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For the most part, Japan takes personal hygiene pretty seriously. Combing your hair, putting on makeup, and getting dressed in the proper attire are all seen as essential parts of getting ready to go out in public, and dress codes are a much bigger deal than in some countries.

The standard grooming routine runs into one pretty big problem in the summer, though. Since most people in Japan take a bath at night before going to bed, by the time they arrive at work or school the next day, several hours have passed, during which sweat, oil, and odors can build up on the body. To combat this, there’s a wide variety of fragrances and deodorants available in drug stores, with one brand in particular that’s being described as “the ideal scent for women.”

Both Internet portal Rakuten and women’s fashion magazine CanCam recently carried out surveys to help pin down “the most pleasing smell.” Rakuten’s poll of 1,200 users revealed that their favorite scent was “soap or shampoo,” and the 100 men CanCam’s reporters spoke with confirmed that “soap” was the scent they were happiest with coming from a woman.

This puts women in a bit of a bind, though. There are plenty of perfumes that allow them to add a spritz of floral or fruity scent, but how do you make yourself smell like soap without taking a shower, something most women, by virtue of bathing at night, will have done 10 hours or so before the start of their date?

Should you just leave a handful of suds tucked inside your blouse?

Actually, there’s an easy way to leave yourself soapy and refreshed. Many body odor-conscious people in Japan use deodorant sheets, which are sort of like baby wipes for adults.

Beauty product manufacturer Kao’s Biore Sara Sara Powder Sheet line comes in a variety of aromas, including rose, citrus, and berry. The one that’s got Internet users in Japan talking, though, is the soap-scented variety.

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Sold in both hard and soft packs, the soap Sara Sara has been earning a reputation as providing an ideally attractive scent for a woman. As a matter of fact, they smell so enticingly feminine that some men are apparently happy with the smell even in the absence of an actual girl, as shown by these recent tweets:

“Someone at the office was talking about them, so I bought a pack. It’s true, they smell shockingly like a pretty girl.”
“Gonna go pick up a pack for smelling right now!”

But while the smell is apparently good enough to stand completely on its own, that doesn’t necessarily mean the soap Sara Sara sheets will improve anything, as one male experimenter found out.

“I bought some and tried them out, but after I wiped myself off, the girlish scent coming from my body freaked me out.”

Maybe there’s no substitute for actual female companionship after all…

Sources: So-net, Hachima Kiko
Top image: Kao
Insert images: Kao