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16 Strange But Useful Japanese Inventions


Chindogu is the Japanese art of inventing silly and useless things which solve everyday problems. The invention is typically unusual but creates a solution to a very specific problem we face every day. The invention may seem useful because of its purpose when in reality it really isn’t useful at all. 

It is typically a product that will lead you to believe that it’s a genius idea when there are other, more practical products that do the same thing.

In this list, we’ll show you some inventions which we actually think would be pretty useful in our everyday lives. Here are 16 strange Japanese Chindogu inventions that we would totally use in our everyday lives. If not for their usefulness, then for their sheer strangeness.

1. Buttered toast lovers unite! If you love toast as much as I do, you probably get pretty frustrated when you try to smear hard butter onto your toast only to have it completely rip your toast to shreds. This interesting Japanese invention called a butter grater is totally something I would buy. And I can already think of so many other things I’d use it for (*cough* popcorn *cough*). Yum.


2. If you’ve ever gone to work or for an important meeting dressed to the nines and then rain starts pouring within minutes of stepping outside, you’ll be happy to hear that this awesome umbrella tie exists.


3. For some reason, I’m deathly afraid of putting any type of liquid in my eye (or anything else for that matter), which is why I will never agree to get contact lenses. But this interesting eyedrop funnel invention may just solve that problem. Or not, who knows.


4. If you love singing karaoke but are a little self-conscious of your voice, this “silent” karaoke invention is just the thing for you.


5. This sound catcher pillow lets you hear the sound from the TV even when you’re laying down. Where was this when I was growing up?


6. Apparently, square watermelons are much easier to pack and ship, so they’re grown in cases to shape them into squares. I’d totally buy one of these and use it as decoration in my apartment.


7. So this is pretty much the exact opposite of a hearing aid. They’re called hearing enhancers but I’m not sure I’d want to be seen walking around in public with them on.


8. Okay, I’m freaking out here. Who thinks of these things, and where can I get my hands on one of these? This chopstick fan cools your noodles as you’re eating them. If you’ve ever experienced the excruciating pain that is a chopstick-full of burning hot noodles against your tongue, you’ll want one of these too.


9. What’s the point of an umbrella if you’re going to end up completely soaked anyway? This rain-proof umbrella will never make you dread an umbrella purchase ever again.


10.  This is called a simple ear explorer and it’s just that: a device which will allow you to explore your ears. Hey, you never know when you might get something stuck in there that requires some investigation.


11. This bubble wrap keychain is the instant stress relief that I need in my life right now. It would also be great to use it to annoy the people around me.


12. This 360-degree camera is the epitome of DIY. Why only get a picture of one angle when you can get it from all angles? Think about it.


13. This book-shaped pillow is perfect for any student who is late into exams week or who may or may not be about to lose their mind.


14. Because when you spend hundreds of dollars on a pair of beautiful shoes, you better believe you’re buying an accessory to keep them dry when it rains.


15. This banana case will keep your banana from getting squished or bruised, and it will totally look awesome coming out of your lunch bag.


16. If you’ve got an itch you just can’t reach, this “scratch shirt” will come in useful so you can pinpoint to your friend exactly where he or she should scratch when you’ve got the itchiest of all itches.



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