Sweet. Adorable. Lolita.

Hello everyone! This week I come to you with an informative and slightly opinionated article about Lolita fashion. The Lolita fashion movement contains sixteen subgenres all being housed under one name. The most common used terms of these subgenres is Gothic Lolita, but the most commonly worn is Sweet Lolita. Being a Lolita can be extremely expensive. The most over-the-top style by far is Sweet Lolita, which is what the majority of people say.

The sixteen subgenres are:

Sweet Lolita:

Sweet Lolita is the most over-the-top style and includes aesthetics nearly exclusive to Lolita. It is also the most child-like of the Lolita styles, using many bows, ruffles and light colors to make up an outfit. The most common colors used in a Sweet Lolita outfit are pink, white, and powder blue, but an outfit can be made with nearly any pastel or plaid (or nearly any color at all as long as it is not neon).

Common motifs in Sweet Lolita are toys, strawberries, cherries, cakes and candies, hearts, polka dots and flowers. Prints inspired by fairy tales are also quite common.

Light, natural make-up complements this style. Teased out pigtails and bouncy curls are commonly worn by Sweet Lolitas. (via www.lolitafashion.org)

Gothic Lolita:

Gothic Lolita is the by far most well-known Lolita style, and used to be the term that would refer to Lolitas of all the styles. However, with Lolita fashion becoming increasingly popular in the west, this mislabel is now somewhat rarer. Another term that is associated with Gothic Lolita is EGL, or Elegant Gothic Lolita. Elegant Gothic Lolitas specifically wear items from the brand Moi-même-Moitié.

Despite its gothic label, Gothic Lolita is rather different from the western version of goth. As with all Lolita styles, it’s not very revealing, usually cute or elegant, and lacks the white powdered faces and black lipstick that may be found in western goth.
There are two types of Gothic Lolitas: the traditional one that has come to symbolize the style as whole, and the one with visible gothic influences.
The traditional Gothic Lolita wears plain black clothing with white lace; very much looking like a cute darker version of Ama Lolita.
The secondary type is less ‘cute’, and has more influences from western goth fashion. Motifs such as crosses, bats, coffins are common. The clothing also breaks out from purely black, revealing colors such as wine, royal blue, deep plum, white, silver and gold (the latter two are usually used to accent prementioned colors).


  • The style is dark, cute or elegant.
  • Colors include black and white, wine, royal blue, emerald, deep plum, silver and gold.
  • Prints often contain gothic motifs, such as crosses, castles and bats.
  • Common materials are cotton, chiffon, polyester and velveteen.
  • Has less ribbons and lace than its sweet counterpart.
  • Headdresses include rose corsages, alice bows, bonnets and headbands (now unfashionable).
  • Skirt length is the standard knee-length or longer.
  • The lolita silhouette is kept by the use of panniers, but may be less poofy than Ama Lolita in some cases.
  • Over-knee socks and tights. May sometimes be of lace or fishnet.
  • Chunky platform or elegant high-heeled shoes are most common.
  • Accessories include lace chokers, cross, crown or pearl necklaces and lace gloves.
  • Bags are often adorned with gothic motifs, or may be shaped as crowns or bats.

Make-up & Hair:

  • Usually elegant hairstyles, straight with bangs or with curls.
  • Popular hair colors are black or dark red.
  • Mascara.
  • Dark eyeliner.
  • Dark-colored or black eyeshadow.
  • Red or pink blush.
  • Lipstick come in both lighter and darker shades, such as a soft nude pink or dark red.
  • If desired, fake eyelashes can be put on to achieve a doll look.
  • It is also common to use special contacts called circle lenses to achieve said above look. (via hellolace.net)

Aristocrat Lolita:

This style is a lot more mature than Lolita in general. It has a lot in common with the western ‘Romantic Gothic’. In general, there are no cutesy motifs (prints, lace, over-abundance of frills, bows, etc). Skirts are often worn long, although sometimes they can be shorter, especially in the hotter months. High corseted waists on skirts is common, so are actual corsets (all types). Fitted jackets with tail coats are popular, so are frilly shirts (and cravats), top hats, veils, etc.

An Aristocrat’s hair is usually done in a mature style. Buns and other lifted styles are common, however it is okay to wear your hair down, short and/or curly (try to avoid lolita-like barrel curls though). Extreme hairstyles are usually done in conjunction with extreme make-up, usually for things like fashion shows. Often times it’s much too troublesome to go to such lengths for daily wear.

Make-up is also usually mature and sometimes on the darker side. Extreme makeup is usually not done (except for special circumstances such as fashion shows and club events). Somewhat darkened eyes and dark red lipstick is common. Lighter colors can be used, but generally only on the lips.

This style can be worn by men and women easily, often this is a very good style for men to take up if they want to dress up too. (via lolitafashion.org)

Casual Lolita:

Casual Lolita is a more toned down version of the style, while still retaining the basic Lolita elements. It is very hard to put together a nice casual Lolita co-ordination unless you have years of experience or are a natural at it.

Most favoured in the Casual Lolita co-ordination is (in a way) simplicity, so a nice simple cut-sew perhaps with a motif of some sort paired with a Lolita skirt and hair accessory/headdress. (However the hair accessories are usually toned-down as well.)

Casual Lolita can best be described as what a Lolita would wear when not ‘dressing up.’ Still modest, and elegant but not as over the top as most other Lolita styles.

A great Casual Lolita can be compiled out of any colour, as long a you remember to match colours, prints, etc. etc. as you would with any other Lolita style. A simple caridgan over a jsk or skirt creates a nice casual look. (via lolitafashion.org)

  • The style is casual, and cute.
  • Your inspiration is Alice Deco à la Mode and Kera.
  • Casual adaptions will look different depending on which Lolita style it’s based on (Ama, Gothic, Classic, etc).
  • The color scheme range from neutral shades to pastels.
  • Small amounts of lace, frills and ribbons.
  • Non-Lolita brand clothing is very often coordinated into this style.
  • Headdresses include style-specific ones, but are kept simple.
  • Simple cardigans are worn, often decorated with ribbons or small amounts of lace.
  • Simple cutsews and t-shirts, sometimes with a Lolita-related print.
  • Items such as turtleneck sweaters can easily be incorporated for a classy feeling.
  • Skirts are simple with frills, or a specific print to make the outfit pop.
  • Skirt length is standard knee-length to shorter skirts.
  • The Lolita silhouette is normally kept by a pannier, but is not always a priority.
  • Knee/over-knee socks, or tights.
  • Simple Mary Janes or suitable non-Lolita shoes.
  • Accessories include style-specific ones, but are kept simple.
  • Bags are usually kept simple, often adorned with a ribbon.

Makeup & Hair

  • Usually simple hairstyles, normally no wigs.
  • Mascara.
  • Eyeliner if desired.
  • Eyeshadow if desired.
  • Red or pink blush.
  •  Lip gloss/lipstick in red and pink hues. (via hellolace.net)

There are many more from this that you can find at the two websites I have cited. Personally I think Lolita is a great style to check out even if you don’t plan on going down that path. Who knows, it might give you ideas for your own unique style!

2 thoughts on “Sweet. Adorable. Lolita.

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