Can you believe that the last time I did one of these posts was in February? How long ago was that! Recently I asked you all what kind of posts you wanted to see, and some of you mentioned my ‘one item five ways‘ series… So I’m bringing sexy back and am focussing this post on my leopard print skirt.
I’ve been dying to create lots of outfits with this skirt for ages, and now that leopard print is back in fashion (yay!) it gives me more of an excuse to bring it out again. So, let’s take a look at these outfits, shall we?
The last time I did a ‘Get the Look’ post was back in 2012. Yep, 2012. That’s a really long time ago (especially in the blogger world) and I remember just how encouraging it was to be able to mimic a gyaru brand outfit with items from the UK (or, in worst case scenarios, eBay). So I was overjoyed to read that you really wanted to see something like this again on my blog and this – along with my ‘one item five ways‘ – is going to be another series that I’m bringing back. After all, my main purpose on this blog is to help fellow gaijin gyaru out in their gyaru journey!
Today we’re looking at this ane agejo outfit modelled by Tomomi, a MA*RS shop staff gal (gosh I can’t actually remember how long she’s been working there…) and she is the perfect example for Ane Agejo – for looking sexy but also classy! This outfit is ideal for those at work, so let’s dive right in.
“What even is gyaru?” I hear people say whenever I tell them about this Japanese fashion. Sometimes I brush it off and say, “it’s just this Japanese fashion” and let them divulge at their own pace (usually they then follow it with “where you look like an anime doll?” which is very frustrating). Other times I hop onto Google for some inspiration to show them what I mean but then realise that I don’t look anything like the first few pictures of Black Diamond that pop up… And when I finally found one, the stranger has lost interest by then so I just put my phone away.
“I love the look of it but I wish I was more confident to gyaru wear it in public…” is one of the most-used phrases I hear from people who have held back from wearing gyaru. It can be daunting because gyaru, like other Japanese fashion styles, isn’t exactly “normal”. Sure, we can get away with jeans and t-shirts but there’s something about us that sets us apart from Western fashion. Maybe it’s the over-the-top makeup, the curly hair, or the flashy nails… Whatever it is, it makes people look back and wonder “what the hell are they doing?”
I’ve had to deal with more and more ignorant people the more dramatic my style became. It allowed me to grow thicker skin and boy I’m so glad it did because I was a right nervous wreck when I first started! Even now it’s still quite nerve-wracking to be decked out in MA*RS, but my style has toned down because of my laziness so it’s not quite so bad anymore. Here are some tips I’ve learnt over the years on wearing gyaru it in public!
I’ve always wanted to be no.1; when I first joined gyaru I wanted to be the best gaijin gyaru in the U.K., and a few years later it changed to wanting to be the best agejo in the world. My aims were pretty high so I bought as many MA*RS items that my greedy hands could get a hold of, and for a time I believed that I was the best and that I was happy. I tried hard – perhaps too hard – and I called it the golden age of my gyaru life.
That golden age lasted a year, maybe two, before I started my downward spiral. Agejo began to slip away from my fingers and I felt my identity lose its grip. I didn’t know who I was anymore and I began to doubt myself. I loved agejo, so why wasn’t it making me happy anymore? I worked so hard to be the best but it just took the joy out of gyaru and made it into a competition. In the end I was left disappointed and dissatisfied.
Hey cuties! Long time no wishlist post? It’s been such a long time since I’ve done a wishlist post – my last one was in Christmas 2016 – and since then my spending habits have spiralled almost out of control. Organising my own wedding didn’t help my budget, but now I’m suffering from the aftermath of it.
So instead of doing lots of impulse shopping I’ve decided to do a cute little jfashion wishlist to help me figure out what I really, really want.
It’s a strange concept, isn’t it, the thought of an introverted gyaru? Gyaru are always portrayed as out-going and fun-loving in the media, but I’m so far away from that. It used to get me down quite a lot as I felt that my introverted nature meant that I wasn’t a “real gyaru”, but the older I got the less I cared. I just preferred to be in the comfort of my home with my husband and my cat than out partying, it’s as simple as that.
I’ve never been one of those people who have had yearly goals, let alone 5 year plans, and so I’ve been going about my days without really knowing what I wanted in life. Sure, I listened to an endless amount of podcasts on growing my blog & Etsy store – helloooo Jenna Kutcher – but real, solid goals? Nah.
I didn’t think anything of it until I started feeling more unsatisfied with my current state. I had switched from my usual, happy-go-lucky self to a grumpy grandma who missed “the good old days”. I wasn’t shifting anything, nor progressing, and to put it simply, I felt like I wasn’t living the life I loved.
Did I really want to continue living like this? Being grumpy all of the time? Never being happy with where I am?
Hello m’dears, it is your gyaru granny speaking. I’ve been into gyaru for nearly 10 years now and it has evolved so much during that time, so it can seem a bit overwhelming to come across it as a beginner as there’s so much to take in. Here are my top tips to help you out on your journey as a gaijin gyaru!
I know what you’re thinking – Is it even possible to feel lonely doing/being gyaru? Gyaru is, after all, a fashion, so how can you feel lonely by just wearing different clothes?
For me, gyaru is more than that. It’s what made me fall in love with Japan in general and accept my ‘kawaii’ side unapologetically. I don’t think I’d ever have the courage to use Rilakumma stationery at work if it wasn’t for gyaru (even though gyaru technically doesn’t have anything to do with it). Gyaru gives such a confidence boost, and the makeup is my war paint.
Sandals: New Look
Hat: Haven’t a clue
But it’s one thing dressing up and taking pictures in your gyaru gear vs actually going out and hanging out with other gyaru. To be surrounded by others to talk about things we’ve seen lately (like Sakurina’s new brand Riina Couture) or to help each other out in improving our style. Gyaru has always been a mainly internet-based style, and we tend to just communicate over FB/Twitter/Insta with the occasional gyaru meet here and there. I’ve always dreamed of the day that I could just hop over to a fellow gyaru’s house just for a casual hangout in our PJs and watching cheesy chic flicks rather than travel (what seems like) thousands of miles to see them.
So yes, being gyaru it is quite lonely.
If there was an easy way to feel less lonely then I’d be all over it. But in the meantime I’d say that the way to combat this loneliness is to just keep on being present, whether that’s on the internet or in the real world. Post those selfies, those outfit photos, and be effortlessly you in your style. Hell, start a blog! Get gyaru on the map but don’t feel disheartened if it doesn’t work out… As long as you’re having fun and not forcing yourself to be gyaru for gyaru’s sake, than that’s all that matters, right?
Do you ever feel lonely being/doing gyaru (or any other alternative fashions)?
Lizzie Bee xx