Today, 14 March, is White Day, and if you've heard the day referred to among some Japanese friends, but have not experienced it for yourself, you might be a bit confused, as I was.
What many people don't know is that Valentine's Day is celebrated quite differently there than in other parts of the world. Typically for those familiar with Western cultures, on 14 Feb, lovers, partners, sweethearts, and friends will exchange gifts and celebrate together.
In Japan however, only the women prepare gifts for men on 14 Feb. This usually takes the form of chocolates. Giri-choco is presented to platonic friends, colleagues etc, whereas Honmei-choco is reserved specially for lovers, spouses, sweethearts. Many women will actually take a hand in making Honmei-choco by hand and presenting these as a special gift to represent their commitment and love.
The men on the other hand, wait until White Day, to present their loves with a token of affection. And that's also typically the occasion when a lot of people will make a gift of luxury skincare (especially "whitening" coffrets to tie in with the "white" theme).
Shiseido, the grandest and most traditional of the Japanese skincare houses, tends to be a popular source of gifts for ladies of all ages. Unblemished, fair skin is the hallmark of youth and beauty here, so a luxurious White Day skincare coffret containing a spot-targeting product like the White Lucent Micro Targeting Spot Corrector tends to go down well.
P.S. Customers in Singapore can get an exclusive White Day Shiseido x Swarovski crystal accessory as a gift (while stocks last) when purchasing White Lucent MicroTargeting Spot Corrector or a 50ml bottle of Ultimune!
It may be the end of 14 March in Asia even as I post this, but I'd still like to wish everyone a happy White Day. (I mean - the Japanese know where it's at; I'll exchange chocolates for luxury skincare any day!)