Norwegian has recently been criticized for upholding strict and even anachronistic rules regarding the personal appearance of its female cabin crew members. The Guardian’s Barbara Ellen writes that the airline’s enforcement of this kind of aesthetic perpetuates an outdated stereotype of female crew.
When it comes to make-up, dress and overall appearance of cabin crew, many airlines – most notably, Virgin Atlantic – are now scrapping long-enforced views and rules. But, as The Guardian‘s Barbara Ellen writes, low-cost carrier Norwegian, which hit headlines earlier this month for the continued enforcement of rules regarding the personal appearance of female crew members, appears intent on perpetrating the anachronistic “oversexualized” “air hostess” cliche.”
While female members of cabin crew certainly aren’t the only professionals for whom appearance has long been heavily regulated, Ellen states that, “All too easily, “smart” or “groomed” or “brand-appropriate” become euphemisms for something quite different. It’s as if, for some women, their first task is to look semi-sexually available and anything else they achieve during the working day is a bonus.”
“It’s not that women don’t sometimes wish to dress glamorously or sexually, and are entitled to, but that they’re structurally expected and pressured to, in ways that men aren’t,” Ellen further explains.
In a final rejoinder on the subject, she writes, “As with all work environments, if men aren’t required to totter about in heels, why on earth are women?”
[Image Source: Norwegian Air]