If you don’t live in Hokkaido, Japanese summers are hot and humid! A good way to stay cool, other than staying in a confined room where air-conditioned air is piped out from a room cooler, is to use a uchiwa. It only takes just a little muscle to keep a constant breeze and recently there are highly functional ones that will help send cool air your way!

Stainless Steel type, put it in the Freezer!

We found this one at the on-line shopping site ‘@mall’. Don’t worry, although it is stainless steel, with specialized technology it is only 0.2mm thick, and only 70 grams, so that it is easy to fan yourself with it. It can also add a fragrance to your breeze as the cap at the tip of the handle can be filled with your favorite aromatic oil!

Dipping the fan in water and freezing it for about 20 to 30 mins allows for the melting water droplets to evaporate into a great breeze rivaling the air conditioner! With the fragrance of the oil it is not simply a uchiwa, but a self-contained high-tech cooling apparatus!

Water Uchiwa

On a more traditional level, Ieda Paper Works, washi producers in Gifu Prefecture, produce a uchiwa called Mizu Uchiwa, or water Uchiwa, which has nothing to do with dipping it in water. They use a very fine paper called ‘ganpi’ paper which is varnished in an exclusive lacquer giving it the cool shine of water. Water uchiwa are a tradition of the Nagaragawa area in Gifu. All we have to do is fan ourselves with them, but just looking at their beauty has a cooling effect.

i-phone Uchiwa!(?)

Finally, here is a fun application on your i-phone, which may take quite a bit of imagination to cool you off! This unique application which is quite popular is called ‘nouryou’ (cooling) uchiwa, where a uchiwa appears on the screen and if you fan yourself with your i-phone… well you are bound to get a bit of a breeze, however miniscule. Rather than be irritated with the heat, at least you can gain some comfort in the idea of a cool breeze from your i-phone!LOL

Summer still has a way to go! Put the uchiwa to use and you may be able to help save on your electrical bill, which is very important in this day and age!

Stainless type Uchiwa freeze it and feel the cool breeze!

Water Uchiwa with beautiful nature motifs.

Water Uchiwa with flower patterns go well with yukata.

These Water Uchiwa have masculine patterns for men to look cool!

These bright colored Water Uchiwa draw your attention with their beauty!

Here are the i-phone uchiwa, inviting you to feel the coolness!