A gadget designed to drown out embarrassing noises of nature has become a top seller among women in Japan.

Manufacturers Toto claim to have more than doubled annual sales of the Sound Princess to more than 500,000 last year.

Women pass their hands over a sensor to trigger the noise of running water from a speaker, reports the Guardian.

The devices can now be found in shopping centres and restaurants but demand is greatest in the workplace.

“The core of our clientele is schools and companies,” said a Toto spokeswoman, Kumi Goto.

“Japanese women are very embarrassed by the sounds they make on the toilet.”

More here.