Skip to main site content.
(marine corps)

Dress code

Marine Corps becomes first military branch to allow women to lock and twist their hair

By WITW Staff on December 21, 2015

The Marine Corps became the first military branch that will allow female soldiers to wear locks in their hair, a policy change that was requested by black female soldiers who say it is easier and more cost-effective. The change in hair policy comes after a Department of Defense-mandated review that all branches were ordered to undertake in 2014 to ensure that their hair policies were inclusive of black women, according to USA Today. Staff Sgt. Cherie Wright helped lead the changes by telling Marine brass that “for some, this change is culturally liberating, has financial benefits, and is simply convenient.”

The new rules allow for one- and two-twist hairstyles as long as they are neat and professional-looking and the hairstyle does not interfere with the proper wear of headgear, but the allowable hairstyles will come with strict limitations: they can be no more than 3/8-inch apart, cannot be more than 3/8-inch in diameter, must remain tightly interlaced/twisted, and must encompass the whole head, according to the report. The Marine Corps is working on creating a webpage to illustrate the allowable locks and twists.

Read the full story at USA Today.