Seijin–Shiki: The Japanese Coming Of Age Day

  • In every culture, there is a day in which young boys and girls become adults. Coming of age days are very important in a societal sense. For the Japanese this day is called “Seijin-Shiki”. The coming of age is held for many college students who are thriving to be recognized as adults by their family and peers.

    When a person turns 20, he or she now has legally become an adult in Japanese society (They can legally drink, smoke, go to hostess bars, gamble, drive and vote). It is celebrated on the second Monday of every January. Seijin-Shiki honors everyone who’s turned 20 years old over the past year. They celebrate this to help young people realize that they now have became full-fledged adults.


    To celebrate their coming of age it’s customary for the new adults to dress properly for their “coming of age” ceremony. The men wear either suits and ties or a traditional Japanese wear. The women wear gorgeous and extremely expensive kimonos(rentals alone can cost up to 1,000,000). Celebrations take place in every city ward around Japan. Anyone can attend, the ceremony starts at 11:30AM, but the day starts much earlier for the young adults who spend hours in preparation.


    The young adults usually meet up with their friends after the ceremony at a location where dozens of photographers take pictures. In some areas performances are held, such as live taiko drum performances. Later in the afternoon, people continue to celebrate, but in different ways. Some go shopping, others head home with friends and family to have fun and drinks together.

    Seijin-Shiki is a really big deal for the people of Japan. The youths are welcomed into the world of adulthood with lavish celebrations and coming of age ceremonies held at offices, universities and even households.