Vibrators get Japan Buzzing

Kat Kahn
Japan's streets are buzzing — with the sound of vibrators.

According to Shukan Post, Japan has embraced adult goods, foregoing the "sleazy" image sex toys once carried, with almost every young woman seen on the streets of Japan now carrying a vibrator in her handbag.

Norie Oda, owner of adult goods shop Happy Woman, says that previously, "nearly all our customers used to ask us to disguise the labeling on our packages so they looked like they were cosmetics or something, but now we get much fewer of those type of requests. I suppose people just don't see them as such a big thing anymore."

Ikumi Wakabayashi, an adult entertainment journalist, called the shift the "My Vibrator" phenomenon.

"Women's sexual awareness has progressed. More women now want to pursue sexual pleasure by themselves, as well as with guys. Young women have no problems with using adult goods," Wakabayashi said.

Eiko Yamada, owner of adult goods shop Shesta, added that there's "more good vibrations around than a Beach Boys album," with the number of adult aid users skyrocketing, particularly among women in their late 20s and early 30s.

"Our sales are almost 200 percent more than what they were last year," Yamada said.

Discount store chains and online sales have been the catalyst for the rapid change, Sanae Takahashi, CEO of Merci, an adult entertainment business, said.

"Over the past few years, discount store chains like Don Quijote have started selling sex aids over the counter, and online sales are doing well, too," Takahashi said. "There has been a really rapid increase in the number of our single women customers and those who come to the store as a couple."