Most branches of the military are getting with the times and loosening up their standards about what kinds of hairstyles women are allowed to wear.
“Army Regulation 670-1″ was passed back in early March, and it stated that female soldiers weren’t allowed to wear their hair in “twists, dreadlocks, Afros and braids” during deployment. It described the natural styles as “matted” and “unkempt.”
Women who didn’t follow the rule would be forced to cut their hair and/or wear wigs (because that’s completely practical in the field). At the time, it was pretty obvious from the language that the guidelines were racially biased and directly targeted black women.
Sgt. Jasmine Jacobs of the Georgia National Guard was outraged by the changes that she started a petition to combat the guidelines, and it looks like the military listened! Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced Tuesday that, with the exception of the Marines, the military is making some big changes to the style guidelines for women.