Paleness, Momoeri, Poupee, and Galmama

Ghostface killah

LOL It seems on the gyaru_secrets, I was called out for being too pale and uhhh making my eyes too big(?).  I really am super pale, indeed. Once a boy in middle-school asked me if I was albino. I told him I was half ^_^v teehee! I did tan this summer, but with it costing around $30.00 a trip in Japan (their monthly packages are rare or very expensive), and the upcoming joy of tights I decided to stop for the winter. Not to mention the skin erosion.

Now I’m back to my pale self. As I’ve said before, when I tan I notice non-gyaru Japanese enjoy calling me gyaru, but with the gyaru community I think they see white girl (as in race) not white girl (as in albino) first. However, with the rise of Agejo I think tanning has really stopped for a lot of people. Agejos are usually the ones with the purchasing power so you’ll see many more Agejos out and buying instead of looking and saving $$ for tanning and working a part-time job.

It feels like there’s now two pulling factions of gal culture with Agejo pulling to paleness and Oraorakei and Nuts style Rock heading to tanning (or black skin as its called. BTW it’s considered a compliment when someone comments on your tan and says your really black. Hilarity ensues when you hear Japanese people say this to a white person in English). I do appreciate how gal has opened yet again to allow those who don’t want to tan into its circle.

The popular tanning place: Blacky

Jul,y 09 in a Delyle onepiece. I miss being that brown.

But I do not want this as my future nsfw

Anyways if you’re turned off by my skin, I’m sorry I guess. I do not plan to tan until shorts season. I really admire many of the Japanese who take a live for the now approach and tan until they’re “black”, but I just can’t do that myself. Skin cancer and less elasticity in skin doesn’t appeal to me until my legs are out 24/7.

I also hope to make this blog about as less about me as possible. If it was more about me I’d be discussing papers, my cats, my freakish love of Mexican food and pie, and my obsession with Sportscenter. Not too fun, eh?

Momoeri’s Pop-up store

While leaving I read on Momoeri’s blog about her pop-up store in Shinjuku. Popup stores are quite popular in Japan, with Bape and Kitson having stellar sales during their times as ones. However it was my last day in Japan and I was too exhausted to visit >_<; So in pops my beloved Sebastian to report on  it:


 From Sebastian:

 Pic from Sebastian

The space in marui one shinjuku where random stores rotate on the first floor currently features MOMOERI. i think it’s there until 1/11. i got a picture of the window outside, but it is kind of shoddy because it was taken with my phone >_> i would have taken one inside, but they wouldn’t let me. if i find myself back in shinjuku soon i will try and take some better pictures. they have tons of hostess dresses for sale (which oddly only old women were looking through >_>), her roomwear, some ridiculous santa suit roomwear onepiece, shoes/socks/etc and lots of make and blingtastic accessories and generally cute things for about 5sen and under. a lot of the make was like 300Y – 800Y and they also eyelashes, tiny purse mirrors, keitai straps etc.  there was even a heart-shaped condom box with two flavored condoms inside ! like seriously wtf. there is another satellite store on the seventh floor with things like momoeri portable DVD players completely deco’d, more 小さいもの stuff and some jewelry boxes that looked like doll-sized plush pink chairs and sofas and shit, but they open up like leopard seal mouths.

The inside from Momoeri’s blog
Leopard seals with their Stitch mouths and diet of penguins creep me and Sebastian out. 

I do like tiny Momoeri goods, but the larger ones seem to be more cheaply made. Here’s hoping she finds a better supplier!

Poupee

Momoeri’s Slutty Santa gear
So Christmas is the biggest date night in Japan, so coincidentally in comes all these lingerie and outfits of slutty Santa. Sometimes it’s slutty elf or reindeer, but both are rare thankfully. Men’s Egg voted Cosplay Sex as their biggest kink, over such old ones as s&m and toys. I do want to know how many women decide to buy and bring out slutty Santa outfits. Maybe I’m a simple girl for gettin’ down. ^_^;;

Now poupee has a version of it. As well as bra + panty set.

Are you guys all using poupee?It’s a place you can shop without having to pay anything, and you get money from uploading your own clothes… ahh for a shopaholic this was like taking Las Vegas to a gambler.

Also you can make your poupee look like you. Me n Poupee from this summer:

Pretty similar except I lack giant eyes, but make up for it in forehead
Thank god for bangs.

If you’re on poupee, add me and let’s be friends! I’m lazy/busy and only dress-up my poupee lately though.

 It may provide kitschy outfits, but the best for gals to use it is the poupee jiten.Users often post their purchases before you see them in mags and often on real people. It’s a great way to shop fashions and find out what your brand is currently doing. Gilfy, Glad News, and Cecil McBee are on it just to name a few. The gal shoplist has all the poupee links if they have one.

Gal Motherhood: the facts

Momoeri brings me to a talk on being a galmama. Now I’ve noticed both rapture and hate within the gaijin communities over the rise of galmama.

Now I should preface this with I am NOT a mom, I am NOT one because I think mothers make the ultimate sacrifice. They should always put their children first and I admire those who take action to do so.

I have said GAL is WORK. However, many of these mamas have found ways to work around that. (see the Momoeri pic below)

 
A relevant thread of how Fukuoka real gal moms are dressing. See the simplified hair and often lower heel.
Even the mom-models have simplified hair. Both also look extension free.

Before I start with the gal issue, discussing mama in Japan has to go hand-in-hand with the declining birthrate. The US has a declining birthrate, but we have a laxer immigrant policy which pics up the slack. So when Japan found this out a few years ago there was a huge commotion about how people should screw and some politicians even came out asked women to be baby making machines. This got shot down, but the atmosphere was very pro-babymaking. So the culture for children is very desirable now. Onto the gal part…

Galmamas usually fit into two categories: unmarried and married. 

In the unmarried case, a gal who for the most part before baby has a job that is not office related ex: hair, nails (like in Momoeri’s case), shopstaff. Now these aren’t hours that make having children very easy. Since space is always important, daycare is very expensive and many have waiting lists. So… how does a young mama help her child? Well she either gets help from her parents, which frees up her time to do gal things if she wishes.

Or.. she becomes an Agejo. Either hostess, bargirl or works on in an adult business. As a single mama needing daylight with her child, there are not that many jobs. Japan has climbed up a few notches on the gender and equality scale on the UN, but it definitely still poor.So in an unequal society, women do what they can.

Agejo is a gal look that must be maintained. However, they can wear their hair plain and pay for hairset (30 minutes) during work times. Then she can wear shorter nails which are easier to handle the child’s needs (two hours every month). In this way, gal is her profession, it is her lifestyle.

In the married case, during naptimes or school she has time to make appointments and touch-ups to her look. She also has the monetary support of her husband to spend a little on herself if she sees fit.

Personally, I really appreciate the rise in galmama and the magazines dedicated to it. In western society there has always been a MILF stereotype or at least an allowance especially with celebrities that moms could look sexy and be attractive after marriage.

The traditional mindset in Japan has made a bride into a mother and therefore as someone’s mother she is not to be considered sexy or attractive. In a psychology study of Japanese men who cheated many said they no longer found their wives attractive or sexy after birth. However, on the same side a woman had the thought that if she birthed a child and raised him she was finished and had no more obligations as a woman.

But cheap and cute with the moms still looking sexy.

Now with the blossoming of galmama, moms are allowing themselves to feel sexy and attractive. This is a very new and IMO great trend. You may think that the time it takes to be gal ignores your child’s needs, but most mothers can find time for themselves and reassert that they are a person, a woman too, and not just a mother. Yes being a mother means sacrifice, but gal can and often has to be done for the welfare of their children.

Look at Momoeri, looking gal but in great maneuverable clothing.
Galmama magazines also talking about issues most moms want to know: saving on food, cute kids clothes, and recommendations on short or no heels for strollering your kids. Not to mention it’s a forum for mom’s to show off their cute kids, and that’s just universal.
  Food budgeting tips.
Before you hate or love on galmamas just take time to reconsider their place in society and how most are working hard for the sake of their children. v^_^
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14 comments so far

  1. Emi on

    I'm glad you are smart about your skin. I tan easily and have skin cancer in the family, so I'm a pale gal too. It's foolish to tan so much…especially for fashion.

  2. Lissy on

    I too use to be VERY pale until I started taking Iron & Vitamin B complex with a high strength Vitamin C to absorb faster in my blood everyday and then I started to get some skin color! Some one once told me [before I had all the vitamins] I had onion like skin and that made me feel so sad. D:Anyway I think pale skin looks more youthful and feminine so we rock! ❤

  3. Shanna on

    I can say i am a galmama .and after i get him i feel me sexier than before…because my body change i getting a female body more.. i do more for me and my son.. that means for me.. i wear highheels around 10-12 cm. i wear sexy clothes. i have job and i have time for beeing a gal and a mother…so i think it really diffrent in the most countries.. cause here in germany.. i feel me now more like an adult and boys like me more than before..cause they think "she have a kid and job she know what she want bla blub" so it is really diffrent ^^""

  4. Miki on

    Have you ever tried spray tans or those lotion ones?? There are a few temp ones that disappear after 30days or something too I think. you might like to give that a go as a healthier alternative.

  5. Mitsu on

    Miki: I don't think they do a good job and currently I am happy with the color of my skin. I find it silly that it's an issue. Sure I miss being a nice caramel for summer, but to be an orange for winter sounds not so pleasing.

  6. Nuku on

    I saw that secret too.. well especially in winter it's a pain to tan, in summer it's easy of course..but yeah who wants to look like Ms Versace later, that's so NOT wild and sexy ;DIt's especially a lame secret cause if that person would follow your blog, she'd know that you are always recognized(?wrong word? sorry I'm not a native speaker) as a gal and got a good connection to the shop staff girls as well..so please don't take it to your heart ._. skin colour should be the least to identify a gal.

  7. Mitsu on

    Nuku: I just can't think any of those secrets as a good secret. I think as women our worst trait can often be being passive aggressive and the internet seems to just amplify that. Not to mention it allows people to just be downright cruel. As women in a very marginalized fashion we should be celebrating ourselves, not cutting each other down. I don't see Japanese communities doing it (with the exception of 2ch which is not gal). If someone thinks my paleness makes me look creepy that's fine. If my they don't like my eyemake that's okay too. a) you can't please everyone and I surely don't hope do, I'd rather be happy for myselfb) I do tend to follow make-up trends, some I will look back at even a month later and be wth I was thinking. It's the enjoyment of trying something new, and the shame sometimes LOLI didn't take it to heart and the girl doing the secret said kind things too, but it saddens me there's a community out there. Everyone should be lifting each other up. Anyways this blog is always to talk about trends and current info concerning gals, it should be last last last about my skintone <_<;;

  8. Mitsu on

    Shanna: Whoa girl 10-12cm!? Lawd! I have one 10cm pair heels and I despise them for the feet killing they do (of course I love the leg amplifying they do too LOL). Kudos girly! Go you also juggling work and motherhood. I don't think I could do that, but I am in awe of those who do. In short: keep doing yah thang! ^_~

  9. Nuku on

    Yeah, you're totally right :)it's actually quite sad that part of the community is not like supporting each other but to "secretly" talking bad about others instead of offering help or just keeping their bad opinon for themselves. It's just like this when a newbie posts and some people go really really harsh on them. It's not that everybody starts off perfectly._.

  10. Sparklewolfie on

    I think it is great to encourage taking care of yourself after marriage too 🙂 In Asia family is such a big thing that a lot of mothers forget about themselves entirely!

  11. Lindsay on

    Great post, Mitsu! I totally agree with you on the tanning thing. I live in California where it seems like there's a tanning salon (either booths or spray) on every streetcorner, and bronze skin(or, let's face it, orange) is a must for everyone over the age of 12. I have naturally very pale skin, and decided it wasn't worth it to spend money on changing the color of my skin to fit some arbitrary idea of beauty.I like the whole concept of the pop-up store. It doesn't put too much pressure on the retailer to be an amazing success, and it gives the locals a taste of something that they otherwise wouldn't have. I was wishing that there was one in my area and then I remembered that I already visited one! In San Francisco's New People building (it's a mixture of art gallery and mini-mall with Japanese brands) had a pop up 6% dokidoki shop (what they termed a "limited shop"). Very interesting. I hope the trend continues.

  12. Ligaya on

    Hi! Great post as always.I must def agree with you, it's better to save up for tanning for the season when it counts – summer! No use wasting money on a tan when it's time – and perfectly sensible – to cover up in piles of clothing. And honestly, I think you look nice pale in your photos. Then again, I have only been in the US for winter only once, and I was in California (to visit my older sister) so that doesn't really count now does it? v^^0 Also, yes, some people do look a LOT older when they tan often. I dunno why it happens, it's pretty sad actually, but I am glad I have good genes and tan automatically in my tropical home (not like we have a choice though, lol!). And wow, I am amazed how you put galmama into the married and unmarried contexts! I personally respect and admire any woman who decides to keep her child and raise him/her the best she can whether or not she gets the support of a man. I also agree with you, a woman can always try to look good even after child-birthing and during child-rearing – it's a way of reasserting her own person, and choosing to just live beyond the "mother" archetype. I am glad that the galmama culture is spreading. Lord knows the Japanese need the higher birthrate, with them being mostly xenophobic (the more accurate term being outsider-o-phobic… erk, sorry, that's still xenophobic right? ^^0) and all. Also, like Sparklewolfie said, motherhood is such serious business here and I see so many mums neglect themselves once they become mums!Alright, I may not be online much longer as I have TONS of last-minute Christmas things to do! Merry Christmas everyone! v^_^v

  13. Bianca on

    i like your skin and eyes soooo i dont care what anyone else says…Plus, I think gal mamas are probably really good mamas, and back in the day in the US moms used to take more pride in their appearance as well. Infact my bf's mom still cooks in heels! I think if its part of your everyday life adjusts too it, looking terrible and like life is running you dry doesnt = a better mom. I'm sure these mamas spend more time with their kids then most american celebs…no one comments on that tho :/merry christams btw!

  14. ラブ✰ゆい on

    I think being fair is nice, compared to you harming your skin. At least you know the effects and care for your skin better.Besides that, I learnt something in this entry! Love reading your blog~ Love your poupee doll too!


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