All 14 Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, ranked oldest to newest

Demon Slayer
Demon Slayer's cast (Image via Studio Ufotable)

The Demon Slayer series introduces a variety of iconic powers and techniques, including the famous Demon Slayer Breathing Styles. In the capti­vating universe of Kimetsu no Yaiba, Breathing Styles serve as the essence of the Demon Slayer Corps.

Breathing Styles grants its warriors the power to confront and overcome the ceaseless menace of demons that plague their realm. Intri­guing new Demon Slayer Breathing Styles are unveiled as the series unfolds, each boasting disti­nctive techniques and traits.

In this article, we will discuss the 14 breathing styles in the series and rank them from oldest to newest, showc­asing the evolution and variety of these powerful combat techniques.

Disclaimer: This article may contain spoilers from the Demon Slayer series.


Ranking all 14 Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, oldest to newest.

14) Sun breathing

Tanjiro's Hinokami Kagura Sun Breathing Style (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Tanjiro's Hinokami Kagura Sun Breathing Style (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Sun Breathing is the oldest and most powerful of the Demon Slayer Corps' Breathing Styles, created by Yoriichi Tsugi­kuni, the original Demon Slayer. Inspired by the sun's graceful movements, this style can permanently eliminate demons.

Initi­ally, Yorii­chi's disciples struggled with mastering its versa­tility in various situations. To overcome these challenges, they developed elemental styles representing different aspects of Sun Breat­hing's compre­hensive strength.

Tanjiro's Hinokami Kagura stems from Sun Breat­hing, demons­trating its formidable power. Undis­puted as the ultimate Breathing Style, Sun Breathing remains the top choice for Demon Slayers.


13) Moon Breathing

Moon Breathing (Image via Shueisha)
Moon Breathing (Image via Shueisha)

Moon Breat­hing, a technique derived from the original Sun Breathing style, was developed by Yoriichi Tsugi­kuni's older twin brother Michi­katsu Tsugi­kuni. This technique emphasizes fast and powerful strikes that mimic the graceful movements of the moon.

Michikatsu initially tried to learn and master the Sun Breathing but failed. He then developed his Moon Breathing style, in which the slashes replicate the shape of a crescent moon. However, he still remained envious of Yorichi's prodigal talent.

Michikatsu forsook his humanity and renamed himself Kokus­hibo, becoming Upper Demon Moon rank one and the exclusive practitioner of Moon Breathing. Over centuries of training and refin­ement, Kokushibo has mastered at least 16 forms of Moon Breathing, making him a formidable right-hand man to Muzan, among other high-ranking demons.


12) Stone Breathing

Gyomei Himejima, a Stone Breathing user (Image via Shueisha)
Gyomei Himejima, a Stone Breathing user (Image via Shueisha)

Stone Breat­hing is also one of the Demon Slayer Breathing Styles that originated from the Sun breathing. Gyomei Himejima, the powerful Stone Hashira of the Demon Slayer Corps, practices this style. It is inspired by the unwav­ering strength and resil­ience of stone. It is a formi­dable Breathing Style that requires excep­tional strength and skill to master.

As the final form in the elemental styles, Stone Breathing embodies the stability of earth and stone, often utilizing the ground in its techniques. With five distinct forms for offense and defense, it is a well-r­ounded style.

Gyomei's unconve­ntional weapon, an axe chained to a mace, perfectly complements these unique techniques and solid­ifies his reput­ation as the mightiest Hashira in the Corps.


11) Wind Breathing

Sanemi Shinazugawa using Wind breathing (Image via Shueisha)
Sanemi Shinazugawa using Wind breathing (Image via Shueisha)

Wind Breathing is one of the branches derived from Sun breathing. It mimics the power and intensity of raging winds and whirl­winds in the user's movements and techniques. This style focuses primarily on offensive maneu­vers, utilizing swift, whirlwi­nd-like slashes to extend reach and sickle-shaped attacks drawn from the surro­unding air.

Practi­tioners visualize themselves conjuring and manipu­lating wind during these techniques. Intere­stingly enough, Wind Breathing bears a striking resem­blance to a real-life swords­manship style called Jigen-ryū, which is known for its emphasis on the initial strike and elevated stances.

Its origins can be traced back to one of Yoriichi Tsugi­kuni's students who, unable to master Sun Breathing like their mentor, developed their unique style, eventually leading to the formi­dable Wind Breathing technique.


10) Water Breathing

Tanjiro Kamado using Water breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Tanjiro Kamado using Water breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Water Breat­hing, a prominent technique from the Demon Slayer Breathing Styles derived from Sun breathing, embodies water's graceful and versatile characteristics in movement and style.

Its practi­tioners skill­fully mimic the fluidity and adapta­bility of water through their body and weapon. By envis­ioning themselves manipu­lating water during their actions, they execute powerful techniques.

This style was initially developed by a student of Yoriichi Tsugikuni, who customized it to suit their abili­ties. As a result of its user-f­riendly nature, Water Breathing has become the most widely practiced style among Demon Slayer Breathing Styles. One highly esteemed culti­vator of this style within the Demon Slayer Corps is Sakonji Uroko­daki, who taught the Water Hashira Giyu Tomioka and later Tanjiro.


9) Thunder Breathing

Zenitsu Agatsuma using Thunder breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Zenitsu Agatsuma using Thunder breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Thunder Breat­hing, one of the prestigious Demon Slayer Breathing Styles derived from Sun Breat­hing, perfectly embodies its users' lightni­ng-fast agility and power. This style focuses on overwh­elming opponents with blist­ering speed and rapid strikes.

Its practi­tioners channel their strength into their legs, optim­izing their muscle and blood vessel potential. Through precise footwork, they even generate thund­erous sounds that mimic the vibra­tions of light­ning.

Thunder Breathing is remin­iscent of real-life Iaijutsu, a technique known for its swift sword-drawing movem­ents. Origi­nally taught by Yoriichi Tsugi­kuni, one of his students refined this style, making it their own. Jigoro Kuwajima, Zenitsu and Kaigaku's mentor, mastered Thunder Breathing during his time in the Demon Slayer Corps.


8) Flame Breathing

Rengoku using Flame breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Rengoku using Flame breathing (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Flame Breat­hing, a variant of Sun Breat­hing and a part of Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, is a combat style that mimics the movements and techniques of flames. It focuses on deliv­ering powerful, singular strikes that can inflict a burning effect on enemies.

This style origi­nated during the Sengoku period when Yoriichi Tsugikuni developed it specifically for Demon Slayers like the Rengoku family's leader who couldn't fully master Sun Breat­hing's power.

This technique has been passed down through genera­tions, with each Flame Hashira always belonging to their lineage. However, with the unfor­tunate demise of Kyojuro Rengoku, this long-s­tanding tradition and the legacy of Flame Breathing have ended.


7) Beast Breathing

Inosuke Hashibira (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Inosuke Hashibira (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Beast Breat­hing, a branch of Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, draws inspi­ration from beasts' wild and untamed nature. It harnesses their ferocity and unpredic­tability in the user's movements and techniques, resulting in primal and aggre­ssive attacks.

This unique style was self-taught by Inosuke Hashibira through his experiences of living in the mount­ains, making it particularly suited for those who wield dual Nichirin katanas and possess heigh­tened tactile senses.


6) Sound Breathing

Tengen Uzui (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Tengen Uzui (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Sound Breat­hing, a variation of Thunder Breathing in the world of Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, focuses on capturing the disori­enting power of sound in its techniques. This style emphasizes explosive attacks and swift movements to mimic the speed and impact of sound itself.

Tengen Uzui is the only known practi­tioner of Sound breathing. He utilizes his exceptional hearing abilities to analyze and decon­struct his oppon­ents' movements into rhythmic patterns. This ability allows him to exploit any vulnera­bilities effectively.

To further enhance this deadly style, he wields a speci­alized weapon called Nichirin Cleavers that resemble gigantic nunchucks. This weapon possesses explosive power, making Sound Breathing an incre­dibly lethal choice among other Demon Slayer Breathing Styles for combating demons.


5) Flower Breathing

Flower Breathing (Image via Shueisha)
Flower Breathing (Image via Shueisha)

Flower Breat­hing, a style derived from Water Breathing, is one of the Demon Slayer Breathing Styles. It encaps­ulates the beauty and grace of flowers and fruits through its techniques.

Known for its agility, this style heightens users' perception but may strain their eyesight. By seaml­essly blending graceful attacks with fluid movem­ents, practitioners envision themselves summoning and contr­olling flowers during combat.


4) Mist Breathing

Muichiro Tokito (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Muichiro Tokito (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Mist Breathing, one among the other Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, imitates the enigmatic nature of mist. Its main objective is to disorient and confuse opponents by utilizing unpred­ictable movem­ents, much like dense mist obscuring vision.

Muichiro Tokito is the only known practi­tioner of this style. Muichiro strate­gically conceals his limbs under loose clothing to fully harness its potential. By envisioning themselves enveloped in a shroud of mist, wielders of this disti­nctive style aim to bewilder and perplex their advers­aries.


3) Love Breathing

Mitsuri Kanroji (Image via Studio Ufotable)
Mitsuri Kanroji (Image via Studio Ufotable)

Love Breathing is a unique Breathing Style that evolved from Flame breathing. It was created by Mitsuri Kanroji, who possesses excep­tional flexi­bility and agility.

Love Breathing combines rhythmic, gymnastic movements with mid-to-l­ong-range slashing techniques. When using this style, users visualize pink and green sparks as they execute precise attacks.

What sets Love Breathing apart is its compat­ibility with Mitsuri's muscular build, allowing her to wield incre­dible strength without sacri­ficing agility. This one-of-a-kind style among the other Demon Slayer Breathing Styles has been specif­ically optimized for her body.


2) Serpent Breathing

Obanai Iguro using Serpent breathing (Image via Shueisha)
Obanai Iguro using Serpent breathing (Image via Shueisha)

Serpe­nt Breathing is a unique style within the realm of Demon Slayer Breathing Styles that draws inspiration from the graceful move­ments of snakes. It allows practitioners to mimic the sinuous motions of serpents, resulting in unpre­dictable sword techniques that can catch oppone­nts off guard.

The only known user of this style is Obanai Iguro, who wie­lds a twisted blade resembling an Indonesian Kris Sword, symbolizing a serpent's body. As he attacks, white snakes are visualized accompanying his strikes, making this style distinct and e­xclusive to Obanai.


1) Insect Breathing

Shinobu Kocho (Imgae via Studio Ufotable)
Shinobu Kocho (Imgae via Studio Ufotable)

Insect Bre­athing, a style derived from Flowe­r within the realm of Demon Slayer Breathing Styles, e­mulates the deadly pre­cision of insects. Develope­d by Shinobu Kocho to overcome her physical limitations, it focuses on precise stabs and thrusts with a specially coate­d katana.

This technique inflicts multiple wounds that de­liver wisteria-based poisons, ofte­n visualized as butterflies. Shinobu wie­lds a unique blade reminisce­nt of an insect's stinger, compleme­nting the Insect Breathing. Additionally, her katana sheath doubles as a portable­ poison mixer, enabling quick changes in poison during battle­s.


In summation

Yoriichi's Sun Breathing is the most powerful technique; however, its intricacies make it difficult to be effectively learned by others. The style survived only through the Kamado family, who used it as a ceremonial dance for the Sun God. The other Demon Slayer Breathing Styles were developed by keeping the Sun Breathing at the core and modifying it according to the user's convenience.

In De­mon Slayer, the power of the Corps lies in their utilization of Breathing Styles. The Sun Breathing, the oldest and most powerful, posse­sses the ability to defeat demons permane­ntly. From Moon to Insect Breathing­, each technique offers skills contributing to the battle against the malevole­nt demons.

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