8 Best Tried and True Japanese Melamine Sponges in 2022 (LEC, Azuma, and More)

Melamine sponges are popular because they can remove stubborn dirt and grime without using any soap. The raw material is a foam made from melamine resin. When combined with water, this kind of sponge becomes a powerful cleaning ally. They're good for screen doors, bathroom and shower, and especially for removing water stains on glass. There are a lot of products available, but not all are equal!


Our editors searched Japanese e-commerce sites such as Amazon, Rakuten, and Kakaku.com for the best melamine sponges available online. We then picked out the most popular products and tested them for three things:


  1. Ability to remove dirt
  2. Ease of use
  3. Durability


We then ranked the products and put what we learned into a buying guide to help you choose the best Japanese melamine sponges available online.

Featured in this article

mybest US Editors
  • Last updated: 08-22-2022
Table of Contents

How to Choose a Melamine Sponge- Buying Guide

There are 3 points to think about when choosing a melamine sponge.

① Look for a Product That Will Effectively Remove Dirt

① Look for a Product That Will Effectively Remove Dirt

These sponges all look basically the same, but performance varies greatly. Read online reviews (like this one!) and remember that price doesn't equate to quality.

② Choose the Right Size for the Job

② Choose the Right Size for the Job

The sponges come in two types: small cubes, and free-cut large sponges.


The small cubes are good for things like removing soap scum on bathroom faucets because they can be manipulated into tight places easily. Big sponges are best for bathroom mirrors and water stains on car windows and such.


We recommend having both types, so you can quickly tackle any cleaning job!

③ Consider Cost Performance

③ Consider Cost Performance

Most melamine sponges are not expensive, but sometimes you get what you pay for. If it takes more than one cube to get the area clean, you're not saving any money no matter how cheap it was. Read our reviews, and if you bought something that didn't work well, try a different manufacturer next time.

8 Best Japanese Melamine Sponges

We picked out some of the most popular products and tested them for effectiveness, ease of use, and durability.

Then, based on our tests, we ranked the top 8 Japanese melamine sponges available online.

Japanese prices for some of the products are given, but they've been converted into US dollars to make it easy for you.

Image
1
LEC Geki Ochi Poi Poi 1

LEC

2
LEC Kazuya Motegi's Melamine Cleaner 1

LEC

3
Ohe New Geki-kun Melamine Sponge 1

Ohe

4
Azuma Cleaner Eraser Jumbo 1

Azuma

Name

Geki Ochi Poi Poi

Kazuya Motegi's Melamine Cleaner

New Geki-kun Melamine Sponge

Cleaner Eraser Jumbo

Features

mybest's Top Choice! The Best Melamine Sponge!

Perfect for Getting into Corners

Recommended for its Affordable Price

Recommended If You Want to Cut Your Own Size

Price$1.60$8.10$1.50$3.70
Japaneseレック激落ち ポイポイ茂木和哉のメラミンクリーナーメラミンスポンジ NEW一撃くんおそうじ消しゴムJUMBO
Dirt removalA+ABB
UsabilityABAA
DurabilityA+AAC
Overall scoreA+AAB
Link
1
Japaneseレック激落ち ポイポイ
Dirt removalA+
UsabilityA
DurabilityA+
Overall scoreA+
2
Japanese茂木和哉のメラミンクリーナー
Dirt removalA
UsabilityB
DurabilityA
Overall scoreA
3
Japaneseメラミンスポンジ NEW一撃くん
Dirt removalB
UsabilityA
DurabilityA
Overall scoreA
4

AzumaCleaner Eraser Jumbo

$3.70

Japaneseおそうじ消しゴムJUMBO
Dirt removalB
UsabilityA
DurabilityC
Overall scoreB

Products That Didn't Make the Cut

And why they didn't quite make it.

Kokubo Mega Pika Melamine Sponge wasn't durable enough. Although it's pre-cut into little squares for you, it didn't work well and fell apart easily.

Top Value Melamine Sponge actually removed dirt well, but the texture is rough and it breaks apart during use. It's medium-sized, unlike some others that are too big or too small.

Whiz Pika King Free Cut just didn't remove grime and fell apart easily, too. We gave it our lowest ratings for both.

Mokku Beppin-san started to fall apart as soon as we applied force to scrub. It's not dense enough, and doesn't remove dirt well at all.

How We Tested the Sponges

How We Tested the Sponges

We put each of the sponges through 3 tests. Then we scored them on a scale from A+ to D.

Test ① Did It Remove Dirt and Scum?

Test ① Did It Remove Dirt and Scum?

Our editors wrote on a white plastic bath stool using a permanent marker to reproduce the toughest dirt. We checked how many times we had to scrub to remove it, and whether or not the ink was actually spread around and made worse by the sponge.


Although the results differed by manufacturer, dense sponges made by LEC performed well.

Test ② Was it Easy to Use?

Test ② Was it Easy to Use?

As we used the sponges, we checked how it felt. Was it the right size for most jobs? Was it dense enough to transfer our scrubbing force to the item?


We thought the small cube type was the most convenient. If you're in a hurry, choose that kind. If you're short on storage space, the big one that can be cut by hand may be better. A happy medium is the pre-cut type that can be easily separated without a knife or scissors.

Test ③ Did it Hold Up Well?

Test ③ Did it Hold Up Well?

Finally, we checked how durable each sponge was. Did it hold its shape? Did pieces break off? Even if it works well, if it falls apart easily, you'll have to spend more money.


We found that price didn't relate to durability. The best way to check is to touch the product and see how dense it is. Denser is generally better!

Some Precautions for Using Melamine Sponges

Some Precautions for Using Melamine Sponges

Melamine sponges work so well that you may be tempted to use them for everything. Don't!!!

These sponges should not be used on:


  • Finished or coated material such as waxed or lacquered items
  • Glossy plastic
  • Stainless steel
  • Printed materials or painted items
  • Wood

Be sure to check the manufacturer's instructions for use.

Some Precautions for Using Melamine Sponges

Never, ever use a melamine sponge on your body!


Some people used to think it was a good idea to use these products to clean your teeth, but it's not at all. Using these on any part of your body is very dangerous. No matter how badly you want that permanent marker to come off your child's hands, this isn't the way to do it!

Author: Nao Kondo/Translation: Susan Lucier-Ogawa/Photos: Taisei Hoshino, Koichi Miura

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