Valentine's Day (バレンタインデー)

In Japan, Valentine’s Day became popular by the chocolate company’s promotion. It said “only on this day, girls can ask out the boys they like with the sweet special chocolates”. So in the old days, during Valentine’s Day season, chocolate shops were full of excited, cheek-flushed young girls.

But since around 10 years ago, this movement has changed. Girls have started to enjoy exchanging chocolates with their female friends. Such chocolates were called tomo-choco (friend chocolate). Since then, chocolate shops during Valentine’s Day season have been full of cheerful girls group.

And now. Recently expensive and gorgeous chocolates are popular in this season. Women who work tend to buy such chocolates as a present for themselves. They call such chocolates "Jibun eno gohoubi" (reward for myself). So nowadays, during this season, chocolate shops are full of women look like a bit tired...

Of course even now there are young girls and women who send chocolates to boys or men they like, but it feels like those people have been decreasing year by year. There is also a habit named giri-choco (charity chocolate) in which women send to men who are just friends or colleagues of them. Japanese culture is always unique.