100 Coolest Harajuku Looks of 2012 — Straight from Tokyo

100 Coolest Harajuku Looks of 2012

From Mode to Lolita, the 100 coolest Harajuku looks of 2012

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Selecting the 100 coolest looks of 2012 from the many many hundreds of looks that we photographed this year was awesome. But it was also an extremely difficult and time consuming project that started last week and continued until the last minutes before this article was published.

Lists like this are subjective. There are lots of people that didn’t make this list that we would have loved to include. If your look didn’t make this list, it doesn’t mean we didn’t like it. It’s merely because we decided to limit the list to only 100 looks.

Our rules were both simple and strict. Looks had to be original, coordinated and create an impact on the observer. We placed no restrictions on styles. You will find everything from Mode to Lolita in this list. Some people appear more than once.

Whether you allowed us to shoot you or you came back day after day to visit our pages, thank you so much for supporting us. Thanks to you, we have been able to continue JAPANESE STREETS for ten years now. We are totally ready for the next ten!

Also check out Harajuku’s top trends in 2012.

Click on a photo to see the full shoot.


Kumamiki | Vani


Mai | Hanazono (Uri)


Satomi (Saromi) | Nihei (Takabo)


Yuko (Ribbon) | Arika nico


Kurebayashi | Kurebayashi


Satomi (Mepura) | Yuri (Moco)


Emo | Junya (Junnyan)


Natsumi (Kurau) | Hayato (Kyoka)


Risa (Lisa13) | Shoko (Ruru)


Aihara | Kaoru (in memoriam)


Erina | Yurie


10MO8 (Tomoya) | si oux


Aran Yoshioka | Aran Yoshioka


Kakuka | Shohei Minami


Miu Oki | Hitomi


Yuki | Yuki


Hosaka | Emi


Ryu Gouda | Chika Yamada


Maro | Tsuyoshi Kurahara


Hideko Tsutsumi | Kim Min Ju


Tsumire (Sung Yi Wen) | Tsumire (Sung Yi Wen)


Yume Matsuda (Ketsumo) | Coi


Aoi | Shiori (Risu)


Li Lium | Kakegawa


Marina | Marina


Emi | Monika


Narumi Meguro | Yuki


Juria | Maiko


Mariko | Airi


Kozue | Sachi Nezaki


Misato | Etsuna


Minami | Kasumi


Ari | Minami


Fumikazu | Marika Ichida


Rokugawa Hiromasa| Anri Ozawa


Rina (Cony) | Momo


Akari | Sayo Akasaka


Kenta Kudeken | Ayaka Nakamura


Yoshito Oana | Shunpei Kodera


Pokke | Yuki (Sulfone)


Hirari Ikeda | Amomo


Anna (Anami) | Ayano Satou


Rika Kuroki | Moeka Yasuda


Miho Yoshida | Kana


Aikawa | Ryoma Nagamoto


Juri | Hitomi


Jun Kurasawa | Ando


Anna Yamada | Maki Misawa


Erina | Yukie Tada


Sachi | Mary

Also check out Harajuku’s top trends in 2012.

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Comment (日本語もOK)

What is your thought process when you look for a photo? It seems to be: “do they look over the top?” “do they have no sense of style” and “are they a bit retarded?” It’s an honest question and I’d love it answered because Japanese “fashion” and “streetsnaps” are bloody awful. And these are some of the best examples of how awful they are. Please discuss and enlighten.

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

@Roberto: Why does look something beautiful or ugly to you? What are the origins of these experiences? The concept of beauty is not written in stone and varies widely around the world and over time. To understand it, you must study the culture and the evolution of that culture. You have to give yourself a completely new perspective. And suddenly, things that appeared idiotic become totally natural, as in this video clip:

And… Thank you for your comment. ^^

Kjeld Duits
Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

Actually I think Japanese streets post one of the best street snaps… Wont say name here,but there is other blog that post snaps,that doesnt have as much variety as this blog here. Japanese fashion is some what crazy,it is not cat walk style from paris,milan ,new york.. It is unique styles and sometimes over the top,but that is what makes it special. Obviously you have no knowledge of japanese streetfashion or its history. I suggest you study that for better understanding the styles posted on “japanese streets”

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

I think he thinks about how interesting and intelligent this person is to make that beautiful work. I hope one day you will think like him.

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)


I think that the M. Duilts made his point very well and I hope it will give you some hints on how to try to see beyond what is in front of you. Of course, to someone who never came to Japan, to someone who is not really acquainted or interested with/in Japanese street fashion, this might seem a bit over the top (the words “bloody awful” are a bit too rude for my taste). But then again would you really be interested in pictures that show the same things you can see on mannequin in shops or in the big magazines? What makes this website unique is the uniqueness of its subject!
Well … that is only my humble opinion ^^

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

The only “retarded” is you, Roberto. First of all: if you do not like it, should not waste your time doing a review so negative. Here, EVERYONE likes japanese fashion – respect that. Second, you’re a very limited person.

Japanese fashion is what is the most modern and open-minded in cultural and artistic representation of our society. For japanese people, there is no boundaries, no limits are intangible. They express their peculiar way of dressing with freedom of choice, using the best of their imaginations, and especially (something you certainly do not have): sentiment. This people are much more evolved than us, westerners.

So, I suggest, dear Roberto, you go to study about japanese fashion. Sincerely, you’re a narrow-minded person.

Evolve for your own good!

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

@ Roberto

Your question is totally OK. Many westerners think Japanese Street Fashion is retarded. Thank to your question, we have a chance to explain. For me J. street fashion is very creative, crazy and playful! These folks try to INVENT something NEW, EXPERIMENT and PLAY with fashion. Of course, not all experiments end up well _ You should rather understand these folks as walking canvas and their fashion as ART. They add many new dimensions to the fashion which we have never seen before. They invent something we couldn’t even imagine! That’s why we should be thankful for their imagionation. Also, I admire them because they try to express their personality and an effort to be unique.

Jan 4, 2013 (3992 days ago)

I find it absolutely great and inspirating for many not standard minded people!

elena fallet
Jan 5, 2013 (3990 days ago)

@ Roberto :
How can we illuminate you Roberto since you use words that close the doors. The difference is something that awakens the spirit and Japanese fashion consists precisely of elements that escape you. This is not serious don’t get angry either. And if it assaults you please feel free to look at things more hopeful for you. :)

Jan 10, 2013 (3986 days ago)

Roberto, the clothes may be unusual but remember that not everything consists of being conventional- there’s an art in going outside the boundaries. For a long time people were upset at Mondrian and Picasso but now people understand them as arbiters of a new way of looking at the world. I respect your point of view but please do the same for others- there is no universal arbiter of taste. Perhaps if you consider the clothing here as a sort of public costume you’ll see it in a different light.

Jan 11, 2013 (3984 days ago)

@Joe: Beautifully said, Joe. Thank you.

Kjeld Duits
Jan 11, 2013 (3984 days ago)

Some beautiful things have been said in the comments. Thank you for sharing them. It is often said that avant-garde artists like Van Gogh, Mondrian, Dali and Picasso were ahead of their time. Of course they were not ahead. They were their time. It was the people that were behind and needed much time to catch up. It is the same with Japanese street fashion. The people on the streets of Tokyo live now, dress now. Their styles define what it means to live in Tokyo now. The rest of us, we are just playing catch up. ^_-

Kjeld Duits
Jan 11, 2013 (3984 days ago)

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