The Samurai Face Masks (Men Yoroi - Menpou)

The Samurai Face Masks

  • The purpose of the samurai metal mask is to protect the face from slashes and also scare the enemy.
  • The samurai painted inside of the mask red because they believed it gave them more “war-like” appearance.
  • The samurai mask has mustache and beard. The purpose of the mustache is to give it more natural look and also more war-like look. During the peaceful ego period all the men were asked to shave their beards because having a beard may mean the daimyos want to fight and want to revolt against the shogunate.
  • The mask has distinctive facial features including gold teeth.
  • Most masks looked like demons, devils and wild animals. The inner part was colored red because the samurai believed it looks more intimidating and warlike.
  • The masks have a hole underneath for the sweat to flow as it gets to wear it during the battled.
  • During the peaceful times the samurai wore high bamboo hats when they were in the city to hang out as they didn’t want to be seen making a mistake.
  • Today the Japanese wear face masks because a) not to spread germs b) not to get sick c) not to have a dry mouth d) not be seen without make up e) not to get hay fever f) not to be bothered g) as a fashion item h) not to be seen doing a bad thing I) stay warm j) enjoy scented varieties