The Sound Princess

sound princess

Many Japanese women are embarrassed at the thought of being heard by others during urination. To cover the sound of bodily functions, many women used to flush public toilets continuously while using them, wasting a large amount of water in the process.

As education campaigns did not stop this practice, a device was introduced in the 1980s that, after activation, produces the sound of flushing water without the need for actual flushing. A Toto brand name commonly found is the ‘Otohime’ (literally ‘Sound Princess‘ also homophone with a legendary goddess Otohime). This device is now routinely placed in most new public women’s rooms, and many older public women’s rooms have been upgraded.

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