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Kuchisake-onna Japanese Slit Mouthed Woman


A young woman who lived hundreds of years ago and was the wife or concubine of a samurai. She was very beautiful but also very vain, and she was discovered to have been cheating on her husband. The samurai, extremely jealous and feeling cuckolded, attacked her and slit her mouth from ear to ear, screaming "Who will think you’re beautiful now?

That woman roams around during foggy evenings, with her face covered by a surgical mask, which would not be especially unusual, as people with colds often wear masks for the sake of others in Japan. When she encounters someone, primarily children or college students, she will shyly ask, "Am I beautiful?" ("Watashi kirei?").

If the person answers yes, she will take off her mask and say, "Even like this?"

At this point, if the victim answers "No," she will slay them with a pair of huge scissors.

If the victim tells her she is pretty a second time, she follows the victim home and slays them in their own doorway. This is because  the word "kirei" , Japanese for ‘pretty,’ is a near homophone of "kire", the imperative form of "to cut".

kuchisake-onna-pi01If the victim answers "You’re average", they are saved.

Also, the answer "so-so," causes the Kuchisake-onna to think about what to do, and her victim can escape while she is in thought. One way to escape is to present the Kuchisake-onna with amber, hard candy. Another is to say "pomade" three times (in some versions, six times). This will make her either falter and turn or run away. If the victim has pomade, they can write with it behind her back to keep her from following. The reason is that this reminds her of either the dentist’s or (plastic) surgery smells, or that her boyfriend used it.

Kyla from Seattle, WA

Another Version

There once was a beautiful women named Kuchisake-Onna who lived in Japan, in a small village with her husband. Everyone would comment on how beautiful she was. All the compliments encouraged the girl and she began to get confident and reckless. Men approached her consistently and as her ego swelled, she became unsatisfied with her relationship with her husband. She thought she could cheat on her husband without him finding out, but she thought wrong.

One night her husband saw her kissing a soldier. In a fit of temper, her husband took a sword and slit her mouth from ear to ear screaming “Who will think your beautiful now!?”

She survived her scorned husband’s attack, but her confidence was shattered and she spiraled into depression. The girl killed her self and became a vengeful spirit who walks around Japan with a mask on her face and scissors in her hand.

If you encounter her, she will ask you softly “Am I pretty?” If you say yes she will take off her mask, showing her mouth that is slit from ear to ear and ask “Am I still pretty?” If you continue to answer yes she will slit your mouth ear to ear with her scissors and scream “Now you’re pretty like me!” If you say no she will rip your body parts apart and keep your head so that she can remember you. The best answer would be you’re average or you’re fine… It will give you a chance to run and get away from her and good luck if you live in Japan my friends!

Kiera B.

Posted in Children, Regional and Cultural

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