#JFashion 101 - How to buy Japanese brands directly from Japan? (Updated)

19 de mayo de 2021

Hi, Gals! Some time ago I made a blog post in Spanish about how to buy Japanese clothes? So this time I decided to update that post in English to not only talk about second-hand clothes but Japanese brands in general. I'll also add more Shopping Services I've seen many friends use so you have more options to get the best deals to your countries. So now let's start!

Disclaimer: This will be a long post

What do you need to buy Japanese brands?

What you need to buy it's super basic to be honest, just three things to have in mind:

A PayPal account. That's going to be linked to your debit or credit card.
Your measurements. I recommend you to know and memorize your regular mesurements for clothes and shoes.
And Google Translate. Which will be your best friend because we're going to search around translating the pages.

And with that we can start looking around to buy everything you want. From clothes and shoes, to makeup, magazines, collectibles... All you want.

1. Finding the products you want 

First we're going to check second hand e-commerces and then brand ones. The main and most popular site to buy is Mercari among gals, however I could say Fril is just as good or even better. But no worries, all sites work basicall the same. We have:

 Fril (from Rakuten)
 PayPay (from Yahoo)

So you only have to go to those sites and look for the brand you want on the search bar. You're going to find a lot of mixed stuff from that brand so the first thing I do is to Google translate the page and go to "Narrow down". Here you will see this pop-up. Most sites have this and the "Narrow down" button is always over the products. 

There you have two options: To browse through keywords or by brand. I usually do that by brand, but just in case some sellers didn't tag the products right, I search the brand on the keywords as well. On categories you can choose Women's Clothes > Tops, One-pices, shoes, accesories, etc. After that, if I have a budget I write the maxium I'm expecting to pay on my items (for me it's usually up to 2000 yens, ah but if it's a dream item~). And finally I set "Only on sale" on. I don't want to see all the items already sold out.

For example:

Before and after Google translate

These are some boots I already bought. I was looking for boots like that for a long time and never found ones that I could say: These are the ones! image So There you should check two important things: Size and product condition. Under the red button you will see more specs if the seller wrote that. So that's important to check too, specially with clothes if you want to know the measurements.

Also if the product condition is there are scratches and dirt or worse than that, be sure to check the pictures to see how bad is that to decide before choosing something like that. But in general, definitely not recommended. It's better to choose from no noticeable scratches up. And always being sure of that with real pictures, because some sellers just attach catalogue photos.

Now let's say you want to buy something brand new like these Ank Rouge boots in sale from their official online shop. Be sure to also Google translate everything (in the picture is on) and check stuff like the size, material, stock photos and if you're not sure about the size, go to the size chart on "size information", most stores have that with their measurements in inches and/or centimeters.

Here there are some stores where you can find many Gyaru and sweet and girly brands for clothes and circle lenses:

 Dream V aka. Yumetenbo: Dear my love, Newly me, Diable Baiser, Rabintage
 Ailand: Ank Rouge, Jamie NK
 Tokyo Kawaii Life: Liz Lisa, Chouchou Ette.
 LiLimPark: MA*RS, Princess Melody
 My Color: Rady, Michell Macaron, Cheri Mi, Miss Mine and others. 

2. Buying your items & Choosing a shopping service 

Ok, I think choosing a shopping service is sometimes pretty hard to do because or you don't know where to find them or there are too many. So here I'll share with you all the SS I know and I recommend you to check the following:

 Their fees: The most common fees are the Comission fee (for some SS you have to pay a certain amount for each item, in others just for the whole order, even if the order includes many items), the Adquisition cost (if getting your items  has a local shipping cost or some extra transaction cost), Storage fee (the SS will keep your items for a maximum amount of time, after that you will have to pay some yens per day), Packing fee (what is costs to pack your order to be sent) and the fee to combine orders, which means that if you make many orders you will have to pay them to send everything together at once. Not all SS make you pay that, so you have to check which have the best fees before choosing them.

 The shipping to your country: Some SS also have a fee on the shipping cost and you can notice that when you go to the shipping cost page on their web and they are way higher than in Japan Post. So I recommend you to avoid those ones. You should check too which shipping options are available for your country because it's not the same for everyone. For example, for me I only have Express shipping or Seamail so you wouldn't want to have that surprise at the end having to choose between extra expensive or extra slow.

So the shopping services you have are:

 JP Shopping: #1 Gal's favorite because they're super cheap and with a really good customer service. However their web is ugly af.
 Buyee: #2 Gal's favorite because their interface. However their fees are absurdly high. I think they accept Mercari but not Fril.
 Japonika Market: Good fees but higher shipping costs.
 Zenmarket: Ok to buy brand new, they don't accept second hand stores.
 FromJapan: Lots of fees to check but they also pick-up items. Good for in-stores buys (for example, Donki x EGG in-store collection).
 DeJapan: Just like Buyee, they have a really good search engine, so you can do all the first part of this blog post directly on their web.

JP Shopping form // Buyee Cart

With the shopping services you will find two ways of ordering, it depends on each site. In some you have a form where you paste the links of all the items you want, in others you have an actual cart where you buy the items. But basically you collect the items/links you want and then make the first payment through PayPal or the pay option they have, so they can buy and collect the items for you. 

3. The after buy & Shipping options 

Once you bought the items you wanted to, you just have to wait. They will send you a confirmation of the payments and order made to your email. You will also get notifications when they receive your items. So once they receive everything you can choose to send the order or to hold on to make other orders and then ship all together. I recommend you to make this decision depending on the custom fees of your country, but I'll tell you later about that.

When you decide to pack your order they will take some days to pack and weight everything base on the shipping option you requested. And they'll let you know when it's ready so you can make the second payment. Here you will have to pay for the shipping, the packing fee, the combining fee and any other extra fee depending on the SS.

For example, right now I have an order on hold on JP Shopping, because I have another two I'm waiting for and I want to combine everything. But if I wanted to request that one I would have to select that order and below that I will have to choose the shipping method and add my address. 

Once the order is sent you will receive the last notification with the tracking number. And you will only have to track your parcel through 17track or any other app you like until it arrives home! Halleluya! 

4. Custom fees 

Something you should take in consideration is that every country has their own custom fees when importing stuff so I recommend you to talk to gals from your country to know which are the ones applied to you.

The customs fees basically work like this: When you buy abroad you have a limit on the price of your order that can enter to the country for free (in some countries that limit is 5 euros which is ridiculous, in others is 250 euros which is a blessing. In Peru it's 200 dollars). If your order (excluding the shipping cost) is higher than your limit then you have to pay a percentage of the order (the percentage also depends on the country) to receive your package. 

You should also consider that some private couriers like DHL or UPS could ask for another fee to deliver your package locally. So I don't recommend those options.

And I think that's all you should take in consideration. Do you have any question? Or something you think I should include in the post? Let me know in the comments. And thanks for reading this super long post. (っ˘з(˘⌣˘ ) ♡

I hope now it's easier for you to buy your favorite Gyaru brands! 


4 comentarios

  1. I JUST shipped out my haul from Buyee . . . I think I overdid it lmao!! I'm definitely switching to JP Shopping next time, the fees are getting wild. I'll just have to get past the ugly site xD it looks bootleg
    - Amiman♥

    1. Believe me when I tell you that their forms are better now. They used to be even uglier hahaha. But it works wonders and it's cheap so I can't complain. Lmao.

  2. What do yall think of white rabbit as service?

  3. Does mycolor ship int? I really am dying for a Mitchell Macaron skirt, but theres no shipping policies listed >_<!