10 Oddly Wonderful Items in Japan's Drugstores
As we all know, Japan is full of many weird and wonderful things. A simple trip to the supermarket can turn into hours of wondering what this is and what that does—and the same goes for the drug store. We picked up 10 things from our local drugstore that might shock, amuse, or confuse foreign visitors.
10. Ear Cleaners
Japan goes a step further than your usual cotton buds with these devices that claim to get all that icky wax out of your lugholes.
One end is solid to get the more… solid bits out. The other end is made of soft rubber for the more flaky bits. Lovely.
9. Ghostly Face Masks
Face masks are a popular beauty treatment the world over, involving slathering a usually green, mud-like goop onto your face and leaving it to sit. However, the ones you usually find in Japan are a paper-like mask soaked in an essence.
8. Themed Bath Salts
Stores like Lush have proven the appeal of smelly things to put in your bath. Japan takes it a step further with anime-themed bath salts, like these featuring One Piece and Attack on Titan.
7. Moist Face Masks
We’ve all seen the pictures of Japanese people hiding their faces behind their trusty masks. This is usually to avoid passing on an illness rather than avoid catching one, or to protect against pollen allergies. Apparently, behind at least some of these masks a rather strange secret is lurking. This brand comes with moist pads that are supposed to stop your throat from drying out during the day. They’re also very useful on long flights for the same reason—give them a try!
6. Hot Pink Anti-Constipation Pills
They may look like candy, but you don’t want to eat them like they are or you’ll be spending a whole lot of time familiarizing yourself with Japan's technologically advanced toilets. Surprisingly, Japanese people tend to be more open about their bowel movements than Westerners and, rather than hiding behind plain, unobtrusive packaging, these anti-constipation pills come in a bright pink packet that appeals to women.