Space Force Unveils Uniform Tweaks, OKs Neck Tattoos and More

The Space Force released updates to its appearance and uniform policies May 24, detailing more permissive regulations governing tattoos, facial hair, and makeup.

Among the various changes the Space Force is making from the Air Force’s policies, the new Guidance Memorandum allows Guardians to have a single neck tattoo—as long as it is authorized, does not exceed one inch, and does not pass a vertical line drawn from the beginning of the ear, essentially keeping it to the back of the neck.

Like the Air Force, the Space Force will also allow one tattoo per hand in the shape of a ring, no more than 3/8 of an inch wide.

“There are no other size or placement limitations on tattoos” as long as they comply with Department of the Air Force regulations, the memo adds.

The Space Force will also allow male Guardians to have longer mustaches, extending 1/4 of an inch horizontally from the corners of the mouth. That’s in line with proposed changes from the Air Force, which currently limits Airmen to mustaches that don’t extend beyond the corners of the mouth. A leaked Air Force memo detailing the same standards as the Space Force circulated on social media recently, but no official changes have been announced for the older service.

On top of that, the Space Force will allow male Guardians to wear cosmetics such as foundation and concealer, though “only to cover scars or blemishes.”

In addition to those grooming and appearance standards, the Space Force memo also laid out several new uniform policies and pieces for Guardians’ Air Force dress uniforms, while the Space Force waits for its own version.

Those changes were previewed by Chief Master Sergeant of the Space Force Roger A. Towberman earlier this year in a video message sent to Guardians in which he said the moves were intended to “space it up a little bit.”

Among the tweaks, Guardians will now be able to wear the service’s enlisted rank insignia as available. They can also swap out the buttons on their service dress coat to ones that feature the Space Force’s “Delta, Globe, and Orbit,” switch their nameplates to hexagonal ones, wear new U.S. collar insignia also featuring a hexagon, and sport the new Space Force Service Cap Badge on wheel and bucket caps.

Finally, the memo also allows Guardians to purchase gray shirts and black bottoms to serve as PT gear “in lieu of the Air Force PTG pending release and availability of the official Space Force PTG at a Guardian’s home station military clothing sales store.” The clothing, however, can feature only one small visible trademark logo per item, and the back can either be blank or feature a Space Force logo or Delta.

“Guardians have been waiting a long time for this policy to drop, and I couldn’t be happier to get it out there and start getting this stuff on the shelves,” Towberman said in a statement. “I appreciate their connection, which brought us these ideas, and the character they’ve shown waiting patiently for us to work through the policy process. It’s time to space it up.”

The Space Force’s work on its own service uniforms continues. The final design has been approved, Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond said in April, but testing and production still has to happen, and that could take some time as the military and the broader U.S. deal with supply chain issues.
Raymond did, however, model the new service uniform during several recent hearings before Congress, featuring several small tweaks and a better fit than when the uniform was unveiled in September 2021.

Graphic courtesy of U.S. Space Force