Kiss in Japan – How is it seen? Kissing in public?

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Many know that Japanese culture disapproves of kissing in public, even on a peck. But is it true that nowadays Japanese people don't kiss in public? How do they face it? In this article, we will address different subjects and curiosities about the Kiss in Japan.

We can notice that even in anime and dramas a kiss can end up being rare. Several successful romantic dramas sometimes do not feature any kisses. How will the Japanese face the kiss? A survey carried out by SK Planet Japan with 400 men and women between 20 and 30 years old reveals interesting things about the Kiss, breaking this subject that used to be a taboo.

About 60% of respondents kissed only 5 people. 90% of women said that not all of their kisses led to a date. That is, many women confirmed that they are willing to kiss for no reason, just because they want to. That is, nowadays the casual kiss has become common in Japan, it is no longer the promise it used to be.

Kiss in Japan - how is it seen? Kissing in public?

The kissing culture in Japan

Although many young people today are not ashamed to kiss, or even to kiss strangers. It turns out to be difficult to find a situation of "kiss" when your shy nature destroys the courage to approach the girls. Some resort to group dates to get closer and find a date. During school life, many Japanese start a relationship, but sometimes they don't even have the courage to kiss.

Some say that kissing in Japan only happens when both parties want sex, a big stereotype, a big lie. It's true that many prefer to do it in the comfort of their own home, and some couples may not end up kissing at all moment, like leaving for work and arriving home. It's a fact that Japanese people are ashamed, and don't like to show affection in public.

Kiss in Japan - how is it seen? Kissing in public?

Another thing that gets in the way of kissing in public is the fact that the law in Japan prohibits relationships between students under the age of 18 without the country's conscience. Despite Japan being an open country and not getting involved in the lives of others, many end up feeling shocked or uncomfortable when they see people kissing in public.

  • There are legends that say that the kiss was forbidden by Tokugawa due to the tuberculosis epidemic that haunted Japan at the time;
  • Despite Japan's conservative culture, some children and teenagers have used the kiss on the cheek as a greeting;

Japanese women seem to like being kissed on the neck.

The kiss that involves the exchange of saliva and tongue was called kuchizui (口吸い) which can be literally translated as mouth-sucking. When the West influenced Japan in the Meiji era, the common kiss was called seppun (接吻) which can literally be translated as touching lips. Until, with time, the most common term came from the English kiss (kisu – キス).

  • キスして – kisu shite – Verb to kiss
  • チュー / チュウ- chuu – Kissing onomatopoeia
  • Kissu (キッス) can also be understood as a kiss. (Or name of the band Kiss);

Kissing in public in Japan?

Although it seems taboo, and is rare, it is not unusual to find people kissing, holding hands or hugging each other in public in large urban areas of Japan. This is because many young people today are being influenced by the Western media and are jumping on the bandwagon. In fact, interviews reveal that Japanese women are more comfortable kissing in public when it's with a foreigner.

Perhaps many do not kiss in public because of men's lack of initiative. Some say they would not be ashamed if they are in places with a romantic mood. Surveys reveal that about 20% of young people between 17 and 29 kiss in public. Cities like Osaka and Tokyo this rises to 32%. See our guide to when to kiss in Japan by clicking here. 

Kiss in Japan - how is it seen? Kissing in public?

Just because Japanese people don't kiss or show affection in public doesn't mean they aren't affectionate, they just show it differently. The fact is that the Japanese are people just like anywhere else. and all people are different and with different preferences. I myself am Brazilian, I do not go out kissing anyone who is not considered my girlfriend. But I also wouldn't be shy about kissing in public, even in Japan.

Kissing strangers in public?

Finally, I'm going to leave some videos that show foreigners trying to kiss unknown Japanese girls on the streets. I don't really like this kind of joke, but who am I to criticize.

But it's interesting to see the reactions and opinions, see how they refuse, or even some who accept and kiss without any shame. Don't think it's easy for them to accept because these videos usually only show success.

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