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A dakimakura without a cover on it

A dakimakura (抱き枕; from daki 抱き "embrace" and makura "pillow") is a type of large pillow from Japan which are usually coupled with pillow covers depicting anime characters.[1] The word is often translated to English as body pillow, waifu pillow, or husbando pillow. In Japan, dakimakura are similar to Western orthopedic body pillows, and are commonly used by Japanese youth as "comfort objects".[1]


A dakimakura featuring the character Mirai Suenaga

During the late '90s and early 2000s, dakimakura began to intertwine with otaku culture, leading to the production of pillow covers featuring printed images of bishōjo and bishōnen posed lying down from various anime or bishōjo games. Many of these early otaku dakimakura covers were released through Cospa, a character goods and apparel store which as of 2018 continues to release official dakimakura covers.[2]

Although dakimakura are sometimes called "Dutch wife", the original definition of this phrase is closer to the chikufujin, or "bamboo wife". The year 2015 saw some of the first talking body pillows with Ita-Supo and its mascot, Rina Makuraba. It was invented by former Kyushu Institute of Technology researcher, Koichi Uchimura.[3][4]


Dakimakura are available in two main sizes, 160 or 150 cm (63 or 59 in) in length with a 50 cm (20 in) width (100 cm (39 in) circumference).

Prior to the mid-2000s, dakimakura were available in one size; 160 cm × 50 cm (63 in × 20 in). Since the late 2000s, 150 cm × 50 cm (59 in × 20 in) dakimakura became available and increasingly popular due to shipping cost savings from being under the 2 kg (4 lb 7 oz) airmail weight limit.[5]

Due to the increase in popularity, new sizes have been created to adapt to all heights and ages, and although there are other sizes available, the 5 most popular sizes are: 180x60, 170x60, 160x60, 150x50 and 140x40 cm.[6]

Love pillows[edit]

Love pillows are a subset of dakimakura usually portraying life-size pictures of characters in suggestive poses. They may portray anime characters, furry characters, or pornographic film actors.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Galbraith, Patrick W. (2009). The Otaku Encyclopedia: An Insider's Guide to the Subculture of Cool Japan. Tokyo: Kodansha International. ISBN 9784770031013.
  2. ^ Dakimura pillows on Pillow Professional
  3. ^ Bamboo Dong (28 February 2015). "Make Your Hug Pillow Experience More Pleasurable with Rub-Activated Talking". Anime News Network. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  4. ^ Lynzee Loveridge (16 March 2016). "Interactive, Rubbing-Activated Hug Pillows Finally Get Release Date". Anime News Network. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  5. ^ The Perfect Size Of A Dakimakura
  6. ^ "Dakimakuras". Dakimakuras. May 8, 2018.

External links[edit]