Walking around Shanghai, I noticed a subsegment of youth who appeared to dress differently. They had more of a funky, j-pop (Japanese pop) and k-pop (Korean pop) look to them but still with a Chinese sort of feel.
I did some searches into this and learned about a whole group of youth called Fei Zhu Liu, which when translated means “non-mainstream”. I suppose this movement started off as small groups of Chinese youth discontent with the status quo and wanting to stand out. However, the more I observed and read about them, the more it appears that this has slowly inched towards mainstream. Will this counter-culture movement need to become more extreme in order for the hardcore FZL’s (the term is abbreviated when discussed online) to continue to stand out?
After a frenzied and valiant search for an official definition of FZL (there really isn’t an official one), scouring madly though message boards and forums and blogs, I have learned that FZL’s are a mix of of Hime, Ulzzang and Scene.
Don’t worry if you don’t understand the above definition whatsoever. That’s what I’m here for!
Hime: The Japanese word for princess or a lady of higher birth.
Ulzzang: Is a Korean phrase for “best” & “face”. The basic meaning is to describe people who look good – naturally or with the use of programs such as Photoshop or Haduri.
Haduri: Haduri is a Korean software/webcam program that lets the user take pictures of themselves and modify these pictures with special effects to make them look better/cuter.
Scene: This is a culture made mostly of teenagers and can be compared to the “emo” culture, a culture derived to reject the “norm”. Scene kids may listen to alternative, Indie or more underground music. In general, they tend to look “tough” and “hardcore”, with dark clothes, heavy eye-makeup, choppy hair, tight jeans.
I had no idea what any of these words meant either! But now that I know, it’s so interesting!
AND I might have to check out that Haduri software they all appear to be using to take/modify their glamour shots. If I ever figure out how it works, I’ll post up some pics =)
Here are more shots of Chinese FZL kids: