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The fifth of my images of Japan collection September 23, 2006

Posted by urbanblue in Images of Japan.

Five years ago, the districts of Shibuya and Harajuku in Tokyo were swarming with “yamamba“. These are girls in their late teens and early twenties who go all out to tan their skins as dark and as orange as they can, wear white and silver make-up, dye their hair as outrageously as possible and generally look like freakish extras from a Clacton Pier pantomime. They’re very much in decline now however, as this fashion is becoming overtaken by the Mariah Carey inspired “gyaru” style. Big hair, glittery make-up and Hello Kitty accessories.
Which means that yamamba spotting is becoming somewhat of a hobby. Bit like birdwatching. As ridiculous as the fashion is, I am going to miss it when it eventually dies out. So, for the fifth photo in this collection, and as a kind of preemptive swan song, here’s a yamamba I spotted in Yoyogi Park earlier this year.




1. Yokohamarama - September 23, 2006

I always thought they looked a bit like Nancy Sinatra.

2. yokohamabrian - September 24, 2006

or perhaps a Tammy Faye Baker. Anyway, they will live on forever in our minds, just like the half-naked Shibuya boys that were with them:) Some folks are just SO classy!

3. urbanblue - September 27, 2006

Nancy Sinatra? Tammy Faye Baker?! I could be wrong but I don’t think that’s quite the look they are going for! I think this one in the picture looks like Paris Hilton coloured in by a four-year old with a new pack of felt tips.

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