Summer has arrived in Japan and the heat is on! Most of us are content to cool off by hitting the beach or the water park in whatever feels comfortable. But casual swimsuits just won’t do for Japan’s lovely hime-kei, or “princess style” girls, who tend to approach fashion the way that storybook characters approach a ball.
Luckily, such girls can select from a wide array of eye-catching and elaborate bikinis from a web shop called Yume Tenbo (“Dream View”) which has a special subsection devoted solely to princess style. Their “Love Bikini 2011 princess summer collection” promotion is underway now and the items for sale range from kawaii, to itsy-bitsy, to downright stunning. For example…
From the Dearly brand comes this “2 Way Lovely Princess Bikini Set” which has been given the prestigious seal of approval from hime-friendly magazines such as S Cawaii! and Koakuma ageha. The copy claims that the polka dot pattern, ruffled skirt, and removable neck frill can help “increase your cuteness 200%” and all for a mere 2,980 yen (US$38.00).
More 2-way fun in the sun can be had via this “Dot Rose Bikini”, also from Dearly, which retails for 5,980 yen (US$76.45). The selling point here is the detachable princess-y ribbon and the rose-patterned short pants which can be removed to “charm everyone with a beautiful body line.”
As seen in the pages of Popsister magazine, this set in Dearly’s “Rose & Ribbon Series” includes a halter bikini and a matching “romantic” one piece dress for quick change artists. Too bad the 5,980 yen (US$76.45) price tag doesn’t include a tiara like the one the model is sporting.
If merely showing off a lot of skin doesn’t get enough attention from a beachside “prince”, then an enterprising princess may want to invest in a sparkling “Frill Rhinestone Bikini” for 4,980 yen (US$64,00). The combination of ruffles, ribbons, and dots won raves from Popsister and ageha magazine, but would an actual princess really settle for rhinestones?
Dearly promises that this “Frill Halter Triangular Bikini” will “wobble and sway” creating maximum “SEXY and cuteness” wherever you walk. They also mention that it will improve your bust line by at least 200%. Popsister and nuts magazine were convinced enough to lend this 2,980 yen (US$38.00) bikini their endorsement.
So what’s a seaside princess to wear when prancing about on the sand? Surely not Crocs or flip-flops! And so Dearly offers these beach sandals which are detailed with lace and ribbons designed to look like macaroon cookies, no less. They may not be glass slippers, but what do you expect for 780 yen (US$10.00)?
Here are a few bonus princess bikini pictures – in case you haven’t yet found your preferred style:
Article by Patrick Macias, photos courtesy of Yume Tenbo.
About the author:
Patrick Macias runs the “Japanese Fashion Inferno” blog. He is also the author of “Japanese Schoolgirl Inferno: Tokyo Teen Fashion Subculture Handbook” (Chronicle Books). He has written for a variety of publications in the US and Japan including Wired, Studio Voice, and Weekly ASCII.