Cosplaying as an ultra-pale character? Japanese Twitter users have found the perfect product!

It’s no secret that for many people in Japan, paler skin is better. In fact, you’ll often seen women strolling down the street on sunny days with parasols open wide and long sleeves pulled over their forearms. But what about all our cosplay-loving friends who often find themselves standing out in the sun for hours at a time?

Many of them are also trying to replicate the look of characters who may be as white as Casper the Friendly Ghost, but that’s difficult to maintain after roasting all afternoon. And that’s where Oneday Brightening, a cream that does exactly what its name says, comes in. The cream has made a splash online recently with cosplayers posting photos of the difference this product makes!

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Gotta catch em’ all, especially if they’re “Free!”

Birds of a feather flock together, so the saying goes. And that concept applies to non-humans as well; it’s not uncommon for pets and their owners to act, and sometimes even look, somehow similar after spending years together. Even in the super popular anime and game series Pokémon, where the aim of the game is to collect as many pokémon as possible, many of the pokémon trainers in the series use pocket monsters that somehow resemble them.

But what the characters of the anime series Free! were pokémon trainers? Which creatures would they have under their well-toned wings? Find out as this Japanese fan puts her imagination to work in a series of awesome Pokémon x Free! crossover illustrations!

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Japanese elves bring us a new snack cake with the great taste of old meat!

Japan never ceases to be the country of making something taste exactly like something it shouldn’t. In the land where you can get kimchi-flavored soft drinks and spaghetti-flavored ice candy, it would seem food companies are really just drunk with power when it comes to what they can and will make stuff taste like.

And now we have “the perfect snack cake for any meat-lover,” Momotan Aged Meat Flavored snacks. It’s in the form of a typical Japanese confection called manju with a cake-like outer coating and sweet been paste filling. However, these Momotan manju are heavily seasoned to make you swear you were eating a morsel of month-old meat instead!

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You are going to wish this Singaporean chef was making your lunches for you【Photos】

The art of bento making is one that truly forces the creator to plan out every single move ahead. You can’t just plate and then decorate; you need a game-plan right from the start. Plus, it’s not just about presentation – the food has to taste good too. There are plenty of amazing bento artists in Japan (basically any creative mom) but the craft is slowly making its way off the island nation.

A passionate chef from Singapore has been wowing us with her creative and stunning bento that are practically too good-looking to eat. But, any good chef knows that we eat with our eyes first, which means we have been absolutely devouring her cute food.

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New Toyota ad showcases safety tech, reminds us the world is horrifying and dangerous 【Video】

There’s a new Toyota commercial making the rounds on the Japanese Interwebs – with over 2 million views on YouTube – which showcases not only some mind-boggling new safety tech on Toyota cars, but also reminds viewers that the world is a dangerous place in which something terrifying, embarrassing or graphically injurious could happen to you at any time.

Join us after the jump for the feel-good video of the year!

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TMI alert! Japanese high school students are causing a stir online by sharing their “LOVE videos”

A day doesn’t go by that the morality police aren’t up in arms about something the rest of the world finds innocuous. Whether it’s the “music these days” or “those kids and their crazy hair,” we generally can’t help responding with sighs and exaggerated eye-rolls. But this time, we’re wondering if maybe they’re not entirely wrong.

It turns out Japanese junior high school and high school student couples across the country have raised eyebrows by posting videos of themselves kissing online. Which wouldn’t be a big deal if it weren’t for the fact that these videos are open to the public for anyone to see.

So, why are they publicizing their relationships and why is it such a hot topic? Read on to find out!

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Beat the heat with these 14 adorable daikon dishes!

Summers in Japan are pretty warm. In fact, one might got a bit further than that and say that they are down right hot. Of course, there are many places in the world that are hotter and more humid, but knowing that doesn’t help those of us sweating over here now!

One home remedy popular in Japan is grated daikon, or Japanese white radish. Of course, if you’re not a fan of radish, this might not be an easy medicine to swallow, but fortunately Japanese Twitter users know just how to get you to eat it: with some of the cutest food ever! Get ready to beat the heat and go “Awwwww!” at the same time!

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Say konnichiwa to Erica, the android who can have “completely natural” conversations 【Video】

We’ve known for a while that Japan is busy at work creating life-like human robots that will one day take over the world. But for the most part they’ve seemed pretty silly, like malfunctioning children that don’t quite know what they’re doing.

However the most recent Japanese android creation, Erica, might put a stop to that. She was created specifically with the goal of imitating human speech and body language patterns, in order to have “completely natural” conversations.

Will she be able to trick her inevitable suitors into thinking she’s real? Read on to find out!

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Who needs diamonds? These animal cling rings are the cutest you’ll ever see

Artist and accessory-maker Jiro Miura sculpts animal figures, earrings, and more, but what we’re particularly crazy about is these adorable, lifelike animal rings that cling to your finger with their little tails, legs and paws. There are so many animals to choose from, from hedgehogs to fennec foxes, and since each ring is custom made, even if you can’t find your favorite animal Jiro is sure to be able to make it.

Take a look at more of these super cute cling rings below!

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44 years old is plenty young to star in a lingerie ad, proves Japanese model 【Videos】

Between its teen idol singers and the debate over when a women linguistically stops being a “big sister” and starts being an “auntie,” Japan has long held youth to be a critical component of classic beauty. That attitude might be slowly starting to erode, though. Not only are we living in an age where models in their 40s can sell bikini DVDs, women who’re past the four-decade mark can also star in lingerie ads, as shown in these videos.

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The Last Guardian’s director talks about delays, what to expect in finished PlayStation 4 game

In discussions about video game director Fumito Ueda and his works, you’ll often hear the terms “innovative,” “poetic,” and “beautiful” pop up. Some might even call the man a visionary, but one word you can’t use to describe Ueda is “prolific.”

After releasing his directorial debut, Ico, in 2001, Ueda followed up with Shadow of the Colossus in 2005, which remains his most recent finished product. But six years since its initial announcement, Ueda’s latest project, The Last Guardian, is finally nearing completion, and the creator recently sat down with reporters to discuss the game’s numerous delays as well as what fans can expect when they finally get the chance to play it for themselves.

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Holy smokes! Super-pricey ice cream cigars are this summer’s hottest cool treat

You may already be familiar with YOKU MOKU – the Japanese sweets company famous for its sugar cigar cookies. Well it turns out that the company has outdone itself this summer, as it has just brought out a new product called Cigare ice cream – luxurious cigar-shaped cookies filled with, yup, ice cream. And, as you might imagine, Japanese sweet-lovers are already raving about them online…

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“Got caught cheating.” 10 of the weirdest reasons Japanese store owners closed shop for the day

Running your own store and being your own boss can be tough. You have to work long hours, pick up the slack of any slacking employees, and if the customer isn’t happy it’s on your head. But not having to answer to anyone but yourself also has its perks, because you can close up shop at any time and for any reason you want! And the following store owners did just that, as evidenced by these hilarious “closed” signs.

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“Buddhists’ Disneyland” the Pure Land Cave is the trippiest place on earth

In Kaohsiung, Taiwan, there stands a massive Buddhist complex set up by the half-century-old sect Fo Guang Shan. It is a sprawling 30 hectares (74 acres) and contains the nation’s largest monastery, a 36-meter (132 foot) tall Buddha statue, as well as an enormous Buddha Memorial Center in the shape of a pyramid.

However, for our correspondent Kowloon Kurosawa the real action could be found in the Pure Land Cave. It’s an attraction rumored to have been patterned after Disney’s It’s a Small World ride. However, as we’ll soon see, Buddhism is not so much a “small” world as it is a creepy and psychedelic one.

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Here’s why you shouldn’t leave your anime girl pillow alone with a frisky Winnie the Pooh

For a country that’s ordinarily very concerned with not doing anything to shock or offend, Japan can be extremely open about its sexual tastes, in ways that manifest as both perfectly healthy and perfectly pervy. Japan is also pretty open and comfortable with its weakness for cute things, as you’ll often see adults of both genders sporting clothing or accessories bearing the image of popular children’s characters.

But what happens when you have both a sexy anime huggy pillow and a cute Disney stuffed animal in your bedroom, and you leave them alone for a while?

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“Do you want some ramen with those eggs?” Our reporter tries ramen with ALL THE EGGS!

So, you like eggs, but with all the conflicting research about the little balls of protein, it’s hard to decide if you should be eating zero eggs, an egg a day, or as many as you can stuff in you face. Sadly, we’re not entirely certain either, but if you simply don’t care about what’s good for you or not, we’d like you to meet your comrade-in-shells, P.K.

Our clothes-hating Japanese reporter P.K. is a huge fan of the unfertilized bird babies, and he recently read that all that research saying you shouldn’t eat too many eggs is bunk. So he decided to make up for lost time and headed down to Ramen Kagetsu Arashi to get a bowl of noodles with more eggs than a chicken coop. Egg lovers, get ready to hear your stomachs growl!

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7 more things foreigners do that Japanese people find amusing

As a foreigner in Japan, have you ever experienced a slightly awkward yet somehow humorous interaction with a Japanese person? Perhaps you were curious to know more about some aspect of Japanese culture and asked someone a rather random question, or conversely, a Japanese person was curious to know something about your culture and came to you for all the answers. Or maybe you were just out on the street and happened to witness an amusing exchange between some natives and the local gaijin.

Last year, we brought you 10 such tales of comical intercultural interactions, and today we’d like to introduce seven more fun, quirky, and interesting anecdotes as shared by Japanese Twitter users about their exchanges with foreigners. Have you ever been in a similar situation to one of these yourself?

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The quintessential Kyoto experience: becoming a maiko for the day! 【Pics & video】

They say that it’s rare to see a real maiko walking the streets of Kyoto, since these artists usually work at night and live in their own secluded world, far from the rest of Japanese society. In fact, if you spot a maiko strolling around Gion during the day, there’s a good chance she’s a tourist who’s undergone a fabulously elaborate makeover.

We took our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley to a studio in Kyoto’s Gion neighborhood to have a maiko-over and be transformed in an amazing process that yielded completely stunning results. Ashley was able to choose her own kimono and obi sash, and as part of the deal she was treated to a professional photography session and the opportunity to take a stroll around the streets of Gion in full maiko garb!

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An architect figured out a brilliant way to reuse thousands of empty beer bottles

Next time you’re about to dump beer bottles in the recycling bin, consider that they could be used to make a house instead.

Armed with $11,000 and 8,500 discarded beer bottles, Chinese architect Li Rongjun spent over four months using bottles to build the second floor of his two-story house in Chongqing, China, according to Chinese media.

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Facial recognition website decides how masculine or feminine you are, suggests famous look-alikes

Ever wanted to know who your celebrity look-alike would be? Wonder no more – there’s a website that will tell you! By uploading a selfie, facial recognition technology will guess your age, gender, and celebrity doppelganger.

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