Cute mascots and “kawaii” characters are a common feature in a lot of anime and manga, and adorable animal faces can be found on a whole range of products. One subset of such mascots are known as “Iyashi Kyara” or “relaxation characters,” (a cultural phenomenon heavily satirised in horror-thriller anime Paranoia Agent.)
These cute critters are purposefully designed to create a feeling of comfort, so if you’re a little stressed why not take a look at:
Tarepanda – Meaning “lazy panda,” this sleepy fellow was created by San X back in 1995 and has been a huge hit in Japan since. Not only is there a wide variety of Tarepanda stationary, but Bandai even created a series of videos and games about the tired bear.
Rilakkuma – Another popular San X character, the “relax bear” is a very common design and even features in a series of picture books and a chain of themed cafés! From phone cases to kettles, you can find this teddy’s face everywhere.
Jinbeisan – You’d probably think that it’d be hard to make something as gigantic as a whale shark into a calming, cute face… but with his round design and soft colours Mr Whaleshark is capturing the hearts of many.
Kapibarasan – If you thought a whale shark was strange, there’s even a kawaii version of the world’s largest rodent! At first you could only find plushies of this guy in vending machines, but after becoming a big hit you can now find Mr. Capybara merchandise all over Japan.
Theo Tin Tuc Anime