RAF Says Beards are Fine Now But Must be Tidy

By Gary Cutlack on at

The Royal Air Force is getting with the times, daddio, as it's finally about to remove an ancient clause demanding that its staff are cleanly shaven about the face.

From September 1 applicants will be considered for roles within the RAF even if they're hiding their facial skin from view, with the air force saying it's a move to encourage inclusivity within its branch of the military. Those already serving will be allowed to grow their faces out too, although the updated "facial hair policy" demands than any such beard must be "smart, neatly-trimmed" in appearance, just in case they're shot down over Russia and end up being paraded in front of local media.

It brings the RAF in line with the Navy, where beards are allowed -- but permission to grow has to be sought from the commanding officer first. The Army is currently languishing in moustache-only territory, but all three armed forces do allow beards if required on religious grounds. [BBC]

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