This term was brought up by Dimdom89 who mentioned that it was the new term for yuri subtext in Japan. Let’s briefly go over what classifies as soft yuri. For this post I will be using examples from 2015.
Soft yuri is in the simplest explanation, two (or three) girls engaging in romantic situations or fantasies that come off as soft. It can go so far as even a kiss being soft, basically a kiss without tongue.
Any yuri pairing whose televised encounters are limited to holding hands, lots of blushing, exchanging words with each other that can easily be interpreted as romantic, touching cheeks very softly, staring longingly at one another…
…sleeping together in the same bed, the subway, etc.
every single KumiRei moment no matter how steamy, all soft yuri.
If a kiss on the lips without tongue is as far as it goes, soft yuri. As far as physical contact goes: No breast fondling, no licking body parts, no biting/nibbling, nothing beyond gentle caressing or teasing. Blowing in the ear is okay though.
That’s pretty much the extent of soft yuri. Soft Yuri is basically the replacement for shoujo-ai because if readers look up what shoujo-ai REALLY means then it makes sense to stop using it.
Readers who are accustomed to using shoujo-ai can freely continue doing so so as to avoid confusion.