The appearance for Enlisted US Army service members is outlined by AR 670-1. The importance of appearance is to look professional. The purpose of appearance is for every soldier in the US Army, to include officers of both warrant and commissioned, to have a base line for general personal appearance.
The importance of appearance helps to look more professional. If Joe Scruffy, comes in every day unshaven, smells of body odor, booze and cigarettes, he not only makes himself look bad but he makes his unit look bad if he is out in public and people see him. If you better your appearance, you in turn better your hygiene and you better your work ethic.
The purpose of appearance is vital to the US Army uniform standards and the professionalism of the job. If everybody came in to work wearing their own uniform that they tie-died themselves we would look like a bunch of hippies. Granted, Commissioned officers aren’t held by the guidelines of AR 670-1, but they aren’t going to come to work with a uniform different than the enlisted Joe next to them. NCOs and officers set the standards for new soldiers. If we have a standard set for the appearance of the military uniform, we look the same, which will in turn create unit cohesion, allowing us to function better as a team, unit, and an army as a whole.
Simple ways to better your appearance, you can keep two separate uniforms out of your closet; one for the dirty day in the motor pool or hangar, and one for the day you need to look your best for a ceremony or your own promotion. Keeping yourself shaven isn’t very hard either, if you know your hair grows back fast, plan to keep a razor or electric shaver handy to buzz it down at lunch. If the hair on your head grows fast, plan to have a haircut every paycheck. If that doesn’t fit into your budget, buy a razor and shave it down every week. Your body odor seems out of control and you stink by the end of the day, keep some baby wipes and deodorant close...