

  • Shara
    May 11, 2021

    Can I still wear gyaru if I’m black (African American)

    • hellolizziebee
      May 11, 2021

      Yes ofc! There are some black gals who look absolutely amazing like: dd.kyoko ; shaiira_1218 ; reinakkuma ; amii.iman ; boy_kuma ; bebeajadore… And there are a few more that I’ll try and grab their insta handles for you!

    • rae
      June 15, 2021

      can i be gyaru if i don’t tan? i’m very fair-skinned (naturally ginger) so i just burn up in the sun, and i don’t have the money for fake tan, plus im scared that i wont like how i look tanned and will hate it until it fades away 😦

  • pyon !
    August 27, 2021

    omg tysm

  • S
    August 29, 2021

    Hi! I used to be an every day gyaru starting in 2010 and loved the style for many years.

    I stopped wearing it when I developed an eye condition. I can’t wear contacts at all anymore, and even sometimes makeup can be hard. Lashes are iffy as well (on special occasions I can but not every day like I used to) and overall there are some makeup things I used to do a lot I can no longer do.

    But I really miss my gyaru clothes! I miss dressing up in them and the feeling I got wearing them.

    Is it hopeless for me to return to the style? I still use elements from gyaru in my style now but I miss being full out gyaru 😦

    • hellolizziebee
      August 29, 2021

      Hey cutie!

      Unfortunately the makeup is a huge part of the gyaru look, however, there is a way to do it without lashes and that is to go old school but to achieve that you have to have a tan, strong contour, and eyeliner.

      • S
        August 29, 2021

        Thank you for replying! I have long lashes naturally so might try just pounding on the mascara and doing lashes on very special occasions.

        Non eye make like contour I can definitely do!

        • hellolizziebee
          August 29, 2021

          Oooh yes that’s a great idea! My friend Emi (emiriichu on YouTube) doesn’t wear lashes for her gyaru look so I’d highly recommend looking her up for inspo! She did some makeup tutorials in the past. Can’t wait to see what you do ❤️❤️

          • S
            August 29, 2021

            Lashes used to be my staple so I will miss them but will still do it for special occasions for sure! (It just requires a few days of low to no make after so I try to be picky)

            And omg thank you I will check her out on yt! I was in Japan during my peak gyaru years and not very active on socmed so am not too familiar with the gaijin gyaru scene

          • hellolizziebee
            August 29, 2021

            Tbh I feel like I am quite similar to you… I have eczema on my eyelids and around my eyes so can only really wear makeup once a week 😭

          • S
            August 29, 2021

            I understand that struggle well 😭😭 it’s really hard to adjust as someone who did really dramatic ott make every day

          • hellolizziebee
            August 29, 2021

            I can’t imagine how you feel 😭😭

  • A.C.
    September 1, 2021

    Can i still be a gyaru if i dont have a tan

  • HONK
    September 1, 2021

    Is it ok to do the droopy eye makeup if I’m white?

  • Lydie Marie
    October 22, 2021

    Are there any places I can get clothes that are cheap?

    • hellolizziebee
      February 12, 2022

      You can buy gal brands secondhand and also just look in local stores! Go for the aesthetics and overall look, not the label

  • Lydie Marie
    October 22, 2021

    Do I need to wear the lashes? I can do all the rest of the makeup I just don’t like putting on lashes. Also where are the best places go get clothing?

    • hellolizziebee
      February 12, 2022

      There are ways to do gal without lashes – I’ve edited this post with examples!

  • smfodncismxksos
    February 12, 2022

    honestly, i disagree with the part where you said “you arent gyaru if u dont do gyaru everyday”. unless im misunderstanding you.

    if ur saying “u cant be gyaru if u dont dress gyaru every single time u go out” i disagree. but if youre saying “u arent gyaru if you wear normal clothes and call it gyaru” i agree.

    i mean im a gyaru but sometimes i CANNOT dress gyaru every time i go out, like not having enough energy for example, but im still a gyaru. i hope that makes sense

    • hellolizziebee
      February 12, 2022

      Yeah I think there’s a misunderstanding…. Basically I don’t want people to think that they can wear normal clothes without any sort of gyaru styling and no makeup and just hair in a ponytail but then still passing themselves off as gyaru.

  • Minna L
    February 24, 2022

    can you wear casual clothes while still wearing the makeup? i find the make-up very pretty but i can’t find a clothing or hair style i like yet I don’t want to wear the makeup in the wrong way is be disrespectful to others that wear the outfit, hair, and makeup

    • hellolizziebee
      February 24, 2022

      Yep definitely but it’s all about how you put those casual clothes together. I’d do some research into gyaru outfits to get a general idea

  • Gabriella
    February 24, 2022

    Is it ok if I can’t wear a lot of eyeliner or put in fake eyelashes my mother is very strict and I can only put some top liner and a little bit of bottom liner I do wear very dramatic eyeshadow and contour.

    • hellolizziebee
      February 24, 2022

      I believe I answered a similar question to this in the blog post!

  • Annie
    February 28, 2022

    Can I be gyaru without being conventionally gyaru? I’ve been wanting to join this community because of its anti colourism and feminism (also the pretty clothes) but I don’t really wear makeup (I sometimes like to put eyeshadow on +lipstick) and I have glasses and short black hair. It’s just the gyaru mindset that I’m after, the community seems so beautiful! I still wear bright clothes with animal print and stuff! What I’m basically saying is, is it okay for me to just dress gyaru and follow the mindset without doing a lot of makeup? I can totally do eyeshadow and eyeliner! I just wanted to know ❤

    • hellolizziebee
      February 28, 2022

      You’re more than welcome to do those things but unfortunately it won’t be classed as gyaru, because even though it has a strong lifestyle, it is heavilg based on your appearance as well so things like makeup and your overall appearance will contribute to that 😊

  • Gobl
    March 12, 2022

    Hello! I love your content and this post is very useful! <33

    I'm pretty new to gyaru, though I've been interested in it for a good while now. I've spent time researching and finding ways to slowly incorporate the lifestyle and fashion into how I live and what I wear! ^-^!!

    Agejo is easily my favorite of the substyles, though Himekaji is also very accessible with the things I already own in my wardrobe, I've even tried to mix the two!

    I do have a concern though, I find it difficult to style my hair since it is *very* short, and shaved on the sides, and most of the references I have found are still longer than what I have to work with, is it still possible for me to be gyaru because of this?

    Should I compensate with flashier fashion/accessories/makeup if I can't seem to find a way to properly style my natural hair?

    I do own wigs though! Should I wear those instead?

    Thank you! xoxo <3

    • hellolizziebee
      March 17, 2022

      Hey cutie! I shall do my best to reply to your questions <3

      It is absolutely possible to do gyaru generally with very short hair - I'd highly recommend looking at Ayame for inspiration! She is more of an oraora gal but it's interesting to see her take and how she styles herself.

      However, with that being said... It's going to be very hard to do sweeter styles like himekaji and agejo without having long-enough hair to curl and I personally don't think it's going to work. Give it a go first, but you probably will need to wear wigs when approaching those styles.

      Good luck! <3

      • Gobl
        March 23, 2022

        Thank you very much!! ^-^!

        Looking at lot of references I can see what you mean, and I’m glad to have your input!

        Now that I’m actually looking into oraora I see that it also fits a lot of what I like clothing wise surprisingly! I love how intimidating and strong it looks! The dark colors, gold, and animal prints mix together so nicely.
        I’ll see if it will fit better with how I want to style myself, and try to incorporate it into my style as well!

        Again, Thank you so much!!
        Much love! ❤

        • hellolizziebee
          March 23, 2022

          Awh yay I’m so happy to hear that! Good luck in your gyaru journey, and let me know if you ever get stuck 💕

  • Anaiz
    March 28, 2022

    My 12 year old sister wants to be gyaru can she?

    • hellolizziebee
      March 28, 2022

      Yes she can although… Some of the styles can be quite outgoing so you might need to give her some guidance, but styles such as himekaji, amekaji and casual gyaru will be great. Magazines like popteen, egg and ranzuki will be a great starting point!

  • Mary
    April 11, 2022

    If i wanna be gyaru, do i have to only dress that way? Like can i have other fashion styles too or am i only allowed to be gyaru?

    • hellolizziebee
      April 11, 2022

      Hmm well this is kind of tricky, but for example… If you’re dressed in lolita with lolita makeup and lolita styling, then you’re not gyaru. Hope that makes sense 😅 like you are totally okay wearing other styles as long as you don’t label it gyaru

  • Nylah
    April 17, 2022

    I wear two different styles (sweet lolita and pastel decora) and I’m recently getting into hime gyaru. A m I not a true gyaru if I don’t always wear the style? I want to dress this way, but still be able to wear my other styles. I also can’t do very heavy makeup, as I have sensitive skin, or have my nails done super long cause I’m still in school.

    • Nylah
      April 17, 2022

      if so, i might as well just wear gyaru-inspired looks rather than the style. partaking in every single part of the gal lifestyl just isn’t something i’m able to do right now

      • hellolizziebee
        April 17, 2022

        Yes I think it’s best to just call it gyaru inspired then! Because you can’t really label your pastel decora look as gyaru…. I think I answered a question similar to this so I will update my blog post so that I can better answer this question

  • Ai_Tan
    April 22, 2022

    This post inspired me to do something crazy!

    I’ve been full gyaru since 2007 (high school) and I honestly don’t remember the last time I didn’t put makeup on. Seems kind of unthinkable for me. Well, I’m going to challenge myself to go ONE WHOLE MONTH without any makeup at all! I’ll limit my face to just self tanner, circle lens, and of course my lashes. No mascara, eyeliner, lipstick, brows, or blush!

    “As long as the makeup is missing you are not gyaru at all.”

    I’ll emphasise every other aspect of gyaru to try to create my usual distinct look. My hair is already blonde/pink so I’ll spend extra time styling it every day. Hair bows, nails, and more obviously gyaru fashion choices might help. I will put this to the test!

  • Eva
    April 25, 2022

    Tysm for this post! I really want to get into gyaru and this was really helpful <3 Do you have any recommendations for gyaru styles that are appropriate for a 15 year old?

    • hellolizziebee
      April 25, 2022

      You can do whichever substyles that makes you feel comfortable!
      But, if you want something more specific, then I’d say try everything but maybe not agejo… Just focus on what you’re comfortable with!

  • Maddie
    May 15, 2022

    What would happen to the Gyaru subculture if makeup disappeared?

    • hellolizziebee
      May 15, 2022

      It wouldn’t exist I guess? Not too sure!

      • Maddie
        May 17, 2022

        I’m sure Gyaru fashion would still exist! It would look different though. If makeup disappearing includes removing it from old pictures/videos then the whole history of Gyaru would be suddenly barefaced.

        Would there be any way to overcompensate for no makeup?

        • hellolizziebee
          May 17, 2022

          Unfortunately no.

          • Beezbun
            May 20, 2022

            How can I look Gyaru inspired without makeup?

          • hellolizziebee
            May 20, 2022

            Gyaru is so heavily based around makeup that you can’t, really.

          • Howli
            May 20, 2022

            Do you have a link to that interview with Harutamu?

            I’ve been looking for it since forever!

          • hellolizziebee
            May 21, 2022

            It unfortunately got taken down because of copyright 😭

  • Crystal
    May 21, 2022

    What could I call myself if I do gyaru once in a while? It’s just one of the many fashion styles I’m into and I often choose to go for other styles for practicality.

    • hellolizziebee
      May 21, 2022

      Gyaru inspired is probably the best term to use 😊

      • Crystal
        May 21, 2022

        Noted, I decided to just go with “fashionista” since I’m into quite a few fashion styles! Thanks

  • Jen
    June 9, 2022

    How can I maintain the gyaru look at the beach? Not much fashion to work with wearing just a bikini lol. I wouldn’t be caught dead with a bare face but I do tend to strip back my makeup look a little around water!

  • lazybonnet
    June 14, 2022

    hi i have a question about the hair styles and i can still be gyaru without styling my hair or having bangs i have gyaru clothes and makeup but i just don’t really like curling my hair or putting on any head accessories

    • hellolizziebee
      June 14, 2022

      For me personally I just feel like something is missing when I don’t style my hair…. But that’s just my personal opinion 💕

  • Erin
    July 23, 2022

    Do I have to be in a specific sub style to be considered Gyaru?
    And tysm for your website its super helpful💕:D

  • Erin
    July 23, 2022

    Do I have to be in a specific sub style to be considered Gyaru?
    And thank u for your website its super helpful💕:D

    • hellolizziebee
      July 23, 2022

      Awh thank you! And you can be whatever substyle you want, as long as you look gal ❤️