Sorry, no beards authorized in this recent Navy message.

But the Navy is giving leeway to commanders to relax hair length grooming standards for men and women to help fight potential exposure to COVID-19.

The recent Navy Administrative message only applies to hair length and does not include sideburns, other hair styles or facial hair.

“Relaxed hair length grooming standards will only apply to the area of the scalp,” the NAVADMIN reads.

Commanding officers “may allow for additional hair length and bulk on the sides, top and back of the head. At no time will relaxed grooming interfere with the proper wearing of Navy head gear proper use of protective personal equipment (helmets, masks, hoods, etc.),” the NAVADMIN reads.

The Navy says the relaxed grooming standards are an effort to maintain proper social distancing guidelines to help stymie the spread of COVID-19.

The Navy said in a news release that exchange barber shops will remain open depending on installation guidance, but shops will limit customers to help maintain social distancing.

“Good judgement of leaders at all levels of the chain of command is required to ensure all possible COVID-19 force health protection precautions are being taken,” the message reads.

Shawn Snow is the senior reporter for Marine Corps Times and a Marine Corps veteran.

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