Why Can’t We All Stop Falling In Love With “Knee-High Socks”? Let’s Unravel The Mysterious Attraction Of It!
As one of the standards items of Japanese “moe” culture and common knowledge for all Japanese subculture geeks worldwide, “knee-high socks” have the never-ending possibility to attract many different people nowadays. From fashion, to subculture, and even to fetish art, knee-high socks have come to be loved by males and females now. As one of the main symbols of a changing image, they have evolved to where a new culture has been born. A Japan Knee High Association has been established to support all “knee-high socks” lovers, whether they wear them or just like to look at them.
Why have “knee-high socks” been so popular for so many years now? Why are they so attractive to both genders? We are here to dig deep with the basic history and evolutionary paths of them!
What’s “knee-high socks”?
Knee-high socks developed from “high socks,” socks that covered up the calves. Those were around since the 1980s, when many of the female idols were wearing as part of their costume for their performance in television programs, and often coordinated with a mini skirt or short pants. But during this time, white high socks were common than black and soon became more popular with the Lolita fashion in the 90’s.
Since 2006, as branch off from high-socks, knee-socks were introduced to the public as a fashion item that makes your legs more thin. Not only the niche fashion culture like Lolita, every fashion style in Japan incorporated the knee-high socks to spice up the cuteness or sexiness. Soon, the item itself was abbreviated as “Nii-hai,” or “Nii-so,” which made young females in Japan to be more familiar with. From there, people have made different varieties according to their preferences and currently, there has been a set definition as for length for each type of knee-socks. “Knee-high socks” are considered to be about 40 to 50 centimeters long. “Over Knee-high socks” are 50 to 60 centimeters long. “Thigh-high socks” are over 60 centimeters long.
But the most common term is “knee-high socks,” and people will just refer to any socks that goes high above the knees would be called as “nii-so,” which tells, that is how much it is embedded into the culture.
Why “knee-high socks” and not other types of socks? There has been data collected from the male population who would consider that legs and thighs are to be important part of sexual attraction. And since knee-high socks do emphasize those parts of the female body, it explains why that male population recognize the attraction, or the “moe” of knee-high socks.
Currently, there is a shop where they sell only knee-high socks called, “Zettai Ryouiki“. They sell knee-high socks that have playful and colorful designs to coordinate in your style.
The most important part of what it means to wear knee-high socks is the “Zettai Ryouiki.” “Zettai Ryouiki,” translated as “absolute territory” has came up as part of the main aspect of why knee-high socks are attractive and sexy. The definition of it is the bare skin area of the gap between the knee-high socks and the skirt or shorts.
Not only is the length of the socks are important, but the balance of that exposed area with the clothing is also important to consider as part of attraction as well. If that is balanced out well enough, it is considered as “moe.” Some may prefer a smaller gap, others prefer larger, so whatever the preference is, the kinds of lengths are already available.
Trends From Fashion to Anime to Fashion Again
The “nii-so” craze was not just as fashion influence that has triggered to its popularity, but the female characters in Anime series wearing knee-high socks have become popular with male audiences.
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