Virgin Atlantic ditches mandatory make-up rule for female cabin crew

Cabin crew
Female cabin crew at Virgin Atlantic will no longer be required to wear make-up [Photo: Getty]

Female cabin crew representing Virgin Atlantic will no longer have to wear make-up as part of mandatory uniform.

If staff members do wish to wear lipstick or foundation then they are encouraged to stick to the airline’s official colour palette.

A spokesperson for the airline said per Huffington Post, “We want our uniform to truly reflect who we are as individuals while maintaining that famous Virgin Atlantic style.”

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“Not only do the new guidelines offer an increased level of comfort, they also provide our team with more choice on they want to express themselves at work. Helping people to be themselves is core to our desire to be the most loved travel company.”

In a further bid to bring the airline into the 21st century, Virgin Atlantic will now also offer female staff members trousers as part of their uniform.

Before the new regulations, the airline would only provide them upon request.

Cabin crew
British Airways’ 2011 uniform guidelines state that lipstick and blusher is a “minimum requirement” for female cabin crew [Photo: Getty]

A 2011 interview with make-up artist Kim Allgood and hair stylist Helen Kavanaugh – who work as grooming standards managers for Virgin Atlantic – gives a glimpse at what the airline expected of its female staff.

According to Allgood and Kavanaugh, Virgin Atlantic would not permit women to have natural roots, dye their hair primary colours or wear a fringe below their eyebrows.

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But while the airline is shifting its stance on gender equality, British Airways still has a long way to go.

Uniform guidelines from 2015 state that “obvious blemishes should be concealed wherever possible” while female members of staff are expected to wear lipstick and blusher as a minimum requirement.