Affordable and Powerful! Best 5 Laundry Detergents in Japan for Indoor Drying

Many people in Japan dry their clothes indoors during the rainy and pollen seasons, or because they are not home during the day. This article introduces Japanese laundry detergents recommended for drying clothes indoors, and tips for indoor drying.


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1. Attack Highly-Active Bio-EX (Kao)

This is an extremely recognizable product among Japanese people, famous for its slogan: "Just one spoonful will bring out amazing whiteness." Highly rated for its cleaning power, this laundry detergent effectively removes mud and oil stains.
It is also great when drying laundry indoors, as very little of the odor from the drying laundry remains. The small package includes a measuring spoon so that you can measure out the detergent without getting it on your hands.
Its affordability and cleaning power makes it a favorite of mine, and it is particularly recommended for large families and those with young children.
It has the slightly nostalgic scent of floral soap, so whenever I use it, I am reminded of my childhood when I would help my mother put laundry up to dry.

Guide price: 365 JPY (incl. tax)
*Available at drugstores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi and Sundrug as well as at big-box retailers.

2. Heyaboshi (Hang-to-Dry Indoors) TOP Antibacterial EX (LION)

An all-rounder developed specifically for indoor drying with outstanding cleaning, antibacterial, and odor-blocking powers. It eliminates not just dirt, but even viruses from the fibers, and therefore is a great ally during the flu and pollen seasons.
It has a bright citrus scent so that the laundered clothing smells fresh, which I especially appreciate during the rainy season.
The lid has a flap that makes it easier to open and close, and it also closes tightly so that there is no danger that the contents will spill out even if the box is knocked over.
The laundry tends to come out a little brittle due to the cleansing power, so you should use a softener along with it if you like your laundry soft.

Guide price: 324 JPY (incl. tax)
*Available at drugstores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi and Sundrug as well as at big-box retailers.

3. Top Super NANOX for Odors Pump Bottle (LION)

A laundry detergent specially formulated to combat unwanted odors caused by sweat, tobacco, and dampness from air-drying. NANOX's unique cleansing components and nano deodorizing enzymes sink deep into the fibers to break up and eliminate odor-causing grime, while antibacterial components suppress the propagation of odor-causing bacteria to protect clothes from bacteria for up to 48 hours after washing!
This powerful laundry detergent even comes in an innovative pump bottle so that you can dispense the laundry detergent with one hand without worrying about spillage. It is a clear bottle, so you will know to refill it before it runs out.
I recently started using this laundry detergent, and I may not be able to stop thanks to its outstanding ease of use.

Guide price: 492 JPY (incl. tax)
*Available at drugstores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi and Sundrug as well as at big-box retailers.

4. Attack Antibacterial EX Super Clear Gel (Kao)

Drying laundry indoors is always a challenge. If space is limited, it may be difficult to keep items apart from each other enough to let the air through, so you may end up with funky odors.
Attack Antibacterial EX Super Clear Gel is the laundry detergent that solves the issues of drying laundry indoors. It has superior antibacterial powers, suppresses bacteria within the wash water, and thoroughly eliminates dirt and smells so that unwanted odors do not appear even if the clothes are dried in close proximity to each other. It is also low in suds, so you only need to rinse once and can shorten your wash cycle. With low water and energy usage, it is noteworthy as an environmentally friendly product.

Guide price: 334 JPY (incl. tax)
*Available at drugstores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi and Sundrug as well as at big-box retailers.

5. sarasa (P&G JAPAN)

Powerful laundry detergents can have irritants in them, so people with babies or sensitive skin may be reluctant to use them.
Recommended for those people is sarasa: a laundry detergent with no brighteners, chlorine, or colorants. High-activity organic enzymes break up and eliminate stubborn stains, and natural tree extracts gently protect the fibers so that the laundry comes out amazingly soft and gentle to the touch.
The freshly washed clothes have a bright citrus scent that blocks unpleasant odors that may appear when drying clothes indoors.
The laundry only needs to be rinsed once for it to become nice and clean, making your everyday laundry routine a much simpler task.

Guide price: 428 JPY (incl. tax)
*Available at drugstores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi and Sundrug as well as at big-box retailers.

How to Quickly Air-Dry Laundry Without It Smelling

In Japan, a humid country with a rainy season, there are many antibacterial, odor-blocking laundry detergents on the market, but they will only be half as effective if you don't dry your laundry correctly.
When laundry is dried indoors, it remains damp for a while, allowing odor-causing bacteria to breed on dirt that wasn't completely eliminated. So, here is how to quickly dry your laundry to prevent it from getting smelly:
・When the wash cycle is complete, hang the laundry up immediately;
・Leave space between each item so that air can circulate;
・Hang items such as towels so that the longer section hangs down and there is as little overlap as possible;
・Expose the laundry directly to air using a dehumidifier, air purifier, or fan.

These small adjustments can help overcome indoor drying issues, so be sure to give them a try.

This article introduced recommended detergents and tricks for drying clothes indoors during the rainy season. Be sure to give them a try!


*This article was published on WOW! JAPAN. Click here to see a list of WOW! JAPAN articles.

The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.

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