So, I know there's すっきり for neat rooms etc., ぴかぴか for something shiny, and きゅうきゅう for cleaning itself, but is there an onomatopoeia in Japanese to show that something has just been washed or cleaned enough to squeak?

きゅうきゅう sounds close, but I don't feel like it can be used for the state of being clean itself.

Interestingly, I found this question about 'squeaky clean' when searching for this...

  • 2
    きゅうきゅう for cleaning itself -- You mean きゅっきゅっ, no? E.g. 「きゅっきゅっと磨く」- polish clean, cf. 「きゅうきゅうに詰める」- pack tightly
    – chocolate
    Jan 27, 2022 at 0:55
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    Fun fact: floors would literally squeak. Some say it functioned as intruder detection back then.
    – dungarian
    Jan 27, 2022 at 4:10
  • @chocolate, thank you, I didn't notice that. Now that you mention it, the site that I sometimes revisit to review these (nhk.or.jp/lesson/english/soundwords) indeed says きゅっきゅっ (Lesson 23). Seems like I mistook those っ for う when learning it. However, jisho.org has an entry for きゅうきゅう (which it translates as 'squeak') and no entry for 'きゅっきゅっ'
    – Vladimir
    Jan 27, 2022 at 12:27
  • @dungarian, didn't know that too. Then I guess, this is really a not well-known thing. Even though it is really interesting. Thank you
    – Vladimir
    Jan 27, 2022 at 12:28

2 Answers 2


According to スキンケア商品のオノマトペと感嘆詞の評価 by a cosmetic company.

It would be つるつる,すべすべ,ぴちぴち,さらさら,すーすー,etc. and I will add the table later.

enter image description here

  • Thank you. I actually found つるつる when searching, but I thought it was only used for shiny floors. ぴちぴち sounds like it can be used for dishes. Judging by dictionary entries, it is quite a useful onomatopoeia
    – Vladimir
    Jan 27, 2022 at 12:36
  • I think it would be useful if you also try to explain any difference between those examples in their usage, nuance, etc.
    – a20
    Jan 27, 2022 at 12:36
  • Both are used for also skins. For the floor, きゅっきゅっ sounds the most common onomatopoeia for squeaky clean. ぴちぴち is suitable for fresh skin, so it can not be used for dishes in that sense. Jan 27, 2022 at 12:41
  • @a20 Thanks for the suggestion. I am typing on tablet, so it's more forusing on search. Jan 27, 2022 at 12:44
  • Now, having looked at the PDF, I am very impressed that there are people who study that. The world has proven itself interesting in yet another way
    – Vladimir
    Jan 28, 2022 at 13:08

maybe Kyuukyuu no hada? Not sure if your nuance is just for literally something clean or a "squeaky clean image" kind of thing. I'd be curious to know about the clean image nuance, but nothing came up. My husband (Japanese) said there's a dish-soap brand that's kyuukyuu or squeaky clean because it cuts oils and makes that sound. Hope that helps!

  • Thank you. Just to clarify: by 'hada' you meant 肌, right? I don't know any other 'hada' (yet, at least), so it would be like 'cleanly polished surface'
    – Vladimir
    Jan 27, 2022 at 12:25
  • a dish-soap brand that's kyuukyuu ああ、花王のキュキュットね... 「きゅうきゅう」じゃなくて「キュキュッと」
    – chocolate
    Jan 27, 2022 at 13:35

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