New Zealand navy to allow male personnel to wear fake eyelashes and makeup

Male service members in the Royal New Zealand Navy will soon be allowed to wear fake eyelashes, nail polish and makeup under new gender-neutral guidelines.

The updated regulations come as the New Zealand Defence Force updates its grooming and appearance standards.

“These updates are to reflect that the RNZN make no distinction between male and female members in terms of their personal grooming and appearance," said Chief of Navy Rear Admiral David Proctor.

Beginning Nov. 1, all Navy personnel will be permitted to wear discreet makeup, clear or pale nail varnish and  "trimmed, neat and natural" false eyelashes when in uniform, Auckland-based Newshub reported.

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Beginning Nov. 1, male personnel in the New Zealand navy will be able to wear false eyelashes and makeup. The changes are part of updates to the New Zealand Defence Force grooming standards.

Beginning Nov. 1, male personnel in the New Zealand navy will be able to wear false eyelashes and makeup. The changes are part of updates to the New Zealand Defence Force grooming standards. (Royal New Zealand Navy)

One pair of natural colored stud or sleeper earrings will also be allowed along with moderate amounts of perfume or cologne.

"These updates are to reflect that the RNZN make no distinction between male and female members in terms of their personal grooming and appearance," Proctor told the news site.

Messages to the New Zealand Defence Force from Fox News were not immediately returned.

However, body piercings and "exaggerated hairstyles" such as partially shaved heads and mohawks are still prohibited.

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Proctor said the changes are designed to present an inclusive, professional military image and are based on neatness, cleanliness and safety.

"The RNZN is a modern and professional organization that embraces individuality and personality," he said. "However, we are a military organization and with that comes certain expectations on our personnel in terms of dress and appearance."

The U.S. military has adopted gender-neutral regulations in recent years. Women are now allowed to serve in combat roles and the Marine Corps and Navy dropped "man" from certain job titles to make them more inclusive.