cute

8 photos of Hana-chan chillaxing will make you as happy as a hedgehog on spa day

We all need pampering now and then. Whether it’s a good massage or a mani-pedi at the nail salon, a little me-time goes a long way towards helping you smile and unwind after a long week at work.

If it’s been a while since you last spoilt yourself with a relaxing spa visit, these photos are sure to remind you of what you’re missing. Meet Hana-chan the hedgehog, a girl who enjoys a regular grooming ritual so relaxing it makes her fall asleep with a satisfied smile. This is the most chillaxed animal you’ll see all day!

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Cats and snow: The quickest way to make a cuteness train

On the Internet, there is little that people can agree on. From politics to the current state of anime, commenters can be relied on to pull out the metaphorical daggers over the sight of a dissenting opinion. That is with one magnificent exception: Cats! Cute and cuddly, it’s almost impossible to find something wrong with cats.

Okay, that’s not entirely true, but you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone kvetching about this indecisive kitty, except its slave…sorry, owner!

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Think Japanese news is boring? Try it with some cats!

Sometimes the news can get a little heavy-handed. Topics like terrorism or tax hikes can raise blood pressure, cause grumbling about the horrible state of the world, and eventually get to the point where it’s just so boring that you shut it off.

But one news show has figured out a way to keep viewers interested, even during the difficult parts: just have a cute cat walk around the news desk and be generally adorable while everyone is talking about serious subjects.

We’re not kitten you, it’s fur-real.

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Disney’s Baymax appears in curry, hot pots, and more, thanks to cheesy food-based pun【Photos】

You might not guess it, given the country’s well-known acceptance of stoicism as an admirable virtue, but Japan absolutely loves puns. In fact, the characteristics of the Japanese language, such as multiple potential pronunciations for the same kanji character, make it a veritable pun-producing machine.

For example, the character for “rice,” 米, is usually read as kome. When it’s combined with other characters, though, it’s read as mai or bei, with the latter being pronounced like the English word “bay.”

Of course, that also means bei is pronounced like the first half of Baymax, the loveable caretaker/combat robot from Disney’s Big Hero 6. And now that Japanese fans of the film have figured out how to put a little rice into Baymax, they’re also coming up with ways to put a little Baymax into their meals by making Baymax curry rice, rice balls, and nabe hot pots.

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Woman’s best friend: Possibly the sweetest photos of a grandma and her cat you will ever see

For over a decade, Japanese photographer Miyoko Ihara has been capturing the amazing bond that has developed between her grandmother, Misao, and Fukumaru – the white, odd-eyed cat her grandmother found as a stray kitten. The two have remained nearly inseparable, and the bond they share shows in the beautiful photos that Ihara takes.

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Friends too busy to go to the Pokémon Cafe? No problem! Pikachu himself will sit with you

If you’re a Pokémon fan who’s feeling blue over missing your chance to eat at the limited-time restaurants based on the series that previously appeared in Yokohama and Tokyo’s Roppongi neighborhood, cheer up. Until the end of February, the Pokémon Cafe is back again, this time in the trendy part of Tokyo called Shibuya, and looks to be cuter than ever.

Unfortunately, when you combine food and cuteness in one of the busiest cities on earth, you also get long lines. Helping to make the wait worth it, though, is the possibility of having a meal while sharing your table with a very special dining companion, Pikachu.

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Kitties, doggies, bunnies, and deer – even more stuff balanced on Japan’s pets!

Earlier in the week, we reported that the phenomenon of putting weird stuff on your pet and taking a photo of it was having a revival on Twitter in Japan. Today, we’re delighted to bring you even more pictures of a range of fuzzy animals with stuff precariously balanced on them!

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New batch of socks with collars adds sailor suit style for your feet, plus lace and button-downs

A few months ago, we took a look at a collection of truly unique socks that took their styling cues from shirts by providing cute and quirky collars for your ankles. The offbeat idea seems to have found a market, as manufacturer Erimaki Sox is back again with three new designs that add extra femininity, button-down class, and even some sailor suit-style playfulness.

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“Can you help meow-t here?” Twitter user discovers why his bread clock was constantly wrong

Even in the era of having the sum of human knowledge to date in your pocket, there’s something to be said about using a sweet novelty clock. If you’re in Japan, you have lots of options. There’s Zelda clocks, beautiful-women clocks, clocks that come for free in magazines. But that’s just scraping the surface, because apparently there’s such a thing as bread clocks too.

One Twitter user recently posted that he’d been having problems with his bread clock constantly telling the wrong time – until he found out the reason why. And no, it’s not because the clock is a piece of bread – the real reason is far more adorable than that.

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Ninja-cats are hiding in homes around the world and we have 20 photos to prove it

When lying in bed at night, have you ever heard a weird noise — a creaking floorboard or the rustling of a piece of paper? Has food ever mysteriously disappeared? While it very well could have been a ghost, it could have just as easily been a ninja-cat hiding in the nooks and crannies of your home!

Some ninja-cats are more skilled than others, living in apartments and stealing food completely undetected by the owners. Others, however, are not so stealthy and occasionally get caught on camera. Observe!

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Japanese netizens can’t stop balancing stuff on their pets, but this birdy and kitty aren’t amused

If you’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time on the internet over the past few years (haha, who are we kidding, of course you have), then you’ll probably be familiar with the trend of balancing stuff on your pets. It’s practically an old meme now, but for some reason it seems to be having a revival on Twitter in Japan. Two doting pet owners tweeted some choice snaps of their fuzzy buddies practically buried under a mountain of… stuff, and it’s totally squee-worthy! Join us after the jump for some very unamused but amusing pets!

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Hamsters in sleeves are all the rage in Japan this winter 【Photos】

Japanese homes are notorious for being poorly insulated, in the wintertime often leaving you feeling just as cold indoors as you do outside.

Despite having permanent fur coats (lucky them!) our pets can still feel the chill and will do what they can to stay cozy. We’ve already shown you cats and space heaters, and dogs in kotatsu, but now we bring you some adorable hamsters in sleeves.

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The cat hairband, for when cat ears just aren’t enough

Earlier this month, the Internet was all abuzz over some awesome cat ear headphones. As creative as they may be, though, they’re really more robotic than feline in appearance, what with their glowing LED accents and external speakers.

If you’re more concerned with fashion than music, though, and you feel like you could do without all the cybernetic-style accouterments, one Japanese designer has put together an alternative form of cat-shaped headgear. Just to reiterate, that’s “cat-shaped,” not “cat ear-shaped,” since this hairband gives the illusion of an adorable kitten perched atop your head.

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Team Japan’s goalkeeper is awfully good at catching cats

Soccer (or for those of you across the pond, football) is one of those sports you either love or hate. Some find the game thrilling, others can’t understand how a 1-0 victory is anything but an absolute bore. But even if you aren’t one of those people who are able to fully appreciate “the beautiful game,” we have a feeling you’re going to love the following set of photos featuring cute kitties instead of soccer balls.

Because who could resist the sight of Team Japan’s keeper, Eiji Kawashima, looking like he’s trying to wrangle a bunch of cats?

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Yokohama’s adorable hedgehog dumplings are packed with spikey cuteness and creamy custard

Located about a half hour south of downtown Tokyo, the city of Yokohama has a couple of big tourist draws, like its gigantic Ferris wheel and bayside parks with panoramic views. If you’re hungry, though, you’ll want to head to Yokohama’s Chinatown, which is one of the biggest in Japan and is made up almost entirely of places to eat.

As a matter of fact, you don’t even have to grab a seat in a restaurant to fill your stomach, since the streets are lined with stalls selling all manner of munchies. Some of these you might see elsewhere in Japan, like the steamed pork buns that are also convenience store mainstays. But there’s at least one treat you can’t find anywhere but Yokohama’s Chinatown, and that’s these adorable sweet dumplings shaped like tiny hedgehogs.

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Japanese food blogger makes fried chicken poodles: “They’re too cute to eat!”

Whether our parents like it or not, food is an art form. Playing with food is awesome, and we’ve seen some spectacular examples of shaved-ice masterpieces, printed designs onto food, or corgi omelets.

But if you’ve been looking for a quick, easy artistic recipe you can do at home, look no further. Get ready to make the cutest little appetizers you’ve ever seen: fried poodles.

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Meet the girl who’s wrapped up in dreams of sushi

If you’ve been captivated by a bizarre breed of sushi cats or fallen in love with a cup-clinging girl called Fuchiko, chances are you’ll soon be swooning over a young lady who likes to hang out inside pieces of sushi.

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Cute anime railway girls keep passengers company on Tokyo Skytree train

Japan is no stranger to weird and wonderful product collaborations between companies. We’ve seen Mos burger x Mister Donut creations, a Hello Kitty invasion of The Very Hungry Caterpillar books and even Sailor Moon girls teeing up with sanitary pads.

So when the ten-year anniversary of the Tetsudou Musume (Railway Girls) anime rolled around this year, their new collaboration could have taken them anywhere. Thankfully, the girls have gone the more conventional route – by tying up with an actual train and riding together with you in 2-D form inside the carriages.

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Dress like your Barbie in a cute, limited edition retro lingerie/bikini set

Are you a Barbie girl in a Barbie world? If your answer is yes, you’ve probably been dreaming of this day your whole life. Finally, you can look like your Barbie doll!

We’re not talking about getting thousands of dollars worth of cosmetic surgery to look like Real Barbie or wearing Barbie heads in your shoes. But we are talking about wearing undergarments that match those of your Barbie doll. You’ll be like twins!

The Japanese lingerie and apparel shopping website Peach John, has a lingerie line called Yummy Mart. Yummy Mart is teaming up with Barbie and LAFORET, a lingerie shop in Harajuku, to bring you a limited edition collection of Barbies and underwear to match!

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The surprisingly easy art of getting your hamster to “cosplay,” tonnes of cute guaranteed!

There are people in this world who like cosplay, and there are people who like cute little animals. Put them together and you’d get possibly the only kind of cosplay that has the potential to out-cute toddlers in tiny geeky costumescosplaying pets!

Sadly, not all pets like being put into costumes, but most of the pets I’ve seen have a common interest in putting their curious little heads into gaps and holes. One Japanese pet owner combines the two elements in a stroke of genius, and came up with the most brilliant hamster “cosplay” we’ve ever seen. Check out the geeky little pal after the break!

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