What to Buy in Japan (Fashion Tips for Beginners)

We all know by now Japan has some unique products to offer, but uniqueness doesn't have to mean expensive. So what does a visitor need to know before hitting the streets of Japan? Knowing what to buy is an excellent first step.

As a general rule, apparel is one of the most popular products purchased among foreign visitors in Japan. There are multiple popular clothing stores on the streets of Japan, such as UNIQLO, W♡C, and WEGO. However, Japan also offers vintage clothing to popular sneaker brands. 

In this article, we found some items that are even more affordable than in other countries. Knowing how to save can be a lifesaver on your trip, so try to keep our helpful tips in mind. 

What To Buy In Japan?

 1. Affordable Clothes

Japan is one of the best countries in the world to travel for fashionistas. Tokyo districts such as Harajuku and Shibuya offer some of the trendiest fashion pieces. Aside from luxurious stores, there are also brands where you can shop on a minimal budget. 

Stores like UNIQLO, GU, and WEGO are top fast-fashion retailers in Japan, and you may like these stores if you're a fan of Zara, Forever 21, and H&M.


  • WEGO

WEGO sells a wide variety of clothes at affordable prices.

WEGO keeps up with the trends and even sells famous streetwear brands like Dickies, and recently, Guess, all at lower prices.

There are WEGO shops all around Tokyo, so you're guaranteed to find one. This store should be your first stop in Tokyo!


The king of inexpensive Japanese fashion, UNIQLO is a Japanese designer, manufacturer, and retailer found in Asia, Europe, and the United States.

UNIQLO usually sells quality basic items, including sportswear, office wear, and baby and kids clothes.

They usually don't sell trendy flashy clothes but timeless pieces that you can wear for a long time to come. They also have sales on weekends, so if you want to shop at even lower prices, you should go there on a Saturday or Sunday.

  • GU

GU is run by the same company as Uniqlo but is much cheaper.

GU used to be the store where you buy fashion basics when you're on a budget. However, they have recently started getting on board with the latest trends.

They sell quality clothes like jeans and dresses, but lately, they have also included more trendy street style items, such as cool hoodies and sweatshirts. 

There are also many cheaper global brands in Japan. For example, brands like H&M and GAP are more affordable than in other Asian countries. 


2. Japanese Clothing Brands

This may seem obvious, but Japanese fashion brands are cheaper in Japan, even if you have the same ones in your country!

Aside from Uniqlo and GU, you can find brands like COMME des GARÇON or Yohji Yamamoto cheaper than any other country.

Discovering some new fashion brands while you're there will definitely be worth your time.



3. Anything MUJI

These beautifully designed items will make any minimalist's heart sing.

The prices are much more affordable, and the selection is much bigger in Japan than, for example, in The United States. From homewares to skin cleaning products, you can find anything in the shop, and at their flagship store, there is even a cafe, bicycle rentals, and a bookstore. 


4. Fun Accessories

Get your fun on in the neighborhood of Harajuku.

Takeshita street is full of fast fashion and kitschy gift shops, such as outrageous phone cases, bows with polka dots, and tees and merchandise with Engrish sayings. 



5. Tax-free Designer Wear at Omotesando and Ginza

The neighborhoods of Omotesando and Ginza are home to the most luxurious designer brands. Prices on designer goods fluctuate depending on the exchange rate, so make sure to do some research first.

Also, don't forget to ask for a tax refund for purchases over 5,000 yen. 


6. Kawaii Goods

Some of the most famous kawaii stores are:

  • Bodyline

According to Tripadvisor, Bodyline is one of the most recommended shops in Shibuya. This store has a bit of everything for people seeking trendy clothes, especially if they don't mind coming out of their comfort zone. Bodyline offers everyday casual clothing, but also lolita style and cosplay clothes! It's one of those stores you can walk out of with 10 different things you didn't even realize you needed. 


  • W♡C

This store is for kawaii lovers who are on a budget. WC is full of cute and unique clothes that are much more affordable than other kawaii shops. Everything in the shop is pastel-colored and mostly purple or pink. The upstairs of the shop sells vintage clothes, however, keep in mind that they are a bit more expensive! The store sells everything from clothes and bags to shoes.


  • Q-Pot 

Q-Pot is a kawaii fashion and jewelry brand. They take kawaii foods such as macarons and turn them into jewelry. They do the same with clothes.


  • Swankiss 

Swankiss is a sweet and feminine fashion brand, often featured in Larme magazine. Their target group is girls in their teens and twenties. 


  • Honey Salon by Foppish

Honey Salon's designs are more mature but still cute. The brand uses details such as ribbons and pom-poms to add a touch of kawaii to their designs. 


  • Emiria Wiz

Emiria Wiz makes everyday kawaii fashion for women in their twenties and thirties. 




7. Sneakers

When you travel to Japan, you may notice that some fashion items are much cheaper than in other countries, including sneakers.

You can usually find sneakers at bargain prices at large chains like ABC Mart. Japanese stores not only offer footwear at lower prices, but you can also find limited edition sneakers from brands like Adidas or Nike that you can't find anywhere else in the world.

The best places to find trendy shoes are Shinjuku, Harajuku, and Shibuya, where a number of trendy sneaker stores are located. 



ASICS is a Japanese sports equipment company.

They will be familiar to many since their products are sold globally. Their running shoes are incredibly well-known, and they ranked as the top performance footwear in the market. Their name is an acronym for anima sana in corpore sano, which means a healthy soul in a healthy body.


8. Plus-size Fashion

Online stores offer more than just typical Japanese sizes.

Nissen is a popular online shop with clothes that are appropriate for work. This site has plus and tall sizes, and they even have large shoes. Their plus size range is called SmileLand, and they carry sizes from L to 10L.  Their tall-sized brand is called Slattgir.  

Another plus-size Japanese online store is Cecile, offering clothes up to 10L in many different styles. They also have shoes up to 27cm, but the number of styles is limited. 

Finally, another popular plus-size fashion brand is FOEL, they have plus-size clothing for both men and women. They also have high-performance wear like cooling T-shirts for summer and anti-wrinkle  "iShirt". 

We hope our little guide has been helpful to you, and that we've convinced you that not everything in Japan has to be super expensive. So have fun in Japan, and don't forget to bring a few fashionable "souvenirs" home!




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Article| 18/02/2022 | Fashion


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