24 June 2020

Gyaru 101: Mori Gyaru

Continuing on with our Gal 101 series, next up we have Mori Gyaru! For these series our models and staff have gathered their sources and thoughts about the styles they are passionate about and this week we have Kumomo teaching us about this lovely sub-style! She is also our artist so spot her in Volume 2 if you haven’t already!

What is Mori Gyaru?

Mori Gyaru is a combination of the base Mori Kei jfashion, and the Gyaru jfashion. It’s unique because it’s a combination of the two, and it works really well. It got its start mostly in the Mori Kei community and lived a short life in terms of popularity, even though there are still those who enjoy the fashion. Most of the mori community shied away from it or didn’t consider it a true part of the fashion because of how it strayed from the “mori guidelines”. Of course, those guidelines aren’t official but even today are still held up as the basis of the mori fashion. The core “rules” of mori were started on Mixi (a Japanese social media site) by a girl going by Choco, and to this day have acted as the basis of Mori Kei.

Rule breaker?

Most of the Mori community didn’t take or stick to Mori Gyaru because it went against or diverted from a lot of big and arguably classic rules. Mori gyaru incorporates a lot of bright colors, prints, fabrics, and styles, and takes short lengths over the long and incredibly layered big sister Mori style, but that’s what makes it work so well. Mori Gyaru focuses more on the cutesy side of gyaru, and the sexier or more flashy side of mori. Most Mori gals wouldn’t really go for a full face of makeup, but Mori gals typically love keeping the long nails, a full face of makeup and the lashes but tend to go for a more doll-like look with earthy or dulled colour pallets.


By going against the traditional rules of both fashions, this is what makes this sub-style such a staple, it follows the classic gyaru mindset of going against the mainstream ideals and taking things and making them more suited for yourself, but combining it with the soft and down to earth fairy forest style of mori kei. 

Mori gyaru is arguably a sister style of another popular Gyaru fashion; Roma gyaru, where girls focus on pink and floral shades but a lot of looks keep with that layered look of Mori.


Mori gyaru hair has a type of- effortless look to it, but in reality it probably took a long time to do. I’ve seen some models say it can be compared to the “Gaijin’s seemingly natural and relaxed wave.” 

You’re going to want loose wavy curls instead of the typically tight or large coil/kinky curls you see in a lot of Gyaru fashions. Big teases or very high ponytails are also not seen a lot in Mori Gyaru, as they lose that natural touch, and drift more into Roma or even in some cases, Hime gyaru style. I see a lot of pigtail and loose braid styles along with simple dolly cut bangs. The most important focus is it needs to seem effortless, and that is a staple of Mori Gyaru hair. 

Take it up a notch by adding lace or ribbon hair accessories to complete that Mori Gyaru vibe. Neutral, pastel, or earth bows are also a good choice if looking for accessories, as well as berets or hats. But we’ll talk about that more in the actual style section.


Mori Gyaru makeup is what really makes this style its own. Mori Gals tend to do a lot more makeup than your average mori. They step away from the focus of nature, and move more to focus on “accentuating” or focusing on certain features, like making skin look pillowy soft and almost angelic, big doll like eyes, but still walking that balance as to not over do it. 

For eyes, it’s normal to see very thin but long lashes and little or no bottom lashes aside from a bit of mascara. Lip colors, where again, most Mori tend to avoid bright lipstick or colored lips in general, aside from soft pink; Mori Gyaru dabble in dark colors, bright pinks, and sometimes even reds. Lots of blush around the eyes and nose, and more natural looking eyebrows. 

The overall goal here is to keep it a little more calm than typical Gyaru, but not so natural that it goes back to Mori, it’s about finding that balance between the two.


So, some signature staples of mori gyaru include…

  • Floral prints
  • Cotton and light breathable fabrics
  • Denim! 
  • Hats; Primarily berets and fedora style hats with wide brims, Can-can hats, etc
  • Flower, lace, and fabric accessories as well as bows and ribbons
  • Leather, stone, or wooden jewelry, evenly spaced out, keeping with that natural theme
  • Maxi dresses
  • Short hemline layered looks
  • Lace or layered shorts
  • Lace
  • Carefully (and lovingly) chosen fabrics that compliment each other (knit fabrics with lace, or denim with lace are just a few Mori Gyaru combos) 
  • Loose cardigans and sweaters 
  • Longer nails with natural shapes, and colors, but not the typical Gyaru nail look
  • Pastel, light, and earth tones
  • Scarves 
  • Crocheted clothing pieces (vests especially)
  • Fur accents

These looks when combined can create a beautiful and fun fashion that pays homage to its big sister styles, while being unique and standing on its own two feet as its own substyle.

Kumomo is one of Papillon's artist, but is here today to give you some great info on the sub-style Mori Gyaru!

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