100 yen shops are one of the most popular sightseeing spots in Japan. They offer pretty much anything you could imagine and they will make pretty much anything customers requests. There are actually advertisements inside the stores that ask customers for new ideas which is why they have some very weird items. Many items only have one or a few purposes – they sell tools for making tiny rice balls for example.
Today, I’ll introduce you a few interesting things I have found in 100 yen shops. I visited chains called Can Do and Daiso this time. You can find both pretty much anywhere in Japan. Daiso also has an online shop but it requires you to order the items in large quantities so you can’t really just have fun trying everything. Nowadays you can find branches of Daiso overseas as well.
1. Wide Angle & Macro camera lens for smartphones (Can do)
Did you now that you can buy a wide-angle lens for your phone with 100 yen? I didn’t either until I saw this one in tv a few weeks ago. Using this lens, you can capture a wider angle of view and also take clearer pictures of tiny objects with the macro feature.
Taking the lens out of the box, it looked pretty professional. Does it look like a 100 yen item? Definitely not. But does it really do what it promises to do?
I honestly don’t notice much difference between the pictures above. The most remarkable point is probably the black shadows in the corners of the picture taken with the lens. The macro feature wasn’t remarkably amazing either – I think I can actually get better pics without using the lens. While you might be able to fit one more friend in a group selfie using this, I didn’t really find it useful. Maybe I just don’t have enough friends.
2. Hair curler rolls (Daiso)
This one was a real hit on Twitter when it came out. A simple yet amazing way to curl your hair without any heat, and it’s also very kind to your hair causing the least amount of damage possible.
After actually trying this, I think it indeed is nice if you want to sleep as long as possible in the mornings and also a great way to curl your hair if you don’t want to damage your hair. However, it was pretty difficult to roll my hair onto the sponge rolls the first time and waking up in the morning, I was glad I had chosen a weekend day for testing – my hair certainly wasn’t ready for going out. I think these would be amazing if you learned how to use them though so everyone who likes curling their hair, I would recommend buying this if you have a chance to visit Daiso. It costs only 100yen anyway!
3. Jar opener with a magnet (Daiso)
For those who always have to search for leather gloves to open jars and bottles, this is a perfect find! It has a magnet included which also makes it easy to store as you can just slam it on to the fridge door.
4. Boiled egg holder & breaker (Daiso)
Doesn’t sound too useful? True, you certainly could live without this as well but it was a lot more useful than I expected.
It’s not only useful when rising the eggs up from the water, it’s also actually useful when breaking the eggs. I only tried this once so I can’t say it’ll break them perfectly 100% of the time but the one I used as an experiment egg really turned out perfect.
5. Hair drying glove (Daiso)
This one promises to make your hair dry a lot more faster than without the glove. For me, the material really resembles that of a towel and I would actually dare to say that you can get the same results by using a towel. True, this glove can be pretty easy to use as you can wear it on your hand but in my personal opinion, it just gets in a way. I have very long hair and it would be very tiring to dry my hair always holding the dryer in the same hand so this is not really my thing.
All that being said though, it’s only 100yen. If you feel like you might have use for it or think that it would look nice in your bathroom, come to Japan and buy it.
6. Stainless steel soap (Daiso)
This one looks like an ordinary steel oval but it’s actually supposed to work as a soap. It promises to wash away the smell of fish, the very lingering smell of onion and garlic and so on.
Actually trying the soap, I’m surprised to say that it actually did work. I wouldn’t replace ordinary soap with this but I do wash my hair with this thing as well every time I have cut onions or made something with fish.
7. Melamine sponge (Daiso)
You might not believe me when I say I saved one of the best ones for the last place, but this really is one of my most recommended products in this post. These tiny cubes promise to effectively clean even grease stains – without soap. I tried it on windows and it worked amazingly, so well that I would definitely buy it again.