Ken Suzuki (× Creative Director) × Tsuyoshi Yanagimoto (Head of Hair Salon Lily)
A HAIR IRON WAS BORN TO ENRICH THE HEART.
A HAIR IRON WAS BORN TO ENRICH THE HEART.
A hair iron was born to enrich the heart.
The purpose of beauty is not only the pursuit of beauty. The elimination of worries is also an important purpose. Among the problems related to hair, "curly hair straightening" has attracted attention in recent years. The beauty appliance brand cadocuora has developed a revolutionary hair iron "BI-G1" in partnership with Beauty Garage Co., Ltd., a leading company in the beauty industry, and Tsuyoshi Yanagimoto (representative of Lily), a hairdresser who is a specialist in curly hair straightening. Mr. Yanagimoto and Ken Suzuki, the creative director of cado, discussed the secret story of the development.
Major problems with curly hair straightening
―― In 2018, the beauty equipment brand "cadocuora" launched a noseless hair dryer called "BD-E1" called P form, and it has received high evaluation. And the next beauty appliance I chose was a hair iron that is often used in hair salons.
Ken Suzuki (hereinafter Suzuki)
This project started in May 2019. Since it is a product that I have never made before, I asked Mr. Yanagimoto, who had appeared in many media as an expert in curly hair straightening, to cooperate.
Yanagimoto (hereinafter Yanagimoto) I run Lily, a hair salon specializing in comb cutting, curly hair straightening, and hair quality improvement in Omotesando,Tokyo. Hair irons are a tool I often use, so it was very interesting for cados, who are strong in design, to enter the field. I've loved cado's products for a long time, and I've been using humidifiers, so what kind of products can I make? There was also a sense of an expectation.
Suzuki: First of all, Mr. Yanagimoto sucked up the current situation and dissatisfaction surrounding hair irons. It was more than I expected, but anyway, it was just what I thought.
Hair irons are often used to solve problems and complexes such as hair loss and curly hair straightening. And curly hair straightening is a high-risk treatment that all processes cannot fail, and it is considered to be the most difficult of the hairdresser's techniques. I thought that it was necessary to create an environment where it was easy for hairdressers to work because it was not only the theory on the desk but also the technology that experience means. Drugs for stretching hair have evolved considerably. In addition, it is true that salons that specialize in curly hair straightening transmit information on SNS, etc., making it easier than ever to learn technology. However, the most important hair iron has hardly evolved.
Suzuki: We are "amateurs" when it comes to hair irons, so all the stories were fresh.To be honest, without Mr. Yanagimoto's cooperation, I think it would not have been possible to commercialize it. It's not exaggerated.
Yanagimoto: It was a challenging project for me. The hair iron brand used in the field has not changed since about 15 years ago when I started as a hairdresser, and the shape has hardly evolved. In the first place, there is little information about hair irons, and it is difficult to know what to use. Therefore, I often choose what I used in seniors and salons as it is. But whether it's right for you is a different story.
Suzuki: There seems to have been a lot of dissatisfaction with the current hair iron.
Yanagimoto: What I always thought about during the treatment was that I wanted to attack the roots of my hair more. However, the hair iron used is almost impossible to do to the last minute because of its structure. In addition, since the treatment lasts for a long time, dissatisfaction comes out by all means, including ease of having and ease of having around. Hairdressers who are particular about curly hair straightening may customize hair irons to make them easier to use.
On the contrary, hair irons, which should be tools for curly hair straightening, had become bottlenecks.
Yanagimoto: There are many people who are suffering from curly hair straightening, but there are also people who have suffered further from failure due to lack of skills of hairdressers. Because it is a riskey treatment that can not be missed, if not only drugs but also hair irons evolve as well, failure will be less. It should be a great benefit for both hairdressers and customers.
Suzuki: This time, I was working with Mr. Yanagimoto, and what surprised me the most was that I had words. It was my first time working with a hairdresser, but I thought that a professional who expresses beauty has a sensibility. However, Mr./Ms. Yanagimoto clarified the problem of the current hair iron in words immediately. That's why I quickly understood what I needed to do in terms of design and how to clear it in terms of technology.
Clear professional language will be a development tip
――cado has made so-called products for the general public. Compared to national brands that make products for a wide range of targets, we are narrowing down the expected target, but we are still trying to develop products with a wide user base in mind. However, the hair iron "BI-G1" must be recognized by professional hairdressers.
First of all, we had a clear goal of creating something that would convince Mr. Yanagimoto. However, it is that there is no rough compromise "It will be all right by this". The issues to be cleared are clear, but instead, it was difficult to have no escape.
Yanagimoto: That's exactly what I had to do with the trial work, so I had it re-created from scratch. The design of the work was good, but if the tip is thin and the hand becomes thicker, the fit in the hand is bad.
Suzuki: It was a work that could be used properly, but he pointed out clearly where the deficiencies were, so I could see the improvements, and I immediately moved on to the next step. "BI-G1" must be a "professional tool" to the last.
Yanagimoto: I was also happy that I was able to convey such seriousness. I also responded properly to the hope that it was a hair iron that could attack the base of the hair, which I was most particular about.
In the process of attacking the base of the hair to the last minute, it is important to clearance the treatment part at the tip and the plate part where heat enters. The plate part and the treatment part must be almost the same size, and there was a demand that the treatment part be considerably thinner.
Yanagimoto: "BI-G1" has almost the same size as the treatment part and plate. I think that the clearance to the edge is not 1mm. I had the plate spread to the last minute.
Suzuki: It was also difficult to develop plate materials. The plate requires smooth, hair-friendly sliding and moderate tension required for curly hair straightening. In order to satisfy this requirement, the prototype had a special Teflon sheet attached to the surface of the almiplate. As a result, I was able to achieve a very smooth slide, but Mr. Yanagimoto immediately put in a bad start.
Yanagimoto: If you put a material on the surface of the plate, the temperature will be uneven by all means.
Suzuki: That's where we made it a way to coat fluororesin. In order to achieve both smooth slippage and moderate tension, we prepared four types of fluorine resins of different formulations and pursued optimal conditions. In addition, the plate itself was prototyped many times. It was also hard to find the ideal shape of the groove to engrave on the plate.
There are many hair irons with flat plates, but in this case, it was necessary to apply tension while moving the iron finely by myself. If there is a groove in the plate, the unevenness of the groove picks up the undulation of the comb well, and such a trick is unnecessary because the hair is solved. As a result of various examinations, we made three grooves.
Suzuki: In addition, grooves make it easier to control water vapor, so you can attack the hair well without burdening the scalp. In addition, considering the pressure on the hair, I made it a suspension mechanism where the plate part sinks. I'm particular about how it sinks, so that only one plate sinks.
Yanagimoto: There are types of existing products where the plate sinks, but there is no such thing as thin. Thanks to this thinness, it is possible to attack the root of the hair.
Suzuki: The speed of temperature control was also requested by Mr. Yanagimoto. I was conscious that it quickly raised to the appropriate temperature of 180 °C and returned to 180 °C immediately even if the temperature lowered at the time of treatment. In order to achieve this, we initially tested multiple sensors by temperature band, but we did not get the results we expected. After much consideration, we finally achieved the expected results by adopting a dual control system that combines a temperature sensor with our own digital control. Mr. Yanagimoto uses the work that was made in this way, receives feedback, and improves it. That was a repetition, was it?
Yanagimoto: The test of the work was done with the hair of my customers. Of course, using a hair iron under development is a good explanation, and I knew that my skills and experience wouldn't make a big mistake. But above all, because it is a new technology, I want to try it in a realistic situation. I worked on it seriously.
Designed as a "professional tool"
―― Even if the function as a hair iron is realized by sucking up the precise opinion of the professional, there is no meaning if a beautiful design like cado is added there. "BI-G1" is an unprecedented hair iron born from the fusion of functionality and design.
This time, each and every one of the development processes was completely different from cadocuola dryers, let of the products we have had so far. In the first place, it is natural that different opinions will be expressed between the product making side and the sales side, but this time we must also match the opinions of professionals who use the product. However, as a result, I think we were able to achieve high-level manufacturing.
Yanagimoto: As I had wanted, the base of the hair became a plate that was easy to attack, and because the treatment part was thin, the erring became better, and difficult places such as behind the ears and around the hair became easy to attack. In addition, by scraping off the excess meat of the main body, the ratio of the plate to the existing product has increased. This makes the work even more efficient. Moreover, it is considerably light.
Suzuki: I made more than 100g lighter than existing products. In the professional model, the length of the code is also 3.5 m, which is more than 1 m longer than for general users. If there is no Mr. Yanagimoto, referring to the existing product, "Is it this much?" I would have decided the specifications in the atmosphere. However, Yanagimoto is not ambiguous, and there is a clear answer as to why such lightness is necessary and why he wants a code of this length. By looking ahead to the benchmarking products and combining them with professional opinions, we were able to reach a goal that was beyond our goal, even though it was the first product to be used as a hair iron. It is because of Mr. Yanagimoto's words.
I'm always thinking about ideals, so it may have become a clear word. However, for me, a lot of moyamoya related to curly hair straightening were solved.
Suzuki: I was satisfied with the functional aspect, but how was the design?
Yanagimoto: Isn't it quite difficult to firmly balance design while having such a function? If it is a function priority, it is easy to look wild, so I have the impression that I put it together well. It is simple, yet has a presence, and I think that unpretentious coolness is cado-like, but it embodies it splendidly.
Suzuki: Thank you. General products will also need a design to stand out in the sales area. However, this time, it is a product used by professional hairdressers at hair salons, etc., and I wanted to establish it as a "professional tool". Isn't the hairdresser's tool cool? Scissors or leather pouches. I wanted the design to be established even if it entered such a world. There may have been about three times as many requirements as the products we had developed so far to put together the required performance and usability in a beautiful design.
Yanagimoto: Thanks to that, it is well received by the staff.
Suzuki: That's nice, isn't it? cado has an equation of "the heart × (technology and beauty)." Beautiful design and good technology are essential to create attractive products. The BI-G1 hair iron was able to achieve this. In addition, the part ×", "the heart of the heart", was also smoothly addicted this time. Simple and good things tend to be simple, but cado's products become a flower of space. I want it to be not only conspicuous, but also something that creates a good atmosphere. Even if this hair iron is just placed in the dressing room or washbasan, I think it will add a flower to it.
Even though it is a high-function hair iron that professionals also use, it is wonderful that such a design is good. Moreover, since it is easy to take around, I would like to recommend it to hairdressers who want to start curly hair straightening from now on. Hair irons are treated close to people's skin, so it's scary at first. That's why I want you to choose a tool that you can feel safe with. A badly available hair iron is like driving a car you're not used to, for example. If you can't control it like a limb, you can't run in the city with peace of mind. Similarly, it is better to be using a hair iron as an extension of your hand. Because curly hair straightening is a risky treatment, using a tool that is easy to manage will lead to a sense of security, and failure due to lack of technology will be reduced. It is also a big advantage for customers who go to beauty salon hair salons.
Suzuki: Yanagimoto-san has a lot of commitment to tools at the end of his words, so why?
Yanagimoto: I always use the best tools. It becomes unclear whether the cause when the treatment actually does not go well is in my arm or in the tool when it is an idea "It is good with such a tool because it is a beginner ?c?c". But if it's the best tool, you know you're the cause of your failure. The best way to notice a problem is to use the best tools.
Suzuki: This BI-G1 was developed for professional use, but will also be sold to the general public. Are there any benefits to users inging with the "best tools"?
Yanagimoto: Of course. Hair irons can also be purchased at mass retailers, but there are many that have good plate slipping. However, it is also difficult to curl, style, and care because the hair is easy to escape. In that respect, "BI-G1" has an appropriate hook, so it is difficult for hair to escape and it is easy to make a hairstyle. So if you're used to hair ironing, you'll be familiar with it. In addition, curly hair straightening begins to swell after 2 to 3 months, but with "BI-G1", it is easy to care because it can be attacked to the root.
Suzuki: Bi-G1 is a hair iron developed as a professional tool for hairdressers, but I would be happy if its performance and ease of possible having it help to eliminate the complex of hair.
Mr. Yanagimoto, thank you very much this time.
Representative of Lily
Born in Tokushima Prefecture in 1985. After working at two hair salons in Tokyo for a total of six years, he became independent. After a career as a freelance hairdresser, he opened Lily in Omotesando, Tokyo in November 2014. As a "master of combing and curly hair straightening", he has gained overwhelming support from women suffering from hair quality and damage.