Clothes washing and ironing in Japan

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I discovered this survey following some Japan visitor mentioning that everyone seemed neatly turned out, but retorted that ironing seems infrequent, and most of the well-ironed clothes are likely from the dry cleaner’s. So I did a quick Google search for data to back up my supposition, and found this survey from Sankei Living and P&G into clothes washing and ironing.

The survey also mentioned that in 2016 people did on average 6.4 washes per week, down from 8.6 in 2011, but in the same period the weight of clothes per load increased from 2.6 kg to 3.1 kg per load, so a weekly total of 22.4 kg in 2011 to 19.8 kg in 2016.

We do a washing every day, but my wife never irons, and I do a couple of shirts and a pair of trousers once every week. My mother always ironed, right down to socks and underpants, though.

Here’s a typical washing day scene in a Japanese flat:

Cleaning time in my place !

Research results

Q1: How do you want to change how often you wash clothes? (Sample size=800)

Current frequency is fine
43.9%
Want to decrease
54.9%
Want to increase
1.3%

Q2: Do you know that if you leave clothes unwashing dirt becomes harder to remove? (Sample size=800)

Yes
83.5%
No
16.5%

Q3: How do you want to change how often you iron clothes? (Sample size=800)

Current frequency is fine
38.0%
Want to decrease
60.6%
Want to increase
1.4%

Q4: How often do you iron clothes? (Sample size=800)

 
Twice or more per week
Once a week
Once, twice a month
Less than that
Never
Full-time workers
N=196
22.4%
25.0%
14.3%
25.5%
12.8%
Part-time workers
N=302
34.5%
25.8%
17.5%
16.2%
6.0%
Housewives
N=266
35.0%
24.4%
12.0%
18.4%
10.2%

Q5: What stresses you regarding washing clothes? (Sample size=800, multiple answer)

 
Washing
Drying
Folding
Full-time workers
N=196
11.2%
28.6%
35.7%
Part-time workers
N=302
9.9%
19.9%
32.5%
Housewives
N=266
7.5%
12.0%
28.6%

Q6: Compared to five years ago, how much more efficient have you become? (Sample size=800)

Q6A: Ironing

Much less
3.9%
A little less
11.9%
About the same
65.4%
A little more
14.1%
Much more
4.8%

Q6B: Vacuuming

Much less
2.9%
A little less
16.1%
About the same
51.9%
A little more
24.1%
Much more
5.0%

Q6C: Clothes washing

Much less
2.1%
A little less
9.4%
About the same
54.1%
A little more
29.0%
Much more
5.4%

Q6D: Dish washing

Much less
1.4%
A little less
6.0%
About the same
50.8%
A little more
29.9%
Much more
12.0%

Q6E: Cooking

Much less
6.0%
A little less
11.5%
About the same
43.9%
A little more
34.1%
Much more
7.9%

Demographics

Between the 2nd and 6th of August 2017 800 women between the ages of 20 and 59 (with an average age of 42.0 years old) completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 24.5% of the sample were in full-time work, 37.8% in part-time or casual work, and 33.3% were full-time housewives.

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