We’ve talked before about Japan’s love affair with gigantic hug pillows. Even if they’re not covered with pictures of your anime or celebrity crush, dakimakura, as they’re called in Japanese, have a number of physiological advantages, as well as the psychological benefits some people reap from having something to hold as they sleep.
Of course, some people also feel more secure and relaxed being held as they sleep, which is why Japan has a new, double-pronged huggy pillow that can hug you back.
Sold by Bibi Lab, the same company behind the human-shaped Cotton Wife and Cotton Husband huggy pillows, the unique item is called the Sandwiched Between Twintails Pillow, for its vague resemblance to the popular dual pigtail hairstyle so many in Japan are enamored with.
The 8,800-yen (US$74), 150-centimeter (four-foot, one-inch) pillow weighs roughly three kilograms (6.6 pounds). Aside from being soft to the touch, the felt cover is removable and machine-washable. It’s only available in light brown, however, so if you’re sticking with the whole twintail motif, you’re stuck with a sun-bleached brunette.
Honestly, though, even Bibi Lab doesn’t seem entirely committed to the unusual theme. Instead, it’s trumpeting the versatility and comfort the pillow provides, regardless of your preference in hairdos. The product’s website lists no fewer than 10 different ways to use the Sandwiched Between Twintails Pillow, sorted into beginner, intermediate, and advanced techniques.
Starting with the easy set, you can use it like any other huggy pillow, with the added bonus of it reassuringly cradling you from behind.
Alternatively, you can lay one end below yourself like a mattress, then lie on top of it and wrap your arms and legs around the other.
▼ Once you fall asleep, though, gravity is likely to do its thing and put you back into the first position we looked at.
The last easy position is elegantly named “The Scenery of a Hundred Dreams,” and looks comfy enough that we could imagine ourselves sleeping long enough to have at least that many.
Moving on to the intermediate techniques, we learn the Sandwiched Between Twintails Pillow isn’t just for sleeping, as it also makes a handy computer desk.
You can also roll it against itself and create a slot for you forearm, which should help keep it from falling asleep when you’re relaxing on your side.
An extra tight twist produces this option, dubbed “Tied Up in Knots Because of Your First Love.”
This pose adds a bit of neck and shoulder support to an extra-tight squeeze.
The first advanced technique has you and the Sandwiched Between Twintails Pillow embracing each other like a pair of touchy-feely lovebirds.
On the other hand, if you’re searching for actual human companionship, there’s the “Meeting Each Other at the Head” position.
▼ Although really, if someone is willing to do this with you, you should probably stop kidding yourselves and just date already.
And finally, if that doesn’t work out and you find that it’s just you and the Sandwiched Between Twintails Pillow in the house, you’ll be happy to know that you can still enjoy the offbeat interior accent even when you’re not in the prone position by bracing it against a wall, then leaning up against it.
Since it’s not motorized, though, you’ll have to handle the kabe-don responsibilities yourself.