Category Archives: FASHION

Ishoku-hada extreme body painting subculture invades Tokyo again

miyako akane ishokuhada body paint cosplay tokyo

When gravure idol (glamor model) Miyako Akane kickstarted a new body painting cosplay subculture back in June, certain sections of the web went nuts. While this is hardly a genuine trend — a handful of models don’t constitute a movement per se — ishoku-hada (literally, “unique skin” or “unusual skin”) is pretty irresistible on a pure visual level.

Well, Akane and her cohorts were recently back in action on the streets of Tokyo with the expected spectacular results.

miyako akane ishokuhada body paint cosplay tokyo

miyako akane ishokuhada body paint cosplay tokyo

miyako akane ishokuhada body paint cosplay tokyo

miyako akane ishokuhada body paint cosplay tokyo

Omotesando is kind of the Champs-Élysées of Tokyo, known for its broad boulevard and brand flagship stores as well as, unlike the crowded streets of Shinjuku and Shibuya, ample space for pedestrians to enjoy a ramble. However, we imagine the average nighttime stroller on September 9th would have been shocked to see these models showing off their extreme body paint fashion, which takes various Akihabara, Harajuku and Shibuya gyaru or cosplay trends to new radical heights.

This the ladies wore kimono and opted for an oiran historical courtesan theme.

Cool Japan? Wacky Japan? Or an awesome street fashion movement in the making? You decide.

…continue reading

    

Meet Lulu Hashimoto, a living doll fashion model

lulu hashimoto living fashion doll tokyo japan

Everyone knows that Japan has a lot of dolls: from luxury silicone sex dolls to Licca-chan and Hinamatsuri Festival dolls.

Kigurumi is a kind of cosplay or costume play where participants dress up in full-body costumes, sometimes with anime-style masks (known as animegao kigurumi) or furry suits. If you’ve ever wanted to become a mascot and really embody the role, then this is the subculture for you.

But can it be fashion, too?

A younger designer called Hitomi Komaki thinks so. She has created Lulu Hashimoto, a “living doll” fashion model.

lulu hashimoto living fashion doll tokyo japan

This prototype may well find itself presented by some as the latest example of “wacky Japan” clickbait or Harajuku street fashion gone mad, but it’s actually an innovative and intriguing development. Lulu is a full-body doll suit with a wig, mask and stockings. And “she” is the perfect solution for anyone who has ever wanted to become cute in that uniquely 2D style that lingers somewhere within the uncanny valley where many androids and robots are also consigned.

Creepy or kawaii? The jury may be still be out but Komaki sees potential for this as a product where you can move around in a “human” way but take on a doll-like character for enhancing your cuteness (while also maintaining anonymity). The stockings, which were co-created by fashion designer Koh Ueno, even have airbrushed doll-like joints, further cementing the strange fusion of doll and person in the suit.

lulu hashimoto living fashion doll tokyo japan

“Many people call my project a fetish, though for me it’s not a fetish but fashion,” she says. “It’s like wearing nice clothes or putting on false eyelashes to become cuter.”

“I want to see women wear these stockings and transform,” says 29-year-old …continue reading