Yami Kawaii/Menhera

Recently, I read about a new “anti-Kawaii” movement in Harajuku fashion where I notice cynical taglines and and words that read “die”. It is Tokyo’s version of the anti-establishment Punk movement. It is called Yami Kawaii. The word “yami” is the character for “sick” or “ill” and often alludes to the physical maladies like pain. The Yami Kawaii culture revolves around fake bandages, skulls, pink blood, and gas masks. It is actually similar to “kowa-Kawaii” or “scary-Kawaii”, which deals with gore with a goth spin to it. Another style for another day.

This month is Mental Health Awareness month and along with Yami-Kawaii, I focused on Menhera-Kei. Yami takes on a mental mental dimension and it means “mentally anguished”. Menhera is short for “mental health”. For someone like me who is diagnosed with mild depression and an anxiety. It is already hard on me as a black Woman but even harder for those to believe me. This style is a way to create art and fashion and bring it to real life instead of hiding it inside.

I was able to display this style, my edgy ness, and all things Harajuku at the Harajuku meet in Los Angeles at Studio Chibi. I mixed the style of Menhera with alternative Avant Garde, which I am inspired by the Japanese fashion designer, H.Naoto!

The blue plaid cap from Dolls Kill, lace up choker from Hot Topic, pink steampunk google, turquoise netted top & turquoise netted tights from Amazon, Hangry & Angry t-shirt by H.Naoto, Tripp black pleated goth skirt from Hot Topic, and the platform sandals from Japan (online).

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