News that financial services firm UBS is reducing its 44-page dress code, which stipulates what colour lingerie and stockings are acceptable for female retail employees, illustrates that the submissive perfection of the Stepford wife is unlikely to be adopted by working women.
The existing code, which applies to retail employees based in Zurich, Switzerland, also advises both men and women to avoid garlic breath and tp wear watches to signal a concern for punctuality. In addition, it tells women how to apply make-up, while also advising them not to show roots if they colour their hair.
According to the guidelines, the life of knee stockings can be extended by keeping toenails trimmed and files. Oh, and don’t forget female underwear should be skin coloured.
Meanwhile, men are instructed to get a hair cut every month, and avoid unruly beards and earrings. And those that have not yet mastered the art of tie knotting, should not worry because it is explained in the guide.
A spokesperson from UBS said: “Key elements [of the code] are regarding the outside appearance. There is a requirement for staff in the retail branches [1,500 people out of the 23,000 employed[. It does not apply to employees outside Switzerland.”
They added that the main requirement was for staff to wear a dark suit, white shirt or blouse, red tie or red scarf and a black belt and black shoes.
A new simplified version of the code will be given to employee in May.