fashion

Compared to the U.S., Japan has different cultural standards about revealing female fashions. That’s not to say women in Japan show more or less skin than their American counterparts, just that they show it in different places.

So while you’re likely to see more cleavage in L.A. or New York, a stroll through Tokyo or Osaka will turn up more women in very short shorts. Honestly, after spending enough time in Japan, its easy to become desensitized to hot pants, until something comes along that pushes the envelope by offering less coverage from some angles than a pair of panties.

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Cadcaptor Sakura renaissance continues with four dresses inspired by the anime heroine

As part of the Cardcaptor Sakura renaissance, we’ve previously looked at cosmetics, accessories, and no fewer than three pairs of shoes that pay homage to the beloved anime and manga character. Until now, though, you were on your own if you wanted to dress like the series’ star, but now you can add more than a half-week’s worth of Cardcaptor Sakura dresses to your wardrobe.

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“Would you carry a woman’s purse for her?” Japanese men share their baggage-handling policies

With the prevalence of public transportation in urban Japan, going out on the town means having to lug any belongs you’re taking with you around for the day. This adds a bit of a complication for couples out on a date. Assuming things are going well and the lovebirds are spending several hours together, at some point the woman’s purse is going to start feeling heavy, but how many Japanese guys are willing to step up and shoulder the task of carrying their girl’s bag for her?

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Japan’s wildest nail art: sushi, pirates, scissors and more 【Photos】

Nail art is pretty big in Japan. For a lot of women (and some men?), getting their nails not just colored, but decorated with gems, 3D flowers and mini-paintings is a monthly routine and fashion must. Usually it’s fairly subtle, but some nail art aficionados think bigger and bolder is better, no matter how hard it makes typing a mail or wiping your bum.

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New Sailor Moon merch goes old school as the magical girls turn into eight-bit pixel art

Seeing as how 17 years passed between the final TV episode of Sailor Moon and its reboot, Sailor Moon Crystal, it’s no surprise that the latter makes far more use of digital animation production. But while the newer anime’s designs have sharper line work, some traditionalists still prefer the old school look of the original series.

However, if you’d rather have your Sailor Senshi not just rough around the edges, but downright rectangular, merchandiser Bandai is ready to fill that need with this line of Sailor Moon merchandise done in the style of eight-bit pixel art.

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How hung up on a woman’s weight are Japanese men, really? Poll attempts to find out

Sometimes, Japanese guys can seem illogically hung up on numerical parameters when deciding whether or not they find a woman physically attractive. Be it a maximum age or minimum bust measurement, sometimes the amount of technical data being tossed around almost makes it seem more like they’re talking about machinery than women.

But does it really make sense to get so hung up on numbers when dealing with something as subjective as beauty? We’ve seen before that age isn’t anything but a number, so what about weight? A recent survey set out to find out how Japanese men would answer that question.

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I see dead Pikachus! Fashion magazine reader comes up with dark take on freebie Pokémon pouch

We’ve talked before about some of the cool extras that’ve come bundled with girls’ manga anthologies in Japan, but they’re not the only publications that dangle the offer of freebies to help drum up sales. In Japan, fashion magazines for adults also occasionally come with promotional items, such as day planners, scrunchies, or other goodies they think their readers might be interested in.

Women’s fashion magazine CanCam recently ran a special feature on Pokémon-related apparel and accessories, so the publishers thought it’d be the perfect opportunity to package the issue with a Pikachu-shaped fuzzy cloth pouch. To make it seem extra special, they decided to pass on his usual vibrant canary yellow and instead produce a chic monochrome version of the series mascot.

But “unique” doesn’t always mean “good,” at least according to one reader who came up with a morbid interpretation of Pikachu’s lack of color.

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Past and present photos of Japanese fashion models make us wonder, where have all the gyaru gone?

For much of the 1990s and 2000s, it seemed that you couldn’t walk down a street in any major shopping district in Japan without spotting a group of gyaru chatting enthusiastically about…something. But in recent years, the number of tanned young women with the very colorful (some might say “loud”) gyrau fashion style seems to have dropped almost to zero.

With the shutting down last year of fashion magazines Koakuma Ageha, which will be restarting publication in April, and egg, it seems that gyaru might soon be owacon (“owatta contentsu” or something that doesn’t sell anymore). While we wouldn’t be too quick to sign any death certificates, these before-and-after photos of one-time gyaru models are a sure sign of how things have changed.

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Tokyo Boys Collection teams up with Japan Self-Defense Force to parade their fine men in uniform

Everybody loves a man in a uniform – a fact that was clearly evident at the Tokyo Boys Collection fashion and entertainment event held on March 12 when members of the Japanese Self-Defense Force (JSDF) took to the catwalk to support relief efforts for the Great East Japan Earthquake.

The JSDF have already played a significant role in the recovery process, with search and rescue teams scouring areas most affected in 2011 and cleanup crews working tirelessly to bring the region back to a semblance of normalcy. But with the theme of “The Japanese Spirit that Enchants the World” to guide them, they were given a chance to get a little recognition for their handsome good looks.

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Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon will guard you from the rain with new line of anime umbrellas

A while back, the rights holders for Sailor Moon decided the franchise would henceforth have the official English title Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, a looser adaptation than the direct translation of its Japanese name, which would have been Beautiful Girl Warrior Sailor Moon.

Linguistic purists may bristle at the new title, but the argument can be made that it fits better with Sailor Moon’s less aggressive personality, in that she fights only to protect others. And now, after years of guarding her in-anime world from the forces of evil, Sailor Moon and her companions are ready to guard their real-world fans from the rain and sun, with this line of Sailor Moon umbrellas.

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Anna Sui jumps into the world of Sailor Moon fashion with necklaces, earrings, and bags

Today, Tokyo’s Isetan is welcoming back Sailor Moon and her magical gal pals. From now until March 31, the department store chain’s Shinjuku branch is offering a special lineup of fashion items based on the hit anime. Previously, we’ve looked at the new offerings from Samantha Vega, Honey Bunch, and Riccimie Premiere Salon, all popular Japanese brands.

Now, Anna Sui is getting in on the moon prism action, with a selection of coolly feminine bags and accessories inspired by the Sailor Senshi.

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We visit the brand-new Disney store for grown-up women in Tokyo’s Harajuku 【Photos】

Disney’s elegant princesses and cute characters have earned them legions of fans around the world. In Japan, adults of all ages are smitten, unashamedly saving up for specially branded clothing and accessories, and using precious vacation time for day trips to Tokyo Disneyland.

This love for all things Disney has resulted in three stores exclusive to Japan that cater directly to the adult market. Fukuoka and Chiba have each been blessed with a unique branch of their own, but it’s the newly opened store in Tokyo’s Harajuku, the birthplace of kawaii culture, that really sets out to impress.

Come with us as we take you through the store, with its pretty princess accents and attractive displays filled with bags, jewellery, smartphone accessories and more.

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Disney and Baby The Stars Shine Bright collaborate on range of lolita-style Cinderella dresses

If you weren’t raised on a steady diet of Disney movies, then we’ll wager your childhood was lacking a little animated magic. Even now the old classics still hold up, and Disney definitely isn’t just for kids.

But if you’ve ever been left disappointed that those amazing Disney Princess dresses they sell at the Disney Store don’t fit anyone over the age of eight, then fret not! Now adult women (or indeed, men) can dress up in fantastic, whimsically childlike Cinderella dresses courtesy of this collaboration between Disney and lolita style brand Baby The Stars Shine Bright.

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Get ready for the rainy season – water droplets are the latest trend in nail art

Between the spring cherry blossom season and the hot, humid summer is Japan’s rainy season, which can leave everyone feeling a little blue, not to mention soggy. But the rain can also be an inspiration for fashionistas, and these Japanese girls (and guys!) certainly don’t mind getting their nails wet (although the same probably doesn’t go for their hair).

Japan is always in the lead when it comes to nail art, with western countries only just starting to catch on to techniques that have been common in Japan for years, particularly when it comes to gel nail designs. Just like with clothes, new trends come and go all the time, and the latest one doing the rounds here is water droplet nails.

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Frills and poofy dresses galore at an international lolita fashion tea party in Tokyo

Is there a place for tea parties and frilly dresses for women in the 21st century? The answer is a resounding yes from these lolita fashion ladies!

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Use Sailor Moon’s new official face powder, or, in the name of the moon, she will punish you!

Despite the huge amount of Sailor Moon merchandise that’s been released over the years, no company has yet made a fully functioning version of one of the many items that instantly transform main character Usagi from ordinary schoolgirl to magical guardian. Things are moving one step closer to that, though, with this new Transformation Brooch from merchandiser Bandai.

While it won’t cause a frilly combat uniform to materialize around your body, the cosmetic powder inside will help your skin look as smooth and unblemished as an anime heroine.

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New Sailor Moon clothing line for Tokyo department store may be the most stylish and elegant yet

Last month, we took a sneak peek at some of the fashion items set to go on sale this month when Tokyo department store Isetan opens its limited-time boutique of high-class Sailor Moon apparel. February’s announcement was filled with girlish purses, wallets, and watches, and with just days to go before the store opens, the lineup of new Sailor Moon clothing has been revealed, as well as the three brands participating in the collaboration.

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Light-up Hikaru Skirt makes its Idol music video debut

The “wearable special effects” skirt project, “Hikaru Skirt,” made its big debut in the idol group Mōsō Collaboration’s newest music video, “Mahou no Juice” (lit. Magic Juice) on Sunday. The project’s website claims the skirt turns the “zettai ryōiki” (i.e. the “absolute territory” between where a girl’s skirt ends and her stockings begin) into “komorebi ryōiki,”or “territory where sunshine filters through the trees.” The members utilize the skirts’ different color options for each of their outfits.

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Who needs a real Apple Watch when you can wear this cuter one made of felt?

Watches are, oddly enough, a timeless accessory. Kids wear them, adults do too, and grandparents hand them down as family heirlooms. This has been going on for centuries, and even nowadays people go nuts for cute watches, fancy watches, and now, smart watches.

With the recent announcement of the Apple Watch people are preparing their wrists and their wallets for the new meeting of fashion and technology. Even tech whiz kids, dare we say “Smart Kids,” want in on the action, but some people, like artist Hiné Mizushima, don’t really see the need for kids to have real Apple Watches, so she created a clever and adorable felt alternative.

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New Dragon Ball Z shirts and tote let you wear your love of Frieza on your arm/whole upper body

In the world of anime, it seems like Dragon Ball Z’s Frieza is the man/alien of the hour. Not only does he have a new cola endorsement deal that also gives him a chance to show off his slick dance moves, he’s also set to play a big role in next month’s brand-new Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection of F theatrical feature.

Now, if you’re one of the many fans with a fondness for this particular Dragon Ball Z antagonist, you’ve got the chance to wear your love of Frieza on your sleeve, or really your whole upper body, with two new T-shirts and a tote bag that pay tribute to the galactic emperor.

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