What is considered a professional appearance?
Okay! I’m sorry for getting off the bookish topic, but I really want to try and branch out into a few real-world topics once a month or so to really talk about other aspects of the world. After all, the real world influences fiction. Thus it seems only rational to discuss such topics, right? Well, I think so. If you don’t, the command Ctrl+W (on Windows) will allow you to leave. Bye! 😉
Onto today’s topic!
Being of the age where I have started getting into a professional atmosphere and looking for jobs and all the necessities that go along with that, I am often baffled by some of the requirements and expectations for employees regarding their appearance. I mean, there are obvious ones like personal hygiene and appropriate clothing (though, admittedly there are plenty of gender double-standard regulations [for both men and women]). But I’m talking about the other pieces of our appearance that express who we are as people.
I’m talking about tattoos and hair color.
For those who don’t know, I worked in a hospital for a time. As someone who was interacting with a variety of people who came into the hospital (despite working at night when everyone is sleeping and literally never interacting with any patients), I was expected to meet the standards of ‘appropriate’ appearance. What did this mean? No non-natural colors in my hair. No visible tattoos. Why? Because we might offend one of our patients (particularly those of the older generation).
Now, I can kind of understand this (as my parents are of that older generation.) Tattoos, back in the day, were considered to be bad. They mar your beautiful skin. They often look trashy (depending on who your artist is). And they indicate that you are a hooligan who gets into lots of trouble.
Uh-huh. Because my treble clef is totally a gang symbol I share with my partners in crime. 😒
And the same thing goes for strange hair colors. (which is funny because even farther back in the day, women having short hair was considered taboo. But look at women now. And men have long hair.) So I find it absolutely amazing that here we are in the 21st century still dictating to people how they are allowed to look because… what? Everyone else might have an issue with it? What the hell?!
This is so backwards and dumb that I can’t even wrap my mind around it. How on Earth is my blue, red, or whatever color hair offending you?
First off, it’s not on your head.
Second off, I do believe you have control over your own eyes.
LOOK THE OTHER DIRECTION!
And third off, what is this!? The 1950s where we peek over our neighbor’s fence and compare ourselves with the Johnsons and then tattle all their dirty little secrets?!
MIND YOUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS!
Frankly, what I do with my body is my own business (so long as I’m not hurting myself.) Yeah, tattoos may not be everyone’s thing. Yeah, bright-colored hair may be unsightly. But guess what? That’s your opinion. My opinion says I look like a badass and I have the right and freedom to do, say, and wear what I want, which could include black lipstick, a corset, a hoopskirt, a set of steampunk goggles. None of it affects you!
And the whole concept of being offended by something someone else wears is just absolute GARBAGE. That’s right, take your bullshit to the curb because no one wants to deal with it. Do you know what ‘being offended by someone’s appearance’ really means? It means that you are intolerant of the people around you and let your own personal prejudice keep you from getting to know others. That doesn’t make you better than them. That makes you worse than them. That makes you the awful human being because we are in a time and age when acceptance of people as they are is so much broader than your misconstrued, outdated mindset.
More importantly, if we are talking about a job, whether it be an office job or something else, how does my colored hair or tattoos really impact my ability to do my job? Do you think I will be distracted by my own hair? Do you think my tattoos cause me physical pain and keep me from working? No. They do nothing more than satisfy and display my own personality. Thus they should have no affect on whether I receive a job or not.
But what do you think?
Should tattoos/colored hair be allowed in the workplace?
Leave your thoughts below!
And check out my discussion from last week:
“Politics & Book Blogging“