Earlier this month, Japanese manufacturer Kaltech launched its latest cosmetic technological innovation to the US market for the first time. As shared by Jacqueline Nakao, Senior Managing Director of Marketing and Planning at Kaltech, the development and release of the Yuragi Junsui Première marks the world’s first beauty humidifier utilizing photocatalytic technology, which offers “a safer alternative to chemical cleaning which mimics nature’s photochemical process.”
A photocatalyst is a material that uses light to produce a chemical reaction, and in Kaltech’s application of this process, the company hopes to leverage this technology into “becoming an instrumental part of the global cosmetics and beauty care industry.” We spoke to Nakao to learn more about the development of this innovative new device and its potential impact on manufacturers and suppliers to the cosmetics and personal care product industries.
About the Yuragi Junsui Première
Having already achieved success in the photocatalytic air purifier industry, the Kaltech research and development team decided to turn to the cosmetics industry with the Yuragi humidifier, which marks the company’s transition from producing air purification devices to water purification.
“Based on past success, we felt confident about entering a new market in the United States and beauty” with this device, shared Nakao. “Through our research, we quickly learned that for many beauty product users, skin care with age-defying results was a highly sought-after experience. Thus, we combined our pre-existing technology with our customer needs to develop the Yuragi,” she explained.
The company has rich experience in utilizing photocatalytic technology to remove impurities, and the Yuragi “humidifier uses tap water, not distilled water like most humidifiers do,” she said. Consisting of a “dual filter technology that uses a unique cartridge to eliminate chlorine and minerals typically found in tap water,” the device eliminates chlorine and other minerals that can be harsh on skin, and can result in dullness, dryness, or irritation.
“The built-in photocatalytic plates keep any water that has accumulated in the tray clean and free of bacteria and other contaminants,” Nakao explained. This is crucial to the humidifier’s efficacy as it “eliminates the need for daily water changes and ensures that only the purest water moisturizes and nourishes the skin,” she shared.
The devices design also features an ultrasonic sprayer with two attachment nozzles, which make it easier for moisture to penetrate the skin barrier. “The first feature makes the surface tension of water molecules become weaker,” said Nakao, “while the second feature has water molecules that are only four to five microns in diameter.” This ensures that when a consumer uses the Yuragi device, they experience the greatest possible moisture benefit to the skin.
Challenges to device development
As detailed by Nakao, the most pressing challenge when developing the Yuragi device was to find “the right application for a new technology,” and the team needed to experiment “a great deal with the actual dispersion and water droplet size of the mist, which directly influenced product design,” she said.
To address this challenge, the research and development team ultimately “developed two settings for the Yuragi for two very different scenarios,” Nakao explained. The first setting, ‘beauty mode’ resulted in larger water droplets “to create an immediate sensation on the skin.” Further, in ‘humidifier mode,’ “the droplets are much smaller to allow for natural dispersion throughout a room,” she added.
Adjustments like these were crucial to a successful product launch as “these seemingly small changes have a big impact in the way our customers experience our products day to day,” she said.
Plans for future innovation
The Yuragi launch is relatively new, and newer still to the US market, but the Kaltech team is already working on further technology innovations in this space. Said Nakao “in the coming months, we plan to launch additional versions of the Yuragi.”
Kaltech is “thrilled to enter the U.S. market and looks forward to sharing more on future products” soon. With further expansion on the horizon, it will be interesting to see the consumer response to this innovative technology as the year progresses.