In Japan, you don't see a lot of hair - apart from on top of the head or blocking up the plug hole.
There are few moustaches, and if someone has a beard it's usually a fake one bought from a novelty shop. Excessive hair seems to be a big no-no.
For women in particular, a hairy arm could be a cause of embarrassment. Two hairy arms would be twice as bad.
Anti-hair manufacturers across the nation are constantly bringing out new products to keep the bristles at bay.
But now it seems like the definitive product (another one) is finally here. It's the no-no shaver. The first no refers to no hair. The second no refers, reassuringly, to no pain.
The no-no shaver was featured on a recent TV infomercial. It went on for a good hour. There was hair all over the place.
Finally, a hair remover that doesn't hurt like hell.
The shaver incorporates burning technology which essentially frazzles your follicles and melts your hair, leaving a burnt-hair odour to confirm that the job's done. And apparently it doesn't hurt a jot.
The infomercial went to extraordinary lengths to demonstrate the no-pain factor by showing how painful other methods of hair extraction can be.
Three unsuspecting souls with suitably hairy haunches were hauled in off the street and forced to volunteer for a test using the no-no shaver. They made it sound like pain would not be involved.
But within minutes of their hirsute legs being thrust before the cameras, it was clear that a high level of discomfort (ie. pain) was central to the show, with one of the women soon suffering audible pain.....
One was given the no-no shaver. Another was given a good old-fashioned bloodletting razor and finally, thrust into the hand of the woman who drew the short straw was little more than a pair of pliers. Plucking hell! Wasn't it obvious these weren't going to be the best method of hair removal? Yes, it was obvious, but the infomercial makers wanted to film it nonetheless.
1 - the no-pain shaver. 2 - the bloody razor. 3 - the plucking pliers
The poor plucker on the far right looks like she might be regretting her decision to "have a bit of fun" by volunteering for the experiment....
The plucker is off camera, although she can be heard. Screaming.
Then, just as you weren't expecting it, they showed a close-up of the plucker at work.
It all seemed rather unnecessary. And she could be heard yelling one word....
Meanwhile, the other two collected their hair in a large bowl.
A big bowl for all the hair.
Not surprisingly, the no-no shaver came out the winner.
As the plucker was carted off to hospital, the infomercial concluded that the no-no shaver was by far the most efficient and least painful way to remove hair.
The ad closed with some shots of a model shaving her hairless body....
...from her legs up to her arms and beyond....
It was a wonderfully pain-free end to a painful-looking infomercial.