Our reporter loves nothing more than a good soak with a good manga, and now she knows how to get rid of the page warping that comes with that combination.

Like a lot of people in Japan, our reporter Anji Tabata likes to take long baths. Also like a lot of people in Japan, she likes to read manga. And yep, you guessed it! She like to read manga while she’s in the bath.

But while there’s a definite appeal to that double-dose of life’s simple pleasures, there’s a downside too. You can’t have a nice hot bath without water, and all that water turns into steam and moisture, which gets into the pages of Anji’s manga volumes and makes the paper wet and wavy.

Luckily for Anji, not so long ago she came across a tweet from Osaka-based paper good company Ohguri Shikou, in which they shared a lifehack to reverse the effects of wavy water damage.

According to Ohguri Shikou, if you’ve got a wet book or notebook, all it takes is a few simple steps to undo part, or maybe even all, of the damage. First, using a towel, wipe the wetness off the book’s front and back covers. Do not open up the book or wipe the inner pages, and do not try to dry it with a hair dryer.

Next, put the book inside a Ziploc bag, but leave the bag open. Place the bag in your freezer for 24 hours. Once that amount of time is up, take the bag out of the freezer and the book out of the bag, place the bag on a paper towel, and place another paper towel on top of the book. Then place some sort of broad, flat weight on top of the stack, let it sit for one or two days, and your book should be looking good again.

Before trying this method on her manga, Anji decided to test it on a pair of notebooks, with differing amounts of wetness. First, she grabbed a blue notebook, made her hand wet, and then flicked droplets of water onto it.

She then turned on the faucet in her kitchen sink and let the water run over this yellow notebook, thoroughly soaking it,

▼ This caused the yellow notebook to warp almost instantaneously.

Then she followed Ohguri Shikou’s advice, toweling off the covers and putting them inside Ziplocs and then inside her freezer.

The next day, she took the notebooks out, sandwiched them between paper towels, and put a thick magazine on top of them.

After waiting for a day, she checked the results.

Starting with the blue book, it was a noticeable improvement. There was still some waviness at the edges of the paper, but as far as the parts you’d actually right on, it was back to looking just like it had before she’s made it wet.

Things weren’t quite as smooth with the yellow notebook, which still showed some waviness at its upper edge.

Considering how warped it had been pre-freezer, though, this was also a pretty impressive improvement, and the writing area was usably smooth.

Ah, but what about Anji’s manga? Well, the volume she’s been reading recently in the bath was looking like this, with a pronounced wave to its paper.

And after a day in the freezer and a day of pressing?

It looks practically brand-new!

So it seems like Ohguri Shikou really does know what it’s talking about. Anji also has to admit that even though the company’s advice said to press the book for one or two days after taking it out of the freezer, she’d only given them a day since she’d been anxious to see the results, and they probably would have been smoother if she’d let them be pressed for two days instead.

All that said, she’s happy to know that as long as she’s not purposely dousing her manga with water, a one-day press looks like it’s sufficient to restore her bath time manga to their original glory, so if you’ve got a warped volume or two sitting awkwardly on your bookshelf, Ohguri Shikou’s tip might just do the trick for you too.

Photos © SoraNews24
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