Category Archives: Lolita

How to De-tangle a Curled Wig

Here’s a simple tip for both cosplayers and Lolitas — how to de-tangle your curled wigs without ruining the curls!  With light wear, a curly wig can be carefully finger-combed if it is only a little tangled.  After a couple of wears though, wigs can get pretty tangled, but as you may have realized, you can’t just take your brush and brush out your curly wig like you would a straight one.  I mean, you could, but you’d end up with a poofy wavy wig instead of a curled one.  That doesn’t mean you can’t brush it, but the key is to carefully and patiently work on each section, one at a time.

WigDetangle1

This wig got pretty messy after a windy day out.  The left side has already been carefully combed out, while the right side still needs work.  I started by pinning my wig on a stand so it’s well anchored and easy to work on.  Even if you don’t have a wig stand, finding some way to hang it will make things easier.  Separate out one lock of hair, and very carefully and gently comb it out until it is completely smooth.  Since wig hair is plastic and the curls are heat set, you won’t ruin the curls if you are gentle with your wig.  Once it is tangle-free, you need to re-form the curl.  I do this by wrapping the lock of hair neatly around my finger and then gently releasing it down into a spiral.  That’s it!  No product needed.

WigDetangle2

When I am finished with a piece, I clip it out of the way so I can work on the next piece.  Work your way from one side of the wig to the other.  It can get pretty tedious if you have a long, full wig, but the results are worth it.  Your wig may even look as good as new!  If you aren’t so particular about having well-defined, tight curls, you can brush larger sections and then run your fingers through afterward to break the curls back up into smaller sections.  Either way, with a little patience your curled wig can look fresh and springy once again!

How I Got Into Lolita Fashion

I have been a longtime admirer of Lolita fashion, but didn’t start seriously dressing in the style until more recently.  When I first started cosplaying, Malice Mizer was becoming popular, and a number of my friends cosplayed Mana.  Even though I am not into gothic styles or J-rock, it was through these trends that I learned about Lolita fashion in general and discovered Gothic & Lolita Bible (a magazine) and Baby, the Stars Shine Bright (a Sweet Lolita brand). I browsed the BtSSB web site periodically and saved images of pieces that I liked, but I had to be content with admiring these pieces from afar.  I didn’t have any connections to get them for me from Japan, and I didn’t have any money either (and Lolita is expensive).

Gothic & Lolita Bible

Gothic & Lolita Bible: Vol.1 (2001), Vol. 16, Vol. 36, Vol. 50 (latest)

Some of my cosplay friends sewed their own Lolita outfits and were active in the Lolita community, organizing and participating in events at anime conventions.  I put together a few Lolita-inspired outfits myself, but was not at all active in the community.  In 2007 my friend Lynleigh started her own Lolita brand called Sweet Rococo.  Her site had a Design Wizard where you could create your own dresses, skirts, and accessories using fabric and lace from Japan.  I bought a few dresses and accessories from her.  Unfortunately she has just closed her business making custom items, as she no longer has time for it, but she will be opening an Etsy shop in the near future.

In 2008, Baby, the Stars Shine Bright opened a store in San Francisco, CA, which is where I live.  I could hardly believe it, it was like an impossible dream come true.  It seemed so unreal that I could just drive into the city and buy these beautiful clothes that I could only daydream about before.  Still, Lolita is a big investment, and it wasn’t until 2009 that I received my first two pieces as Christmas gifts.  The first was the Jewel Tree Bouquet OP (One Piece) in black.  I usually prefer lighter colors, but the print looked so striking on the black background.  The second piece was the Heart Heart Blouse in off-white, which happens to be one of the items I had saved a picture of many years before.  The Heart Heart Blouse is apparently one of their staples that they frequently re-release.

BTSSB Jewel Tree Bouquet OP in black, BTSSB Heart Heart Blouse in off-white, Mary Magdalene Mille Rose OP in Ivory

The rest, as they say, is history.  I still can’t afford to buy all the pieces I want, but my collection is slowly growing.  In late 2010, Angelic Pretty also opened a store in San Francisco with Harajuku Hearts.  Now both BTSSB and Angelic Pretty have online stores that ship to anywhere in the U.S., making Sweet Lolita fashion much more accessible to American followers.  Most of my items are from BTSSB and AP, but I do have one dress from Mary Magdalene, which is the prize of my collection.  The Mille Rose OP was released in 2007.  I saved a picture of it and daydreamed about one day owning such a beautiful dress, but never dared hope that it could actually be mine.  Then one day I was browsing EGL Community Sales (I only go there when I’m trying to sell something) and found a girl selling one that she hadn’t even worn!  I snatched it up, of course.  I still can’t believe my luck!

Since I now own several dresses and have a number of friends who also wear Lolita, we like to dress up and get together for afternoon tea.  It’s fun to see people’s reactions when we go out together.  It’s definitely not a style I could ever wear on a daily basis though.  It’s too impractical with all the petticoats and fine fabrics and lace, which I would be afraid to get dirty.  Lolita fashion has definitely influenced my personal style, though, and has inspired me to design my own clothes that have some cute elements but are practical enough for everyday wear.  I reserve full Lolita for special events.  Even though I am one of the older Lolitas, I hope to continue wearing the style for many more years to come.  As long as you are mindful of what styles are flattering on you, I think you are never too old to be cute.