Amongst the most popular style subcultures in Japan, there are ones which has been around for so long and still makes an appearance up until now, specially at the streets of Harajuku. If you want to know more about different Japanese street fashion, you can read about it on our article right here. But the main focus of this post is about Amekaji, a substyle of Gyaru fashion style. Before we take you to more facts about what Amekaji is, you will get to know Gyaru first with a brief description, it is very important to know the key things to remember on how to a Gyaru before anything else.
Gyaru and its substyles
The word Gyaru is translated into the English word Gal and the trend has been around for years. It is very distinguishable by their bleached hair, heavy bright colored makeup, highly elongated and decorated nails, tanned skin and colorful clothes. The look was somehow inspired by the American TV show Baywatch. You'll notice that their makeup is usually heavy on eyeliner, eyeshadow and false eyelashes making their eyes very large and prominent, it is so dramatic that the effect is mostly exaggerated. The overall look is somehow the opposite of Asian beauty standards which are always going towards fair skin and dark hair. There are many substyles under it, some of them are Agejo, Hime Gyaru, Ganguro, Kogal Yamanba and Amekaji, which is the main topic for this article.
All about Amekaji
This term itself came from the English words American casual, so it immediately gives off the idea about the whole style concept. It is a substyle under Gyaru that's all about being colorful, flamboyant but casual. It's not just any colorful clothes, they wear bold and really bright colors that would surely make you give them a double take from afar. It promotes comfort and versatility because there is no limit in wearing any shape or size of casual clothing, it could be loose fitting shirts or sweaters for all its worth, as long as they are using any striking color scheme like bright yellows, green, blues, hot pink, and the like.
For tops, the most commonly worn pieces are sweaters, bomber jackets and letterman jackets. There are a lot of layering for this style but when it's summer time, they only usually wear something like shirts (bright colored of course) and cargo pants. Tees worn usually have some sort of message or slogan, and patterns apply for other pieces of clothing, like polka dots, stripes or hearts. Some of them wear loose fitting shirts of their boyfriends. Bottoms are quite distinct though, they rarely wear skirts and even dresses are never an option, instead, they wear something like cargo pants customized with colorful prints and patterns. Shorts are also something they would wear, specially on a hot weather. And as for shoes, they never wear any type of high heels, since Amekaji is all about being comfortable, flat footwear like sneakers, tennis shoes, rubber shoes and ballet flats would suit best. For someone who is wearing shorts or in some occasion, skirts, they would pair it up with some patterned or colorful knee high socks. The overall look is the epitome of everything bright and multicolored fun.
Hairstyle and dye
Hair is probably the very first thing that anyone would notice from someone donning the Gyaru look. The trademark of being a Gyaru is the overly bleached hair or really light hair color like light blonde. The hairstyles would vary, it could be long with beach waves, some braids, side swept bangs with twin ponytails and so on. Usually, Gyaru hairstyle would often be big and full of volume, it is the same with Amekaji, same big and bright hair, same makeup but just different type of clothing. For Gyaru, common hair accessories would be bows and hairclips, but for Amekaji, something like baseball caps or even beanies are commonly worn and since they normally wear caps, big hairstyles like other Gyaru subsets are not necessary.
Makeup and tanned skin
Makeup is same with every Gyaru substyle, heavy makeup focusing on the eyes to make them super large looking and noticeable. Bright eyeshadow is used often and the shades are usually a complete contrast with their tanned skin, contact lenses or circle lenses are also used to change their eye colors. Lipstick shades are typically on the light side, pale ones or even nude colored ones. Contouring of the face is also very important for this substyle, they would make sure that their faces are a lot slimmer and their noses are a lot more smaller.
Accessories and nail decorations
Gyaru is known for having long, decorative nails and Amekaji is no exception for this rule. While most Gyaru substyles have their nails decorated in an excessive manner, with really long lengths which are extended using acrylic or gel fake nails and lots of bling, Amekaji tend to be on the lighter side, since this substyle is just everything about "casual", they choose to have much more simpler nail decorations or just a simple manicure.