What It Takes To Be the Best Lolita You Can Be, According To The Gothic & Lolita Bible!

While digging through some pictures from the Gothic & Lolita Bibles, I came across this little comic. Of course, it was in Japanese originally, but I was intrigued and a bit confused by what was going on! I asked if anyone had translated this because I was quite curious what that owl was tormenting those girls for and Tanpoponoko came to the rescue and translated it! I simply edited her translations into the original comic for reading ease. If clicking it doesn't bring up a bigger picture (because sometimes blogger does weird things to images!) click here for a larger version!


Before I say what I want to say, check out the comic by clicking for a larger version (or alternatively, check out Tanpoponoko's text translation here).

I found this comic neat because it's a bit of a controversial topic in the Western Lolita circles, especially the bit about adjusting how you act and speak to be a better Lolita! Does that necessarily mean this is bad advice, even outside of the cultural context of Japan? I'm going to maybe be a little controversial in my own opinion and say "No, this is not actually that bad of advice!".

Generally in the West, it's regarded that owning Lolita clothes is all it takes to be a Lolita, and this isn't exactly untrue. It is definitely the biggest hurdle in becoming a Lolita, and you just can't be one without them, but to become a great Lolita it might take a little more than simply plopping a dress down over your head. While it's generally considered that changing the way you act and dress while in Lolita annoys people and makes it seem more of a costume than a fashion, it's not a bad suggestion to polish your look with a nice hair style and some simple learning how to move elegantly in a fluffy skirt.

You don't have to turn yourself into a perfectly made up and coiffed doll to wear Lolita, but a little bit of polishing in the form of some nice coordination, a good hairstyle, very basic mascara-and-lipgloss makeup, and learning how to move in a fluffy skirt without covering everything around you in your petticoat an simultaneously flashing everyone is never a bad thing! If you're looking for some very basic things you can do to make your Lolita look the best it can be, learn to perfect those things!

16 comments:

  1. Hair is definitely my issue. I have a short hair style because it suits my hair type and my job very well. It suits otome style as well! But when I put on frills I'm so lacking. ;-; I don't think I have hairstyling skills for a long wig! I haven't had long hair for 20 years! Maybe I need to learn...?

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    1. Now I'M confused xD No one is really saying that people are going to treat you better if you're wearing a wig or lipgloss! It's just about trying to be a better Lolita for yourself. If you're just referencing the 3rd panel, as the link to the girl's translation says, she actually had trouble translating that particular line, but looking at the picture it's obvious that what's going on is that people are annoyed because she's just plopped between them with her petticoats all spread out around her and flopping up over the back of the seat.

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  3. I agree! I don't like doing things by half-measures. If I'm wearing a pretty outfit, why not my hair and make-up as well? I'd rather people stare if I'm dressed oddly, than if I'm a little clumsy with my petticoat or have unkempt hair.

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  4. I agree with that, but I think we should improve our manners because we want to be better persons regardless of Lolita ^^. Lolita is just the way we can achieve it, because wearing an alternative fashion means dealing with stupid and rude people and trying not to be like them; I became better in social interactions because of Lolita. And hair and make up of course *.* It's not necessary to be always like you're going to a catwalk, but a bit of it is good for us ^^.

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  5. The main problem about this comic aren't their tips, but that it's a really sexist comic. It promotes slut shaming, body shaming and prejudice against people who don't have money to buy expensive clothing.
    Of course a coordinate will look better with proper makeup and hair style, but this comic is really rude.
    Also, one does not need to act or dress like a princess all the time to be a good lolita.

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    1. oh, okay, at least the sexist language was edited in this version of the comics (I read one that the girls were called b*****), but in the square 1 and 5 they are being shammed because of their appearance. It's problematic.
      We can give advice without making people feel bad or ugly.

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    2. You're obviously allowed to interpret the comic any way you see fit, but exactly which of the 14 panels feature, or even hint at slut shaming, body shaming, or prejudice against people who don't have money to buy expensive clothes? Both girls in the comic are wearing the same dress from start to finish, no mention is made of body types what so every, and I don't see any mention of moral superiority over sexual preferences. Even in each of the girl's first panels it's not supposed to be "LOL LOOK HOW BAD THEY ARE" but it's pretty clear it's supposed to illustrate the girl who gets into Lolita without really having been interested in fashion beforehand and has no idea where to start, which is an incredibly common, if not the most common, experience for people who are interested in wearing the fashion.

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    3. okay, I do agree with you, I had read a version of this comic whose translation wasn't much good and perhaps this had caused an angry interpretation of the comic. and I'm sorry if I sounded a bit rude, I don't mean to be disrespectful with you in your own blog inbox.

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  6. I find this comic quite fascinating. It really highlights the differences between Japanese and Western Lolitas, doesn't it?

    I think self improvement of any sort can only ever be a good thing, so I like the advice on speech and mannerisms. In the West it seems like this is frowned upon as "unnatural", but really, what is "natural"? Why is it seen as more natural to be coarse and crude than to be elegant and ladylike? There is nothing inherently more natural about it, it merely seems natural because it is so commonplace, but it is just as much a mask as any others. To some extent, we all wear masks, the choice as I see it is not so much whether to wear a mask or not, but whether to wear a beautiful or an ugly one.

    A friend has written more extensively about social roles and "realness" here if anyone is interested: https://happyinnocentmusumesenshi.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/a-doll-walks-into-a-maid-cafe/

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    1. To a large extent, I do agree with you! There's really no reason why behaving one way is more "real" or "natural" than behaving another way, or to even really tell which one might be that person trying to suppress how they really would like to act. After all, it's not too far fetched to think that someone might want to "ladylike" with all their heart but think people might think they're strange for it so they put on an act of coarseness or casualness.

      I tried to emphasize that it's more of an annoying thing with people, than a fake thing, because in my experience that's how people tend to feel about it. It is annoying to find out that you might have a friend who insists upon changing the way they act, even among the same circle of friends, depending on what they're wearing.

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  7. I found this comic very funny, and true is some ways (but I enjoyed it mostly for the funniness). I believe the concept of changing your hair/make-up/attitude is essential to dressing nicely in general, and not just with Lolita dress. I hate to see people who wear nice dress or fancy clothes and then their hair looks like crap, or they wear no makeup at all.

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  8. Hi,my name is pandora and i have a bit of a problem.I dress in gothic clothing and i have been interested in gothic lolita and gothic aristocrat clothing since middle school.im 18,my moneys kinda short and i really want to a few outfits before college starts for me.Do you know any gothic lolita/gothic aristocrat clothing stores to start my new wardrobe with?

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  9. I apologize in advance, but I liked what you said. I think that it's a great advice for Lolitas who are starting. I usually say that lolita is a BIG ladder, you start with just a dress and, with time, you'll want circle lenses, larger false eyelashes, dresses with different prints and more and more. So, I translated your post to Portuguese (including the comics) and put it in my blog with all credits. The link is here, I hope you like it ^.^ Hugs. http://lalolita.blogspot.com.br/2013/10/o-que-e-preciso-para-ser-melhor-lolita.html

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  10. For me it was always hard to find western lolita role models, because a lot of them looks, well, frumpish. Sometimes they own the best clothes and give great advices, but when they put their own photos in a blog post, I get kind of disappointed by them. Based on my observations, the average western lolita is a bit chubby (not in a derogatory way) and sometimes tall, but doesn't really know how to dress for her body type. Lolita has a tendency to look better on smaller, thinner (japanese type of) girls, and make bigger girls look even bigger (with the poofy, short skirts, a lot of fabric and short waistlines). So a lot of times the coords are great, but the sad truth is, sometimes the person wearing it kind of ruins it too. A lot of time people don't pay attention to other parts of their body, just the dress, and unkempt, unflattering hair can really ruin an outfit too. These habits can really look worse than they actually are, because they contrast with the lolita aesthetics. An outfit is not only about the dress, and people who are getting involved in fashion by lolita, tend to forget that. For a big part of the loli community, it's their first time to even think about personal style, sometimes in their late 20s or later. And that's why a lot of times people with great sense of style and knowledge about the style end up looking like grown ups dressing like 4yos.

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  11. I have long hair that gets nappy easily and out of commision flat ironsbut i always wanted to do my hair lalotia style what would you recomend

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