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Why Shaving is Important in the Military Essay

Date:  2022-04-27 07:40:11
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The set rules and standards in the military that govern shaving are stringent rules which make soldiers appear hygienic and professional army. Based on the military perspective, all soldiers are supposed to shave neatly with the exclusion of profiles, moustaches or in particular unit of forces as guided by the army policies. Shaving has been made mandatory to soldiers serving in army since have well shaved faced in the military depicts that soldiers are more professional. In the point of view of military officers is that unshaved hair and beards show unprofessionalism and indiscipline because it makes militants appear as if they do not care about their hygiene (Alberico, 2013). Conversely, the military permits its soldiers to maintain moustaches that are kept within the frame of army regulation.

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According to the military regulations, all personnel serving in the Army are required to shave before reporting to duty and maintain the standards of military shaving size (Oldstone-Moore, 2015). It is very crucial to be shaved in the military daily when reporting to office or work due to many reasons. One of the essential purposes to shave in the army every day is for the military officers to keep professional look or appearance required while serving in the armed forces. Therefore, if the military personnel does not shave their beard and hair, they look unsuitable and appear as if they do not care about the need for proper hygiene (Alberico, 2013). Military officers are encouraged to cut beards on an almost daily basis as guided by their set regulation, so they appear like professional soldiers since reporting to job unshaved detracts from the anticipated professional military look.

Another reason for the importance of shaving in the military is to ensure that soldiers keep their uniformity. Soldiers should keep their hair and beard shaved every day, and on their line of duty, they should be in the right place as per instruction and at the right time so that other subordinate soldiers feel the impact of being discipline and emulate (White, 2018). For instance, the senior military officer should, at any given time, keep the standard of an army as a role model to soldiers as the lower ranks. Senior military officer reporting to work with freshly shaved face depicts to the peers that he cares about military standards and his career as a soldier. Soldiers cutting and ensuring they have proper hygiene will put the militant ahead of his peers and express to his Non-commissioned officers (NCOs) that he is ready for promotion to the next level of rank. However, reporting to work with unshaved faces reflects negatively to me and also to my NCOs, my unit, my platoon, and the army, and therefore, they might conclude that my group is indiscipline, my NCOs do not care of shaving standards and military, in general, are not professional (Anderson, 2018). While being at the military rules and maintain shaved face depicts civilians, foreign armies, other units of forces, and the army branches that we are the professional soldiers as expected.

According to military regulation, shaving is categorized under AR-670-1, which guides all military officers to maintain the standards. This is a general regulation to be adhered to by all soldiers in the military as they execute their duties since the shaving bear enables a soldier`s bear not to be stacked in the Kevlar chin straps used as a military tool that is very painful to remove when stuck (Lamb, & Yanez 2014). More so, it is very crucial to shave in the military so that the NBC mask used in the military while serving in various mission have a good seal in the face. Thus, to get rid of unnecessary problems while serving in the military is vital that you shave as required by military standards.

At all times, soldiers are supposed to be clean, neat, and presentable as they serve the nation. Thus, they are not allowed to have beards but the exemption of medically authorized beards for an individual, and once the problem clears up, military standards should be kept. Also, soldiers are not permitted to grow mustache below the top line of the upper lip and should not be more than a quarter-inch that extends in the corners of the mouth. Currently, military forces and police do not allow beards due to one crucial reason realized in World War I; that is, soldiers should ensure that their faces are neatly shaved every day to enable clean seal on a gas mask as they execute their assigned duties (Alberico, 2013). For example, the United States Armey, Marine Corps, and Air force have come up with policies in the exception of religious accommodation that forbid beards based on having a good seal for chemical ammunition protective devices, hygiene, grooming as a sense of camaraderie and for personal uniformity at work.

Shaving in the military is part of the Army officer's standards for grooming to both women and men. Therefore, the military has come up with rules for appearance and uniformity, where the soldier`s discipline is judged. Hence, a clean and neatly shaven face look by militants is essential to army forces since it accounts for a capable and disciplined professional Armed forces. Military shaving is a necessary ingredient to the soldier`s strength, and army effectiveness is considered as the pride and self-discipline that is instilled in the soldiers as they serve the Nation (Anderson, 2018). In the military, soldiers of lower ranks are commanded by military officers in higher levels of position, and it's the responsibility of the commanders to ensure that military personnel is his unit have shaved well, maintain high hygiene, and appear as professional soldiers. Hence, to be in the right direction with your commander, you should be shaven and look neat.

Military shaving is an essential grooming standard for soldiers. Hair grooming policy is compulsory to keep uniformity within the Army population. Cutting hair and beard to be in a small size is accepted with various styles of an individual's choice and should be maintained to be neat and presentable. Non-commissioned officers at different levels of leadership ranks have a role in ensuring that good judgment in the enforcement of military policies. Notably, all military officers are required to adhere to shaving standards and grooming policies either in Army uniform or in civilian clothes at all times in duty (Parasidis, 2015). The critical standard to be considered with a lot of seriousness in the military is to avoid hairstyles, beards that will not enable soldiers to put on headgear and chemical gas masks properly. That hairstyle that hinders soldiers wear chemical masks is prohibited in the military, and soldiers are required to shave almost three days a week to allow smooth wearing of mask and headgears.

Male soldiers are allowed to have sideburns that are neatly trimmed. Male soldiers should ensure that sideburns are neatly shaven in a horizontal line, and they are not permitted to have sideburns that are flared. According to military policy, sideburns are not allowed to grow to the lowest section of the ear opening. In the US Army, serving soldiers of the military are entitled to a shaving waiver if they have a problem of shaving difficulty or pain as advised by authorized medical experts (Parasidis, 2015). In a scenario that medical department prescribes for an individual the beard growth for his health condition, the specific length needed for medical medication should be mentioned. For example, based on the military rules, the growth of beard length should not grow beyond inch (Lamb & Yanez 2014). Therefore, the soldier should shave his beard or hair to be maintained in the growth length prescribed by medical authority, but military standards will not permit a soldier to cut the beard growth into handlebar moustaches or goatees (White, 2018). Female military personnel are required to keep their hair is groomed neatly; the length and bulkiness of the air are not excessive, and hair should not depict a ragged or extreme appearance as a soldier. Females are prohibited from shaving trendy styles that will result in shaving portions of the scalp or designs cut into the hair.

Also, during the recruitment of military officers, shaving is one of the qualifications, and recruits must shave they face neatly. For example, to be accepted in recruitment, one must shave beards neatly and appear presentable. The reasons that recruits must shave is that they are required to show high hygienic level, the norm of soldiers uniformity and discipline with admirable codes of ethics anticipated in the military professionalism (White, 2018). Mainly in the United States, the induction cut is utilized for new male recruits in the military to instill the norm of the shaven face that shows armed forces discipline and professionalism (Oldstone-Moore, 2015). While the female recruited in the Armed forces endure a kind of an induction haircut, where the hair is shaved to chin-length.

In the Navy forces, shaving is very crucial since neatly shaven faces provide safety of sailors and mitigate the hazard to mission and risks to troops. Therefore, Navy forces will not allow its members serving in the forces to have permanent waivers for shaving to sailors diagnosed with authorized medical personnel to have razor bumps since beards and whiskers can prevent the effectiveness of breathing tools by the Navy in diving missions (White, 2018). In some groups of Armed forces, failing to maintain shaving standards can cost soldiers jobs since he maybe is seen by his NCO as indiscipline, and he does not care about his career as a soldier. Thus, to avoid unnecessary problems in the military, such as termination of a job, you have to shave your hair and beard neatly.


In conclusion, military shaving is necessary for soldiers to appear professional and disciplined as they serve the nations in various missions. Currently, short hair and beard in the military is a culture for men while in Army uniform or while in duty and women soldiers to prefer short, well-groomed hairstyles as guided by the set military standards. In the Navy forces, shaving is compulsory, and no shaving waiver is issued permanently to members serving since they believed that beard hairs are individual safety hazards for face seals such as chemical gas and respirators. Hence, all members of the military are required to adhere to military standards and shave their beards at least three times a week for effective operation in the line of duty. Finally, shaving is vital in the military since it enhances uniformity, upholds soldiers' professionalism standards as discipline forces, and for effective use of military equipment that requires a secure seal such as masks headgears, which require a well-trimmed face.


Alberico, M. A. (2013). Shave That Man's Beard, That Is an Order: Why United States Army Service Members Can Be Forcibly Shaved. Rutgers JL & Religion, 15, 167.Anderson, M. (2018). Making Facial Hair Modern: Shaving and Hirsuteness in Post-war Britain. In New Perspectives on the History of Facial Hair (pp. 109-129). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Lamb, A., & Yanez, G. N. (2014). Pseudofolliculitis Barbae. In Acneiform Eruptions in Dermatology (pp. 289-294). Springer, New York, NY.Oldstone-Moore, C. (2015). Of beards and men: The revealing history of facial hair.

Parasidis, E. (2015). Emerging military technologies: balancing medical ethics and national security. Case W. Res. J. Int'l L., 47, 167.White, A. (2018). Whiskers at War: Moustaches, Masculinity, and the Military in Twentieth-Century Britain. In New Perspectives on the History of Facial Hair (pp. 169-185). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

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