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Magazine Caters to "Little Devil" Fashion Fans (August 31, 2007)

The cover of Koakuma Ageha
Of the many women's fashion magazines in Japan, Koakuma Ageha has been making waves for its especially daring fashion suggestions. Launched in October 2006, it covers hairstyle, makeup, and fashion and targets young women who love designer-brand goods and seek fashions that attract men. The streets of bustling Tokyo districts like Shinjuku, Shibuya, Roppongi, and Ikebukuro are now populated by many women who have seemingly jumped out of the pages of Koakuma Ageha.

Curly Hair, Big Eyes, Decorated Phones
Koakuma Ageha (koakuma means "little devil") comes with the subtitle "Seduction and Desire Book for Beautiful Gals Who Want to Become Cuter." True to the subtitle, it features hostesses who work at hostess clubs in addition to professional models. The pages overflow with the women's favorite hairstyles, makeup and manicure techniques, dresses, designer bags and accessories, shoes, and other items.

Cute frills are key to this look.

Hime-kei (princess-type) fashion

The fashions, hairstyles, and makeup featured in Koakuma Ageha are characterized by an avid pursuit of sexiness and cuteness. The look that these styles represent are alternately known as hime-kei ("princess type"), due to the preference for princess-like curls, rose corsages, frilly dresses, and glittering accessories with pearls and rhinestones; age-jo, derived from the magazine title (Ageha), the verb mori-ageru meaning "to puff up the hair," and the term jo, referring to young women; and koakuma-kei ("little devil type"), in reference to the seductiveness of the look.

Girls into this style of fashion typically have dyed blond hair, which they puff up at the crown of the head and let hang in curly locks at the sides. They exaggerate the size of their eyes by applying heavy eyeliner both above and below the eyes, plenty of dark eye shadow on the entire eyelids, and several coats of mascara to lengthen and thicken the eyelashes. Color contact lenses are also a favorite.

One of the keys to the age-jo look is to reveal some skin, such as by wearing strapless print dresses that accentuate the cleavage and miniskirts that show off the legs. Women who sport the style therefore busy themselves with keeping in shape by dieting and frequenting beauty salons.

A decorated mobile phone

The age-jo look is glamorous from head to toe, to the point of being garish. These women wear elaborate nail art and adorn themselves with brand-name jewelry and bags. They walk around in high heels ornamented with roses and ribbons. Moreover, they use decorative cell phones covered in rhinestones and kawaii (cute) motifs like hearts and roses.

A Kind of Cosplay?
The prevailing fashion trends in recent years have been mote-kei ("attractive type") and aisare-kei ("endearing type"), both of which grew out of fashion magazines aimed at young women. These days the "little devil" look is catching on among young women who were not satisfied with these more elegant fashions. Intensely cute, self-indulgent, and sexy, the latest style appeals more strongly to men.

With its overdone hairstyles, makeup, and fashions, the devilish princess look advocated by the Koakuma Ageha magazine may be likened in some ways to a kind of cosplay (dressing up as manga and anime characters).

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Copyright (c) 2007 Web Japan. Edited by Japan Echo Inc. based on domestic Japanese news sources. Articles presented here are offered for reference purposes and do not necessarily represent the policy or views of the Japanese Government.

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