Even the strictest employee admired! Creating new dishwashing experience by extreme cleaning power.

CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray with extreme cleaning power, a need that we identified through the careful observation of consumers. Not only does it remove stubborn oily grime without rubbing just by spraying, it can be used to clean up around the entire kitchen, offering a new user experience. Behind the development of this product was the spirit of challenge and the commitment of each team member to stand-out user experience.

Release date:

Product Introduction

CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray A Single Wash Effectively Removes the Kind of Stubborn Oily Grime You Would Normally Expect to Take Multiple Attempts

This spray dishwashing detergent sold under the CHARMY Magica brand reduces consumer stress about cleaning.

With just a spray and lightly scrub with a sponge, stubborn the oily grim lifts right off surfaces that previously needed hard and repeated scrubbing and scraping to get clean, like a frying pan after cooking a hamburger, or fish grill after use.

By flipping the script on stubborn the oily grim that normally takes several rounds of scrubbing to remove, CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray makes dishwashing easier and more comfortable.

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The Needs We Discovered by Thoroughly Confronting Consumers Are Extreme Washing Power and Use Feel.

Researchers Miyajima and Kamimura talking with a consumer about what washing dishes is like for her

Masaki Miyajima said, “When I first joined Lion, I heard an interview with a consumer regarding a product I developed in which they said, ‘I use this product because I’ve always used it.’ The product’s functions were backed by solid data, and we had great confidence in it when we released it, so I was dismayed to hear that the product’s good quality and the intent behind its development had apparently not gotten across to the consumer. This experience seared into my brain that we need to offer products from the consumer’s perspective, based on the place that those products occupy in their daily lives, and not just our own ideals.”

 The experience that Miyajima learned was one of the jumping-off points for the development of CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray.

 Miyajima recalled, “We conducted interviews with consumers to assess what washing dishes is currently like for them. Many of them said that the function they look for in dishwashing detergents is strong cleaning power. They wanted greater cleaning power than what was currently available. As a development researcher, I thought that we were already developing products that effectively remove grime, so I felt there was a gap between our perspective and that of our customers, who were consistently saying they needed something stronger. This made me think we should develop a product with a much higher level of detergency, such as a product specifically formulated for oily grime.”

 Dishwashing requires time and effort. We thoroughly pursued the use feel that would be easily get across to consumers. As a result, we found that we need to provide consumers with an extreme cleaning power to removes stubborn the oily grim without time and effort. With existing detergents, consumers generally get tough grime off of dishes and cooking utensils by putting detergent on a sponge and repeatedly scrubbing until the detergent eventually penetrates and emulsifies the grime. This is because it is a very difficult technique to remove grim by emulsifying it sufficiently while at the same time eliminating the need to physically rub it repeatedly over and over again. Our approach to this problem considered both the formulation of the detergent and the design of the bottle.

Taking on New Challenges Is the Basis of Research. The Decision to Assign the Important Formulation Development Role to a New Employee

To verify the formula’s cleaning power, we used grime that consumers actually have to clean, such as grease from frying pans used to cook ginger pork and hamburgers

For the development of this detergent’s formulation, Miyajima had his eye on Kamimura, who had just joined Lion that year.

Kamimura recalled, “In the fall of the year I joined Lion, Miyajima asked me to try to develop cleaning technology that could remove stuck-on grease just by applying it. Treating it something like my own independent project, I excitedly began. However, because it was still my first year, I did not have much experience with product development, so as I proceeded with advice from Miyajima and other senior researchers each time. I think because my experience was limited, I was not beholden to conventional frameworks and was able to pursue a washing power from a broader perspective.”

Miyajima reflected on this, commenting “I think that at first, Kamimura thought she might try adding this or that and combine different ingredients, but sometimes it would end up lower the detergency, or the detergency would be high but the formulation unstable. So, we took out those ingredients and, as we searched for different approaches that would increase stability, we steadily improved the formula.”

 There was a reason Miyajima assigned this major role to such a new employee. Miyajima stated, “I do not think that a researcher’s age or development experience matters when it comes to creating better products. Since I joined Lion, I have deepened my knowledge of interface science and detergents through my work, and I am currently involved in the development of many products as development leader for dishwashing detergents. I have experienced for myself the importance of learning through actual work. In addition, because we aimed to create a completely new kind of detergent, I entrusted the first stages of development to Kamimura, a new researcher, as I thought she would be able to freely innovate, unbound by the preconceptions of conventional development.”

 This bold endeavor was enabled by a culture that supports taking on new challenges within the research center. Kamimura stated, “I learned the importance of taking on challenges without being limited by conventional methods and had fun trying to increase the cleaning power more and more. Turning my ideas into reality also helped boost my confidence.”

Assuring Consumers’ Peace of Mind by Applying Past Knowledges alongside Researchers’ Continuous Pursuit Mindset

In developing new products and technologies, it is not uncommon to test several hundred formulations in one day due to the need to precisely balance ingredient types and amounts. Kamimura carefully looked up past research data, racked up successes and failures from the initial development stages onward, and devised an improved formulation. The deciding factor was development technologies and know-how related to products for overseas markets. Lion has accumulated research data from a wide range of perspectives beyond the conventional approaches found in Japan. This data led us to a novel formula not bound by the usual frameworks.

 Miyajima said, “There were concerns that the higher the cleaning power, the greater the risk of rough hands. We were confident that we could effectively approach this by leveraging the data and insights gleaned from the development of Mama Royal,* a dishwashing detergent launched in the 1970s that was created with a focus on preventing skin irritation while maintaining high detergency. The Mama Royal materials provided data about how such irritation is caused not just by stripping away oils, but also by the denaturing of proteins in the skin. Furthermore, there was an abundance of study results on formulations that offer high detergency with low skin irritation.”

Miyajima looking up research data accumulated from previous product development

By applying Lion’s wide range of technological data and conducting thorough studies, we strove to approach consumers’ every concern and need. As a result, we were confident that we could provide a product that consumers would feel comfortable using. 


*Mama Royal

A dishwashing detergent launched in response to heightened concerns over skin irritation from dishwashing detergents that provide new value by maintaining high detergency while being gentle on the hands.

Proposing New Ways of Using Detergents Based on the Bottle Shape while Pursuing Safety Rooted in the Consumer Perspective

The researchers verifying the effects of the formula and bottle shape by spraying grime samples

In an external consumer survey, the prototype garnered high praise, with over 90% of participants saying they would use the product. Furthermore, when the prototype was used by other department employee who is known for his strict evaluation gave us his endorsement, saying that, although they had thought it would be hard to feel how grime is removed, our product delivered a distinct experience of grime removal.

 Miyajima smiled as he recalled, “We were fairly confident that the detergency was significantly different from our products to date, but it was great to get these comments and hear that people really felt its cleaning power.”

 In addition to the formula, to achieve a distinct experience of cleaning power unlike any seen before, we focused on the shape of the bottle. For CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray, we decided to use a spray bottle capable of delivering the highly concentrated washing ingredients directly to the site of the targeted grime. Therefore, we needed to verify product performance from a perspective different from that used to assess dishwashing detergents in ordinary bottles.

 In light of CHARMY Magic One-Wash Clean Spray’s strong cleaning power targeting oily grime, we set its range of applications to encompass oily grime on stoves and the rest of the kitchen, not just dishes. We therefore needed to thoroughly confirm whether it was safe for use on a wide variety of materials. In addition, because the spray bottle releases the detergent in a mist (unlike a regular dishwashing detergent bottle), we had to consider such risks as accidental inhalation. The breadth of usage scenarios we had to imagine was far wider than that for existing dishwashing detergents in conventional bottles.

 Kamimura, who was in charge of identifying items to check, recalled, “We started by diligently collecting a wide range of information on spray detergents developed by Lion, including bath detergent cleaner. In addition, I identified a wide range of items that would need to be checked by imagining how I myself would use the product as a consumer and considering all the things that people might do with the product outside of its intended use. We then confirmed its safety by evaluating these items one by one.”

 Identifying checking items requires researchers to apply their own user experiences and perspectives as consumers. The diligent studies continued day after day.

 Kamimura went on, “Day after day, we were constantly spraying the product from prototype bottles to see if they clogged up or dribbled. We collaborated with the researchers developing the bottles to make minor adjustments to every parameter, from the shape of the bottle’s trigger nozzle to the diameter of the mist particles sprayed from the nozzle. At the same time, we continued to iterate on and improve the formula of the detergent, until we arrived at the optimal combination of bottle and formula.”

Continuing Research with a Commitment to Create Useful Products for Consumers

After CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray was finally launched, the two researchers looked back on what they learned during the development of this product.

 Kamimura gained a new intuitive understanding, telling us, “Since joining Lion, I’ve often heard people talk about creating a distinct user experience. I myself will often buy a product again if it makes me think ‘Oh, this is great’ when I try it. Since realizing that, I have been conducting research and development with a constant awareness of user experience, based on how products make consumers feel when they try them.”

 Radiating satisfaction and confidence, Miyajima remarked, “I am so happy when we receive positive feedback from consumers on a product I developed or I see people buying it in a store. I think a lot of the products I have worked on to date have been focused on balanced formulations that meet a wide range of needs. In contrast, we developed CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray by listening closely to consumers, focusing on unprecedented cleaning power specialized for oily grime. I think this enabled us to achieve a clearly distinct user experience of powerful detergency, a feat previously considered too difficult. I have developed a wide variety of products, but when I used CHARMY Magica One-Wash Cleaning Spray myself, as a consumer, it was honestly the most impressed and surprised I have ever been by a product’s grime removing power. Through this development, I was reminded of the importance of the consumer perspective and conducting research focused on user experience.”

 Lion’s research and development aims to create products that consumers think are good. Through these products, we will make a difference in everyday lives by redesigning habits. With this mission in mind, our research and development activities continue today.


Affiliations are as of the time of the interview. (Interviewed May 2022)

Development Leader Miyajima
With experience in developing laundry bleaches, he develops dishwashing detergents.
Researcher Kamimura
Since joining Lion, she has been developing dishwashing detergents.