When thinking about Japanese fashion brands, one may immediately think about the Harajuku girls. With their flamboyant looks that are often inspired by anime culture, it’s no surprise that they’ve been a target of the international attention. However. if you thought cutesy looks were the only types of clothes we’re good at making, you’ll be proven wrong. Recognized for being one of the fashion capitals of the world, Japan has a diverse range of fashion tastes to offer. In this list, we’ve covered all sorts of brands for you. From those that specialize in girly casual outfits to streetwear inspired grunge looks, it’s all here. One thing we found in common in many of these stores is that they carry good quality pieces that will last you through years. Whether you live in Japan or are just traveling for vacation, it doesn’t hurt to take a peek at some of these highly acclaimed apparel brands.
Perhaps one of the most popular women’s wear brand in Japan, you can count on Snidel to elevate your style. Who says pastel colors and lace were only for little girls? Wearing girly clothes can be difficult once you hit the age of 20, but Snidel does a great job at encompassing the “grown-up girly” style without making you look like a barbie. Mixing streetwear and formal wear, this is a great brand to incorporate into your wardrobe if you want to get your hands on some trendy pieces. Their clothes have a tendency to be on the higher end (mostly over ¥10,000) but the quality of their clothes make up for it.
2. Mila Owen
Do you idolize Parisians? Does your wardrobe have an urban flair? Do you invest in fashion staples? If you answered yes to all of these questions above, chances are you’ll fall in love with Mila Owen. Popular by women in their 20-30’s, this is a great brand for finding basic clothes with a bit of a twist. The best part about Mila Owen’s clothes is how versatile they are. Their clothes are sophisticated enough for you to wear in the office, yet chic enough to get you through an upscale bar.
3. Slobe Iena
Slobe Iena is a brand dedicated to the aspiring Parisian that loves elegant silhouettes. If you want to attain the perfect “Je ne sais quoi” wardrobe, this is the brand you need to keep in mind. Most of their clothes have a subtle girliness that hits the sweet spot of not looking like a child or wearing boring basics.
As a pioneer in the fashion industry in Japan since 1976, BEAMS has played a big role in introducing Japanese to smart casual outfits. As a “select shop”, BEAMS boasts clothes from both their own brand and other international/domestic brands. Their “BEAMS BOY” line does a superb job at capturing the wardrobe of a contemporary grown-up tomboy. The design isn’t the only thing that draws customers to BEAMS, their clothes hold up for years on end.
5. Lowrys Farm
Lowrys Farm is for those of you that don’t want to be a fashion risk taker but still want to wear something that makes you look fashion savvy. Consisting of mostly casual wear, this is a great brand that will introduce you to the quintessential “kawaii” daily wear in Japan. With an affordable price point, this brand has garnered popularity by many young Japanese women. For people that prefer an even more basic mature style, check out their sister brand, Apart by Lowrys.
6. Lily Brown
Most of Lily Brown’s clothing looks as if it was straight out if a movie sets costume closet. Overall, there’s just something glamorous, kitschy and vintage about Lily Brown’s line up. If you’re ever on the hunt for a one-of-a-kind cocktail & party dress, this should be your one-stop destination.
7. United Arrows
It’s no secret that United Arrows is huge in Japan. As a major fashion conglomerate, United Arrows has developed several brands under its umbrella and offers a different taste with each brand. With “creating a new Japanese standard” as its slogan, it has been doing just that since it opened up its first store back in 1989. The best part about shopping at United Arrows stores is that they carry quality pieces that will last you for years.
8. Earth Music & Ecology
It wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that almost every Japanese girl owns an item or two from Earth Music & Ecology. Offering casual pretty outfits for those on a budget, this brand has garnered its status as a go-to brand for many. You can pretty much count on finding an Earth Music & Ecology store in any part of the country.
If you consider your style as quirky, streetwear, edgy and a little bit vintage. WEGO may be worth the hype for you. Think “80’s slogan t-shirts”, “fishnets” and “denim jackets”. Representing the street style of Harajuku, this is where you can find what the street kids are wearing for an affordable price. Don’t want to splurge on trendy pieces? Head out to WEGO, where all the Harajuku girls are getting their hands on up and coming pieces.
Known for their well-made clothes, SHIPS has long offered Japanese people timeless basics that would make an Ivy leaguer go gaga. If brands like J.crew make your heart skip a beat, SHIPS will have something in store for you. Durable cotton shirts, impeccably tailored jackets, and amazing preppy accessories are just some of the things that SHIPS are exceptionally good at making.