Trends in Japan > Lifestyle > Sweet Success
Consumers Get a Taste for Dessert-Shaped Products

What is your favorite dessert? Is it cake? Crème caramel? Chocolate? Ice cream, maybe? Kids and grown-ups alike derive great pleasure from eating their favorite sweets. Knickknacks and daily necessities that tap into the power of desserts to make people happy are becoming increasingly popular. These products cannot be eaten, of course, but so closely do they resemble sweets in shape, color, and texture that you are almost tempted to gobble them up. Many of them even smell delicious!


A very life-like Repos Gateau® ©Flower Nagano


The creations can be used as interior decorations. Repos Gateau® ©Flower Nagano

Ice Cream Bubble Bath, Chocolate Bar Soap
Bath products store Bathing is attracting more and more repeat customers with its cute and trendy sweet-shaped bath and shower products. These include ice cream Bath Whip and a body rinse that you spread on like jam. The interior of the store looks like an ice cream parlor! Colorful body soaps and massage scrubs are lined up in showcases like different flavors of ice cream. There are vanilla, chocolate mint, caramel, and other aromas—all with the exact same appearance and texture as real ice cream. And when you make a purchase, the products are even measured into cups the same as ice cream. The Bathing series also includes soaps made to look like bars of chocolate, complete with foil and wrapping; they even emanate chocolate's sweet aroma. Towels printed with chocolate parfaits and miniature cakes are available, too.

Cakes Topped with Preserved Flowers
Also popular in Japan these days are artificial cakes decorated with preserved flowers called Repos Gateau®, a name combining the French words for "relaxation" and "cake." Originally sold in flower shops, these imitation cakes use lace and carpenter's sealer instead of fresh cream, preserved flowers instead of strawberries, and come decorated with Swarovski handcrafts. Preserved flowers have freshness and texture that sets them apart from dried flowers. Seeing them in bloom atop the cake makes people feel refreshed. And since the flowers will not wither for several years, they can be given away as presents or used to decorate your room.


A cake-shaped eraser ©Iwako


A strawberry ice cream eraser ©Iwako

Erasers are another popular item featuring dessert motifs. Iwako, a Japanese eraser company, makes over 200 kinds of erasers shaped exactly like cakes, crème caramel, donuts, and Japanese-style sweets. The most popular eraser in the firm's lineup is shaped like strawberry shortcake. These items are so realistic that quite a few children choose not to use their erasers, instead treasuring them as collectibles.

Desserts are now a big hit as fashion motifs, too. Cupcake and ice cream print t-shirts and bags with candy designs are a hit with the fashion conscious, and donuts, cookies, and ice cream are inspiring cute nail art. Decoden, shiny accessories for decorating your mobile phone, are appearing in shapes like chocolates, cookies, and ice cream. Sweets certainly have the power to fascinate all generations! (August, 2008)

Page Top

Copyright (C)2008 Web Japan. Edited by Japan Echo Inc. based on domestic Japanese news sources. Articles presented here are offered for reference purposes and do not necessarily represent the policy or views of the Japanese Government.