31 Crazy-Strict Uniform and Grooming Standards Flight Attendants Have to Deal With… (By Kate Beckman).





    Flight attendants are known for always looking putting together. But their standards are way stricter than putting on lipstick and tucking in their shirts. From restrictions on body hair to nail color and even to eating in public, flight attendants have to deal with some pretty crazy rules and regulations. Cosmopolitan.com tracked down the requirements some airlines have for prospective flight attendants to even apply, and the appearance-standard handbooks of different airlines once they get the job. Here are some of the strictest, most intense, and most weirdly specific rules:


    When Applying for the Job.


    1. "Physical features: Pleasing personality, clear complexion (scars, pimples and blemishes not acceptable) and good eyesight" —Jet Airways


    2. "Arm reach of 212 cm [83 inches] while standing on tiptoes" —Emirates 


    3. "At least 2 years of customer or community service experience required" —Alaska Airlines


    4. "Tattoos on the feet are not permitted, as they cannot be concealed. All shoes must be of the classic court style, which leaves the top and side of the foot exposed. The maximum permitted hosiery density is 15 denier and does not cover up tattoos." —British Airways.



    5. "We require applicants to be free of all nicotine use for at least 6 months prior to submitting an application." —Alaska Airlines.


    6. "Between 5'2 (1.57m) and 6'2 (1.88m) in height with weight in proportion" —Ryan Air


    7. "A tongue piercing is not permitted. You will be required to remove any items from your tongue for training and duty." —British Airways.


    8. "Tattoos are not permitted on wrists. Watches must be of a discreet design with either a small silver or gold metal bracelet, or brown/black leather strap." —British Airways.


    9. "Marital Status: Unmarried" —Jet Airways (Note: The unmarried status is only a standard for "inexperienced" crew; people applying as "experienced" cabin crew can be married.)


    10. "Must successfully pass a functional assessment — must be able to lift 50 pounds from floor to waist and 22 pounds overhead" —WestJet.


    11. "BMI — Body Mass Index is used to calculate weight — one's body weight in kilograms is divided by the square of one's body height in metres: BMI = body weight (kg) divided by square of height (m). BMI = 19–24.9 is considered satisfactory" —Czech Airlines.


    (Context: Someone who is 5-foot-3 and 145 pounds would have a BMI of 25.7, so would not meet the requirements. Czech Airlines' page reads, "Your weight and height are recorded in order to see that you comply with the requirements." So if your BMI falls out of that range, you're out of luck.) 


    Once You Get the Job.


    12. "A total of four rings may be worn, with no more than two on each hand." —United Airlines.


    13. "Hands and nails should be kept well groomed at all times, with nail length not exceeding an eighth of an inch beyond the finger tip." —Hawaiian Airlines.


    14. "Don't wear accessories that clash with your uniform." —JetBlue.


    15. "Lipstick or gloss are required and should complement the facial features. Lip liner should be used in moderation" —Allegiant Air.


    16. "Noticeable hair in nostrils and in/on ears or underarms must be cut or otherwise removed." —American Airlines.


    17. "Teeth should present a clean, natural appearance. Employees must have a full frontal complement of teeth. Dental retainers must be gum toned or clear. Braces should be clear or silver." —American Airlines.


    18. "Whilst in Uniform, staff members must not: slouch, cross or fold arms; walk or stand with hands in pockets."  —Regional Express Pty Limited.


    19. "Unacceptable hairstyles include, but are not limited to, extreme or unnatural colors (e.g., pink, purple), top-knots, dreadlocks, cornrows and Mohawks." —Hawaiian Airlines.


    20. "Length [of skirt] may not exceed 1 inch above or 1 inch below the crease of the back of the knee." —United Airlines.


    21. "Don't tie your sweater around your waist; it can be worn around your shoulders." —JetBlue.


    22. "Good oral hygiene should be practiced to ensure that the teeth present a clean, natural appearance. Breath sprays and mints are encouraged. No oral jewelry is allowed to be worn while in uniform." —Allegiant Air.


    23. "Hoop earrings are permitted and may be no larger than 1½ inches in diameter and/or ½ inch wide on the surface." —Hawaiian Airlines.


    24. "Makeup should be freshened as necessary, but never in view of the customer." —American Airlines.


    25. "Mustaches may not extend more than ¼ inch below the sides of the mouth." —United Airlines.


    26. "[For men] Trendy facial hair styles are not permitted (e.g., small patch of hair growing below lower lip)." —United Airlines.


    27. "Males may not wear earrings or studs in ears while on duty or anytime while in uniform." —Allegiant Air.


    28. "[Fingernails] May be no longer than ½ inch measured from the fingertip and should be even in length and shape." —United Airlines.


    29. "Male flight attendants may not wear make-up." —United Airlines.


    30. "Hairstyles may not be more than three inches in fullness and may not wave or curl outward to extreme volume." —American Airlines.


    31. "When leaning forward, restrained hair should remain neat and off the face. A single ponytail may be secured behind the ears and centered on the back of the head. The ponytail should be no higher than the tops of the ears and no longer than the tops of the shoulders." —JetBlue.




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    A Finnish hipster named Mannerheim.


    Although Mannerheim is one of the most famous figures in Finnish history, many people have no inkling of the details they may discover on a visit to his home.


    Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim (1867–1951) commanded the Finnish armed forces during the Second World War and went on to serve as president. His house in Helsinki is now the Mannerheim Museum and shows off his collection of weapons, his hunting trophies and his taste in interior decoration.


    His residence forms a real work of installation art. The visitor enters different worlds in the various rooms because Mannerheim, ever cosmopolitan, wanted the décor to present diverse cultural trends, from English nuances to French ambience. That’s how Mannerheim Museum curator Kristina Ranki describes the house.


    One of the most important figures in the history of independent Finland, Mannerheim leased the villa when he was 57 from Karl Fazer, the owner of a candy factory. Mannerheim lived there, surrounded by the greenery of Kaivopuisto, the park that covers the southern tip of Helsinki, until he passed away. The great man’s residence was subsequently opened to the public as a museum.


    “The reception rooms for prestigious guests were downstairs, while upstairs was more for his private use,” says Ranki. Except for the three exhibition rooms upstairs, the residence remains almost exactly as it was when Mannerheim was alive.


    “A visit to the museum and the guides’ stories are sure to provide a new kind of experience,” says Ranki, “even for people who have read their war history and think they already know everything about Mannerheim.”


    Finnish hipster named Mannerheim.

    Akseli Gallen-Kallela painted this sitting portrait of Mannerheim; a standing portrait by the same artist hangs in the Mannerheim Museum. Photo: Heikki Saukkomaa/ Lehtikuva.


    The only object brought to the museum later is a classic portrait of Mannerheim painted in 1929 by a good friend of his, the prominent artist Akseli Gallen-Kallela. The painting reveals a lot about its subject. It conveys the essential nature of a Renaissance regent and his dandyish sense of style, with his sword of honour and his tailcoat.


    Mannerheim was neurotically meticulous not only about his appearance, but also about his public image: He demanded the right to inspect all photos of him before publication to make sure that no signs of fatigue were visible.


    As a young military officer, Mannerheim was already extremely particular about grooming. Later in his career, when he had attained the title of field marshal, he ordered bespoke clothing from foreign tailors, with details according to his wishes. The gentleman’s civilian outfits were always immaculate, but for reasons of style the commander-in-chief took liberties even with military uniform etiquette. Mannerheim considered narrow lampasses, or trouser stripes, more elegant than the wide stripes that would have been in accordance with regulations for his military rank. For this reason he preferred to wear a uniform of lower rank.


    The walls of Mannerheim’s home are decorated with dozens of hunting trophies, of which the most famous is probably the tiger skin on the floor of the salon. He killed the Bengal tiger while visiting India in 1937. Nor did he ever go hunting looking like a novice; he rode out on horseback dressed as stylishly as if he were going to war. His wardrobe included a red tailcoat and black top hat to wear while hunting.


    Mannerheim took care of his grooming otherwise, too, and not only when he was entertaining – he was well aware of the impact his elegant appearance had on other people. For example, in addition to a toothbrush, he used an innovation of his time – a water jet. Menthol drops were added to a device resembling a small pressure washer attached to the bathroom wall, and then he could carefully rinse his teeth.


    His boots gleamed, every hair was in place and his moustache was correctly shaped, even on his deathbed. A real dandy.


    “He represented the gentleman’s culture,” says Ranki. “Nowadays Mannerheim could perhaps be called a hipster, if the word is taken to mean a person who cares about his own appearance.”


    Finnish hipster named Mannerheim.

    Wealthy chocolate manufacturer Karl Fazer leased this house in Helsinki to Mannerheim for decades; it is now a museum. Photo: Ilkka A. Suominen/ Lehtikuva.


    The smartness of the residence emphasised Mannerheim’s aesthetic sensibility, which extended from his own appearance to the matching colours of the décor in his house.


    “Military discipline is visible in the home,” says Ranki. “Mannerheim himself paid attention to every detail and made sure that everything was exactly in place. He wanted his home to present a certain image of himself, which was conveyed in the items on display – hunting trophies, official gifts and, placed on the grand piano, pictures of heads of state.” (By Marko Ylitalo, June 2017).




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    Elon Musk's growing empire is fueled by $4.9 billion in government subsidies.


    Something wrong with Elon Musk.

    During an event at Tesla’s design studio in Hawthorne, Elon Musk introduces a line of batteries for homes and businesses. (Jerome Adamstein / Los Angeles Times).


    Tesla, SolarCity and SpaceX have collected or received a commitment for $4.9 billion in government support


    Los Angeles entrepreneur Elon Musk has built a multibillion-dollar fortune running companies that make electric cars, sell solar panels and launch rockets into space.


    And he's built those companies with the help of billions in government subsidies.


    Tesla Motors Inc., SolarCity Corp. and Space Exploration Technologies Corp., known as SpaceX, together have benefited from an estimated $4.9 billion in government support, according to data compiled by The Times. The figure underscores a common theme running through his emerging empire: a public-private financing model underpinning long-shot start-ups.


    "He definitely goes where there is government money," said Dan Dolev, an analyst at Jefferies Equity Research. "That's a great strategy, but the government will cut you off one day."


    The figure compiled by The Times comprises a variety of government incentives, including grants, tax breaks, factory construction, discounted loans and environmental credits that Tesla can sell. It also includes tax credits and rebates to buyers of solar panels and electric cars.


    A looming question is whether the companies are moving toward self-sufficiency — as Dolev believes — and whether they can slash development costs before the public largesse ends.


    Tesla and SolarCity continue to report net losses after a decade in business, but the stocks of both companies have soared on their potential; Musk's stake in the firms alone is worth about $10 billion. (SpaceX, a private company, does not publicly report financial performance.)


    Musk and his companies' investors enjoy most of the financial upside of the government support, while taxpayers shoulder the cost.


    The payoff for the public would come in the form of major pollution reductions, but only if solar panels and electric cars break through as viable mass-market products. For now, both remain niche products for mostly well-heeled customers.


    Musk declined repeated requests for an interview through Tesla spokespeople, and officials at all three companies declined to comment.


    The subsidies have generally been disclosed in public records and company filings. But the full scope of the public assistance hasn't been tallied because it has been granted over time from different levels of government.


    New York state is spending $750 million to build a solar panel factory in Buffalo for SolarCity. The San Mateo, Calif.-based company will lease the plant for $1 a year. It will not pay property taxes for a decade, which would otherwise total an estimated $260 million.


    The federal government also provides grants or tax credits to cover 30% of the cost of solar installations. SolarCity reported receiving $497.5 million in direct grants from the Treasury Department.


    That figure, however, doesn't capture the full value of the government's support.


    Since 2006, SolarCity has installed systems for 217,595 customers, according to a corporate filing. If each paid the current average price for a residential system — about $23,000, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists — the cost to the government would total about $1.5 billion, which would include the Treasury grants paid to SolarCity.


    Nevada has agreed to provide Tesla with $1.3 billion in incentives to help build a massive battery factory near Reno.


    The Palo Alto company has also collected more than $517 million from competing automakers by selling environmental credits. In a regulatory system pioneered by California and adopted by nine other states, automakers must buy the credits if they fail to sell enough zero-emissions cars to meet mandates. The tally also includes some federal environmental credits.


    On a smaller scale, SpaceX, Musk's rocket company, cut a deal for about $20 million in economic development subsidies from Texas to construct a launch facility there. (Separate from incentives, SpaceX has won more than $5.5 billion in government contracts from NASA and the U.S. Air Force.)


    Subsidies are handed out in all kinds of industries, with U.S. corporations collecting tens of billions of dollars each year, according to Good Jobs First, a nonprofit that tracks government subsidies. And the incentives for solar panels and electric cars are available to all companies that sell them.


    Musk and his investors have also put large sums of private capital into the companies.


    But public subsidies for Musk's companies stand out both for the amount, relative to the size of the companies, and for their dependence on them.


    "Government support is a theme of all three of these companies, and without it none of them would be around," said Mark Spiegel, a hedge fund manager for Stanphyl Capital Partners who is shorting Tesla's stock, a bet that pays off if Tesla shares fall.


    Tesla stock has risen 157%, to $250.80 as of Friday's close, over the last two years.


    Musk has proved so adept at landing incentives that states now compete to give him money, said Ashlee Vance, author of "Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future," a recently published biography.


    "As his star has risen, every state wants a piece of Elon Musk," Vance said.


    Before his current ventures, he made a substantial sum from EBay Inc.'s $1.5-billion purchase of PayPal, the electronic payment system in which Musk held an 11% stake.


    Soon after, he founded SpaceX in 2002 with money from that sale, and he made major investments and took leadership posts at Tesla and Solar City.


    Musk is now the chief executive of both Tesla and SpaceX and the chairman of SolarCity, and holds big stakes in all three, including 27% of Tesla and 23% of SolarCity, according to recent regulatory filings. The ventures employ about 23,000 people nationwide, and they operate or are building factories and facilities in California, Michigan, New York, Nevada and Texas.


    Tense talks.


    The $1.3 billion in benefits for Tesla's Nevada battery factory resulted from a year of hardball negotiations.


    Late in 2013, Tesla summoned economic development officials from seven states to its auto factory in Fremont, Calif. After a tour, they gathered in a conference room, where Tesla executives explained their plan to build the biggest lithium-ion battery factory in the world — then asked the states to bid for the project.


    Nevada at first offered its standard package of incentives, in this case worth $600 million to $700 million, said Steve Hill, Nevada's executive director of the Governor's Office of Economic Development.


    Tesla negotiators wanted far more. The automaker at first sought a $500-million upfront payment, among other enticements, Hill said. Nevada pushed back, in sometimes tense talks punctuated by raised voices.


    "It would have amounted to Nevada writing a series of checks during the first couple of years," said Hill, calling it an unacceptable risk.


    With the deal imperiled, Hill flew to Palo Alto in August to meet with Tesla's business development chief, Diarmuid O'Connell, a former State Department official who is the automaker's lead negotiator.


    They shored up the deal with an agreement to give Tesla $195 million in transferable tax credits, which the automaker could sell for upfront cash. To make room in its budget, Nevada reduced incentives for filming in the state and killed a tax break for insurance companies.


    Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval and Musk sealed the agreement in a Labor Day phone conversation. Hill said it was worth it, pointing to the 6,000 jobs he expects the factory to eventually create.


    The state commissioned an analysis estimating the economic impact from the project at $100 billion over two decades, but some economists called that figure deeply flawed. It counted every Tesla employee as if they would otherwise have been unemployed, for instance, and it made no allowance for increased government spending to serve the influx of thousands of local residents.


    A $750-million factory.


    Musk has similar success with getting subsidies for a SolarCity plant in Buffalo, N.Y. The company currently buys many of its solar panels from China, but it will soon become its own supplier with a new and heavily subsidized factory.


    An affiliate of New York's College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering in Albany will spend $750 million to build a solar panel factory on state land. SolarCity estimated in a corporate filing that it will spend an additional $150 million to get the factory operating.


    When finished in 2017, the 1.2-million-square-foot facility will be the largest solar panel factory in the Western Hemisphere. New York officials see the subsidy as a worthy investment because they expect that it will create 3,000 jobs. The plant will replace a long-closed steel factory.


    "The SolarCity facility will bring extensive benefits and value to this formerly dormant brownfield that provided zero benefit to the city and region," said Peter Cutler, spokesman for Empire State Development, New York's economic development agency.


    SpaceX, though it depends far more on government contracts than subsidies, received an incentive package in Texas for a commercial rocket launch facility. The state put up more than $15 million in subsidies and infrastructure spending to help SpaceX build a launch pad in rural Cameron County at the southern tip of Texas. Local governments contributed an additional $5 million.


    Included in the local subsidies is a 15-year property tax break from the local school district worth $3.1 million to SpaceX. Officials say the development still will bring in about $5 million more over that period than the local school district otherwise would have collected.


    "That's $5 million more than we have ever seen from that property," said Dr. Lisa Garcia, superintendent of the Point Isabel Independent School District. "It is remote.... It is just sand dunes."


    Crucial aid.


    The public money for Tesla and SolarCity factories is crucial to both companies' efforts to lower development and manufacturing costs.


    The task is made more urgent by the impending expiration of some of their biggest subsidies. The federal government's 30% tax credit for solar installations gets slashed to 10% in 2017 for commercial customers and ends completely for homeowners.


    Tesla buyers also get a $7,500 federal income tax credit and a $2,500 rebate from the state of California. The federal government has capped the $7,500 credit at a total of 200,000 vehicles per manufacturer; Tesla is about a quarter of the way to that limit. In all, Tesla buyers have qualified for an estimated $284 million in federal tax incentives and collected more than $38 million in California rebates.


    California legislators recently passed a law, which has not yet taken effect, calling for income limits on electric car buyers seeking the state's $2,500 subsidy. Tesla owners have an average household income of about $320,000, according to Strategic Visions, an auto industry research firm.


    Competition could also eat into Tesla's public support. If major automakers build more zero-emission cars, they won't have to buy as many government-awarded environmental credits from Tesla.


    In the big picture, the government supports electric cars and solar panels in the hope of promoting widespread adoption and, ultimately, slashing carbon emissions. In the early days at Tesla — when the company first produced an expensive electric sports car, which it no longer sells — Musk promised more rapid development of electric cars for the masses.


    In a 2008 blog post, Musk laid out a plan: After the sports car, Tesla would produce a sedan costing "half the $89k price point of the Tesla Roadster and the third model will be even more affordable."


    In fact, the second model now typically sells for $100,000, and the much-delayed third model, the Model X sport utility, is expected to sell for a similar price. Timing on a less expensive model — maybe $35,000 or $40,000, after subsidies — remains uncertain.


    "Some may question whether this actually does any good for the world," Musk wrote in 2008. "Are we really in need of another high-performance sports car? Will it actually make a difference to global carbon emissions? Well, the answers are no and not much.... When someone buys the Tesla Roadster sports car, they are actually helping to pay for the development of the low-cost family car."


    Next: Battery subsidies.


    Now Musk is moving into a new industry: energy storage. Last month, he starred in a typically dramatic announcement of Tesla Energy-branded batteries for homes and businesses. On a concert-like stage, backed by pulsating music, Musk declared that the batteries would someday render the world's energy grid obsolete.


    "We are talking about trying to change the fundamental energy infrastructure of the world," he said.


    Musk laid out a vision of affordable clean energy in the remote villages of underdeveloped countries and homeowners in industrial nations severing themselves from utility grids. The Nevada factory will churn out the batteries alongside those for Tesla cars.


    What he didn't say: Tesla has already secured a commitment of $126 million in California subsidies to companies developing energy storage technology… jerry.hirsch@latimes.com




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