What is this Japanese Hairstyle and Why is it Popular?

  • FASHION
  • CULTURE
  • The “hime cut” (姫カット) is a very popular hairstyle which originated in Japan. It is the favorite of fashionistas, including celebrities across the world from Taylor Swift to many Asian celebrities. It is said to make one look prettier and increases elegance and grace. Let’s take a look at this exotic hairstyle!

    History

    The hime cut started during the Heian period (平安時代) and continues to be one of the top picks for women today. The word “hime” in Japanese means “princess”. The noble women and royal family members in Japan during the Heian period started this trend in order to make themselves look different from regular women of their time. Since it takes a lot of care and maintenance to sport this hairstyle every day, only wealthy women could do it during that time. This look is now widely popular among women of all ages in many countries.

    The Look

    A post shared by 結 (@yuiteen_galaxy) on

    The hime cut is recommended usually for women with long, straight hair. In this haircut, the hair at the back is kept long while the side locks are cut to the length of the cheeks. The front hair is usually very short, cut to align with the eyebrows. Some women prefer slightly longer side locks while some prefer shorter ones depending on their face type. This hairstyle can seem pretty daunting for people with curly hair as it requires heavy shampooing, straightening, and curling. Even for people with naturally straight hair, maintenance can be tiring, especially during seasons with high humidity.

    There is no specific rule that you should have this look in a certain way. Instead of having long hair at the back, some women create an “odango” (お団子) or pigtail. Some even have double pigtails. Popularized by the anime series Sailor Moon, the odango bun became a complimentary hairstyle to the hime cut. However, this is not worn by many Japanese women on a regular basis, except during some cosplay sessions. You can actually wear a simple hair clip or hair pin to look more elegant instead of a pigtail.

    Popularity

    The hime cut seems to have found its permanent place in the anime world. Many female, and sometimes even male, anime characters have this hairstyle.

    This style has also become part of a fashion trend called “GothLoli”, a combination of Gothic and Victorian era Lolita subcultures. If you walk along Takeshita Street (竹下通り) in Harajuku (原宿), Tokyo, you can find many Lolitas with this hairstyle. Be it cosplay, Gothic events or steampunk conventions, you will very likely encounter women sporting the hime cut.

    The hime cut has a strong influence on not only Japanese women, but also western women. Many people believe this haircut makes them look cute. Although not mass marketed, the Lolita fashion has spread to American and European fashion streets. There is a trend these days in the west to have this hairstyle along with Lolita clothing on a regular basis.

    There was a famous magazine that popularized this trend called the Gothic and Lolita Bible, which ranked among one of the top ten manga magazines in the world by critics. Many celebrities have popularized this fashion subculture, one of such is the famous Japanese author and fashion designer, Novala Takemoto (嶽本野ばら).

    The hime cut can be complimented with rosy makeup and a short gown to look like a Lolita. This haircut suits women of all facial types, shapes, and ages. Why not try out this popular hairstyle? See for yourself how it could bring a fresh new look to your face!

    Related Articles:
    The Top 10 Shopping Districts in Tokyo for Fashion Enthusiasts
    Where to Buy Lolita Fashion? Check These 4 Japanese Brands Out!
    All About the Twin Tail Hairstyle and Japan’s Pigtail Hair Idol Group