fashion

Disconcerting news from the world of Japanese fashion: adherents to the cutesy subculture of Lolita fashion are organizing themselves into an official group. Their target: the whole world.  Read More

Step Out of the Vegie Patch in a Pair of Onion Tights

There’s a theory that says cultures see colours differently. So what happens when you put green and white together on a pair of tights? Most of us would throw colour theories out the window and just see a pair of awesome legs. But when you’re in Japan, some people say, “Green onion!” and others shout “No! White radish!”

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Change You Can’t Believe in: Japan Reacts to Obama’s Proposed New Hair Style

Unlike the more somber State of the Union Address, the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner is generally a more raucous affair; a chance for the Commander in Chief to get cozy with journalists through self-deprecating humor and celebrity guests.

This year’s dinner, which took place Saturday, was no exception, with guests from actor Kevin Spacey to Korean Gangman Style artist and noted gentleman Psy hearing President Obama make jokes at his own expense while also ribbing Republican rivals.

Oh, and he also showed guests a disturbing montage of photos featuring a new hairstyle he’s thinking of sporting for his second term…

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Tomatoes – Tokyo’s Latest Fashion Trend?

The coming of spring brings a coming change in fashion, which in turn prompts many to consider a slight change to their hairstyles. Lopping off a considerable length to go from “long” to “short”, adding a few streaks or coloring for accent, or perhaps getting a perm or wave will allow most people to achieve the look they’re after. One young Tokyo trendsetter, however, decided an extreme makeover was needed to celebrate the arrival of warmer weather and the start of the school year (April to March in Japan).

As the following picture shows she didn’t go with a garden variety cut, she went for the garden itself, turning her lovely locks into a… tomato!
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Love Cats? Then These Adorable “Cat Tights” May Be For You!

With cherry blossom season over in Tokyo, the weather here is definitely turning warm and pleasant (at least for a little while, until the rainy season starts and then the hot and humid summer). Women across Japan are eagerly shedding their coats to enjoy colorful, spring fashion, and to our delight, one of our reporters at Pouch has found the purr-fect item to combine fashion and fun — “cat tights”! Read More

Fake Knee-High Stockings Enrage Men of the Internet

A storm of boos has flooded Japanese forums in response to the invention of fake knee-high stockings. This piece of clothing makes a woman appear to be wearing long socks when she is actually wearing fully sealed tights. As a product, fake knee-high stockings greatly help women to comfortably achieve a cute look. But for some men, the lost opportunity to catch a glimpse of an exposed leg that is brought on by these full-coverage stockings is too much to handle.

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Is That Sushi in Your Ear or are You Just Wearing “Crazy Headphones”?

Gadgets purveyor Apparestore is hoping that pretending your ears are so unclean that fungus has actually started to grow out of them will become the new fashion trend with these “crazy headphones” featuring weird objects that jut out from the earbuds. Samurai swords and sushi are just some of the things you could have seemingly growing out of your ears with a pair of these cheeky earphones.

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New Reports Show Going Without a Bra Actually Good for Women, Men Everywhere Rejoice

The old wisdom that going without a bra too often would cause a woman’s bazongas to stretch out and droop like a pair of baseballs in training socks is going out the window thanks to a series of recent reports to the contrary, and Japanese women are apparently responding by going out in public unsupported in record numbers.

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Mixing Business with Pleasure: Take Your Nerdiness to Work with the Itasuit!

Who says the office is no place for scantily-clad girls with blue hair? Now you can look smart and professional while staying true to your animé roots with the latest in clothing for discerning otaku- the itasuit!

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Would You Like Some Fries With that Hair? Fake Food Accessories On Sale Now

In Japan, most restaurant windows are filled with plastic versions of food, giving customers a sneak preview of what they might expect to find on the menu. This practice is so popular that designing and creating these fake foods is a multi-billion yen (tens of millions of US dollars) market.

Food sample companies are now getting creative and branching out into other non-food related markets, starting with the Hatanaka company and their new line of faux-food accessories. Daring trend setters are now free to accessorize using pancakes, French fries, and even bacon.

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More Japanese Women Getting Fake Crooked Teeth? Industry Insider Speaks

In many Western countries, crooked teeth are seen as imperfections and most people consider a straight set of pearly whites ideal.

The story is slightly different in Japan, where yaeba, or snaggletooth, are considered cute; with some men finding the imperfect smile they form endearingly childlike and attractive.

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Totoro-esque Body Sock Creepy Insult to Japanese National Pride

It’s not often that a piece of clothing makes you feel sick to your stomach, but this one does, and not just because it’s creepy as hell. The bizarre suit has become a topic of conversation on the net in Japan and abroad, and if you look at the response, it seems readers are not enjoying the visual effect whatsoever, calling the body sock “a nightmare,” “too scary” and “an offense to Ghibli.” Read More

From D-Cup T-Shirts to Nostril Power Outlets — the Creative Clowning of Takayuki Fukuzawa

Quirky Japanese designer Takayuki Fukuzawa is on a mission to make people smile.

A graduate of Tokyo’s Nihon University, Fukuzawa started designing his own unique brand of “humourous art and design” products not long after entering full-time employment as a home designer. After bringing smiles to exhibition attendees’ faces and realising that he might be on to something, he quickly established his own company, ekoD Works (pronounced “eco doh”), and hasn’t looked back since.

Japan’s Excite News sat down with Fukuzawa to pick his brains about his unusual product line-up, the meaning behind the company name and the runaway success of his mercilessly cheeky “Wild Idea Mapping red Bra T-shirt”.

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Shoes for Shorties: Japan Develops Business Shoes for Men that Add an Extra 7cm

Shorter businesswomen wishing to appear taller can experiment with vertical lines, fashion styles and, of course, pop on a pair of enormous high-heeled shoes in order to gain a few inches, but short of wearing platform shoes and styling their hair into ridiculous quiffs, the shorter male office worker is at something of a loss.

Although the average height of both males and females in Japan is on the rise due to increasingly western-style diets, Japan’s men are still a little on the short side. And that dents their confidence. Thankfully, though, a footwear designer in Japan has recently launched a special line of business shoes that, through a slightly elevated heel and a discreet inner-sole, reportedly add an extra 7 cm to any man’s total height.

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The World of Japanese Ornamental Hairpins: Breathtakingly Beautiful Flowers and Butterflys Caught in Time

Kanzashi have been used to adorn the hair of Japanese women throughout the ages. These ornamental hairpins are still considered a form of art and are crafted with pride even today, even though Japanese women wear traditional kimono less than ever before.

Our sister site YouPouch recently featured the incredible work of kanzashi artist Sakae, who uses flower blossoms and butterflies as the main motif of her work. We think you’ll agree that each piece is a work of beauty caught in time, so check the gallery below and be prepared to have your breath taken away.

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Photo Booth Horrors: When Japanese Purikura Goes Wrong

Purikura, short for Purinto Kurabu (Print Club), are Japanese photo booths that let you take digital pictures with your friends and then decorate and edit them using a touch screen and stylus. After you finish decorating, your pictures are then printed on multiple copies of sticker paper so you can cut them and distribute them among your friends. You can also have them sent to your cell phone or e-mail address.

Purikura booths can be found at shopping areas and arcades around Japan and are incredibly popular with teenage girls and young women, who use the image editing features to wash out the natural colors of the photos so their skin look smoother and lighter. Over the past few years, many booths have even introduced a function that lets you enlarge your eyes so you can look “cute” like an “anime character” or “freaky” like an “alien”, depending on who you ask.

These are powerful tools and, as you can imagine, can conjure horrifying results if abused. We’ve searched the Japanese internets to assemble a gallery of some of the more disturbing (and hilarious) photos that have emerged from purikura photo slots.

Check it out below, if you dare.

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Grab Your Camera: More Middle-Aged Japanese Men Crossdressing in Public

We’ve run quite a few stories about crossdressing in Japan over the past few months, which may have some of you wondering if dressing up in drag has become something of a fashion craze among Japanese men.

It turns out it has among one demographic, according to Nikkan Spa, who reports that over the past few years there have been an increasing number of reports of normal, middle-aged Japanese men walking around Tokyo in drag.

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Japan Has a Fashion Magazine for Elementary School Girls, May Be of Interest to Child Molesters as Well

During a brief stint teaching English at a rural elementary and junior high school in Japan a few years ago, I was surprised to see how much more fashionable Japanese kids are than their American counterparts.

Not actually at school; they were all in their school or gym uniforms on schooldays (though many elementary schools now allow personal clothes). But when the weekend hit, many of my students would transform into little fashionistas and roam the local shopping mall—with a parent or guardian, of course.

I always wondered where they picked up their fashion sense from, and after seeing a few pages from JS Girl, a semimonthly fashion magazine for elementary school-aged girls in Japan, I think I finally get it, and it makes me a little sad.

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Fashion Trend or Wall of Self-Isolation? More Japanese Youth Wearing Surgical Masks to Hide Their Face

First time visitors to Japan may be surprised to see so many people wearing surgical masks in public.

There are a few reasons for this, the most common being that they are sick and are wearing a mask to keep their nasty germs to themselves in consideration of those around them. Likewise, many people also wear a mask to guard themselves from whatever illness is going around. Others use it vainly to shield their faces from the onslaught of cedar pollen that descends upon the masses every spring.

Then there are those who wear masks because they’re self-conscious about the way they look or have something they want to hide, like a pimple or even their emotions.

In particular, wearing surgical masks for cosmetic and comfort purposes has become so popular among young people in Japan over the past few years that the media has begun labeling it as a “fashion trend.”

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Chinese Artist Recreates Iconic Evangelion Scene with Interpretive Dance and Fire Cups

It’s been a little over a week since Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo opened in theaters across Japan and the film has already grossed 2.8 billion yen (about US$34 million), making it the most successful film of the year domestically.

If you still can’t get enough Eva, Chinese artist Lu Yang has created a short tribute film for the celebrated animated series that involves high fashion, interpretive dance, and Chinese fire cupping.

True to the spirit of Evangelion, the film is artistic, bizarre, and slightly disturbing.

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