Japan in summer is HOT. The humidity being almost 100%, the temperature in its 30s or 40s (degrees Celcius) and the city heaving with heat, it can feel completely unbearable at times.
I was inspired about the silly, quirky, ingenious Japanese gadgets and inventions so I wrote an article for Matcha, the Japanese online trave magazine, about how to stay cool in Japan during summer.
Click here to read the full article at https://matcha-jp.com/en/4707.
Most of the items you can find anywhere, in konbinis, supermarkets, pharmacies – or my personal favorite, Don Quijote, a massive, nationwide discount store.
Cooling sprays and lotions
Personally I love how handy the cooling aerosol sprays are: they are light weight so you can carry them around easily and they provide instant cooling.
The cooling lotions are amazing after a day in the sun when your skin is just burning with the heat: nothing like a nice shower and slapping some of this stuff on to cool you down!
They sell undershirts that are made of breathing, fast drying materials and which do a great job absorbing all the sweat your body will be producing while battling outdoors. You might not believe it, but they make a huge difference on a hot day: instead of sweating through your clothes, these materials help keep the perspiration on a somewhat tolerable level and best of all, you don’t sweat through your “real” clothes.
Those cute little traditional Japanese fans are pretty alright, but I am talking about the battery operated ones: and now there is a new version which blows water mist on simultaneously. I can imagine how this could be a great invention on a dry hot day, which is exactly why I have not invested my yens yet into purchasing a water mist fan.
They work! Sure they look ridiculous, but they block the UV rays AND staying in that moderate shade truly is a great way of avoiding the dangerous – and scorching – sun.
Cooling headbands and scarves
This was a new discovery for me at Don Quijote, one which I must try ASAP: basically a strip of cloth which has a gel “filling” inside. When you soak it in water the gel turns cold for hours – they claim it could even keep you cool for a day.
Sweat absorbing accessories
This is something I came across at Daiso, a 100 JPY shop, that suits especially the office worker, oh yes salaryman, including you! These pads absorb sweat and are attached on the inside of your shirt. They stick to fabrics with a tape and help fight off those disgusting underarm stains.
So yes, the summer in Japan can be an ordeal. But do not crank up the AC and run away from the great outdoors – there are ways to stay cool outside and enjoy the summer. It is definitely worth it.