There are a lot of TV shows out there and in this golden age of TV streaming, the choices have never been greater. So how do you cut through the noise and find the “Best of” for any chosen topic? Well, we’re here to help celebrate and shine a spotlight on some of the latest, greatest and unforgettable shows through the years.
For our ongoing series of articles depicting the best anime, our attention this time turns to fashion. From goofy romantic comedies to colorful action series, there’s a good choice to whet your appetite.
Of course, if we’ve missed any of your favorites, feel free to comment below and we’ll get them added on!
Harbor Light Story: Fashion Lala Yori
Harbor Light Story: Fashion Lala Yori feels like the anime equivalent to Cinderella in some respects. It’s about a girl named Miho who enjoys designing clothing. Despite her passion for designing, she has to endure harsh criticism from her aunt and three cousins. These four enjoy bringing her down because they believe it’s ridiculous for a girl her age to be a grand fashion designer.
Miho gains the opportunity to prove them wrong after she receives word about a contest being held in her area. This contest will crown her area’s new “Disco Queen.” Miho wants to design an outfit for said queen since she’s too young to enter herself. Therefore, the anime follows Miho as she tries to achieve her dreams by utilizing a hint of magic and self-determination.
This anime offers a satisfying narrative and wonderful characters. The anime ends with a massive payoff for all characters involved. The town Miho is a part of is oozing in hopelessness and lacks optimism. Miho represents her town’s dying but final degree of positivity well. Even though she’ll endure harsh criticism from peers and suffer from some events here and there, her positive attitude helps to alleviate the anime’s tense atmosphere.
If you’re looking for an anime with a strong-willed protagonist, then Harbor Light Story: Fashion Lala Yori is worth watching.
Urahara is an intriguing sci-fi comedy that features many thought-provoking themes. Urahara isn’t a visual masterpiece as the animation isn’t fluid, and some character designs come across as uncanny in some areas.
Nevertheless, Urahara captures this feeling of self-fulfilment wonderfully with the content present in its anime. It doesn’t feature a complex narrative, but in its steed lies a work full of charm and life. The characters feel relatable and lighthearted. The colors used in the show give off comforting and wholesome vibes.
The anime feels experimental to some extent and presents viewers with a world full of creativity and wonder. While it doesn’t harbor any technical achievements, one can tell that immense passion and thought went into its production. Urahara may not hold fantastic marvels, but it promises to leave viewers with a distinct and unique experience.
HeartCatch PreCure is a sci-fi action comedy anime with a slightly episodic structure. The anime features some story arcs, but it mainly follows a “character of the week” format found in other magical girl anime like it. While this may sound off-putting to some, HeartCatch PreCure manages to make every episode feel worthwhile regarding action, thrills, and exhilarating moments.
At the same time, whenever the series delves into its overarching narrative, things pick up for the better. You’ll receive striking moments between HeartCatch PreCure’s protagonists and their villains. Sometimes these moments will leave you speechless while others feel on par with the nature of the show.
While the action is acceptable, there are times when it feels like HeartCatch PreCure’s animation studio cut corners to fit within the show’s runtime per episode. On the other hand, this anime cranks up its animation quality immensely during its more serious and plot-driven moments.
Viewers need not worry about the character designs in this series, though. They mesh well with the anime’s differing backgrounds and environments. The attire these females wear is highly fashionable and colorful. The supernatural powers present in the show emulates its fashion theming wonderfully.
Smile Down The Runway
Smile Down The Runway is about a girl named Chiyuki Fujito, who dreams of becoming a flourishing runway model down the line. However, she’s struggling to do so because of her short height. Her attitude shifts when she meets an aspiring young fashion designer named Ikuto Tsumura.
Like Fujito, Tsumura is in a tight spot with his goals. He doesn’t have the resources necessary to complete his goals. Now full of determination, Fujito offers Tsumura a helping hand in favor of him reciprocating the same gesture back. Therefore, the anime follows the daily activities these two embark on while trying to help the other achieve their lifelong dreams.
Although the anime is full of lighthearted energy, it leans toward comedic gags occasionally. The chemistry between these two gradually builds over time and never feels rushed. Fujito’s passion for modeling and Tsumura’s admiration for designing are felt throughout the entirety of the show. Many fans with similar admiration for either craft will find these two relatable.
On the other hand, Tsumura and Fujito’s personality extends further from their passions. This allows all viewers to establish a tight connection with the characters regardless if fashion is or isn’t their foray. If you’re looking for a comedy anime with lovable and relatable characters, Smile Down The Runway has you covered.
My Dress-Up Darling
My Dress-Up Darling mixes romance with fashion in this hilarious slice-of-life anime. It follows a doll maker named Wakana Gojou, who dreams of becoming a phenomenal doll maker like his grandfather. However, he’s not too courageous and often feels he’ll be bullied for his hobby.
Enter Marin Kitagawa, his school’s most-popular student who asks Goujo to make her a cosplay. What starts off as a simple request spirals into something hilariously romantic. You’ll get a good laugh at the many antics Marin pulls in this anime and will end up adoring the lovely bond between her and Gojou by the series’s end.
The animation in this series is wonderful. Marin’s mannerisms feel realistic as the animation studio did a phenomenal job bringing her to life. This anime’s art style and color palette give off this cozy sensation. This anime does feature a chunk of raunchy humor, though. However, the humor’s never too overbearing on the eyes.
If you’re looking for a more hilarious and romantic-driven anime with a hint of fashion appreciation, check out My Dress-Up Darling.
Princess Jellyfish is a remarkable romantic comedy anime that feels like a retelling of the classic Cinderella folk tale. This anime delivers a lighthearted adventure that tackles themes regarding beauty, self-esteem, and gender identity. You can expect this series to reference different mediums regarding fashion and pop culture, too.
Princess Jellyfish follows Tsukimi Kurashita, who has a passion for jellyfish and loved comparing their tentacles to princess dresses. This is all thanks to her deceased mother taking her to an aquarium when she was younger. Tsukimi lives with five other unemployed otaku women and is treated as a social outcast because she chose to become an illustrator.
Despite her depressing situation, Tsukimi meets a beautiful woman one day that helps her save a jellyfish in a local pet store. After this occurrence, Tsukimi starts running into this woman on a daily basis. Despite appearing like a fashionably attractive woman, she reveals to Tsukimi that she’s actually a male college student Kuranosuke Koibuchi.
Despite its quirky premise, Princess Jellyfish does a phenomenal job at hiding it’s serious messaging under its lighthearted comedy. There will be times when the show addresses serious topics like parental loss, social anxiety, and self-confidence in the most innovative ways possible. The characters in this show are a treat, too. Many of them have wonderfully distinct personalities that allow fans to set them apart from others.
If you’re looking for a splendid romantic comedy with hints of fashion and slight innovation, check out Princess Jellyfish.
Among the anime listed here, Neighborhood Story has the most unique-looking art style. The character designs resemble those found in 70s-era cartoons. Unfortunately, the art style does have its shortcomings, though. There are noticeable errors in the show’s animation where things don’t look great.
Thankfully, these instances are few and far between, and don’t hamper your viewing of this series. Another great aspect of this series lies in its incredible music. The music heightens the cozy atmosphere projected by this series wonderfully. There’s never a moment where the music feels too obnoxious or overbearing. The characters in this anime are also a delight to watch.
Every character feels relatable and likable. Although some characters will start off rough, over time they’ll develop into people you’ll appreciate and cheer for. Neighborhood Story’s plot is anything special or unique. While there are some drama and romantic subplots, the anime doesn’t spend time fleshing those scenarios out. This is a series that gives off genuine wholesome energy, and one that leaves a lasting impression.
Paradise Kiss is a fashion anime with a cool aesthetic. Everything from its premise, characters, art style, and world seeps freshness and flavor. This anime’s drama angle leans toward a realistic spectrum. It feels reminiscent of soap operas you’d stumble across on certain TV channels.
Our tale follows Yukari Hayasaka, who runs into a weird and creepy man that frightens her. She runs away and bumps into a beautiful purple-haired woman and faints. When she awakens, she finds herself in a weird place called Atelier and meets the same individuals from the day before. Yukari finds out that these people are fashion designers who attend a famous nearby art school.
These fashion designers ask Yukari to be their model for an upcoming show, but she turns them down and departs Atelier. Unfortunately, she leaves her school ID behind, allowing Atelier’s head designer George Koizumi to retrieve it. Yukari heads back. After some pressure from George, she accepts their modeling offer.
As mentioned before, Paradise Kiss plays out like a drama show on television and features characters getting involved in back-and-forth conversations. Each brings up valid criticisms and points that will make you ponder the topics being brought up. Many romantic shenanigans ensue in Paradise Kiss but come to a dramatic and satisfying resolution.
Overall, this anime provides a stellar mix of romance and realism. Anime fans looking for a show that features an incredible take on human relationships and fashion will have a fun time with Paradise Kiss.
One of the most fashionable magical girls in all of anime is Cardcaptor Sakura. Whether she’s fighting something cute or slightly terrifying, its protagonist, Sakura Kinomoto comes prepared with her arsenal of magic cards and outfits. From her trademark transformation sequences to the magic powers shields in the anime, you’ll find yourself smiling whenever Sakura triumphs in battle.
Unfortunately, the other side characters don’t have a similar fashion sense as her. They also don’t have the wonderous potential as her, either. However, the allies Sakura makes along the way do have formidable magical abilities and likable personalities. There’s also a wonderful romance that blossoms between Sakura and one of these characters that feel wholesome and adorable.
In Cardcaptor Sakura, Sakura Kinomoto finds a strange book filled with Clow Cards called “The Clow.” As she investigates, she accidentally causes the book to malfunction. This causes Clow Cards to fly out of the book and scatter everywhere in town. Keroberos, its beast guardian, awakens from his slumber because of this event.
He informs Sakura to gather the Clow Cards back because they pose a threat to the world. Sakura is appointed Cardcaptor and given the Sealed Key, a weapon that will help her seal the beasts back into their original cards. Sakura must find all Clow Card beasts and seal them back into their cards before it is too late with the help of Keroberos and Tomoyo.
Our tale revolves around a girl named Amu Hinamori, who stumbles across three colorful eggs called Heart Eggs in her bedroom. In each egg, there is a Guardian Character–who represents a person’s desired self. While these guardians help Amu boost her self-esteem, this newfound love doesn’t remain for long.
A council group notices that the guardians have awakened. They point the blame at Amu and enlist her as the “Joker,” who must find corrupted Heart Eggs called X Eggs. With this new job placed on her shoulders, Amu sets out to uncover the mystery surrounding the X Eggs, their characters, and the mysterious organization behind them.
Shugo Chara feels like the sibling series of Cardcaptor Sakura in ways. While Amu’s not as fashionable as Sakura, some characters display the same magical and sensational charisma as her. Amu and her friends encounter fantastical creatures and enemies with colorful designs and personalities. Amu’s reactions in this series feel slightly over-the-top, though.
However, her insecurities and struggle to be accepted by others will resonate with viewers. Her conflicted romantic feelings for several boys she meets in the show may feel bothersome, too. However, there could be some viewers out there that can relate to Amu’s issues and resonate with her approach toward things. Shugo Chara is worth watching if you’re looking for a magical anime with a hint of fashion, adventure, and romance.
So, there we have it, our picks for the best anime through the years about fashion!
What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!