Grooming and the Army

Recently read an article about grooming restrictions for soldiers serving in the Army, and while I realize this is one job where uniformity is essential and expediency rules, I think some of might be a little rigid. Ponytails and French manicures are about as simple as things get, in my opinion. I know on the bases where my husband works the females with hair longer than a short Afro are required to wear their hair in a tight, neat bun, and this makes practical sense in cases where some form of work needs to be performed that any extraneous object–including hair–could pose a danger. But the French manicure thing is perplexing me. I mean, is it all nail polish in general that is causing concern (mainly due to the chemicals that comprise it rather than the adornment itself)? To my recollection, the basic French manicure is simply a painted version of the natural nail. I do realize that there are fancier versions of this that may even include rhinestones or other appliques. and that many French manicures are executed on artificial tips. If this is their focus and rationale for the ban, it is certainly understandable. Safety is, and should be, more of a concern than vanity–which I imagine the questions about earrings stem from as well. Good luck trying to regulate those tattoos, though….

What’s your take?


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. writingfeemail
    Dec 13, 2011 @ 21:01:56

    I love a French manicure as I think it just looks very clean and neat. But I’m not in the military, nor have I ever been, so I can speak to the reason from a security perspective. But I do wonder if it has something to do with keeping appearances uniform.


    • dramaqueen1913
      Dec 13, 2011 @ 21:13:43

      I do get the uniformity of it all, which is why the natural nail look of the French mani is the main point I questioned. I would think of any of the manicured nail looks that one would be at the top of the approved list as far as appearances go. Maybe the flammability of the polish is the concern….


  2. H. E. Lexus
    Dec 13, 2011 @ 09:18:11

    Being former military I can tell you the standard look for the females is not good. Get the taller pumps and I say at least french the nails and let the hair down. If they do not like it, kick em out. It is the 2000’s, relax.
    But I am not running things. 😉


    • dramaqueen1913
      Dec 13, 2011 @ 10:08:35

      LOL! I can appreciate your perspective. But seeing the very regimented nature of the military itself, I don’t foresee a whole lot of “relaxing” on their part. Brings to mind the whole discussion about modesty in liturgical dancewear and the unintentional messages perceived….


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