This is something nearly all Lolitas have to deal with, even the ones who don't mind the odd stares and sometimes mean comments. It takes a lot of courage to go out in public wearing anything out of the ordinary, and even the most toned down Lolita is considered strange by many. There's no real sure fire way to make sure you have the courage to prance around outside with a cake on your head, but there are a few things you can do that can help you work up the nerve to do so.
Any tips for going out in public dressed in lolita? Especially if you are by yourself? How should I react if I get mean comments? What is the best way to try and to help ignore some odd stares?
Personally, I've been dressing, well, let's just say "abnormally" or "with questionable taste" since I was in middle school, so wearing Lolita was really not that big of a step outside of my comfort zone. But that doesn't mean I am always prepared for the attention that outlandish fashions tend to attract! There are a number of things I've learned in my years of wearing weird clothes and I'd like to share them with you all in this post.
- Pretend a little bit. If you're really stressed out about being out in public dressed strangely, play a little imagination game. Pretend that you're completely alone wherever you are, you're a fancy princess in a time travel mishap, or whatever you think can help you overcome how uncomfortable other people's opinions might make you feel. It sounds completely silly, but sometimes focusing on the silliness can really take your mind off of sticking out, and that's all that really matters.
- Ignore people, or just don't react. If you do notice people staring, pointing, or worse yet, yelling or making rude comments, just ignore them. If you can't actually ignore them, and are noticing every comment, don't feel you need to react to any of it. Usually people make comments expecting you to react in some way, and if you just ignore them, it's all about them making a fool of themselves, not them pointing out how silly they think you look to everyone around you. Just think about it, if you're at some people filled place and someone yells something stupid at you, everyone is going to look at the person yelling, not at whatever it is they're yelling about. Just go on your way and most likely no one will even notice you, just the jackass yelling "LITTLE BO PEEEEEEP" for apparently no reason.
- Wear earbuds or headphones. Having some music on can help you block out a lot of things and be a bit in your own little world. Even just having them in your ears, with the sound off, or very low, is a good excuse for ignoring people who make rude comments.
- If ignoring doesn't work, try to brush them off. Sometimes people are just bent on being annoying and you end up in a situation where you simply can't pretend they don't exist. An example of this might be someone who started talking to you and you respond but the situation quickly turned into them belittling you, extremely rude cashiers or shop clerks, or people who you are somehow interacting with. In this case, if you don't feel like you can muster up the courage to simply tell them to mind their own business, the best you can sometimes do is just act like what they said was a somewhat lame joke. Give them a half-assed "Heh heh, yeah" and usually they're satisfied. I'm not going to lie, it is passive aggressive and I do this sometimes to people who are rude to me in public, I act a bit confused when they say something rude or stupid to me, like I have no idea what they could possibly be talking about, "Sheep? What sheep? I don't understand what you mean, I'm not a farmer, and this is a mall, why would sheep be allowed in here?" and the person making the comment often gets a bit embarrassed for even saying anything at all.
- Be polite to people who are kind. Not everyone is going to be rude to you! Wearing Lolita will often get you a fair number of compliments. Now, to the extremely shy person, this can often be just as worrisome as rude comments, but in this case, you should really just give a polite "Thank you!" to anyone who goes out of their way to let you know they like what you're wearing. Sometimes the curious and genuinely interested will ask questions about what you're wearing, you don't have to go into in depth answers and explain the history of the Lolita fashion to them if you don't feel like it, most people are usually just satisfied with "Oh, it's just a girly/fancy/cute fashion that I like to wear". You usually don't have to even say "Lolita" or name-drop Japan if you don't feel like it.
- Work your way up to more outlandish outfits. If you can, you might want to wear some "practice run" Lolita outfits, whatever you might feel is less extreme than your normal style of Lolita. Maybe this means wearing a modest petticoat, skipping the over-sized headwear, or wearing a simple cutsew instead of a blouse. Whatever makes you feel a bit more comfortable!
- Be safe. Lolita is an attention grabbing fashion and it's going to make you stand out so you should know when standing out is a bad idea, whatever your idea of a "bad idea" might be, even if it's something as simple as going somewhere where you just know you'll be getting dirty looks about the way you're dressed. If you can, avoid going to risky places alone while wearing Lolita, try to grab a friend to go with you, or consider bringing a change of clothes to spare yourself the unneeded stress.
How do you deal with the stares and comments of wearing Lolitas in public? Do you find that ignoring it is the best option? Or are you much more vocal about letting people know you don't care for comments!? Or, perhaps, are you lucky enough that no one really bats an eye when you go out decked in your frills and ruffles?