American Apparel Dress Code: Yes To Disco Pants, No To "Expressive" Makeup

It’s well known that American Apparel likes the models in its ads to wear as little as possible. But what about the company’s sales staff? Turns out the dress code for AA retail workers is strict — and kind of dull. No tattoos, no piercings (well, one earring per ear for the girls), and no boots. What’s in? Sperry Topsiders, knitted sweaters and pleated shorts. Is this American Apparel 2010 — or J. Crew 1980?

The leaked employee manual boasts that the company’s dress code is designed to “represent ourselves to a standard our customers would wish to aspire to. … By adhering to these guidelines, we will ensure our presentation remains at its very best.”

That means, of course, wearing lots of AA clothing. But it also means sticking to a clean-cut “vintage” look that bans straightened hair, colored contact lenses or “pointy or square fronted shoes.” Hair should be “complimentary to skin tone” and “clean, tidy and classic.” We’ll leave it to you to decide whether the AA look is really “classic.” One thing’s for sure, though: If you’re going to an AA shop hoping to spot someone dressed like one of their models, you’re going to leave very disappointed.

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American Apparel: The Complete ‘New Standards’ Dress Code Manual [Gawker]