Have you ever seen an anime character wearing a strip of cloth or gauze on their chest and abdomen looking like a mummy. The name of this accessory is sarashi (さらし), which consists of a thick cotton cloth that historically was used under a kimono in order to tune the body and hide the fat from Japanese women.
Sarashi has also been used after the birth of children and also as protective clothing by men. Over time, the cloth gained use in battles and appears constantly in anime and manga as a symbol of a warrior. Warrior women also use this cloth to prevent their melons from swinging during a fight (it would serve as a distraction).
Interestingly the name sarashi in hiragana (晒し) means to expose oneself (to the sun, public, danger ...) and in some cases even public humiliation. The ideogram also involves bleaching and usually composes words like bleaching powder and the like. This piece was probably named after the white cotton cloth called sarashimomen (晒木綿).
Who uses sarashi?
Today's women usually wear a sarashi as a sports bra, and when they do some crossdresser (dress up as a man) or really want to prevent their breasts from standing out, either because of men or to avoid envy of women. Since standing out and differentiating in Japan in certain areas can create discomfort.
The Japanese offenders like bosozoku, yakuza and yankii they also usually wear a sarashi under their blouse or shirt to look more rebellious and strong. In fact, sarashi can serve several purposes and can be used by both men, women, children or the elderly.
Wearing sarashi and exposing yourself when it comes to battles causes an appearance of strength and toughness. It also offers a function to protect injuries and stabs in fights. This cotton cloth can symbolize strength and virility. Men can also use sarashi to hide their bellies.
Some guides say that to use sarashi you must cut it in the way that suits your body. It should be rolled under the armpits without making wrinkles.
Anime characters using sarashi
Several characters use this accessory, we will list some below:
- Bleach - Several characters;
- Urusei Yatsura - Ryuunosuke;
- Gurren-Lagann - Kamina;
- Samurai X - Sanosuke Sagara;
- FMAB - Ling Yao;
- fairy tail - Erza Scarlet
- Love Hina - Motoko and Tsuruko Aoyama;
- Tenjho Tenge - Aya Natsume;
- Beelzebub - Aoi Kunieda;
- Nobunaga the fool - Joana Darc (hiding her breasts);
- Vocaloids - Rin and Len Kagamine;
- Touhou - Reimu;
Did you already know or notice this cloth in the anime characters? What did you think of this article? If you liked it share with friends and read also: