Virgin Atlantic drops mandatory make-up requirement

Today (March 8th) is International Women’s Day, a focal point in the movement for women’s rights.

Travel giant Virgin Atlantic have removed their mandatory requirement that all female cabin crew must wear make-up whilst on duty. Female cabin crew will now be offered trousers automatically, as opposed to when requested – the uniform currently features a tight, red skirt. The move sees a significant change in the airline industry, which has not been progressive when it comes to uniform.

Newer airlines such as Ryanair and EasyJet take a relaxed stance when it comes to uniform and make-up, whereas more established airlines have strict rules on what female members of staff must wear when at work.


(Credit: MercerMJ)

Virgin Atlantic have said cabin crew could now attend work without wearing make-up, but those who still wish to wear it could do so by following the companies guidelines.

Virgin Atlantic Executive Vice President of Customer Mark Anderson said:

“Our world famous red uniform is something all of us at Virgin Atlantic are incredibly proud of. As an airline, we have always stood out from the crowd and done things differently to the rest of the industry. We want our uniform to truly reflect who we are as individuals while maintaining that famous Virgin Atlantic style. We have been listening to the views of our people and as a result have announced some changes to our styling and grooming policy that support this. Not only do the new guidelines offer an increased level of comfort, they also provide our team with more choice on how they want to express themselves at work. Helping people to be themselves is core to our desire to be the most loved travel company.”

British Airways gave female staff the option to wear trousers in 2016, but still requires them to wear make-up.

The reaction on Twitter has been positive, with many praising Virgin Atlantic for bringing their guidelines into the 21st Century. Journalist Jess Brammar said: “Female cabin crew working for Virgin Atlantic are no longer required to wear make-up, the airline has announced. Which, you know, shouldn’t feel like an exciting step forward as it’s TWENTY NINETEEN, but it does.”

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