Monday, May 7, 2012


It's a known fact that proper hygiene is essential to promoting good health and prevents the spread of germs and diseases.  This is especially true for our Servicemembers deployed to combat zones.  

Marine Corps grooming standards have remained constant over the years, but there always seems to be a misconception that these standards become relaxed while in combat.  Not true.  At least not for the past twelve years.  It's surprising how high of a priority it is to maintain a "zero to three" haircut while fighting the enemy.  A lot of has to deal with separating ourselves from other services we work alongside - definitely a pride thing.

Over the next few months I'll showcase a bunch of battle-hardened Marines who have, for the most part, displayed a disregard for these standards during the Vietnam war in the early 1970's.

Handlebar mustache!!! Sa-weet!!

Here's an excerpt from Marine Corps Order 1020.34:

5. Grooming Regulations

b. Men will be well groomed at all times and will abide by the following:

(1) Hair will be neat and closely trimmed. The hair may be clipped at the edges of the side and back; will be evenly graduated from zero length at the hairline in the lower portion of the head to the upper portion of the head; and will not be over 3 inches in length fully extended on the upper portion of the head; the back and sides of the head below the hairline may be shaved to remove body hair. Sideburns will not extend below the top of the orifice of the ear, as indicated by the line A-A' in figures 1-1 and 1-2. Sideburns will not be styled to taper or flare. The length of an individual hair of the sideburn will not exceed 1/8 inch when fully extended.

(2) Head hair will be styled so as not to interfere with the proper wear of uniform headgear. Hair which protrudes from beneath properly worn headgear in an unsightly manner is considered excessive, regardless of length.

(3) No male Marine will be required to have his hair clipped to the scalp except while he is undergoing recruit training or when such action is prescribed by a medical officer. This does not prohibit a male Marine from having his hair clipped to the scalp if he so desires.

(5) The face will be clean shaven, except that a mustache may be worn. When worn, the mustache will be neatly trimmed and must be contained within the lines of B-B', C-C', D-D' and the margin area of the upper lip, as shown in figures 1-1 and 1-2. The individual length of a mustache hair fully extended must not exceed 1/2 inch.

Nice little pomp!

(6) Except for a mustache, eyebrows, and eyelashes; hair may be grown on the face only when a medical officer has determined that shaving is temporarily harmful to the individual's health. In these cases, the current edition of MCO 6310.1 applies.

(7) No male Marine will be required to have his chest hair clipped except that which is so long as to protrude in an unsightly manner above the collar of the long sleeve khaki shirt. Figure 1-1.--Male Grooming Standards (Front View) Figure 1-2.--Male Grooming Standards (Side View).