In America, the only romantic holiday we celebrate nationally is Valentine’s Day. In Korea, however, they also celebrate White Day a month later, on March 14th. The two go hand-in-hand, and it wouldn’t make sense to celebrate one without the other. So what exactly is White Day and where did it come from?
In our last blog, we gave a brief rundown about the holiday of White Day - on Valentine’s Day, women give gifts to men; but on White Day, men give gifts to women. The day is referred to as such because of the tradition for men to give women white-colored gifts, such as white chocolate, lingerie, or other tokens of affection. Some men also follow the “rule of three” for White Day - meaning that the gifts men give to women has to be at least three times the value of the gift that they received on Valentine’s Day.
But where did White Day originate from?
Celebration of White Day began in 1978 as an opportunity for girls to show that they liked a boy. It was started by the National Confectionery Industry Association as an "answer day" to Valentine's Day on the grounds that men should pay back the women who gave them chocolate and other gifts on Valentine's Day. This is because in Asia, Valentine’s Day is traditionally a day for women to give chocolate to men to show their affection.
The Asian custom that only women give chocolate to men during Valentine’s Day is speculated to have originated from the translation error during the initial Valentine’s Day campaigns. The observance of both Valentine’s Day and White Day is now common in Asian countries!
Would you also celebrate White Day? Let us know in the comments below! Also - be on the lookout for our blog covering Black Day, where single people are recognized on April 14th.