Facial and body hair removal has become increasingly popular, especially within the last two years.

Hair removal never was very complicated procedure, and some of the methods can even be done at home.

But today, hair removal is accomplished faster than in the recent past because of new improvements in technology.

Until relatively recently, people between the ages of 17 and 55 waxed, plucked, bleached and applied depilatory creams to unwanted patches of hair.

However, these are temporary treatments and the methods have to be repeated once the hair grows back.

Though electrolysis, permanent method of hair removal, has been in place for years, another permanent technique, laser treatment, has become more widely used.

However, for those uncertain about using laser treatment or electronic gadgets such as those used for electrolysis, another method called threading may be a useful alternative.

The idea of getting piece of cotton thread, twisting it into a cat's cradle shape to catch the hairs of the face and pulling them out sounds painful but Stephanie Slade says it is worth it.

The Brighton-based beautician practices the ancient art of threading which she learnt several years ago.

She said: "I was in London and was learning about Indian head massage from a lady who then told me about the technique.

She tried it out on me and I could feel the effects straight away.

"It was fascinating how it worked. So I decided to learn it for myself and get the right qualification so I could use it on others."

This method of hair removal is often practisedby people of Asian or Mediterranean origin, and should only be performed by someone who is skilled in the practice.

Threading is basically a form of tweezing, but instead of using a tweezer to pull the hair out of the follicle, the hair is grabbed between threads that are wrapped around it.

Many practitioners are extremely fast in removing hair by this technique.

It is a popular alternative to waxing, especially on the face where the skin is very delicate and different from other parts of the body.

During a waxing session, as you remove wax off the face, the muscles are being pulled which may result in premature wrinkling and may cause the skin to peel.

Even though threading takes a little extra time, there are many advantages.

It causes only a little redness on the skin and can catch very fine hairs so the threaded area eventually looks very clean and smooth.

It also virtually prevents broken capillaries and other type of blemishing.

Threading is very good for pale skin, as well as for those who would like to start permanent hair removal with electrolysis.

The benefits of the method are said to outweigh the chief negative which is that it can be a rather painful exercise.

Miss Slade said: "It can be painful but it is all over very quickly and the end result is very good.

"Because it rips the whole root out, it slows down the growth of the hair and so it generally takes three to four weeks to grow back.

"It also leaves a lot less redness which disappears very quickly compared to something like waxing.

It also doesn't leave any stress or trauma to the skin which is caused by waxing.

"Using this method also means that no chemicals or treatments are used that could cause allergic reactions in some people, so again, it can be a very useful alternative."

Miss Slade usually uses the technique on the upper lip, the eyebrow and the whole face.

She said: "I mainly tend to concentrate on areas that are more sensitive and each session usually lasts about two to three minutes.

"The end results are very good and the method is becoming more and more popular."

Miss Slade has experienced the technique herself and says it is extremely effective.

She said: "It takes a while to get used to it and it can be a strange sensation but the end result is worth it. "Especially as it means there can be quite a few weeks between treatments."

1/3 FOR more details about the threading technique of hair removal, call Miss Slade on 07967 449084.