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Valentine's Day

Valentine’s traditions in Japan

In Japan, the feast of Valentine’s Day is very recent since it was born in the second half of the 20th century. In fact it takes place in two stages: February 14 (Valentine’s Day) and March 14 (white day).

On February 14, women offer chocolates to men. But there are two types of chocolate, giri-choco (translated as courtesy chocolate) and honmei-choco (translated as destiny chocolate).
The giri-choco is a chocolate generally bought in stores and is offered to men whom they meet regularly (like work colleagues, neighbors …). Honmei-choco is for men who are very important to them. They can be bought in stores but they are very good quality or they can be made at home. In all cases, the honmei-choco will be offered in a heart-shaped box.

And what do men do in all of this? Well, they patiently wait for March 14 to offer a gift to the woman who gave them chocolate on February 14. If it is a giri-choco, the man will offer in return white chocolates (hence the name) and if it is a honmei-choco, the man will rather offer jewelry or lingerie (but still white!).

The white day is a holiday that can be found in South Korea and in certain regions of China. There are now even other types of chocolate which tend to sell more and more: the tomo-choco (translated by friendship chocolate) which is offered mainly between young girls and the jibun-choco (translated by chocolate for yourself) and which is either for singles or for a little narcissistic people.

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