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Portable fans a breath of fresh air in sweltering summer heat

44 Comments
By Junko Horiuchi

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44 Comments
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Breath of "fresh air"? Just another gimmick that blows around the hot air! Waste of money!

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Isn't it just blowing hot and humid air in your face?

Maybe if it had some small cooler or ice compartment, maybe.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Eh? Wouldn't this be the perfect opportunity to use non single use traditional Japanese fans and encourage eco ?

14 ( +17 / -3 )

Eh? Wouldn't this be the perfect opportunity to use non single use traditional Japanese fans and encourage eco ?

It would. But just to add, those who suffer from arthritis and other ailments that affect them in old age may not find traditional fans as easy to use as these portable things.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

These fans have been around for a very long time. However, the newer ones come with rechargeable lithium battery and better motors which gives longer battery life and better air flow. It maybe not a heat beaker but it is better than nothing.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Eh? Wouldn't this be the perfect opportunity to use non single use traditional Japanese fans and encourage eco ?

Unfortunately those fans are powered by swinging human hands which have very short life span.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Isn't it just blowing hot and humid air in your face?

Maybe if it had some small cooler or ice compartment, maybe.

You are right. Some do have small compartment where you can put icy water it blows cold mist on you.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

It would. But just to add, those who suffer from arthritis and other ailments that affect them in old age may not find traditional fans as easy to use as these portable things.

Right, and yet it's all the "old" folks that are using the traditional fans, and the young people using the newest "fad" on the market.

Why pay for something you can do yourself! Plus the older folks get some exercise too!

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Why pay for something you can do yourself! Plus the older folks get some exercise too!

Ideally, sure. My point is that mobility in the wrist bones can be difficult for some. I'm all for trad fans where possible.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

I wonder what percent of those will be in the trash within a year? I know it doesn't look very stylish, but I wrap some of those cake shop ice gel packs in a long handkerchief and wrap it around the back of my neck. Works wonders.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Land fill in a few months.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I’m still waiting for “real” portable air conditioners. The person that invents a proper and affordable one will become the richest person in the world. At least during the summer times.

While those portable fans may seem useless in some areas, it does have its uses. Using that electric neck fan with an umbrella really works well.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

33’ is not deadly hot. A better product would selling cans of common sense to avoid heat stress.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

33’ is not deadly hot. A better product would selling cans of common sense to avoid heat stress.

Come on down here to Okinawa and say the same thing! 33C HERE and 33C in Tokyo are two very different things! When the "real feel" temp gets as high as 40C with humidity and the UV.....it sure the hell IS deadly!

But then, you rarely ever hear of anyone from Okinawa that dies from heat exhaustion!

(We have common sense down here, just need to export it to Tokyo!)

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

I carry an old-fashioned folding fan but physical problems force me to use it for very short times only (old injury, not arthritis). And that injury also forces me to limit the weight of things I carry about so I don’t want to add even one of these lightweight new-fangled battery powered fans.

I do something similar to hooktrunk2, wrapping the small frozen gel packs from cake shops in a large bandana or hankies and wrapping it around my neck. But I also first wet the hankie in cold water and then wring it out (this can be repeated at public fountains etc if it dries while out. Also I put two of the gel packs in and position them on the front sides of the neck (according to the MD expert in heatstroke that I see frequently on tv this is more effective than the back of the neck).

The gel packs were “free” when we bought some cakes and last for years. I keep a small tub of them in the freezer. If I’m going to be out long enough for them to warm up, sometimes I carry some spares in a small cool bag.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Anything to drop the temperature the tiniest amount is worth it. Summer is brutal in Japan.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Come to Sydney for the summer holidays. It’s a balmy 14deg her this morning

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Oh, global warming is a myth! Doncha know what?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Isn't adding electricity consumption kind of counter-productive ? Plus the plastic waste.

Folding fan, manual fan sound more efficient at a global scale (obviously for people which can use it).

Is not it a bit "dangerous" in crowded area ? Like having someone hair be caught in it and then being a pain to free them ?

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Consume, consume, consume... There is no end in sight to 'the things' people will buy. There is absolutely no hope of changing anything. Wonder how much longer humans have? I'm certain I could buy something that would claim to know.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Oh, global warming is a myth! Doncha know what?

I thought you guys changed the name to "climate change". Or is it "extreme weather" now? Hard to keep up with the shifting goalposts.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

I thought you guys changed the name to "climate change". Or is it "extreme weather" now? Hard to keep up with the shifting goalposts

What we have here is a total misunderstanding of what these terms mean.

Ignorance may be bliss but it can also be dangerous.

Are you in the hoax created by the Chinese camp?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

More e-waste.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I think those more wasteful are the plastic fans used for advertising.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Few others beat me to it, most of these gizmo's will end up in your local landfill or incinerator or on the ground some where, it is truly amazing how much GARBAGE we all buy, I have been trying to catch myself BEFORE I buy stuff I know will be trash.

Trying to get the wife onboard but she is NOT good, in fact pretty bad so I always TOSS this crap out in front of her, hopefully it will start to sink in!

Use those freeze packs! My I am uchiwa all the way, sensu also work but don't pack well for a guy anyway!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

What's the humidity level? http://www.csgnetwork.com/canhumidexcalc.html

33C with the humidity can be mid 40's

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I really hope we aren't being deliberately prepped with articles like this for the Olympic organizers to announce that their entire strategy for dealing with the heat next summer during the games is just going to be making everyone buy one of these things.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

A fan to blow on your face humidity, heat and other peoples' sweaty arm pits smell...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Use those freeze packs! My I am uchiwa all the way, sensu also work but don't pack well for a guy anyway!

Haha should have been I am sensu all the way, uchiwa not so easy to pack & pull out for a guy LOL, MUST be the heat frying my mind!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

A lady should always cool herself with a traditional folding fan. It is both elegant and mildly erotic...

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Stay cool anyway you can. Heat is to be respected for its danger.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Haha. Speaking of cake shop ice packs...I don't know where my wife gets them, but I prefer the larger sized ones. They last longer(and look funny as heck). I will have to try what @Educator60 says and put them in front of my neck(somehow not choking me in the process). As for fans, my JH aged daughter showed me a fan she bought the other day that could connect to her iPhone for ¥300. I have yet to see her use it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I'll take a portable AC, or better yet, an AC suit that keeps me 20° C with tinted visor.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Hooktrunk2,

When it’s really hot, depending on where I’m going and for how long, I also often carry some larger gel packs (about the size of two cake shop ones side by side). They are handy for cooking armpits, groin, neck in an emergency. I sometimes sandwich a wet hankie between two of them in the cool bag which is lovely to pat the face with etc. I think I bought those at a home center or large supermarket. I have a large collection of sizes, hard and soft, that are quite useful around the house too in the summer.

Anyway, whatever method you use, hope everyone stays safe.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I have high doubts about these things not working. Never found a fan blowing hot humid air on me as comforting.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I'm with the posters above. This is disposable plastic garbage which will be landfill before the leaves turn red.

Reusable freezer gel bags are the way to go. One in my panama, one wrapped in a light cotton scarf around my neck, and one wrapped in a cotton hanky nestled under my nads - ecologically-justifiable bliss.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

What a shame we humans are happy to buy the latest disposable item made of plastic rather than changing our behavior to help the planet and stop the record heat in the first place. Wishful thinking I know, I’m guilty too but considering ways to improve my actions.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

A cold beer will do me...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Although as noted above I’m a frozen gel pack person myself, I will concede that for people who are traveling for pleasure or business that may be a difficult option and so these electric fans have a place I guess. Just hope people will use them for years and not trash them quickly. However since they keep coming out with new improved versions, the temptation to replace the old one with a newer model might be hard to resist.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I'm amazed at how many Japanese women still have their hair down in this heat. For me, it's always the first thing to do!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I'm amazed at how many Japanese women still have their hair down in this heat. For me, it's always the first thing to do!

Me too. Having your hair down in the heat is like wearing a thick woolly scarf around your neck.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I'm amazed at how many Japanese women still have their hair down in this heat. For me, it's always the first thing to do!

And for people who like necks, lol

Anyways, a flowing air (like wind) helps in the evaporation of sweat (which is a cooling effect)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ironically, the more extremely the climate become, the more technologies will be created.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Anybody have experience with those Coolcore towels that they have on commercials out here?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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