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Air Force Dress & Appearance -- General

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Wigs and Hairpieces. Wigs and hairpieces will be in accordance with the same standards required for natural hair, will be of good quality, will fit properly, and will not exceed limits stated for natural hair. Personnel working in flight operations or on the flight line are not authorized to wear wigs or hairpieces. Men will have their medical records documented to wear wigs or hairpieces to cover natural baldness or disfigurement; otherwise, they will not wear wigs or hairpieces.

Beards, Mustaches, and Sideburns (Men). Beards will not be worn except for health reasons when authorized by a commander on the advice of a medical officer. If authorized by the commander, members must keep facial hair trimmed not to exceed 1/4 inch in length. If granted a shaving waiver, members will not shave any facial hair. Commanders and supervisors will monitor progress in treatment to control these waivers.

Mustaches, if worn, will not extend downward beyond the upper lip or extend sideways beyond a vertical line drawn upward from the corner of the mouth. NOTE: This does not apply to individuals with shaving waivers.

Sideburns, if worn, will be neatly trimmed and tapered in the same manner as the haircut. They will be straight and of even width (not flared) and end in a clean-shaven horizontal line. They will not extend below the lowest part of the exterior ear opening. NOTE: This does not apply to individuals with shaving waivers.

Cosmetics (Women). Cosmetics must be conservative and in good taste. When worn, nail polish will be conservative, a single color or a French manicure that is natural or clear with white tips, and in good taste. The polish will not contain any ornamentation.

Fingernails. Fingernails must be clean, well groomed, and not interfere with duty performance or hinder proper fit of prescribed safety equipment or uniform items.

Accessory Standards When in Uniform

Jewelry. Watches must be conservative. Bracelets must be conservative, no wider than 1 inch, not present a safety hazard, and worn around the wrist. A maximum of three rings on both hands combined may be worn. Necklaces may be worn if concealed under a collar or undershirt. Women are authorized to wear one small spherical, conservative, diamond, gold, white pearl, or silver pierced or clip earring per earlobe. Matching earrings must be worn and should fit tightly without extending below the earlobe, except for the connecting band on clip earrings.

Eyeglasses and Sunglasses. Eyeglasses and sunglasses must be free of ornamentation on both the frames and the lenses. When indoors or in formation, eyeglasses must be conservative with clear, slightly tinted, or photosensitive lenses. When outdoors, sunglasses must have conservative lenses and frames; faddish styles and mirrored lenses are prohibited. Sunglasses are not permitted in formation. Eyeglasses and sunglasses must not be worn around the neck.

Additional Items. Pencils and pens must be concealed except when carried in the left compartment of the BDU pocket or in the left pocket of food and hospital white uniforms. Beepers and cellular phones must be plain, and either black, dark blue, gray, or silver in color. They may be clipped to a waistband, a woman's purse, or carried in the left hand. Beepers, cellular phones, headphones, and earphones are prohibited unless required to perform duties. Attachments for access badges and passes will be plain, dark blue or black ropes; silver or plastic small conservative link chains; or clear plastic. (NOTE: Green attachments may be worn with the BDU.) These attachments must not present a safety issue. Umbrellas must be plain, black or dark blue, and carried in the left hand. Attaché cases, gym bags, backpacks, and women's purses may be carried in either hand or on either shoulder (not to interfere with rendering a proper salute). EXCEPTION: Members wear backpacks using both shoulder straps when riding two-wheeled vehicles or using crutches.

Tattoos and Brands, and Body Piercing

Tattoos and/or brands anywhere on the body that are obscene or advocate sexual, racial, ethnic, or religious discrimination are prohibited in and out of uniform. Tattoos and/or brands that are prejudicial to good order and discipline or of a nature that tends to bring discredit upon the Air Force are prohibited in and out of uniform. For complete detailed information about Air Force Tattoo, Brand, and Body Piercing policy, in and out of uniform, see Air Force Policy for Tattoos, Brands, and Body Piercings.

In accordance with AFI 36-2903, Table 2.5, individuals are prohibited from pursuing body alterations/modifications that disfigure, deform, or otherwise detract from a professional military image (for example, forking or splitting their tongues, filing their teeth, or implanting objects under their skin).

Continued in Part 2 -- Air Force Uniforms.

Above information derived from AFPAM36-2241V1, PME Study Guide

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