Tomboys in the anime were always a huge topic of discussion in anime sphere in the last few decades. Japanese creators never strayed from doing something different and creating unconvenital badass, tomboyish female characters was definitely something they did pretty commonly. Even though anime is usually put into category of constantly creating female characters that are helpless and too girly, Japanese creators did an amazing job of keeping representation of female characters who could do some things better than their male counterparts or at least equally good. In this article, we will rank our picks of the 25 best anime tomboy characters ever.
We will include female characters from all eras of anime, the earliest 1980s, on our list and say something about maybe less known anime and tomboys for who we think are the best of all time. If you are interested in our picks, stay with us until the end of the article, and maybe you spot characters that you did not see on other lists. Without further ado, let’s start!
25. Kino (Kino’s Journey)
Kino is a fifteen-year-old traveler who with her talking motorcycle called Hermes, goes on a journey to explore countries with unique customs and people around the mysterious world. Kino with her trusty motorcycle never stays for more than three days in one place because of her fear of settling and losing her purpose as a traveler.
She is really skilled in combat – an excellent marksman with amazing speed, agility, and accuracy. She travels with her signature revolver “Canon” which is loaded with liquid gunpowder and six .44 caliber bullets that she uses just for execution or something else serious. She is cool, she’s a badass, and most importantly, a certified tomboy
24. Milly Thompson (Trigun)
Milly Thompson is a Bernadelli insurance agent, friend, and assistant of Meryl Stryfe in the anime Trigun. The anime is set on the fictional planet of No Man’s Land where the plot of the series follows Vash the Stampede, a famous gunman who is constantly fighting bounty hunters so his bounty increases.
Milly or a “Stungun Milly” is an important character in the anime series whose physique is quite intimidating but her personality is quite opposite. She is a kind, optimistic, and really strong character. Her “stun-gun” is her signature weapon of choice, and when others see her with her trusty heavy gun, they are terrified. Because of those facts, she definitely belongs on this list.
23. Haruhi Fujioka (Ouran High School Host Club)
Even though Haruhi had a girly, long hair appearance before enrolling in high school, her appearance drastically changes. Her nerdy, androgynous look is not the appearance of her choice. It was first believed that Haruhi has gender dysphoria, the stress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity. Haruhi is poor and could not afford new school uniforms, so she settled on baggy clothes and a nerdy look that confused a lot of people.
Moreover, Haruhi has short hair because chewing gum has gotten in her hair, and she had to cut it. Boys and girls crushed on her throughout the series, however, during the manga run, she crushed on her classmate Tamaki Suoh. All in all, her style is what makes Haruhi a true anime tomboy.
22. Saber (Fate/Stay Night)
Fate/Stay Night is a Japanese visual novel and an adult game that got adapted into anime series on the Western side of the world. She is a heroic warrior who is summoned by a teenager to participate in a war between masters and servants who are fighting to accomplish their dream by using a Holy Grail.
She is loyal, independent, and reserved, and her warrior-like appearance makes her a certified tomboy who is not afraid of sacrificing herself for the greater cause.
21. Akane Tendo (Ranma ½)
Ranma ½ is a Japanese anime that was really popular during the 1990s, especially in the United States where the anime introduced a lot of visual gags to the American public. The protagonist Ranma Saotome was cursed to become a girl, after being splashed by cold water. He would turn into a boy when he was splashed by hot water. His love interest Akane is a certified tomboy.
Her mother died when she was really young and because of that, she did not learn that many feminine skills. Even her supposed lover Ranma often called her a tomboy and “being uncute”. At the end of the anime, Ranma and Akane get married but Akane stays the same cool tomboy that we know and love, and Ranma finally accepts her and loves her for what she is.
20. Misty (Pokémon)
Everyone who was a child around 2000, knows Misty, Ash Ketchum’s loyal companion on his quest to become the best Pokémon trainer ever. Misty always had a slight inferiority complex because her sisters had formed the group called “The Three Sensational Sisters”, a synchronized swimming group. Because she came from a family surrounded by water, she always preferred Water-Type Pokémon.
Throughout the series, Misty became more mature and sensible, combined with her being a great Pokémon trainer, she became really cool.
19. Suruga Kanbaru (Bakemonogatari)
Bakemonogatari follows the high school boy called Koyomi Araragi, who after being bitten by a vampire was able to return to being human with the help of the man name Meme Oshino, even though some vampire traits stay in him. In this case, Suruga is Koyomi’s underclassman, a star player on the school’s basketball team, and one of Hitag’s acquaintances from junior high school.
She actually considers herself a lesbian, and her appearance matches her love for basketball – a tomboy in every sense of the world.
18. Haruko Haruhara (FLCL)
Fooly Cooly or just FCLC is an anime that follows the story of Naota Nandaba, a twelve-year-old boy whose suburban life is disturbed by the arrival of our entry on this list, Haruko Haruhara, who is an investigator for the Galactic Space Police Brotherhood. Her mission is to detain the most powerful space pirate in the galaxy called Atomsk.
Haruko’s sporty and tomboyish style definitely puts her on our list.
17. Kallen Stadtfeld (Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion)
Code Geass is set in an alternated timeline that follows exiled prince Lelouch vi Britannia, who obtains the “power of absolute obedience” from a mysterious woman called C.C. Kallen Stadtfeld is one of the protagonists of the show and the love interest of the main character Lelouch. She is a strong, determined, loyal, and brave individual who, despite her tough attitude, is quite sensitive.
When she is on the battlefield her piloting skills and battle prowess combined with high intelligence and leadership, make Kallen Stadtfeld one of the most badass female characters in anime ever, and an unapologetic tomboy.
16. Melissa Mao (Full Metal Panic!)
Melissa Mao is a protagonist of an anime series called Full Metal Panic!. She is a former marine and SRT’s second-in-command in Mithril. Her expertise includes electronic warfare and she is really strong. She is quite tomboyish and acts less feminine than other female characters on the show like Tessa and Kaname.
She is a heavy smoker and quite crass – Melissa swears a lot, and acts rude but even despite her attitude she is a cool character.
15. Kagura Mikazuchi (Fairy Tail)
Fairy Tail follows Lucy, a seventeen-year-old girl who sets out on a journey to become a full-fledged wizard and join the strongest and most famous guild called Fairy Tail. Kagura Mikazuchi is the strongest Mage of the Mermaid Hell Guild and her very calm and professional personality makes her really bland.
However, she is actually more than that and her seeking revenge for her killed brother Simon very much brings out a lot of emotions. She is strong, determined, and powerful and her cool style makes her place on this list warranted.
14. Tatsuki Arisawa (Bleach)
Bleach is one of the most popular animes in recent years and its characters are one of the coolest we had the pleasure of watching. One of them is Tatsuki Arisawa, Ichigo’s childhood friend, and the woman who saved her friend’s future wife Orihime. Because of that fact alone, she is bad-ass and cool, and her persona is rounded off by her tomboyish demeanor.
She is a skilled and fierce fighter and even though she is a human, nothing stops her from being her badass self.
13. Nana Osaki (Nana)
Nana is an anime that was released in 2006, and it’s centered on Nana Osaki and Nana Komatsu, two women who move to Tokyo to pursue their dreams of being successful musicians. Moreso, Nana Osaki, who is the lead vocalist of the popular punk band the Black Stones. Her style matches her genre of music, and her punkish style with tattoos and dark colors makes her appropriate for this list.
Nana Osaki is a certified tomboy.
12. Minene Uryu (Future Diary)
Minene Uryu is a protagonist of the anime called Future Diary, which focuses on the Diary Game, a deadly battle royal between 12 different individuals who are given “Future Diaries”, special diaries that can predict the future by Deus Ex Machina, the God of Time and Space, with the last survivor becoming his heir.
Minene possesses a ninth diary called “Escape Diary”, and her style as you see in the picture above is really cool. Her tomboyish style includes eyepatch, weapon holders, military trousers, and jeans with a dose of cool, which makes her a must-entry on this list.
11. Olivier Mira Armstrong (Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood)
Also known as Major General Armstrong, Mira is the primary heir to the illustrious Armstrong family and a commanding officer in charge of guarding Amestris’ northern border. She is also an older sister of another cool character Alex Louis Armstrong. She is a severe woman who is intimidating and scary to her inferior officers, but Mira is also a capable commander who has a strong sense of duty.
She is cool, badass and you guess it, tomboyish for this list.
10. Makoto Kikuchi (The Idolmaster)
The Idolmaster is not your typical anime – it was originally a raising simulation and rhythm video game series created by Bandai Namco Entertainment, which follows the story of the producer who works with a group of prospective pop idols at the talent agency called 765 Production. The TV program spread across numerous media, including anime.
One of the characters is Makoto Kikuchi, who is known as “The Pretty-boy Idol” and the prince of 765 Production. She is very popular among the girls and one of the most popular students in her all-girls high school. She has short black hair and typical tomboyish charm which places her 10th on this list.
9. Sora Takenouchi (Digimon)
One of the original DigiDestined paired up with Digimon Biyomon, Sora was always a quintessential tomboy of the Digimon series. Her love of sports was always frowned upon by her parents but that still did not stop her from being who she is. Her appearance in the first Digimon series is truly resembling a tomboy, and even though she changes her style during the later series, she is still a tomboy at heart, and for that, we need to put her on this list.
She is a huge football fan and is mostly seen with Taichi playing in the Digimon series.
8. Casca (BERSERK)
BERSERK is one of the most beautifully styled manga and anime series ever, and after the unfortunate passing of its creator Kentarou Miura last year, the story of the BERSERK stopped for a while. While we wait for what is going to happen to the beloved manga and anime series, we will talk about BERSERK’s tomboy character called Casca.
She is a former unit commander of the Band of the Falcon and an estranged companion of Guts. Her swordsmanship is something everyone should be scared of and because of her knight-like attire, we need to put her on this list.
7. Hiroyo Surogaki (Bleach)
We have another entry from Bleach and this time it is Hiroyi Sarugaki. She is the former lieutenant of the 12th Division under Captains Kirio Hikifune and Kisuke Urahara, and she is currently Visored. She is pretty powerful and her appearance resembles a gym trainer. She wears a white shirt with a red jogging suit and her short-tampered, aggressive personality matches her appearance perfectly.
She is a quintessential tomboy and perfect for this list.
6. Erza Scarlet (Fairy Tail)
We are slowly getting to the end of the list, and boy do we have great entries next. One of them is Erza Scarlet, a Fairy Tail character and an S-Class Mage of Fairy Tail Guild. She is really powerful and she was serving as guilds master while Makarov was absent. She does not have a right eye and her appearance is really cool, probably one of the coolest in the series.
She is wearing custom-made armor, a blue skirt, black boots, and diamond-shaped earrings. She can change her attire all the time with her magic, and her personality is mostly being strict towards others but also an amazing leader who, according to Lucy, is cool, beautiful, and full of passion. Well, she is also a tomboy, and that is why she is on this list.
5. Touka Kirishima (Tokyo Ghoul)
This dark fantasy anime follows the story of a shy college student named Kaneki Ken, who is nearly killed in an attack by one of the ghouls, and becomes half-ghoul himself after he received organ transplantation from one. Touka Kirishima is the wife of Kaneki Ken and her dual personality usually changes between Tuoka being kind and really angry, making her really angry.
She has a slender body build and is certainly attractive with her blue bob hairstyle and blue eyes. She is a hunter which makes her a true tomboy.
4. Mikasa Ackerman (Attack on Titan)
Mikasa Ackerman is one of the most iconic anime characters in recent years and her badass persona in the anime Attack on Titan made her one of the fan favorites. She had a really tough life, and living with Eren and his family after hers were murdered, Mikasa grew to be a very serious and dangerous character who cares for her friends a lot.
She enrolled in the military, despite wanting to have a peaceful life, and became one of the most capable soldiers in the 104th Training Corps. She is cool, she is iconic and her military hard look makes her a true tomboy, and perfect for this list.
3. Winry Rockbell (Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
This mechanical repair specialist is the daughter of the famous mechanics and surgeons who is a close friends of Edward Elric and Alphonse Elric. She is always there to help them, and she is even the personal automail engineer for Edward, who needs maintenance for his prosthetic right arm and left leg.
She is always in her work attire and her iconic wrench and bandana combined with a tank top and cargo trousers make her a typical tomboy from anime. However, she is not typical at all and her character is one of the best-supporting characters in the last decade or so in anime. She is cool, funny, and cares a lot for the Elric brothers which is, in the end, the most important thing.
2. Revy (Black Lagoon)
Black Lagoon follows a team of pirates/mercenaries known as Lagoon Company, that smuggles goods in and around the seas of Southeast Asia in the early 1990s. Revy is one of the main protagonists of the anime and she is a certified badass. She wields two revolvers and her garderobe consists of black tank top or a sweater with jean shorts and combat boots.
She is loud, sarcastic, deadly, competitive and everything opposite of what a proper typical “goody two shoes” character would be. Besides being really cool and one of the best tomboy characters in the anime ever, she is also one of the most iconic ones, and that is why she is in the second spot of this list.
1. Sailor Uranus (Sailor Moon)
On top of this list and the best tomboy anime character ever is definitely Haruka Tenou a.k.a. Sailor Uranus. She is probably one of the first out LGBTQ+ characters in the mainstream manga or anime series ever, and her sexuality was confirmed in the recent Sailor Moon Crystal series as genderqueer or bigender lesbian. Her relationship with Michiru or Sailor Neptune has been censured in the original anime’s English dub version, but was always a great representation for gay community.
She is one of the coolest characters ever, and her flirting with Usagi during the anime is really endearing. Her style is truly tomboyish – she is wearing suits, shirts, jeans, tuxedos, and other usual “men wear” and drives cool sports cars, since her dream prior to becoming Sailor Senshi was to be a racer. She is definitely the material for the first place on this list, and until this day, one of the coolest characters in anime ever.