Do you know “taiyaki”? It is a delicious traditional Japanese pastry, made of two pancake-like cakes moulded into the form of a sea bream, filled with sweetened azuki red beans. It is one of the favorite traditional pastries of Japanese people, and you can find many specialized shops across almost any city in Japan, that sells taiyaki.
what does it have to do with soap?
The form, and the idea that it conveys. Because our selection of eco-friendly Japanese soaps has the form of this famous taiyaki. Tamanohada, founded in 1892 in Tokyo – more than a century ago! – is one of the oldest soap companies in Japan. First, they essentially mass-produced soaps for schools, administrative buildings and hospitals. It is only in 2003 that they tried producing branded soaps for private use. The success was instantaneous, and still growing across the country.
The idea behind this line of fish-shaped veggie soaps is to convey the Japanese “omotenashi” spirit (the art of welcoming someone without showing all the efforts put into it), through a cute yet meaningful form which is the seabream, a traditional symbol of prosperity and happiness. Fresh seabreams are even offered as a gift for big events, such as weddings, promotions, etc.
Tamanohada pushed the concept of the omotenashi mentality even further: they use wagashi wooden moulds, to shape their soap. Wagashi is a typical Japanese sweet, often accompanying tea, during tea ceremony for example. Combining these two symbols, one visible, and the other at the backend of the production process, Tamanohada created a perfect and singular fusion of modernity and beautiful Japanese philosophy.
Great story, but what about the product itself?
The whole process to produce these soaps is 100% ecofriendly and healthy. They use “RSPO” certified plant oils for their moulds, which is an anti-deforestation guarantee created with Green Peace. The moulds are made from natural wood with traditional craft methods, and of course, the fragrances are also all-natural.
The bream-shaped soaps we selected come in various delicate scents, such as pomegranate which includes lemon oil and a hint of mint extract for a deep yet mellow scent, or black sugar mixed to floral bouquet fragrance for a sweet and complex aroma. It is cute, it is elegant, full of history and symbolics, it gives gentle care to your hands, it is eco-friendly and even suited for vegans.
A meaningful gift, perfect for any occasions, small or big, to show someone that you care.