Muttonchops Need Not Apply, by Harper’s Staff

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June 1990 Issue [Readings]

Muttonchops Need Not Apply

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From “The Disney Look,” a set of guidelines on personal appearance distributed to all new employees of Walt Disney World Company. The AFL-CIO filed grievances on behalf of three employees at a Disney-owned hotel who were fired for refusing to shave their beards and mustaches. One shaved and was reinstated. The other two reached settlements with Disney.

the disney look

Costumes: In keeping with the Disney traditions, very careful attention has been given to every aspect of every part of the Show at Walt Disney Attractions.

We are all aware of how human nature works and realize that it’s normal to look at clothing in a very personal manner. But our costumes must satisfy the needs of all conditions, situations, and cast members, and it is important that all of our people reflect the “Disney look” to our guests through their appearance.

Personal Appearance: Many of you may not even remember amusement parks prior to the Disneyland concept of themed experiences. In fact, most amusement parks had bad reputations and were not considered suitable for the entire family. Walt Disney changed all that when he opened Disneyland.

Each individual’s appearance should add to the Show and not detract from it. For this reason, anything that could be considered offensive, distracting, or not in the best interest of our Disney Show will not be permitted.

the disney look for hosts

Costumes: As a condition of employment with Walt Disney Attractions, you are responsible for maintaining an appropriate weight and size.

Hair: A neat, natural haircut and a clean shave are essential. Hair should be neatly cut and tapered so it does not cover any part of your ears. (Putting your hair behind your ears is not acceptable.) Hairstyles termed “natural” or “Afro” are acceptable, provided they are neatly packed.

Sideburns: Sideburns should be neatly trimmed and may be permitted to extend to the bottom of the earlobes, following their natural contour. Flares or muttonchops are not permitted.

Mustaches and Beards: Mustaches and beards are not permitted, except for individuals hired before the establishment of this standard.

Wigs and Hairpieces: Wigs and hairpieces for men are not permitted except for medical purposes. Medical verification from a doctor is needed if a wig or hairpiece is to be worn.

After-shave Cologne and Deodorant: Due to close contact with guests and fellow cast members, the use of deodorant or antiperspirant is required. The use of heavy after-shave cologne should be discouraged. A light cologne, however, is acceptable.

the disney look for hostesses

Hair Coloring: The “Disney look” does not permit extremes in dyeing, bleaching, or tinting. Frosting or streaking is not permitted. If hair is dyed, it must be all one natural color.

Hair Confinement and Accessories: Hair below shoulder length may require some confinement. In keeping with the “Disney look,” the following hair accessories are acceptable: a plain barrette, comb, or headband without ornamentation of any kind, including bows. No more than two barrettes or combs.

If a hair ribbon is worn, it should complement the costume and be no wider than one-half inch or longer than four inches when tied. Hair ribbons are for the express purpose of holding the hair away from the face, not as a decorative addition to the costume.

Eye Makeup: Mascara may be applied lightly in shades of brown or black to accentuate eyelashes. No eyeliner, false eyelashes, or eye shadow in any color is considered part of the “Disney look.” Eyebrow pencil may be used to highlight the eyebrows in shades as close as possible to the natural color.

Fingernails: Dark red, frosted, gold, or silver-toned polishes are not considered part of the “Disney look.” Fingernails should not extend more than one-fourth of an inch beyond the fingertips.

Jewelry: Small rings, class rings, wedding bands, and wristwatches are permitted.

A “small ring” is defined as the same size or smaller than a female class ring. A ring may be worn on any finger, one per hand with the exception of a wedding set.

A single earring in each ear is acceptable. The earrings must be a simple, matched pair in gold, silver, or a color that blends with the costume. The shape of the earring must be in good taste and complement the costume. Dangle or loop earrings are not acceptable. Earrings cannot exceed three-fourths of an inch in size.


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