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!
Never stop researching and experimenting
PLEASE, for the love of Tsu-chan, DO YOUR RESEARCH! The internet is at your disposal – you can find gyaru magazine scans, old gyaru blogs, gyaru history… you just got to give google a go. I’ve also created a checklist for beginners for you to start from, and I also personally love the Beginner to Gyaru series on YouTube and Papillon magazine share the latest gyaru news on their feed. But take all research with a pinch of salt as everyone interprets gyaru differently – including this blog! I might have a different opinion to others so don’t take my word as gospel; discovering things for yourself is part of the whole gyaru journey.
The best way to learn is to practice and experiment, and this especially goes for gyaru because there’s just so much to take in. I would advise starting with the makeup, following a few tutorials before discovering what is best according to your eye shape (as not all makeup tutorials will work for you). Don’t worry – you do not have to be Asian to be gyaru, and here are some amazing tutorials for Western features created by fellow gaijin gyaru. It’s also good to have a look at non-gyaru makeup tutorials just to learn about the basics like blending and doing smokey eyes, and contouring for your facial features.
Makeup is a priority
Makeup is integral to the gyaru look, and it’s not something that you can just pass over. The most important aspect in gyaru makeup are the eyes – focus on those first and foremost and then you’re good to go!
Remember that gyaru is about the overall look
Even though makeup is integral, that doesn’t mean you can just forget about the other things that make you gyaru. This includes styling your hair, the way you dress, the accessories you wear… And whether or not you need a tan (depending on the style you’re going for).
Discover your style, but don’t be afraid if your path changes
I am a gyaru-chameleon, so I speak from experience. It is an amazing feeling to finally discover your style – and I wrote a lil’ tutorial on how to do so here – but don’t force yourself into it when you notice your passion for it faltering. Try something new!
Don’t jump straight onto brand clothes
The beauty of gyaru is that you can wear your normal clothes, so why spend £££s when you can just wear what’s already in your wardrobe? Give it about 6 months to a year when you know that gyaru is truly your passion before buying brand items, because brand is quite expensive. Besides, knowing how to coordinate items into an amazing outfit is so much better than just throwing on all of your brand items. Here’s a little guide on how to build your gyaru wardrobe!
Join the gyaru community
If it wasn’t for the gyaru community I would’ve lost my way a long, long time ago. It’s just so inspiring to see other gaijin gyaru just doing their thing! It’s a great way to make friends and to also get honest advice, which is key to improving your gyaru style. Without the online community I would never have met other gyaru at international gyaru meets (let alone hosting my own meet) or meeting Akipoyo in Japan! The main place we like to hang out online is Sekai no Gyarusa on Facebook, but a lot of us are also incredibly active on instagram as well. If you’re a little bit shy but still want some advice, don’t hesitate to send me a lil’ message on Twitter/FB/Insta as I’d love to help!
There is always a way to be gyaru
Can’t wear circle lens? You can still be gyaru. Have short hair? Still gyaru. Plus-sized? Still gyaru. I’ve had so many people ask ‘but can I still be gyaru if…?’ and my answer is always YES.
However – if you are lacking in one thing you must try to make up for it in other areas. Take me, for example. I don’t wear circle lens so I make sure that my makeup is as dramatic as possible.
And don’t forget to have fun!
Gyaru is all about “get wild and be sexy!” so remember that at the end of the day, if you’re having fun with the style, then that’s all that matters. It’s quite easy to get knocked down by haters but don’t let that stop you from doing the things you love.
And there we have it! I hope you have an amazing time in your journey to being a gyaru, and if you have any questions or need a lil’ help, I’m here for you!
And to those experienced gaijin gyaru – what advice would you give to a gaijin gyaru beginner?
Lily ChanelApril 12, 2019
I am surprised that it still a big gaijin gyaru community! I’ve followed the gyaru style since 2010 and these last years, there are not news and everybody said the gyaru style is dead. Many japanese models change their look. You are a great example for me, thank you.
Sorry for my english, i’m french!^^
Mary LeeApril 12, 2019
I love this post c: Thank u!!!
JoyApril 12, 2019
Yay, this is the post I needed! I’ve *just* discovered gyaru (at 28…
grannies unite) and have been binge-reading your blog. Thank you so
much for putting all this information up here! 😀
KASSIDYApril 12, 2019
I wish someone had told me sooner about universaldoll when I first started to kinda wander within the gyaru community! Although I’ve never regularly done gyaru, it is still an indispensable resource for those who are interested! And I completely agree- you can be gyaru without checking off circle lenses or long hair or a smaller body. Gyaru has always been about being wild, sexy, and free so as long as you’re doing that with at least a few elements, you’re about as gyaru as you can get!
wannabe gyaruMarch 22, 2021
Hi Lizzie! I like reading your blog and your articles about the gyaru fashion. It is nice thst you are still posting despite the lockdown. Something that fascinates me I always want to place things in context, is: what do you think is the western equivalent of gyaru style? Is it gothic/alternative because they are rebellious and the blonde hair dye and tan skin is equivalent to dying hair black and pale skin in the west, or more california valley girls since the culture/music is more similar? I am really curious about your opinion!
hellolizziebeeMarch 23, 2021
Hey cutie! I think in context, it kind of reminds me of what happened with Punk in the UK when it comes to the rebellious aspect. But in terms of aesthetics… I can see why gyaru sometimes get compared to California valley girls because OG gals looooved tropical and beachy themes! Nowadays I feel like there are so many facets to gyaru that you can’t really compare it to any other fashion as it’s very much it’s own thing