Transform from Stink Spirit to River Spirit, just like the god in the anime movie!

On 23 April, the Toshio Suzuki and Ghibli Exhibition opened in Kyoto, boasting two new displays showcasing 8,800-plus books read by the anime producer.

These displays weren’t the only new addition to the exhibition that originally debuted in Tokyo in 2019, as a variety of brand new merchandise had also been created for the event, including some bath herbs inspired by the famous bath scene in Spirited Away.

▼ The bathhouse in Spirited Away is home to a number of baths frequented by mysterious gods.

One of the gods in need of a good soak is the River Spirit, who enters the bathhouse as a Stink Spirit, contaminated so badly by human waste and pollution that it leaves a trail of foul odour and sludge in its wake. After its herbal bath, and with the assistance of heroine Chihiro, the contaminated spirit is cleansed, revealing a new face that resembles a wise old sage, with missing teeth and bushy eyebrows.

▼ The face of the newly cleansed River Spirit appears on the packaging for the new bath herbs.

Like everything Ghibli gives its approval to, this new product has been thoughtfully made with careful attention to detail, much like a Ghibli film. Created in conjunction with Cheerful Company’s jiwajiwa series of bath herbs, this particular blend has been specially created for the Ghibli exhibition, and it’s been given the beautiful name “Happyakuman no Yu“, which translates to “8 Million Hot Springs“.

Each bag contains 100-percent natural ingredients, featuring four kinds of plants that people have been using since ancient times:

  • Kuma bamboo grass — a plant with a refreshing scent that often grows naturally in the mountains
  • Yuzu — a whole dried fruit is used, sourced from a tree grown from seed, to impart a fresh, fruity scent and give strength to the body
  • Solidago canadensis aka Canada Goldenrod — said to signify “energy” according to the language of flowers, and historically used to heal skin wounds
  • Bancha — coarse green tea to warm the body

▼ Clockwise from top left: Kuma bamboo grass; yuzu; bancha; solidago canadensi.

All the plants used by the company have been grown without pesticides and chemical fertilisers, allowing you to soak up their healing properties without any contaminants.

And while these bath packs aim to help those who use them, they help those who make them as well, as jiwajiwa’s products are handmade by people with disabilities and elderly people requiring long-term care, with stay-home mothers overseeing production control and marketing.

While each pack is good for two baths, it can also be dried in the sun afterwards and reused as a natural deodoriser in places like drawers and cupboards for about three months.

As a Nara-based company, this collaboration with jiwajiwa is a local one located not far from Kyoto, where the exhibition is currently being held until 19 June.

The 8 Million Hot Springs bath herbs are on sale at the exhibition for 1,100 yen (US$8.59). If you’re outside of Kyoto and you’d like to heal your mind and body with a herbal bath worthy of a River Spirit — or Stink Spirit — there’ll be another chance to get them later this summer, when the exhibition makes its way to Tokyo.

Source: PR Times
Featured image: Studio Ghibli
Insert images: Studio Ghibli, PR Times
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