Hi dear Malaysian friends in Japan!! I am Fish. I am a Japanese fashion lover and enjoy sharing my fashion discoveries with you. First of all, let’s have a quick look at the different styles in Japan!!
The variety and specificness of styles in the Japanese fashion world totally astonished me. They use ”Kei”[系] (referring to a specific group sharing some certain common characteristics) to categorize different kind of styles. Talking about styles, we will easily think of general styles such as the cool style, sexy style and etc.. How about Japan? Do the Japanese people categorize styles as we usually do?
In Japan, the Keis are categorized in a very detailed and unique way. Also, the very finely divided Keis will sometimes blend together, creating newly fresh Keis. There isn’t any specific definition for a Kei, because fashion has no rules or borders, so it’s up to the wearer and her surroundings to decide. However, there are still some similarities that you can observe in the Kei. Let’s have a quick view at the general Keis that exist in Japan!
Images create stronger impacts in the fashion world. So I will save up my words and show you some styles I have learnt from Japan!
1) B-Kei(B系): The B-Girl Style
B-Kei refers to Japanese girls who fancies the Hip-Hop American styles. The colors used are quite vibrant and eye-catching, matching striking accessories (usually gold color) with sporty wear. B-Kei is a kind of style that expresses the sexiness of a lady through the sporty way.
2) Onee-Kei (お姉系): The Elder Sister Style
Onee means “Elder Sister” in Japanese. So, the Onee-Kei aims to express maturity of a lady. You can observe the mature hairstyles and heavy eye and lip make ups in this style. The outfit of Onee-Kei wearers usually look simple but not casual. They prefer loafers or pumps rather than sneakers. Also, they usually match expensive bags and accessories on simple clothes.
3) Kirei-Kei(きれい系）: The Clean and Simple Style
Kirei has two meanings in Japanese, which are clean and beautiful. And those are the two goals which Kirei-Kei followers want to aim for. The main idea of this style is to look clean and beautiful. So, wearers will usually avoid complicated patterns and overly outstanding colors. Black, white and nude beige are the popular colors for this style. If you want to try the Kirei style, remember to match your outfit with nude and natural makeups! If not, you might probably contradict the idea of looking Kirei !! (*^_^*)
4) Ga-ri-shu-Kei (ガリッシュ系）: The Girlish Style
Unlike the Onee-Kei which place emphasis on maturity, Garishu-Kei (meaning Girlish in Japanese) aims to express the freshness and radiance of a young girl slowly turning into a lady, just like how a tiny little rose bud blooms into a brilliant flower. This is why you can observe many children-like features like ribbons, laces, and milky colors but at the same time, adequate skin exposure. If you want to look young and sweet, this style probably suits you most ♡!!
(Siah’s friendly hint: This style seems popular among Japanese guys! Give it a try if you want to impress Japanese guys!)
5) Mode-Kei(モード系）: The Mode Style
Mode-Kei is quite similar to the Kirei-Kei, because it mainly focuses on utilizing simple, clean colors like black, white, and grey. However, the crucial difference between Kirei-Kei and Mode-Kei is that Mode-Kei emphasizes on the strength and coolness of a woman, unlike Kirei-Kei which focuses more on the feminine part. Mode-Kei followers match strong impact colors (Royal Blue, Red) as the key point of their outfit. Can you differentiate the main idea that Mode-Kei and Kirei-Kei want to express?
6) Hi-me Gyaru-Kei(姫ギャル系): The Princess Gyaru Style
This is probably the most unique style that is only available in Japan, which happens to be the first style that caught my attention. The idea of this style is very simple, which is just simply to overdecorate yourself! Maximize the volume of your hair, makeup, and accessories, then you are mostly done!! Use all the beauty tools to make you look outstanding as possible. Big contact lenses, shimmering eye shadows and blonde hair color help a lot in creating this Hime-Gyaru style. Hime means Princess in Japanese, which means use all the overly-decorated items to groom yourself like a princess!
7) Urahara-Kei（裏原系）: The Backstreet Harajuku Style
The Urahara-Kei is a kind of fashion that mixes all kinds of fashionable elements and express it through street wears. Urahara-Kei fashionistas are usually very fond in mix-matching, creating impressive outfits even with vintage items. You can see the Urahara-Kei fashionistas hanging around behind Takenoshita Dori, Harajuku all the time. The common items they use for styling are vintage denims, rucksacks and sneakers. Besides, over-sized jackets and loose fit t-shirts are also essential elements for the Urahara-Kei. If you are reluctant to skin and body line exposure and favor comfort, this will probably be the best choice for you!
(Siah’s friendly hint :Urahara-Kei is an ideal style for university students, isn’t it?)
Because of time and word restrictions, there are still many kinds of styles such as the Cele-Kashi Kei(the celebrity casual style) and the Mori-GaRu-Kei (the forest girl style) that are quite popular among young girls in Japan, which I have not been able to mention yet. Other than that, I will explain some unique and exclusive styles like the Lolita, Kera, Gothic in the future. There are still many unique and wonderful styles in Japan that I can’t wait to share with you!
Does this post help you in understanding the Japanese fashion industry more?
The diversity and detail of the Japanese fashion are one of the main reasons I love Japanese fashion so much! Fashion is all about expressing yourself and Japanese fashion really succeeds in expressing all kinds of positive characters of people! I believe there is beauty in every style, so whether it is the Japanese way or not, take this article as a reference. Choose and modify the style that you feel most comfortable and confident in♡!!
Tell me what do you think about these styles! I will write more in-depth articles for each styles if you are interested to know!! ♡
Till then. See ya ♡♡