|What's St. Valentine's Day in Japan?: How is it different to the UK?|
|Saturday, 11 February 2012 00:00|
As you’ve already briefly seen in ‘The History of St. Valentine’s Day in Japan’, there are stark differences between Japanese and British customs about celebrating on St. Valentine’s Day. Here’s a few more details about Japan’s unique customs which you might find surprising.
In Japan, women present chocolate gifts to men they fancy, their lovers, friends, colleagues, family members and so on; but in the UK, it’s men and women who present flowers or other gifts including chocolates to whomever they love or fancy. In Japan, women like to hand-make chocolate, cookies or chocolate-flavoured sweets, because they believe that handmade gifts express their love more than ready made items. This idea might be rooted in Japan’s patriarchal traditions, which insist that women should be good at cooking in order to get married; this tradition does mean that, in general, Japanese men still expect women to cook delicious meals for them at home.
Also, while St. Valentine’s Day is celebrated on February 14 all over the world, including the UK, in Japan, technically, it is celebrated on two different days. The first day is February 14, which is called St. Valentine’s Day like it is in the rest of the world. The second day is March 14, which is called White Day. Although nothing is given to women on St. Valentine’s Day, men who received gifts on St. Valentine’s Day then present gifts to women in return one month later, on White Day. The style of gifts given by men is seemingly similar to that of in the UK, but in fact they are normally expected to buy items that are definitely more expensive than chocolates or flowers.
Either way, one thing is the same in both countries: people in both Japan and the UK enjoy celebrating St. Valentine’s Day on February 14 as a precious occasion which allows people to express their love for someone else openly.
Win yourself some Valentine's Choccies with HYPER JAPAN & Tofu Cute
We've teamed up with super-kawaii online store Tofu Cute (you can also catch them at the event!) to run a week-long competition to win a packed of Valentine's chocolates every day! Today's delicious prize is the super sweet set to the right. And it's so simple to win! All you need to do is Like the post linking to this article on our Facebook, or tweet this article, or write us a comment - and we'll pick someone at the end of each day. And if you don't win today, you can try again tomorrow. Click here to check out Tofu Cute's extensive range of fun and fascinating Japanese sweets and snacks, along with Japanese kawaii-style accessories, stationery and gifts.
Saturday 11th February Prize Details: