1.) The start (1991~1995)
Gyaru style probably emerged around 1991. It wasn’t a famous icon who started with this style, it was actually created by local Japanese students from private high schools.
Rich girls who wanted to be different from the black hair Japanese ladies with white skin. The first Gyaru (=garl = girl) style is Kogyaru (=kid-girl), which was created by those girls. The look was about dying hair to blond or light brown hair, wearing girly make-up (a little glitter and smokey black eyes) to have more western dolls eyes, wearing school uniform in a more sexy approach, high slobby socks, and a tanned skin. Also, in the beginning they showed up with high brand bags or other accessories.
Besides fashion and make-up, Gyaru girls were also into a certain dance move, which they created. It is called Paru Paru! They did it when they gather and hang outside, also it was their affinity for nightlife. They spent a lot of money on night parties and hanging out with all the Gyarus together.
2.) The changes (1995~2014)
Kogyaru was the birth, but Gyaru style has transformed into many different kinds of sub gyaru styles. As you might know, Lolita style was also booming around the same time as Gyaru style. Hime Gyaru is a combination of these two styles, so still as cute dolls, but with extreme beauty styles like the French queen Marie Antoinette. Big wig pieces, a lot of make-up, crowns or big pink bows.
A lot of hostesses followed the new Gyaru sub style called Agejo Gyaru. Hostesses are ladies who work in girlsbars to entertain men, mostly by conversations and drinking. Probably until now, a lot of these girls are dying their hair, have smoky eyes with color circle contacts.
The extreme developments of Gyaru are Ganguro, Yamanba/Manba. Yamanba means Old mountain witch and they had very dark make-up to cover their skin, white lines above the eyes, sometimes also under the eyes and on the nose. The hair was mostly big and a lot of colored hair pieces and their clothes and hair accessories were very colorful.
3.) Now (2017~now)
Personally, I haven’t seen a Ganguro girl in recent years. Obviously it had died, let’s say about 2004. In 2015, a Ganguro bar was opened in Shibuya. And Shibuya still has the most famous gyaru department store, 109. So still curious about this style? It is a good opportunity to visit these unique places. Nowadays, the trend is to be as natural as possible. Girls have darker hair and wear natural style makeup. Although, if I see the advertisement boards in Kabukucho with girls’ faces on, there is still a bit of soft version of Gyaru in the hostess’ club. Gyaru might fully disappear, but Japanese style will always change. So after this period of natural look, what will be next?
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