Demon Slayer is an anime that’s heavily focused on sword fighting. As many fans may know, the “Demon Slayer” title directly translates to “demon-slaying swords” rather than the characters in Japanese. And this leads us to have many questions about the swords featured in the anime series, such as the meaning behind the Demon Slayer sword colors, what sets a Nichirin sword apart from others, and why don’t the characters use guns instead. Well, we are here to answer your questions about swords and even other weapons, including a shotgun, in the Demon Slayer anime. So, without further ado, let’s dive in!
Guide to Demon Slayer Swords (2023)
Our guide goes over the best swords in Demon Slayer, along with other important weapons in the manga and anime. We have compiled all swords in the form of a table, along with their users and breathing techniques, later in the article.
What is a Nichirin Sword in Demon Slayer
Nichirin swords or katanas are special weapons that demon slayers use in this shonen anime. These Demon Slayer swords are tagged with the term “Nichirin,” which denotes the metal they are made up of. This material is made of Scarlet Crimson Ore and Scarlet Crimson Iron Sand. The swordsmiths use this material and create swords on tall mountains where the blade faces direct sunlight for over a year.
By absorbing sunlight, which is the main weakness of demons, the Nichirin swords get the ability to permanently kill demons. But, if you have seen the anime, you would know that this fatal tactic only works when attackers slice the neck bone of a demon. The swords aren’t as effective in killing a demon against other body parts and can even break against some stronger demons.
Colors of Swords in Demon Slayer
Unlike regular swords, Nichirin swords also have the special ability to adapt their users’ combat techniques. The blade becomes a distinct color as soon as the user holds the sword for the first time. This color of a Demon Slayer sword reflects the breathing technique used by them. For example, Zenitsu’s sword is yellow because he uses Thunder Breathing techniques.
Not to forget, this color change only happens if the user is skilled enough in breathing techniques. A new demon slayer first has to pass the Final Selection test, after which they get to choose their ore of choice for the sword, and then only do they receive their weapon.
Expanding on their connection with the sun and the coloring system, the blade of a Nichirin sword can become bright red due to a rise in temperature. This powered version of the sword is extremely powerful and can hinder the regeneration of demons while inflicting serious damage. In the world of demon slayer, a sword can turn bright red via the following methods:
Nezuko’s Blood Demon Art (Seen in Season 1)Strong grip of a user possessing the Demon Slayer MarkClashing of two Nichirn swords held by marked users
Other than that, some swords also have special features and patterns based on their user’s abilities. Zenitsu’s sword boasts a thunder-like pattern across the blade, while demonic swords have scary Blood Demon Art symbols.
All Swords in Demon Slayer Anime
1. Tanjiro’s Black Sword
Color: BlackBreathing Technique: Sun Type & Shape: StandardText: Slay (滅めつ Metsu) – only on the second (Yoriichi) sword
Our protagonist, Tanjiro, is one of the few characters that got access to multiple swords during the run of Demon Slayer’s plotline. His first sword was metallic, and its blade turned black on Tanjiro’s first touch. Though anime fans may expect this to be a bad omen, that’s not the case here. Tanjiro asked about the same and learned that pitch-black blades are just uncommon. Also, the sword’s grip was black in color and had red diamond-shaped marks on it. Next to the grip was a circular ring handguard, connecting to the sword with several small rods.
After season 3 of Demon Slayer anime (aka the Sword Smith Village arc), Tanjiro switched to the sword he found inside Yoriichi Type Zero, the ancient robot created for swordsmen to practice and sharpen their skills. This sword was already deep black in color and didn’t change color after our hero’s touch. Though, Tanjiro did change its hilt to the one borrowed from the late Flame Hashira’s Nichirin sword, which was orange and red in color and shaped like a flame.
Haganezuka, the creator of Tanjiro’s original sword, claimed that this new sword was made from a stronger material than regular Nichirin swords. Moreover, the manga also implied that the sword was owned by Yoriichi Tsugikuni, the first and strongest demon slayer. However, thanks to Tanjiro’s habit of getting his sword broken, even this legendary sword broke in an important part of the story towards the end.
2. Zenitsu’s Yellow Sword
Color: YellowBreathing Technique: ThunderType & Shape: StandardText: NA
Zenitsu uses a standard sword, not too dissimilar from Tanjiro’s in design. It has a silver base with a yellow lightning strike traveling through the blade‘s length. At first glance, it looks like electricity is passing through the blade and matches Zenitsu’s Thunder Breathing technique. We do not see the sword clearly in the Demon slayer manga or anime because of the godly speed of Zenitsu’s attacks.
Meanwhile, the sword’s handguard is circular and silver in color. It also includes a bunch of small yellow triangles on its surface and a golden border on its sides. Lastly, the sword’s handle is golden in color and has two small white ribbons hanging from it. While we do not get a confirmation of the same, the ribbons seem to be a cultural choice.
3. Inosuke’s Chipped Dual Swords
Color: Light-Blue GreyBreathing Technique: BeastType & Shape: ChippedText: NA
Inosuke is easily one of the wildest characters in Demon Slayer, and his sword reflects his wildness well. Firstly, instead of a single sword, Inosuke uses two Nichirin swords. When he got them, both of these swords had simple sharp blades. But, Insuke then used stones to chip and break the blades at several spots. This left him with a sword with teeth-like blade that tears demonic flesh at several spots instead of making a clean slice.
The blades of both his swords are bluish-grey in color, and Inosuke does not use a standard hilt, handguard, or scabbard with his swords. Though not shown on camera, Inosuke even removed the handguard from his swords. He prefers to use cloth bandages to cover the sword’s handle and create a temporary grip that suits him.
In anyone else’s hand, these chipped swords appear like a potential self-harm accident waiting to happen. However, with Inosuke and his Wild Beast Breathing, he launches a series of unpredictable attacks that most demons can’t handle.
4. Kyojuro Rengoku’s Red-Orange Sword
Color: Red-OrangeBreathing Technique: FlameType & Shape: StandardText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Rengoku, the late Flame Hashira, was one of the most talented swordsmen in the Demon Slayer anime. His moves reflected the strength and experience he possessed, while his Demon Slayer sword added to that. Kyojuro’s sword was made of scarlet ore and had Destroyer of Demons etched on its side. It is standard practice for Hashiras to engrave such phrases on their blades.
Moreover, similar to Zenitsu, Rengoku’s sword also has a special pattern on its side: a long flame going along the length of a silver-colored blade on either side. The shape of a flame is also adapted for the sword’s tsuba (handguard), the part that connects a sword to its handle. It has a red and orange border, which matches well with the color of the blade.
Lastly, the handle itself is white in color with orange accents. In an interesting turn of events, as mentioned above, Tanjiro later uses the flame handguard from Rengoku’s sword on the legendary Yoriichi sword he finds during the Swordsmith Village arc.
5. Giyu Tomioka’s Blue Sword
Color: BlueBreathing Technique: WaterType & Shape: StandardText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Compared to other Demon Slayer swords on our list, Giyu’s weapon is simple. It is a standard Nichirin sword that has a blue blade with the standard “Destroyer of Demons” Hashira inscription near the tsuba. Similarly, his tsuba has a simple hexagonal shape with a deep maroon border and a brownish base. This matches well with the white handle that ends in a similar maroon tip and has dark diamond shapes on its sides. Giyu’s non-flamboyant approach with his sword fits his personality and also reflects the calmness of the water.
6. Shinobu Kocho’s Poison Stinger
Color: Lavender-BlueBreathing Technique: InsectType & Shape: Rod-like StingerText: Evil Demon (惡あっ鬼き Akki) & Destruction (滅めっ殺さつMessatsu)
While most swords in Demon Slayer anime only rely on the power of the sun to kill demons, it’s worth noting that sunlight isn’t a demon’s only weakness. If a demon consumes Wisteria poison, its regeneration, strength, and even mobility get hampered. Lower-level demons become paralyzed due to its effects.
Shinobu’s Nichirin sword appears like any other sword close to the hilt but instead, it is more like a Nichirin rod that ends in a needle-like tip. This tip looks similar to an insect’s stringer and injects Wisteria poison into demons. Meanwhile, only a small part at the bottom of the handle-end of the sword is like an actual blade.
Since she lacks physical strength and is a medicinal expert, Shinobu first weakens a demon using poison and then ends its life. This allows her to behead the demon without putting too much strength into her blade. The duality of her sword is reflected in its engravings too. One side of Shinobu’s lavender-blue blade reads Evil Demon, while the other side has Destruction inscribed on it. And if you’re wondering, she also has a sheath (sword holder) in which she keeps her poison mixer.
7. Tengen Uzui’s Dual Cleavers
Color: Yellow-OrangeBreathing Technique: SoundType & Shape: Connected Dual CleaversText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Tengen Uzui has the most extroverted and flamboyant personality among the Hashiras in the Demon Slayer Corps, and his weapon choice strictly follows the same. Instead of a simple sword, he has two extra large cleavers, which are so big that he has to carry them on his back without a sheath.
The two cleavers are connected with each other through a metal chain attached to their hilt, creating a bladed nunchuck-like weapon. Though, only a few other people will be able to carry and use it because of the sheer arm strength required to guide such a heavy and large setup. Tengen and his sound breathing don’t seem to have any issues though. In Demon Slayer manga Chapter 77, we learn that no demon survived the cleaver’s destructive blow before the Upper Rank 6.
As for the blades, they have a bright yellow edge followed by an orange internal sheen. Their base is similar to a slightly wide sword blade, except they have a large circular cut out in the middle. Since Tengen is a Hashira, both of the blades have “Destroyer of Demons” engraved on them. Meanwhile, the chain-rooted hilt has a maroon handle with a golden edge. The tsuba has four polygonal curved sides with a green border and a golden inner side.
8. Muichiro Tokito’s White Sword
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge | Chapter 165
Color: WhiteBreathing Technique: MistType & Shape: StandardText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Much like Tomioka, Mist Hashira Muichiro Tokito has a simple but powerful sword that gets the job done. Tokito wields a white blade with the words “Destroyer of Demons” engraved on it, like all other Hashiras. Meanwhile, its orange-tipped handle has a black cover with multiple diamond-shaped holes revealing the green shade underneath.
Lastly, the handguard between the blade and the handle is a golden square with small hollow squares at its corners. The color scheme of Tokito’s Demon Slayer sword matches his attire and hair color.
9. Mitsuri Kanroji’s Whip Sword
Color: Dark PinkBreathing Technique: LoveType & Shape: Whip-likeText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
If you thought the Love Hashira doesn’t use swords, you might not be entirely wrong. Kanroji’s Demon Slayer sword defies the traditional conventions of swords, but it somehow works out well for her. She uses an extraordinarily long and thin sword, which looks more like a whip than a blade. As you might imagine, the sword swings backward even after a successful move, making it impossible for anyone other than Mitsuri to use it without hurting themselves.
This acts as a testament to her high-level movement skills and unbelievable flexibility. Going with the theme of Love Breathing techniques, her sword’s blade is pink in color and has the Hashira mark engraved on its side. Its handle is sea-green in color and has pink hearts across its length, which end at a pink edge.
Lastly, the handguard for Kanroji’s sword is shaped like a four-leaf clover, which is generally considered a sign of good luck. It has a pink base with a golden border. Not to forget, when it comes to carrying this unusual sword, Mitsuri uses a standard sheath but has to fold the blade multiple times before securing it.
10. Obanai Iguro’s Twisted Sword
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge
Color: LavenderBreathing Technique: SerpentType & Shape: Twisted Text: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Serpent Hashira Iguro uses a sword design that not only incorporates his Serpent Breathing but also establishes the importance of his pet snake in combat. The sword’s lavender blade is twisted in a wave-like formation, making it look similar to a snake’s body. It also has the “Destroyer of Demons” phrase engraved on its blade.
Many fans even compare Iguro’s sword to the classical Indonesian Kris sword. While it’s shorter in length, the Indonesian Kris sword also follows asymmetrical waves in its shape. This unique shape allows Obanai to use his sword in unpredictable ways, making it much harder to doge than a regular sword.
As fans might expect, the handguard of Obanai’s sword features two snakes, along with several plant-shaped symbols. Plus, the handle has simple twisted stripes, similar to Mitsuri’s sword handle in the color scheme. Who knows, we might see a connection between these two as the anime progresses. Meanwhile, due to the complex shape, Iguro can’t just slide this wavy sword into a cover sheath. So, he uses a leather sheath instead, which uses a magnetic hinge to open up and allows him to store the sword vertically.
11. Sanemi Shinazugawa’s Green Sword
Color: GreenBreathing Technique: WindType & Shape: StandardText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Sanemi, the Wind Hashira, is like a personification of the storm that can sweep everyone off their feet. However, his sword is much more tamed in comparison and relies on a standard shape. When it comes to the color of this Demon Slayer sword, it has a jagged green pattern (due to his Wind breathing technique) across its blade, which resembles water ripples created by the wind. Since Sanemi is a Hashira, the sword has “Destroyed of Demons” engraved towards the blade’s top.
Looking at the hilt, you have 8 overlapping polygonal shapes with a dark green interior and silver border as the handguard. Meanwhile, a part of the handle has white ribbons wrapped on top of a black and green grip. The simple design of the sword allows Sanemi to attack its enemies without giving it much thought.
12. Kanae Kocho’s Poison Sword
Color: Light PinkBreathing Technique: FlowerType & Shape: Standard with poisonText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
While we don’t get to see much of Kanae or her sword in action, it’s clear that her choice of weapon is not ordinary. She used a standard Nichirin sword with an orange flower handguard and a simple handle. But her pink blade held more power than anyone could see. Instead of only direct combat, Kanae used her sword to stab poison into the demons.
Unlike Shinobu, her sword didn’t give up the sharp blade to do so and relied on a unique design. This allowed Kanae to stand her ground till sunrise against Domo, the Upper Rank 2 demon. She had no way to win the fight against a high-ranking demon, but her mighty sword allowed Kanae to hamper Domo’s healing and injure him. Not to forget, while we don’t get a confirmation, it is safe to assume that Kanae, being a Hashira, also had the typical slogan engraved on her blade.
13. Yoriichi Tsugikuni’s Black Sword
Color: BlackBreathing Technique: SunType & Shape: StandardText: Slay (滅めつ Metsu)
Yoriichi, the first demon slayer, used the same sword that Tanjiro found after the Swordsmith Village arc adapted in Demon Slayer Season 3. It is a standard Nichirin katana with a deep black blade. Though, it’s not like fans would get to see the black version anyway because the blade mostly remained red during combat due to Yoriichi’s skillset, making him rank the highest in our list of the strongest Demon Slayer characters.
Moreover, the sword has a circular black handguard with four subtle inward curves whose border is golden. Furthermore, the word Slay is engraved on the blade’s side.
14. Kanao Tsuyuri’s Pink Sword
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge | Cover – Chapter 162
Color: Light PinkBreathing Technique: FlowerType & Shape: StandardText: NA
Unlike her mentors, Kanao doesn’t rely on unique poison-injecting swords to kill demons. Instead, Kanao uses a standard sword with a light-pink blade. The sword’s handguard is circular in shape and has three red flowers over a light blue base. Meanwhile, its handle follows a criss-cross pattern, including a white cover and a pink base that ends in an orangish end.
15. Kokushibo’s Demon Sword
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge | Cover – Chapter 168
Color: RedBreathing Technique: MoonType & Shape: Flesh SwordText: NA
Kokushibo, the demon form of Yoriichi Tsugikuni’s twin brother, was able to use breathing techniques even after being turned into one of Muzan’s demons. While he chose the life his brother stood against, Kokushibo didn’t leave his swordsmanship behind even after becoming a demon. That’s why he used his Blood Demon Art to create a flesh sword that works with his Moon Breathing. Since the blade of the flesh sword is made of Kokushibo’s flesh, it is extremely durable and as sharp as a Nichirin sword.
Not to forget, instead of a long straight shape, the Kokushibo’s sword can grow several blade branches across its length. Usually, he sticks with three of them, but thanks to Blood Demon Art, he has the ability to create as many blades as he wants and also prevent any major long-lasting damage.
Moreover, the blade is blood-red in color and has veins and eyes all over it. The eyes and veins are also present over the hilt of the sword. Unfortunately, the manga never goes over the purpose of the eyes and the veins. However, their presence is clearly dominating and scary.
Furthermore, the sword’s handguard has a purple border similar to Yoriichi’s sword. It is circular in shape with four subtle inward curves, which work unexpectedly well with the red blade and the greenish-blue handle.
Other Weapons Used in Demon Slayer
While it is clear that swords and their close variants are the primary weapons for most characters on Demon Slayer, they are not the only weapon we see in the manga and anime. So, let’s go over some special weapons that we see in Demon Slayers.
17. Gyomei Himejima’s Spiked Flail and Axe
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge | Cover – Chapter 169
Color: GreyBreathing Technique: StoneText: Destroyer of Demons (惡あっ鬼き滅めっ殺さつ Akki Messatsu)
Gyomei Himejima is considered the strongest Hashira in the Demon Slayer Corps. But unlike the other talented swordsmen on the team, Himejima doesn’t use a katana to slaughter demons. Instead, his weapon of choice is more powerful and dominating.
The Stone Hashira uses a large axe chained to a heavy flail. Both of them are forged of the same material as a Nichirin sword. Though, as per Chapter 169, the material might be even more superior than many best-forged swords. Even Kokushibo’s demonic sword failed to cut through Gyomei’s chain.
While the flail and axe allow Himejima to make the most out of his skillset and strength, the chain allows him to sense the enemy’s moves and position. Since Himejima is blind, this is the most reliable option for him to keep up with his opponents. Lastly, in case you are wondering, the Hashira mark is etched on the hilt of Himejima’s axe.
18. Tengen Uzui’s Explosive Beads
While Tengen’s sword cleavers are more than enough to get the job done, they aren’t the only weapon in his inventory. Occasionally, he also uses black beads, which cause large explosions on impact and can even harm the upper-rank demon’s regeneration. Moreover, just like his wives, Tezgen also has a bunch of kunai blades, which are throwable knives with a ring at their end.
19. Genya Shinazugawa’s Shotgun
Image Courtesy: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge | Cover – Volume 13
If someone were to bring a gun to a sword fight, it must be the Wind Hashira’s brother Genya Shinazugawa in Demon Slayer. He is the only demon slayer who cannot use any of the breathing techniques, making him rely on unorthodox ways to destroy demons. The main weapon in his arsenal is a double-barrel shotgun, which uses bullets that are made up of the same material as Nichirin swords. However, since he is using a shotgun, it is only effective in close-range combat.
But when Genya wants to save bullets or doesn’t have a chance to fire, he relies on his wakizashi. It is a shorter version of a Nichirin sword that has two hollow ovals making the handguard and a brown handguard. Unlike large Demon Slayer swords, the color of wakizashi is just metallic grey and doesn’t reflect any breathing technique.
Demon Slayer Swords: Colors and Breathing Styles
With all the detailed descriptions and mechanics out of the way, let’s take a look at all Nichirin swords in the world of Demon Slayer, along with their user and the Breathing technique they employ to take down demons.
UserDemon Slayer Sword ColorBreathing TechniqueTanjiro KamadoBlackSunZenitsu AgatsumaYellowThunderInosuke HashibiraLight Blue-GreyBeastKyojuro RengokuRedFlameGiyu TomiokaBlueWaterShinobu KochoLavender-BlueInsectTengen UzuiYellow-OrangeSoundMuichiro TokitoWhiteMistMitsuri KanrojiDark PinkLoveObanai IguroLavenderSerpentSanemi ShinazugawaGreenWindKanae KochoLight PinkFlowerSakonji UrokodakiBlueWaterYoriichi TsugikuniBlackSunKanao TsuyuriLight PinkFlowerGyomei HimejimaGreyStoneKokushiboLight PurpleMoonKaigakuYellowThunder
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the strongest sword in Demon Slayer?
Even though they are technically not a sword, Gyomei’s gray flail and axe are considered the strongest weapon in the world of Demon Slayer. In Chapter 169 of the manga, we learn that its durability and strength are comparable, if not better than Nichrin swords from the Sengoku period of swordsmanship. It was the peak period of swordsmanship.
What is the rarest sword color in Demon Slayer?
Black, the color of Tanjiro and Yoriichi’s swords, is considered to be the rarest Nichirin sword color in the plot of Demon Slayer.
Is Nichirin a real metal?
Just like the demons in Demon Slayer, Nichirin isn’t a real-world metal. Instead, as described in the anime, Nichirin is made using Scarlet Crimson Ore and Scarlet Crimson Iron Sand. These two materials are available on the tallest mountains that are bathed in sunlight for the longest time.
Explore All Demon Slayer Swords and Weapons
Whether you are a fan of the anime or an avid manga reader, you have learned everything there is to know about the swords and weapons shown in Demon Slayer. However, like any other tool, it’s important to note that a weapon is only as effective as its wielder. To learn more about the strongest characters in Demon Slayer, read our list of the top-ranked characters and be ready for some surprises. Though if you are more interested in destructive characters, our list of the strongest Chainsaw Man devils might offer you even wilder options. Moreover, which sword is your favorite in Demon Slayer? Do let us know in the comments below.