Dish soap is dish soap: practical, utilitarian, and (as long as you pick the right brand) efficient. Equally standard are the receptacles dish soap comes in—until now. As of this year, Dawn (the makers of the grease-destroying dish soap you know and love) has launched a new dish soap bottle that’s bound to shake up your dish-doing routine and save you some bottle-shaking at the same time.
Dubbed the Dawn EZ-Squeeze, the new bottle design literally flips the classic Dawn bottle on its head, with a few other upgrades. Like the inverted condiment bottles that are now mainstays in homes and restaurants around the country, the new bottle eliminates any need for shaking the bottle while washing dishes or propping it upside down between uses to make sure you get every drop of dish soap.
The flipped bottle means the soap is always draining downward and in the direction of the dispenser, so you don’t have to flip and hold (and shake) the bottle and then wait for the soap to trickle down before you can use it. Even better, the updated bottle has a first-of-its-kind self-sealing valve that protects against leaks and eliminates the need to flip a cap with sudsy hands while you’re actively doing the dishes, saving you a step and more than a little hassle. (And we tested it out—that leak-free cap truly is leak-proof.)
The five-year effort to create this new bottle began with the Dawn team revisiting how they could make the dish soap bottle even better. According to Corey Brugh, senior brand manager, North America Hand Dish at P&G (the producer of Dawn), “some of the answers were right in front of us.”
In their research, the Dawn team visits real users’ homes to see how they’re using the product, and Brugh says the team realized people were going to a lot of effort to make using their dish soap easier and more efficient, doing things that a re-done bottle could potentially do for them.
“When consumers get to the end of the packaging where there’s just a little bit [of dish soap] left, there’s a lot of compensating behaviors: Things and behaviors that consumers are doing that are telling us, ‘Hey, there’s a change that we can probably make to make the experience better,’” Brugh says.
Thus began the process to ensure that the new bottle could rest on the cap without tipping or leaking while maintaining the user’s ability to easily control how much soap they pour. As with traditional dish soap bottles, a simple squeeze of the new bottle pours the dish soap—but when you stop squeezing, the soap stops pouring, allowing you to tidily place the bottle right where you found it, no flipping required.
Beyond just removing the need to flip the bottle at any point, the Dawn team also looked at other methods for making dish-washing easier: Namely, removing the need to open any sort of lid or cap at all. In addition to making the process a tiny bit easier for a standard user, removing the lid had the major added benefit of making the bottle more accessible for anyone differently abled. Those with mobility or dexterity issues will find that they can use (and store) the bottle with just one hand, and without fumbling with a small cap or trying to squeeze or pull a small nozzle.
“We were trying to make this as easy as possible for consumers,” Brugh says. “This is the number-two most-hated chore, right? ... [We thought], ‘Hey, everybody washes dishes. How do we make it easier on everybody?’”
Making use easier turned into making it possible to use it with just one hand—something at-home dish-washers of all shapes, sizes, and abilities can appreciate.
“It really came down to, ‘How do we remove steps?’” Brugh says. “It was one of our criteria to say, ‘This needs to be so easy that you can do it with one hand.’ You don’t want two hands to manipulate the packaging, flip open the cap.”
The Dawn team’s efforts were rewarded, Brugh says. He says that, during testing, users remarked upon how efficient the new bottle design is, and a tester with rheumatoid arthritis even called out that people like themselves sometimes just needed things that were easier to use—a need the new grab-and-squeeze use of the bottle fulfills.
“We’re just hoping that consumers really have an upgraded experience,” Brugh says of the final product, which features a clean aesthetic and more modern shape than the classic bottle—and even boasts a new, more powerful formula from Dawn that cleans grease faster in Dawn EZ-Squeeze Platinum versions. (The new bottles will be available with both the Platinum and the Classic dish soap formulas.)
While the new EZ-Squeeze bottle won’t replace the classic bottle—both will appear on store shelves, Brugh says—it does offer an alternative (and more accessible) option for anyone who needs or wants it. And who doesn’t want something that will make an every day chore like washing dishes a little easier?
Dawn EZ-Squeeze is widely available in stores and online nationwide as of early 2022.