Burikko - Japanese with Cuteness in Excess

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Burikko [ぶりっ子] is a Japanese term used to describe people who act and speak in a childlike way, it can be considered a type of style, culture and behavior that is embedded within the culture Kawaii and Lolita. In this Guide we will tell you all about these girls who behave with excess cuteness.

What does Burikko Mean?

Burikko [ぶりっ子] is an appeal of intentional femininity (beauty, cuteness), in which women pretend to be ignorant and pampered in front of the opposite sex, pretending to be powerless. It can also be translated as a fake child or a fake child.

We use this word to describe predatory girls who act as pure, innocent and very feminine (like “I don't poop, I ride unicorns and I don't know what sex is?”) But who actually know exactly what they are doing, to get What you want.

The origin of the word comes from [振りっ子] and [鰤子] where first the suffix buri [振り] indicates a style, manner and way. The noun furi [振り] also gives the idea of agitation, balance, appearance and behavior. The ideogram [鰤] that makes up some archaic versions refers to the Japanese Amberjack fish.

The suffix buri it was used to refer to several words in the Japanese language. Perhaps by examining these expressions you can get a sense of the word's meaning and variants. See below:

  • Kawaiiko buru [可愛い子ぶる] - Cute child;
  • Iikoburu [いい子ぶる] - Good child;
  • Nekowokaburu [猫をかぶる] - Dress like a cat;
Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

In short, the word Burikko literally means to act, to follow a style, a way, to look and behave like a child [子]. The word refers to pretending to be a thing, that is, a child, with a childlike and innocent behavior.

There are verbs that resemble the origin of the word as the verb buri [振る] which means [assuming the air of…] or [behaving like…] or onomatopoeia buruburu [ぶるぶる] which means shaking, showing an excess.

Another coined word was “Hamachikko”Derived from fish buri young man who is called hamachi. The aim was to separate young women who acted like children (burikko) of adult women who acted like children (hamachikko), but the term has not become popular and today only burikko.

A person who hides his true nature and shows a different personality to a person.

Meaning of Burikko

Burikko's Behaviors and Characteristics

Burikko encompasses many behaviors that express forced childishness, from a submissive look to a child's voice. Gestures, faces, inclinations and MOE behavior are characteristics of Burikko. See below the main behaviors:

Main Behaviors of Burikko

They also often make cute gestures and facial expressions, some strongly exaggerated that show fear or surprise in everyday situations. Even how to sneeze from burikko they are usually cute.

They act like damsels in distress, and use their sympathy to get the boys' attention. They tend to inflate their cheeks, tilt their heads to the side, or touch their fingers to their faces while speaking, sometimes covering their faces lightly with their hands.

They usually fill their cheeks with air to make an impression like “Moo! I'm angry!" or “Moo! Do not be mean!" or “I'm sad to say that!

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

Some gestures of burikko involves a mouthpiece called ahiruguchi [アヒル口] where they pursed their lips a little. Another gesture is called a sparrow face called chungao [チュン顔]. Another cuteness characteristic of these girls is the ability to look up using only their eyes.

A traditional and natural flirting technique is to touch yourself. Burikko also often touch each other, they also intentionally hold the other person's hand just to say thanks (something rare in Japanese culture). They can also shake the boys' shoulders to ask for something.

Some burikko usually let the tongue out of the mouth, a gesture called tehepero [テヘペロ] similar to Peko-chan from Milky. A very strong gesture that conveys a sense of humor and cuteness.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso
Tehepero and other burikko gestures

Uchimata - Walking with your feet inside

Uchimata [内股] is the name given to the way some Japanese girls walk, with their toes turned inwards. In the West it may be known as a pigeon finger and some even treat it as a disease.

In Japan, on the contrary, few girls really walk like that, many do is force this style of walking because they find it cute and kawaii. This is believed to be common in Japan because of the way that Japanese people usually sit with their legs back.

Some Japanese burikko they also usually run, run small runs at school in a sweet and flashy way that wins the heart of any man.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

Pretending disabilities and forgetfulness

Usually the burikko they pretend not to be able to do something for boys to do for her. Something like not being able to open the lid of a candy, not being able to get something from the shelf, burning your finger in the kitchen, not being able to lift something (even if it is light).

Men feel alpha males when they help these girls with trivial tasks, a great art of seduction known not only by girls burikko. They also usually pretend to forget something, forget something at home or how to use a particular tool or machine.

If they pretend not to be able to do something, they expect the boy to do it. In this case, another feature comes in, the famous “act of begging”. They usually say things like "buy me a souvenir", "I can't do it, do it for me" or simply express the desire to eat something.

Burikko Dialogue and Communication

Usually a girl burikko he is always positive, cheerful and lively, he usually talks about himself in third person, speaking his own name instead of me. They also often use feminine pronouns as atashi (I). Because they are positive girls, they usually give a lot of praise.

They also often use honorary suffixeschan"Or"tan”For both third person and others. Another custom is to extend the words, especially at the end of sentences [ばか ~]. They also usually start their sentences with an “etto”[え 〜 と] which means eeh…

Many Japanese, mainly famous, tend to speak in a very childish thin voice, one of the main characteristics burikko. Some go overboard and end up making strange sounds and moans that may even remind them of relationships.

This is one of the reasons why some Westerners don't like anime, since the characters often have a cute and childlike voice, in addition to making those weird moans. Of course, I personally think that the Japanese language contributes to this sharp tone of sound.

They also tend to give a lot of praise, all in an excessive way and in a very high tone. Things like “Wow!”, “Cute!”, “Cool!” and “I'm happy!”… burikko use the tone of voice soprano, the highest-pitched female suit with the greatest vocal range of all types of voices. 

Burikko vocabulary

They not only speak like children, they also use children's words. Below are some of the children's words used by burikko:

Burikko-goJapaneseMeaning
おちゅかれさまお疲れ様Good job
よちよち*よしよしOkay, right there
しゅごいでしゅね〜すごいですねCool huh?
よくできまちたよくできましたGood job
わんわんDog
ぶーぶーCar
* Yoshi Yoshi - Word that expresses consent and comfort for children. 

Another word widely used by burikko is the expression kawaiii [可愛い〜] which is often used in excess. They practically think everything is cute!

Other frequent words considered cute are:

  • Ukeruu [うける〜] - Receive;
  • Mechasugoine [めっちゃすごいね] - Incívrel;
  • Omoshiroii [面白い〜] - Interesting;
  • Kakkoii [かっこいい〜] - Cool;
  • Wakannai [わかんない〜] - Short for Wakaranai (I don't know);
  • Dekinai [できない〜!] - I can't;
  • Chotto kowaindesukedo [ちょっと怖いんですけど〜] - I'm a little scared;

Burikko-ji - Cute Writing

At the time of the popularization of the kawaii movement, some childish writing styles called burikko-ji, maru-ji, koneko-ji and manga-ji which involved stylized letters, rounded and with childlike characteristics such as hearts, stars and kittens.

It also refers to girls who live drawing kaomoji in texts or simply use lots of cute emoticons in electronic text messages. Not all girls who use this style of writing can be categorized as a girl burikko.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso
Burikkoji writing example

Burikko Style and Appearance

What clothes do burikko wear? What hairstyle styles do they do? Now let's look at some of the styles and looks of the burikko.

At burikko they will usually wear short skirts, even in heavy rain or wind. If they decide to wear pants, they will usually be short and high pants because they avoid hiding their legs. They also like one-piece dresses, they are always cute clothes with flashy features.

Unlike the girls in Harajuku, burikko avoid bright colors, prefer light colors mixed with colors like pastel, pink and purple. Even so colors like red and blue can be present in some pieces. White and pink are the most used colors because they express purity and femininity.

Burikko also like flowers, ribbons, lace and ruffles. Some like lace materials and call for transparency. Ruffles are present on the sleeves, skirt and even the handles of the bags.

Burikko's fashion cares a lot about details. For example, nails, smartphone cases, earphones, wallets, regular holders, business card holders, scarves, bags, scarf cases, socks, etc. Generally cute objects are chosen that differ from the traditional.

Some burikko they often use long sleeves that cover up to their fingertips called moesode [萌え袖]. Already the legs are exposed creating the famous absolute territory Zettai Ryouiki.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

Burikko Hairstyles

Usually girls burikko they also have a children's hairstyle, usually the famous twin tail or double tail, which consists of tying the hair in both ears. There is currently no rule, but we can see such anime hair, Idols and maids.

Another popular hairstyle among burikko is loose brown hair. Usually a brown, beige, gray brown or just a few highlights in the hair causes a cute atmosphere according to the girls burikko.

Another popular hairstyle is the bangs, some even cover the eyebrows or eyes. It seems like something complicated to do, taking hours of dedication every morning. Other girls claim that short hair that looks even masculine, has positive results because it becomes friendly to men.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

The Abilities of Burikko

In addition to the characteristics and behavior mentioned above, being burikko it involves having some special skills that also define that culture.

Usually a Burikko girl is good at acting. She can even shed fake tears if she wants to.
Regardless of her true intentions, she can pretend to be anyone at ease. They like to act and receive praise, so many are famous Idols.

Girls who have burikko behavior have a wide view called a horse view (they have a 350 degree view). They can observe as much as possible around them and can manipulate situations and adapt flirtations.

Another skill is high absorption, girls need to learn and practice the gestures, often observing the people around them and how they react to these gestures. Usually new girls burikko they need to imitate others, usually famous Idols, so the absorption ability.

Other positive points and skills to stand out in burikko are:

  • They are hardworking;
  • They are outgoing;
  • They speak firmly;
  • They are thoughtful;

The Problems of Being Burikko

Many girls want to adhere to this lifestyle or some of its characteristics just because it looks cute. The big problem is that this word ended up gaining a pejorative side of a fake girl interested in winning over men with false behaviors.

This is not the only problem for girls who want to join this culture, generally other women hate girls who act with this behavior. burikko. The reputation generated with men is good, but with girls of the same sex it is never good.

Because it is a flirtation technique, acting only in certain situations with such behavior can create a view that you are a false or self-serving person. The girls burikko does not always have the same attitude towards everyone.

Usually girls burikko has a hostile attitude towards women who are attractive in appearance and inside. They tend to take a cold attitude towards these other women who don't have to pretend or try hard.

The best advice for girls who want to follow aspects of culture burikko it is simply being natural with everyone. Many Japanese women tend to behave innocently as a lifestyle and not as temporary or false.

If you are attentive to everyone and show your true personality, it can be a burikko no problem.

Burikko – japonesas com fofura em excesso

The Origin of the Burikko Term

The term was coined during the 1980s and is sometimes attributed to Japanese comedian Kuniko Yamada, although its exact moment of invention is unclear. That's because some shounen manga used similar expressions to refer to feigned girls.

Mangaká and illustrator Toshifumi Eguchi around 1978 used expressions like kawaiikoburuna [かわいこぶるな!] e burikkodana [ぶりっこだな] to refer to a girl who pretended to be cute. Such expressions probably gave rise to the word burikko, which was later questioned by some experts.

As mentioned above, it was a popular word for children and young people due to the origin of male comics, but that word has spread in the form of a replacement for the conventional word “Kamatoto” (described later).

It has established itself as a new word not only for young people, but also for middle-aged and older people. All this with the help of comedian Kuniko Yamada, who popularized the term in 1981. Soon after that term began to appear in magazines and even became the name of an adult manga magazine specializing in lolicon.

Although the term seems pejorative, many girls consider it a friendly provocation. Many girls of the time had a flirtatious tendency, which results in behaviors burikko. Nowadays many women adopt this behavior as a lifestyle without taking it to the extreme.

Burikko became a sub-culture kawaii among girls 12 and 18 years old in the 80s. About 50% of the girls of the time used something related to culture, be it gestures or writing. Buriko it is also a word used to refer to the edible eggs of hatata fish.

Burikko – japonesas com fofura em excesso

Famous Japanese Burikko

Seiko Matsuda was one of the first Idols to be called Burikko because of his mischievous and unsympathetic behavior. People watched her suspicious gestures and behaviors, she even lied and cried on the music programs.

The voice actress and actress Minami Tanaka he often dominated the world with his superior eyes and burikko poses. She used to say that her gestures and comments were intentional. Today many girls follow this style to become famous.

Yuko Ogura is another that called itself with a nickname and has a nasal voice. Tamao Sato is another teenager famous for her moist eyes and exaggerated and seductive reactions. She became famous for punpun pose [プンプンポーズ] who puts both fists on his head. We also recommend researching about Sayumi Michishige and Momoko Tsugenaga.

Burikko - japonesas com fofura em excesso

Kamatoto - Predecessor of Burikko

The word kamatoto [蒲魚] usually written in katakana has a similar meaning to burikko. According to the dictionary the word kamatoto it means pretending innocence, ignorance or naivete.

Again, she is a woman who knows, but pretends not to know and behaves like a sexually naive. The word "Kamatoto" existed long before the popular word "Burikko" and was originally used in the late Edo period for prostitutes who pretended to be innocent.

The origin of the word Kamatoto derives from Kamaboko a type of surumi with the addition of the word toto [とと] a nickname used in Kansai to refer to fish. That nickname came from the word I'm [疾う] which means quickly, referring to the consumption time of fresh fish.

Another theory is that the term came from girls who pretended to be wealthy daughters to try to get the attention of men.

Burikko – japonesas com fofura em excesso

Reasons leading Japanese women to Burikko

About 27% of Japanese women have tried to appeal to the child side by flirting with a man. Have you ever wondered why Japanese girls act like children? See some psychological studies that show the possible causes of burikko. Most of the time it only involves the desire to stand out or to be cool.

One of the psychologies of burikko is lack of confidence in one's appearance, which leads the girl to cover her appearance with cute gestures, actions and words. A woman who is satisfied with her facial and body parts often hides them from the opposite sex using burikko.

Another reason is that the girl doesn't like her own personality, so she usually hides who she really is. An introverted woman who does not like herself, interprets a different self at the time of flirting, acting like a child to be treated kindly by the people around her, thus generating confidence.

Another reason that leads a girl to have this behavior is the desire to be loved by a specific person, who probably likes this type of behavior. Maybe she just wants to win over the boy using her cuteness. Sometimes she also wants to be loved by everyone.

There seems to be a psychology where girls want to appeal to their femininity. In Brazil, this happens when girls wear provocative clothes and cleavage, while in Japan the culture leads girls to act in a cute and childlike way. Burikko conveys femininity through language, gestures and clothing.

Of course, some girls just want to be called cute, so they act that way. Others are ferocious girls, but they change their behavior in order not to hurt other people.

Burikko – japonesas com fofura em excesso

What do Men think about Japanese Burikko?

Some Japanese say they like the Burikko style because it is cute. Even if it is calculated, false or invented, they are somehow attracted to this cuteness. Others claim to like it because they get compliments and make them feel good.

At burikko they are good listeners and good speakers. They look you straight in the eye and nod, "Yes," and listen to the story with all your might. The simple fact that these Japanese women have the courage to look them in the eye already distinguishes them from the others positively.

Even if the girl is not flirting or interested, they will usually act friendly towards men. Men like it because they consider attitude, something that many Japanese women and even Japanese men tend to have. They are endeavored in different ways.

This greatly facilitates relationships with men without attitude. Some also say they like burikko because they feel alpha male, they feel in charge, they feel they are being helpful and helping out with something.

Of course, there are some men who find it ridiculous, headless and exaggerated, but others claim that such attitudes ignite their love. Others find it difficult to accept because they know the true face. Not to mention the reputation that some spread.

Videos about Burikko

Finally, we will leave some videos showing their appearance and behavior:

Search sources
- Eigobu
- マウンティング女子の世界 - 女子の人間関係 - Japanese Wiki