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Bells are jingling, gift lists are daunting, and snow is…not falling in Tokyo. That can mean only one thing: Christmas, Japan’s favorite romantic holiday, is almost here! While your crazy uncle might tell you that Christmas is apparently under siege in some parts of the world, the only holiday worry you’ll find in Japan is getting the right present for your girlfriend.

But don’t be fooled by all the lovers roaming the streets and tormenting lonely single folks, it’s not all romance. There’s more to the season that kissing atop Tokyo Tower–there are also parties and cosplay! Join us after the jump to check out some of the typical outfit offerings on sale in Japan this Christmas.

We’ve mentioned before that Japan celebrates Christmas and New Year’s Eve the opposite of many Western countries, where Christmas is for romance and parties, and New Year’s Eve is for hanging out with your family. While mention of a Christmas party might bring back horrible memories of office eggnog, Japanese Christmas parties tend to be more fun and are more focused on having a cracking good time with friends.

▼And clubbing!

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Of course, if you’re going to a party, you have to get dressed up, right? You can’t just show up wearing jeans and a jacket. But unlike Halloween, you can’t just grab a ratty old wig and call yourself a Muppet–you’ll have to stick with the theme. Fortunately, getting a Christmas costume isn’t hard in Japan, as long as a Tokyu Hands or a Don Quixote is nearby! Here are a few of the more…interesting Christmas costumes we’ve found this year.

■The Pulp Fiction Christmas Special gimp masks

For some reason there are an awful lot of full-face masks on sale in Japan this year. Our guess is that these are either the product of a Christmas loving luchador or the gimp Santa keeps locked in his dungeon at the North Pole.

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▼Look closely at the tag for the Santa face mask.
You can’t tell us that’s not Murder Rampage Santa.

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▼The reindeer. It’s…it’s…

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▼…it’s screaming!

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■The Inexplicable Sexy “Santa” costumes

Of course, not everyone wants to cover up their beautiful mug. In fact, some of us might want to show theirs off. And maybe a few extremities as well. While winter might not be the best time for a “Sexy [insert random career here]” costume, it’s not stopping manufactures from trying.

Here are just a few of “sexy Santa” outfits (a phrase that never should have existed) we found.

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▼Just how many variations on “Sexy Santa” are there??

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▼The black one is “Cool Santa,” but we’re guessing it was originally “Sexy Charcoal.”

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▼Someone forgot to tell her she was done with the kitten costume photo shoot.

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It’s not easy to make out the price in the photo above, but it’s about 5,800 yen, which is roughly US$50. That’s right, fifty freaking dollars for about as much fabric as a pillow case! And that’s not the end of it either, because you can also find Christmas Barbie Costumes!

▼We’re not sure what the question is, but our answer is “No.”

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■The Nightmare Christmas Costumes

If you’re not into going the gimp route and you’re not up for being a plastic Santa doll this year, have no worries! You can still just choose a regular creepy costume that someone clearly found in the back of a haunted pawn shop!

▼Is that the specter of death dressed up as a present or did he just pee himself?
And wow, check our Mrs. Santa’s bewbs…

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▼Sometimes it’s not the costume that’s creepy,
but the little kid that clearly has a closet full of human skulls.

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▼These aren’t actually creepy, but we do wonder why Santa is breakdancing…

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▼Rudolph would have a lot more friends if he blinked once in a while.

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▼But he still probably had more friends than this abomination.

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▼Is she a flying squirrel or a drunk duck-faced reindeer…

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■The “I’m Just Here for Eggnog” Costume

And, finally, we have the costumes for the lazy jerks who are only at the party for the alcohol. Hey, some days it’s just hard to get in the spirit, right? We can’t all love the holidays, so you should just be glad we even showed up at all!

If you’re more Grinch than Jack Skellington, don’t worry, this whole section dedicated to the lazy and uninspired!

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▼And yet they’ll still set you back about $12!
Might as well just drink at home alone…

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▼Guess what kind of holiday spirit this writer has!

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While we may have a laugh or two (or ten), if we’re being completely honest, we kind of love Christmas in Japan. It’s oddly…tranquil. If you grew up in a Western country, you’re probably used to being beat over the head with various holiday messages, so it’s actually really nice to be able to treat it like just another Wednesday if you’re so inclined. And if you do love Christmas, there’s always a party just around the corner, so there’s basically something for everyone. Just don’t try ordering a pizza on Christmas Eve in Tokyo!

All images © RocketNews24 unless otherwise noted.