Kuchisake Onna

Kuchisake-onna, which translates to 'slit-mouthed woman' is a mask-wearing yokai in Japanese folklore. She wanders dark streets and alleys wearing a surgical mask and may approach you and ask if you think she’s beautiful. If you say 'yes', she will remove her mask to reveal a bloody mouth cut from ear to ear. She then asks 'how about now?' If you scream or say no, she'll cut your mouth with her bloody scissors to look just the same as hers. If you lie and say she's still beautiful, she'll walk away, but will silently follow you home and brutally kill you.

It is believed the only way to out-smart her is to answer in a way that will confuse her long enough for you to run away, or to throw hard candy at her and run for your life. Kuchisake onna is believed to be the vengeful ghost of a woman who was savagely murdered. There are also suggestions that she may be a kitsune playing tricks on young men. The tale was made into a film called 'Carved: The Slit-mouthed Woman' which I'm too scared to watch.


Images in this post are film stills and cover.