This is your nose-to toes guide for everything from hairstyle, to makeup, pantyhose, shoes and everything in between. We teach you how to recreate the polished yet professional style that seems to be synonymous with Cabin Crew and the Aviation Industry in general. It looks difficult to achieve, yet it’s really quite attainable with some preparation, practice and patience!
Tame Those Tresses
Your hair guidelines will differ from airline to airline. For mine, the uniform is identical whether you are located on the ground or are Cabin Crew, which a few added extras for crew!
With Emirates, the emphasis is on looking polished rather than “natural”. This means that although you are not bound to which type of hairstyle you may wear (low chingons, bun enhancers, braided buns and French rolls are all acceptable) if you hair is past your collar. If your hair is above your collar, you must have it down and neatly styled. You must wear an airline-issued scrunchie surrounding your bun, and have no more than 6 bobby pins showing at any one time. If you have extra thick or layered longhair, it is advisable to wear a ‘bun net” to stop fly always. It is also more hygienic as you are serving food!
My current employer endorses a more “natural” look. This means bun enhancers are not permitted (they look to unrealistic) and you may have to be mindful of the (dyed) colour of your hair. Unnatural colours are not permitted, although balayage is permitted! This is a stark contrast to Emirates, where balayage (even though more natural looking) is not accepted. They would prefer you to have all over platinum blonde hair rather than natural looking regrowth!
Hairspray is a must (apply at home, or in your large suitcase. NOT IN CABIN Baggage!). Try to refrain from wet-look gels and mousse, as these are generally avoided.
Good Skin Starts from Within
Make-Up can only accentuate/camouflage so much. Your skin takes a while to adjust to a shift working lifestyle. You will constantly be subject to air-conditioning, and the recycled, pressurized cabin air on board, which can be dehydrating to say the least! Break outs may appear due to stress, lack of sleep, lowered immune system and wearing lots of makeup for long periods of time. The best way to combat this is to eat as much fresh fruit and vegetables as you can tolerate! Lots of leafy greens, fish high in Omega-3 (salmon) and lots of berries. Try to stay away from processed foods and unnecessary sugar. It tastes the best in the air, but once you land the kilojoules (and the hormones) catch up to you!
Make the Most of You
Use makeup to accentuate your best features, and smooth out the ones that you’d rather not see. A light foundation, tinted moisturiser or even tinted sun cream will do the job nicely! If you have freckles, let them shine through! A light dusting of blush or blush mousse is a good idea. Try to refrain from bronzer as the cabin lighting can be quite unforgiving and bronzer can leave you looking sallow! Keep eyeliner to a minimum and make sure mascara is not clumpy and too obvious. Wear a radiant, light reflecting concealer that it is a couple of shades lighter than your skin to eliminate any dark circles from all-nighters (flying or otherwise!)
Stock Up on Stockings
It might seem trivial, but a little ladder can go a long way up. Most airlines will not permit you to fly unless you are travelling with a spare pair of stockings. I can highly recommend ones that have a compression component, and that are of course the correct colour.
Beige (or as natural to your skin colour as possible). Not too opaque as you will get hot and itchy.
Black, 15 denier stockings. Again, not too dark as you will attract the heat!
Ensure your shoes are shiny, polished and you have some gel cushions inside them to make sure your feet are comfy! I also have extra-long toes and am prone to corns. Gross. There are some little pads that you can put on top of your sore spots and it keeps them cushioned and ready for action!
Your Lips Can Save Lives
Literally. Crew are there for so many more reasons other than to serve “chicken or fish”. Crew are there to provide service, yet above all, safety. If you don’t look, (and feel) in control, then the chances are your passengers won’t listen to you or take your advice. Pop on a beautiful, bold lip (either red for Emirates, or nude or light pink), make sure you re apply and keep your shoulders back, and head up high!