Discovering Style in Japan: The Scrunchy

Scrunchy Madness.

I have always fawned over Japanese beauty and style, I’m not sure why, perhaps its because the girls are just so god damn cute.  Back in the UK, I diligently scoured the internet for Japanese fashion and cosmetics news thanks to blogs, import magazines and Youtube. Now I’m here exploring and working in the land of the Rising Sun, my make up obsession continues. However, there are still a few things that continue to baffle and surprise me when I walk around the drug store every week.

I first landed in Japan in March, I was in Nagoya to start my job training and even though I was jet lagged out of my mind, I needed to get out and explore on my second day there. I also needed a distraction, as I was missing home a lot those first couple of days. I dragged myself  (and my puffy face) around an underground mall in Nagoya Station. I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on something, anything remotely かわいい (cute).  Then I found myself at my first shopping target, “It’s Demo”, I spotted make up and handbags at a first glance and went straight inside. Heaven! Alas, I couldn’t believe my eyes when I stumbled upon… the scrunchy section.

I’m sure it’s not just me, anyone in the western world will know that these things are restricted to the bathroom, bed time, working out, the 80s, the 90s, little girls, little girls in beauty pageants, little girls in dance recitals and little girls in gymnastics competitions. Ahem. Alas I was not in a shop which resembles Claire’s, (despite the Hello Kitty mirror) its in a very popular and ‘kitsch’ cosmetics store. As well as popular make up and cute bags, they also stock Cath Kidston and other kitschy designers. Of course this is now one of my favourite places to waste time before getting the train home after work. You can find a scrunchy section in almost any drug store or accessory store, though I will admit, there was a lack of scrunchies in Shinjuku’s Topshop.

Apologies Carrie Bradshaw, I know you would disapprove, I know you said any good woman (in New York) would never be caught with a scrunchy but here in Japan they are a staple fashion accessory and rather cute ones at that. I hope I don’t shock anyone back home when I say that yes, I too have now been wearing them, they make my topknot look just too adorable. I’m sorry. I’m sorry…

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