Japanese people do not need deodorants that much – that’s why finding a deodorant while in Japan can be a bit of a struggle for an uninformed foreigner.
But why are the Japanese people less likely to develop bad odors? The answer is scientific, so put your thinking caps on!
Most Japanese people, along with other Northeast Asian nationalities possess the ABCC11 gene which essentially makes them have fewer apocrine sweat glands so their bodies are less prone to developing secretions that bacterias thrive in. This gene is also linked to having dry earwax. Youtuber Rachel uploaded this video that explains this in detail:
Recently, stores that sell deodorants have begun to increase in number, but there is a reason to think deodorants are sold not for its deodorizing power, but for its appealing scents.
Staying in Japan won’t alter you genes, and Japan’s summer is real hot, so you’re still gonna need your deo-stick whether you like it or not. Here are some tips in dealing with this situation:
This applies to foreigners who are about to visit Japan. To save you from any worry, it’s best to bring a deo supply that would be enough for the length of stay.
As stated above, a number of stores now sell deodorising products, but recognizing whether an item is a deodorant or not may require basic Japanese reading skills. Just recall this string of characters for starters: デオドラント (“deodoranto”) – the Japanese word for deodorant (well, yeah that sounds convenient). Recommendations: try finding one in any Matsumoto Kiyoshi, Don Quixote or large stores like AEON. COSTCO is sure to have deodorants, but it requires membership cards.
Online shopping in Japan is efficient so purchasing deodorants online is a very good option, especially if you worry about language barriers. Japan’s Amazon is easy, can be operated in English, and has a wide selection of deodorants from the West. You also wouldn’t need any credit cards in purchasing since prepaid gift cards are sold in every kombini nationwide.