The following is a guest-post written by McConnell of Kinowear.com
It’s no secret that the bar for fashion is set incredibly high in Asia. Unlike the states, where casual style reigns supreme, Asian men put a lot of time and creative thinking into their daily outfits. If you want to have a better first impression when meeting Asian women, then you’ll need to upgrade your style to match the local competition.
What makes fashion difficult is that there are so many different ways to dress. It’s hard to narrow your choice down to one single style. How can you be sure the style you choose is the right fit for you? What’s the best way to know whether or not a specific way of dressing will be attractive to the kinds of girls you want?
Figuring Out Your Ideal Style
The answer is actually quite simple: go outside and pay attention to what girls are wearing. When you see a girl you like, take some time and look at what kind of clothes she has. Is she wearing heels? Does she have a specific type of makeup? What kinds of colors is she using?
Once you’ve identified your ideal type of girl (and, by extension, your ideal fashion), then start paying attention to what kind of guys those girls are with. What do those guys wear? Is it more casual or more formal? Is it conservative or flamboyant? What kinds of accessories are those guys using?
Whatever details you notice, take notes on them and then bring those notes with you when you go shopping. This way, you can build a wardrobe that is specifically tailored for the types of girls you’re interested in.
The closer you can tailor your fashion to your ideal girl type, the better your first impressions will be when meeting new Asian girls.
Next I’ll discuss country-specific fashion across Asia, so you can get an idea of what’s popular and attractive.
Fashion in Japan
Japan has some of the wildest and most creative fashion of Asia (and possibly in the entire world!) Japanese people are very skilled at taking inspiration from a wide variety of sources and applying them to their outfits. While doing this, they also tend to maintain a strong link to traditional Japanese dress. This means you’ll often find some beautiful mixes of traditional Japanese fashion with modern international influence.
Traditionally, Japanese fashion incorporates lots of drapery, wrapping and excess fabric in their fashion. Modern Japanese designers like Yohji Yamamoto and Rei Kawakubo (Commes des Garcons) make heavy use of these Japanese traditions in their clothing lines.
In Japan there are also many different niche fashion subcultures (bboy and hip hop style, streetwear, host fashion, visual kei, rock ‘n roll style, etc.) and each subculture has men and women that are a part of it. It’s common to see couples dressing with matching styles in Japan.
In the image below, you can see matching Gyaru (gal) and Gyaru-o (male ‘gal’) couple fashion:
Japanese fashion also differs from city to city. Tokyo style tends to be more conservative with lots of neutral colors whereas Osaka and Fukuoka tend to be more colorful and vibrant in their fashion. Nagoya style lies somewhere in-between Tokyo and Osaka, with a combination of colorful, yet professional outfits.
Many people are confused by how feminine Japanese men dress sometimes, with dyed hair, lots of jewelry and clean shaven faces. While this sort of image may not be considered attractive in western countries, it’s this young, slightly feminine and boyish look that’s attractive to a lot of local women in Japan and Korea.
In the photo below, you can see a pair of Japanese hosts (who’s job is to pull women into their club to drink with them). Hosts typically sport flamboyant hairstyles (often with dyed blonde hair) and lots of jewelry and a prince-like look, catering to a typical fantasy of local Japanese girls.
Japan is filled with tons of creative styles. If you find yourself in Tokyo, I highly recommend going shopping in Harajuku or Shibuya to check out some of the unique pieces and creative fashion of local Japanese guys who hang out in those areas.
Fashion in Korea
While Japan specializes in the unique and wild, Korea has a much more down-to-earth style, incorporating lots of western influence while maintaining a colorful and slightly flamboyant edge.
Korea is a country largely driven by seasonal fashion trends and the “styles of the moment”. Every season brings a new set of trendy styles and pieces with it, often driven forward by features in Korean drama or K-Pop music videos.
But don’t let this trick you into thinking Korea is just trend-following. Koreans are great at creating timeless outfits, often with expert use of color. Even the simplest of Korean outfits can stand out as well-designed with careful color choices and great combination of minimal pieces.
Below you can see some very creative western-style suits (designed by a Korean clothing brand) with an infusion of unique detailing, great color and interesting patterns. This type of style is very typical of Korean dandy style.
On the other end of the spectrum, Koreans are extremely good at doing casual style in an attractive and exciting way. Notice the vibrant colors used in even the most basic of outfits (check the guy wearing the blue t-shirt with a bright orange belt popping out against the blue!)
You can see from the outfit examples above that the individual pieces that are popular in Korea are not all that different from the popular pieces in America or Europe, the difference is the level of attention that goes into color and detailing when Koreans build their outfits.
Every western guy can learn a lot from the amount of focus Korean men put into their wardrobes and daily outfits. In the west, people typically stick with “casual and comfortable” fashion that doesn’t require much thought. But that won’t cut it in east Asia!
Putting effort into your outfits will have a huge positive effect on your confidence levels and can sky-rocket your initial impressions with Asian women.
I often encourage my clients in Seoul to check out the local Korean brands and find unique pieces that can’t be found elsewhere (Korean brands often release very creative designs that never make it overseas).
If you’re interested in shopping for South Korean brands, you can shop online at YesStyle and ship Korean clothes directly to your home. Be careful with the sizing, as Asian sizes typically run one size smaller than their western equivalents (ex. a western M size is an Asian L).
Fashion in Asia is VERY different from the west and can be confusing at first. However, with a few key improvements, you can be turning the heads of local Asian girls wherever you might be.
If you need some more inspiration, I recommend creating an account on Pinterest, Tumblr or Instagram and start following some topics, tags or accounts related to Asian fashion so you can develop your visual library and hone your personal style further.