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Grooming Standards and Personal Apperance

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Personal Appearance

  • Male Hair: Hair above the ears and around the neck will be cut from the lower natural hairline no grater and no less than ¾ inch. Hair on the back of the neck will not touch the collar. Hair shall be no longer than 2 inches and groomed so that it does not touch the collar or ears, extend below the eyebrow when headgear is removed, show below the front edge of the headgear, or interfere with the proper wearing of the headgear. Sideburns will not extend past the middle of the ear and should be a clean horizontal line. 

  • Female Hair: when headgear is worn, hair will not show from under the front of the headgear, with the exemption of the beret. Hair (including bun) is not to protrude from the opening in the back of the ball cap. Lopsided or extremely asymmetrical hairstyles are not authorized. Angled hairstyles will have no more than a 1 – 1½ inch difference between the front and back length of hair. Layered hairstyles are authorized provided they show a smooth and graduated appearance. Hair length, when in uniform, may touch, but not fall below a horizontal line level with the lower edge of the back of the collar. When bangs are worn they shall not extend below the eyebrows. Hair bulk (minus the bun) as measured from the scalp will not exceed 2 inches. The bulk of the bun shall not exceed 3 inches when measured from the scalp and the diameter of the bun will not exceed 4 inches. Hair extensions and wigs must look natural, tints and highlights must be similar to the base color of the hair and be a natural hair color. Styles with shaved portions of the scalp (other than the neckline), those with designs cut, braided, or part into the hair, as well as dyed using unnatural colors are not authorized. Three-strand- and two-strand braids are permitted. Multiple braids (more than two braids, ex. Dreadlocks and cornrows) will look uniform, be no bigger than ¼ inch in diameter, and have no foreign objects (ex. beads) woven into the hair. Cornrows must be no larger than 1/4 inch in diameter and show no more than approximately 1/8 inch of scalp between rows. Cornrow ends shall not protrude from the head. Rows must end at the nape of the neck and shall be secured with rubber bands that match the color of the hair. Cornrows may end in a bun conforming to the guidelines listed herein if hair length permits. Hair accessories to secure buns must be completely concealed. Female cadets should only wear a wig if it is a medical necessity. 

  • Facial hair: No facial hair is permitted. Discretion should be used with younger cadets or those with religious convictions. For adults, if worn mustaches will be kept neat, closely trimmed and no portion shall extend below the lip line of the upper lip.

  • Cosmetics: Cosmetics shall be applied in good taste so that colors blend with natural skin tones and enhance natural features. Exaggerated or faddish cosmetic styles are not authorized. Lipstick colors shall be conservative and complement the individual. Long false eyelashes are not authorized. Male personnel is not authorized to wear cosmetics, unless for medical reasons. 

  • Male Fingernails: Fingernails will not exceed past the fingertips, and will be kept clean at all times. 

  • Female Fingernails: Fingernails will not exceed ¼ inch past the fingertips. Nail polish may be worn, but colors should be conservative and complement the skin tone. Acrylics and accessories are not authorized. 

  • One ring per hand and a wedding/engagement ring are permitted. No rings on the thumbs. 

  • Male Earrings: Earrings will not be worn under any circumstances. 

  • Female Earrings: One earring per ear. If you have multiple piercings, a placeholder can be worn but must be concealed. Earrings will be a 4-6mm ball. Gold for officers, midshipmen, instructors, and CPO’s, silver for any cadets under PO1. 

  • Body piercings: Body piercings will not be worn. If you have previous piercings, a placeholder can be worn but must be concealed.

  • Necklaces: one single strand necklace, must not be visible. Chokers and large necklaces, etc. are not permitted. 

  • Wristwatch/Bracelets: Only one of each can be worn while in uniform. Ankle bracelets will not be worn and are not authorized. 

  • Tattoos, body art, brandings, mutilation, or dental ornamentation on a cadet are strictly prohibited. 

  • NSCC officers, midshipmen, or instructor applicants who have visible tattoos, body art, branding, or dental ornamentation that may be questionable, must request a waiver for enrollment purposes.

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