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Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan

Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan

You have a variety of options when it comes to shopping for sanitary napkins and other menstrual hygiene products in Japan. Known as seiri shoriyou hin in Japanese (生理処理用品 /しりしょりようひん), you’ll find napkins, cloth napkins, tampons, and menstrual cups in Japan.

Brands To Know

When it comes to disposable hygiene products in Japan, nearly every product is made by Uni Charm or Kao.

Uni Charm in particular is a leading manufacturer of paper products like adult and baby diapers, nursing pads, face masks, tissues, and toilet paper.

Sanitary Napkins – Seiri You Napukin (生理用ナプキン/せいり よう なぷきん)

When it comes to buying sanitary napkins in Japan, the types and brands available can be overwhelming.

You’ll find winged/hane tsuki (羽付き/はね つき)  napkins as well as  wingless/hane nashi (羽なし/はねなし) varieties.

Napkins are sold by length, which can range from 21 cm to 40 cm. Longer length napkins are typically for night time wear.

You can easily identify nighttime products by its dark colored packaging with moons and stars on them.

  • Nighttime – yoru you (夜用/よる よう)
  • Daytime – hiru you (昼用ひる よう)

 

Choujukusui means “to be deep asleep” and these napkins promise to help you sleep comfortably at night and guard against leaks.

Choujukusui Nighttime Napkins For Extra Heavy Flow Available on Amazon Japan – 345 yen

Center In Napkins are for heavy days and are 24 cm long —  yet, they fit nicely in your pouch or wallet.

Center In Heavy Flow Compact Napkins – Available on Amazon Japan – 546 yen

 

True to its name, Laurier Slim Guard Napkins are slim yet are twice as absorbent as regular flow napkins. Designed for extended use, these can be worn for up to 18 hours. They’re also highly rated on Cosme.net, Japan’s leading beauty and skincare site. 

Laurier Slim Guard Napkins Extended Wear Extra Heavy Flow – Available on Amazon Japan – 347 yen

***Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan***

Pantyliners – Panti Raina- (パンティライナー/ぱんてぃ らいなー)

The race to create the slimmest panty liner is a battle resulting in discreet and absorbent products that cater to a variety of lifestyles. Although most pantyliners come in cute, colorful packaging, they fit neatly into your purse pocket or cosmetics pouch.

Be on the lookout for these terms:

  • Slim – surimu (スリム/すりむ)or usui (薄い/うすい)
  • Super slim – kyoku usu (極薄/きょく うす)

There’s nothing luxurious about the menstrual cycle but you can add a touch of elegance to your day with these “Elegant Rose” rose scented Kiyora Premium Pantyliners.

Kiyora Premium Pantyliners – Available on Amazon Japan – 248 yen

Saralie Pantyliners come in a variety of scents but its floral berry is a top seller. The cute wrapper matches perfectly  with the scent as well.

Saralie Floral Berry Pantryliners – Available on Amazon Japan – 243 yen

If you have sensitive skin and prefer unscented products, these Hadaomoi pantyliners are for you. Made from cotton with an additional layer on top to prevent chafing and irritability.

Hadaomoi Cotton Pantyliers – Available on Amazon Japan – 586 yen

***Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan***

Tampons – Tanpon (タンポン/たんぼん)

Tampons in Japan are made by Uni Charm under its Sofy brand (link in English). As a result, there are few options on the Japanese market.  

 

Sofy Regular Absorbency are a great choice for when you’re on the go. Slim and compact, these are highly absorbent. The easy-to-use applicator makes insertion a breeze.

Sofy Compact Tampons (Regular Absorbency) – Available on Amazon Japan – 523 yen

 

For light days, try these light absorbency tampons. The applicator is just as cute as the packaging — Look carefully for the heart!

Sofy Tampons (Light Absorbency) – Available on Amazon Japan – 524 yen

Stay dry and protected all day or night with super absorbency tampons.

Sofy Tampons (Super Absorbency) – Available on Amazon Japan – 998 yen

***Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan***

Menstrual Cups – Gekkei Kappu (月経カップ/げっけい かっぷ/)

Photo Credit: jip_26

Popular in the US, UK, Canada and other English speaking countries, menstrual cups are bell-like inserts made from medical grade silicone or natural rubber. They function similar to a tampon but menstrual cups are reusable, making them an eco friendly choice. Menstrual cups are not commonly found in Japanese drugstores, so if you want buy one, you’ll have better luck purchasing online.

What makes the Me Lua stand out from other menstrual cups is that has with a loop at the end, allowing for easier removal.

Me Luna M Cup – Available on Amazon Japan – 3,240 yen

The Rose Cup is the first menstrual cup made in Japan, debuting in July 2017. Unlike other cups, comes with a storage case, rather than a pouch.

Rose Cup – Available on Amazon Japan – 5,940 yen

Made in the USA from soft and flexible medical grade silicone, the Sckoon Cup is FDA approved. The Sckoon Cup is smaller than other menstrual cups, yet it holds a higher capacity.

Sckoon Cup – Available on Amazon Japan – 4,830 yen

***Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan***

Cloth Napkins – Nuno Napukin (布ナプキン/ぬの なぷきん)

Photo Credit: Wikipedia Commons

Another eco friendly choice to consider when shopping for menstrual hygiene products are cloth napkins. As with menstrual cups, they are not commonly sold in drugstores, supermarkets, and convenience stores.

If you’re curious about cloth napkins but don’t know where to start, pick up this starter pack made from organic cotton. It contains regular napkins, pantyliners, and cloth napkins for nighttime use.

Sweet Cotton Cloth Napkin Starter Pack – Available on Amazon Japan – 3,703 yen 

You can also find cloth napkins that function as pantyliners. This colorful set by Sweet Cotton is made from organic cotton.

Sweet Cotton Set of 5 Cloth Pantyliners – Available on Amazon Japan – 864 yen

These napkins by Aenuance are the top selling cloth napkins on Amazon Japan. These  organic cotton napkins are thin, lightweight and come in a variety of colors and patterns.

Aenuance Set of 5 Cloth Napkins – Available on Amazon Japan – 1,730 yen

Describing Your Flow

While you may be familiar with the term  “flow,”  Japanese products rely on type of day during your cycle.

  • Light – karui hi (軽い日/かるい ひ)
  • Regular – futsuu no hi (普通の日/ふつう の ひ)
  • Heavy – ooi hi (多い日/おおい ひ)
  • Extra heavy flow – toku ni ooi hi (特に多い日/とくに おおい ひ)

***Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan***

Disposing of Menstrual Hygiene Products

In public restrooms, there is often a separate trash can for sanitary products. If not, dispose of your soiled items in after wrapping them in the designated wrapper or tissue.

At home, sanitary napkins are burnable waste. Take a quick visit to the 100 yen shop and you can get a very kawaii (cute) waste basket (汚物入れ/おぶつ いれ/obutsu ire) and dark colored trash bags to discreetly dispose of them.

Where to Buy Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan

Aside from menstrual cups and cloth napkins, you will find a wide selection of find sanitary napkins, panty liners, and tampons at:

  • Drug stores
  • Home centers
  • Supermarkets
  • Convenience stores
  • Public restrooms

Convenience stores and public restrooms often have a limited stock so it’s best not to rely on them as your to-go place to purchase menstrual hygiene products.

It’s best to buy menstrual cups and cloth napkins online. Buying online is a great way to buy in bulk so you’ll always have stock on hand.

Be sure to check out our other highly rated articles on shopping in Japan:

Guide to Baby Diapers in Japan; Pampers, Merries, Moony, GOO.N, Genki!

The Best Time For Shopping in Japan; Tips and Tricks For Saving Yen

The Japan Expat Shopping List; What do you bring back?

Guide to Point Cards in Japan; How to Earn and Redeem Points

Also, visit our Medical Guide:

Tokyo English Speaking OBGYNs

Tokyo English Speaking Doctors

English Speaking Tokyo Dermatologists

Tokyo English Speaking Ophthalmologists – Great Eye Doctors

Tokyo English Speaking Dentists

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Buying Menstrual Hygiene Products in Japan

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Written by: Teni Wada. American by birth, Japanese by choice, and traveler at heart. Tokyo-based content creator who enjoys browsing combini shelves for limited edition drinks and snacks. Discover her travel adventures and life as a first-time mom on her lifestyle blog babykaiju.com and Instagram @wadateni.

 

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2 comments

  1. I just wanted to give you a huge thumbs up for mentioning menstrual cups and cloth pads – which I’ve been a user of for many years. It’s not your “mainstream” period item so didn’t expect to find it here. Thanks for spreading the word on those options 😉

    • Thanks Caroline. I love that we`ll never have to buy other hygiene product after purchasing the cup. 😉 -Sandra

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