60-year Disney World beard ban ends

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Pirates of the Caribbean ©The Walt Disney Company

Pirates of the Caribbean ©The Walt Disney Company

Disney Vacation Guide: 2012 marks the end of the beard ban

See that photo above of some Pirates of the Caribbean cast members? Well, if any members of this motley crew really arrived at Walt Disney World in Florida or Disneyland in California seeking employment, they would be told they must remove their facial hair before being considered. That’s because for the past 60 years, facial hair was prohibited on theme park workers.

Why the ban on facial hair?

Well, when you think of Walt’s reasoning, it all makes sense. See, back when Walt Disney opened Disneyland in the mid-1950s, carnival workers didn’t have a great reputation. Walt didn’t want his property to be painted with the “sleazy carnie” brush so he implemented a rule that would have his employees well-groomed, lending to Disney World’s squeaky clean image.

The rule did get bent a bit in the year 2000 to allow for mustaches. But…they had to be fully grown on an employee’s downtime. No in-between-growth stubble allowed!

Starting on February 3, men will be allowed to wear a beard or goatee to work at Disney properties in California and Florida. But, Disney’s memo to employees clearly states, “all facial hair must create an overall neat, polished, and professional look and must be fully grown in, neatly groomed, and well-maintained at no longer than a quarter of an inch in length.”

Tell us…

Do you think there’s still a place for a ban on beards at Disney, or do you think this has been a long time coming?