IT has been reported that Japanese authorities are considering a move to ban women from applying make-up on trains.

According to a story in Grazia magazine, commuters are getting fed up with declining standards of social etiquette on the country's public transport and there are claims the practice is unhygienic.

I don't know about you, but judging by the behaviour on trains and buses across these fair shores, I suspect fellow passengers putting on a bit of slap is the least of the Japanese commuter's worries.

I recently spotted a sign next to a train plug socket stating it was for charging laptops and mobile phones only. "What else would it be used for?" I pondered aloud. I wished I hadn't. One colleague told me about a girl on her morning commute who used these sockets to power her hair straighteners, while someone else had seen a fellow passenger plug in a travel kettle and make a cuppa to pass the journey.

Never mind that searing-hot metal or scalding water aren't the best things to be wielding around a crowded carriage. With hindsight, I'm surprised no-one has used the socket for nuclear fission.

Of course, trains aren't the only problem areas. One friend reports seeing a woman plucking her chin hair on a bus. Still, that pales in comparison with my own experience of sitting opposite a man who seemed to think the train journey from London was an appropriate opportunity to clear fluff from his navel, piling the residue on the table between us. I spent the next five and three quarter hours cowering in the vestibule.

So what constitutes public transport-appropriate conduct? As a rule of thumb, keep anything you would usually do in a bathroom, bedroom – or kitchen for that matter – behind closed doors.