Our innovation

Since the company’s establishment, we have generated numerous innovations.
As an R&D company, continuously generating innovation is Kikuboshi’s mission.

Now used by 50% of salons in Japan: a hair coloring protective cream that ensures that only the hair, and not the scalp, is dyed

The standard cream for protecting the scalp during hair color treatments is cold cream. However, cold cream has the disadvantages of causing uneven coloring if it gets on the hair, and hair dye getting on the scalp. Accordingly, salons were asking us, “Is there any hair coloring protective cream that ensures that only the hair, and not the scalp, is dyed?” And so we began developing just such a product. However, our development efforts faced difficulties as we were told by various technical experts that the hair and the scalp have virtually the same organizational structure; creating such a cream is impossible. Be that as it may, such discouragement serves only to demonstrate our R&D strength—if someone tells us something does not exist or cannot be done it only makes us more determined to create or do that very thing.

As the result of trial and error to overturn the conventional wisdom of that time, we focused out attention on the penetration mechanisms of hair and skin on the scalp. We discovered that oil penetrates the scalp and hair at different speeds. From this discovery, we thought about how protection creams are processed, creating various ingredient combinations and several thousands of prototypes, which then underwent repeated treatment testing several hundreds of times. Ultimately, we successfully developed a protective cream that dyes only hair, not the scalp, which until then had been unthinkable.

When this product was first launched, it was too revolutionary for salons to believe it was possible, but two years after its launch the product had gained the top market share.

We want to be honest for our customers: leading the world in labeling cosmetics with ingredients and amounts of each ingredient.

Prior to 2001, cosmetics product labels were not required to list all ingredients. Kikuboshi is the company that took the lead in the cosmetics industry in displaying the ingredient contents on the labels of cosmetics products. COCO NATURA is a carefully crafted cosmetics brand that Kikuboshi has created to enable people with sensitive skin to use cosmetics products safely and with peace of mind. Even now, 15 years after its launch, COCO NATURA remains a popular cosmetics brand.

Believing in the skin’s natural strength, COCO NATURA has a simple formula. Excluding water, the body soap comprises only four ingredients. Skin and hair are naturally full of life force and have a moist, radiant beauty. COCO NATURA utilizes blessings of nature carefully selected to draw out the natural beauty of the hair and skin, focusing on a simple formula. The act of washing the body every day required correct knowledge. Looking at magnified images of the skin’s surface, you can see that the surface has an uneven structure that makes it easy for residue to remain on the skin. Precisely for this reason, we have focused on using only 100% natural ingredients. After COCO NATURA has been used for around one week, the product blends into the skin, maintaining the skin’s naturally moist, soft glow. COCO NATURA comprises a formula that has been devised giving consideration to the skin, and therefore does not contain preservatives or other additives. The skin itself has amazing functions for maintaining its natural optimal balance. COCO NATURA is a beauty-treatment body soap created with the aim of drawing on the skin’s natural functions to achieve optimal balance in the stratum corneum (outer layer of skin).

Heat + vibrations = realization of straight hair that does not kink or frizz, even on rainy days

In order to straighten wavy or curly hair, heat and perming agents are used; with strong curls, however, perming agents break the hair’s cysteine bonds, even when heat is used, and even when the bods are reformed the same straight hair becomes difficult to achieve, enabling the waves to return with humidity, which has been a concern. Using perming agents and heating hair for long periods of time weakens and damages the hair, and so there are limits on the extent to which hair can be straightened without damage.

“We want to realize lustrous straight hair without damage.”

In order to resolve this eternal problem, we research methods for applying vibrations to the hair as an alternative stressor to heat. In particular, we focused on vibrations of 20,000 Hz or below. We learned that, when perm treatments are carried out while vibrations are applied to the hair, the perming agent penetrated deep into the cortex inside each hair as the vibrations break the hair’s cysteine bonds even more finely. In addition to perm treatments, this technology can be used in everyday hair care, making it possible to smoothly straighten or curl hair by applying vibrations to the irons without pulling the hair.

  • [Vibrations not applied.]

    Large amounts of perming agent have stopped penetration near the surface of the hair.

  • [Vibrations applied.]

    Large amounts of perming agent have penetrated deep inside the hair.

This image shows how perming agent penetrates deeper inside the hair when vibrations are applied.
These vibrational irons have been patented not only in Japan but also in North America.

Kikuboshi’s product quality, recognized by the world

Kikuboshi produces between 20 and 30 new products each year and holds many patents both in Japan and overseas. Moreover, the high quality of these products has been recognized by organizations that evaluate product quality such as Monde Selection and iTQi, receiving numerous awards. In future, we will continue to develop highly unique products that will bring joy to the hearts of customers.

The Good Design Award is Japan’s only comprehensive design evaluation and commendation system. Not stopping at cosmetics products, Kikuboshi has also received this prize for scissors used by hair stylists. Moreover, the company has received the Award for Outstanding Compliance in Reporting Corporate Tax, Taito-ku, an award given only to companies that have declared and paid tax correctly and have excellent management practices. Kikuboshi has also received numerous awards from Monde Selection and iTQi, international award systems based in Belgium that evaluate the quality of products, which recognize the high quality of these products. Moreover, Kikuboshi has patented numerous products both in Japan and overseas.

Research Center Director Nishioka

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