Kanao is a young girl of short stature, with large, gentle eyes of a pink-lilac color that are framed by thick eyelashes. She has thin black hair, worn tied into a ponytail on the right side of her head and fastened by a pink and green butterfly ornament that once belonged to her adoptive sister, Kanae Kocho, with a straight fringe and two chin-length strands that protrude from above each of her ears.
She wears a slightly purple-tinted version of the standard Demon Slayer uniform, just with a knee-length pleated skirt rather than the usual hakama pants. Over this, she wears a short white cloak, fastened on one side by a dark pink triple knot, also sporting knee-high lace-up white boots with tan soles, heels and toes.
Some time later, during her battle with Doma, Kanao's hair also appears to have changed color, as the tips now fade from black to pink. After the fight, Kanao begins to wear Shinobu Kocho's hairpin rather than Kanae's as the latter's shattered as a result of her battle, and she also loses the ability to see out of her right eye due to her using Breath of Flower's final form to take out the Upper Moon.
When she is first introduced, due to the abuse she endured before meeting the Kocho sisters, Kanao is an indecisive and quiet girl. She became unable to make decisions by herself and repressed her emotions as a defense mechanism, so to help rectify this, Kanae Kocho gave her a coin to flip to decide which path to follow when she didn’t know what to do.
Between Kanae's death and the Functional Recovery Training Arc, she recovers slightly but still relies on her coin to make decisions. She displays a somewhat mechanical response in conversations; when Tanjiro Kamado approaches her to bid to her farewell, she repeats "goodbye" when he attempts to continue the conversation. However, he eventually manages to start bringing her out of her shell, and she starts to make her own decisions; as well as gaining the ability to speak unambiguously.
Kanao gradually becomes able to express her emotions and wants more openly, as seen when Tanjiro recovers from his injuries and she displays relief, when she tells Shinobu that she wishes to train alongside her and when she expresses shock and distress at Shinobu's plan to defeat Doma.
In her battle against Doma, Kanao takes uncharacteristically sadistic glee in pointing out his own lack of emotions. Fueled by hatred and spite due to her sisters' deaths by his hand, she attacks him verbally to the point where he drops his normal carefree demeanor. Kanao also demonstrates extreme determination and a deep care for her family, crying for the first time in the wake of Shinobu's death, and expressing that she had wished to go home together with her elder sister.
Abilities and Powers
Kanao is the Tsuguko of both Kanae and Shinobu and has been personally trained by the both of them in the art of combat. As such, Kanao possesses superhuman physical skills, abilities and prowess that potentially marks her as a future member of Demon Slaying Corps' Pillars. Tanjiro, another promising candidate, even states that, during their first meeting together, he could already sense that Kanao was the closest to the Pillars out of the existing Demon Slayers, just by smelling her scent and feeling her aura, which further confirms her skills.
- Superhuman Eyesight - Kanao possesses extremely sharp eyesight, being able to accurately predict her opponent's next attack and movements by simply observing the subtle shifts of their muscles, joints and the slight movements of their eyes. This allows her to make effective counterattacks and dodges and stay ahead of her opponents. The Upper Moon Two, Doma, comments on this feat and remarks that due to this skill, Kanao may be more skilled than Shinobu.
- This ability is enhanced with her Final Form: Scarlet Spider Lily Eyes Breath of the Flower technique.
- Full Focus Breath Style - As noted by the other residences of the Butterfly Estate,Kanao has already fully mastered the ability to remain constantly focused in using her Breath Style and was able to master the ability to remain constantly in full focus for over 24 hours.
Breath of Flower (
- First Form:
- Second Form: Plum Spirit (
弐ノ 型 御 影 梅Ni no kata: Mikage Ume?) - A defensive techniques that deflects attacks using rotating sword slashes.
- Third Form:
- Fourth Form: Crimson Hanagoromo (
肆ノ 型 紅 花 衣Shi no kata: Beni Hanagoromo?) - A single sword slash that curves and twists.
- Fifth Form: Peony of Futility (
伍ノ 型 徒の 芍 薬Go no kata: Ada no Shakuyaku?) - A graceful flurry of nine consecutive attacks that flow and weave in on themselves.
- Sixth Form: Swirling Peach (
陸ノ 型 渦 桃Roku no kata: Uzumomo?) A technique used after or during evasion, the user spins around moving with their body weight to deliver an attack.
- Final Form: Equinoctial Vermilion Eye (
終ノ 型 彼 岸 朱 眼Tsui no kata: Higan Shugan?) - A focusing technique that raises the users kinetic vision to its maximum, while using this technique the user perceives the world as if it were in slow motion. Usage of the technique however is highly dangerous, as the tremendous strain caused to the eyes ruptured blood vessels and could cause partial or complete blindness.
- In the first character popularity poll, Kanao ranked 8th with 712 votes.
- Her birthday was decided to be May 19th, the day Kanae and Shinobu adopted her, since her actual birthday is unknown.
- Kanao's main hobby is blowing soap bubbles.
- Her favorite drink is Ramune and she enjoys all of Aoi's cooking.
- According to Goto, Kanao has been slaying Demons since childhood.
- Kanao keeps the coin given to her by Kanae in a memory box, which was also made by Kanae.