“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!
01. Start building up your confidence by wearing “normal” clothes
Start off by wearing your normal, everyday clothes, and combine that with super gyaru makeup and hair. The beauty of gyaru is that you can wear whatever you want; meaning that you can just wearing some jeans and a t-shirt and you’ll still be gyaru as long as you have the hair and makeup down. When you’re comfortable with that, take it to the next step and start wearing more OTT accessories. The next step will be then more dramatic clothes, which you can wear in the comfort of your own home first before venturing outside. And then before you know it, you’re a super gal! Everything can be done at your own pace – don’t rush into wearing a full MA*RS set if you’re not comfortable with it.
02. Kill ignorance with kindness
People often come off more rude than they seem when they ask about gyaru (and all jfashion styles in general) – whether it’s something along the lines of, “Why are you dressed like that?” or “Are you going to a party?” The best thing to do is to answer politely, and if they start acting like a dick then just walk away and ignore them. I had a random guy at uni point at my eyes and said, “What’s with them?” and, after explaining that they were circle lens, he shrugged it off saying that they looked cool. It’s always good to react first with kindness with people who don’t know anything about Japanese fashion.
03. Headphones are your best friends
I cannot tell you the amount of times headphones saved me, especially when I’m on my own travelling home from a gyaru meet. Having some of my favourite music on helped me to block out everyone else, and it’s the perfect excuse for ignoring rude people.
04. Ignore rude people
You might come across some pretty ignorant people in your gyaru life, especially if you’re into one of the more dramatic styles, but the best thing to do is to ignore them. Even if it’s hard to ignore them, just don’t react to their mean comments because it’s not worth your time. Don’t give them the satisfaction that they’ve got your attention.
This is especially important when you’re at a gyaru meet; a whole group of people dressing in Japanese street fashion is bound to get some stares/photos taken of/mean comments, but the best way is to carry on with your girl gang and ignore the haters.
05. Demand payment from unwanted photo-takers
If ignoring doesn’t work, however, then you have to confront them. The Gyaru Party 2018 was a key example of this because no matter how many times we asked people not to take photos of us, they started to get really pushy and ignored out request. I tried taking photos of them when they took photos of us but that didn’t even work, so in the end I resorted to asking them for money when they wanted to take a picture. This strategy worked perfectly, and they soon buggered off.
06. Always be with someone if you’re not comfortable
Always be with someone if you’re not comfortable doing gyaru on your own. They don’t have to necessarily gyaru themselves, but just there to comfort you if you do get any unwanted attention. I cannot tell you the amount of times I was worried about travelling alone when I was fully decked out in MA*RS, so I always made sure I was travelling with my friend or my husband before I was confident enough to go alone.
07. Remember your why
Whenever you’re feeling down and conscious just remember your reason for wearing gyaru. You’re wearing it because you love it, right? Then that’s all the reason you need to go out into the world wearing the clothes you love. Don’t listen to what the strangers say – as long as you’re rocking your look and feeling fabulous, then it doesn’t matter!
And there we have it! I hope this lil’ guide has helped you, but if you need anymore advice on how to wear gyaru in public then please let me know.
And for the more seasoned gyaru… What tips do you have for wearing alternative styles?