This week in Army Times: Backlash on grooming rules … another 100K soldiers may go … Certifications boost careers


What soldiers hate about the new grooming rules

Soldiers are telling Army Times what they don’t like about the pending changes to at least 17 grooming regulations.

In a flood of messages from the ranks, they protest changes in shaving requirements, tattoo rules and more. Some soldiers say it’s good the Army is getting tougher about the way they look, but most spoke up about imposing tougher rules on a force that has seen a decade of war deployments.

See what soldiers are saying, and what the Army plans to do, in this week’s Army Times.

Another 100,000 soldiers may be cut

The Army may face a “devastating” cut of up to 100,000 soldiers, in addition to troop cuts already planned, if Congress doesn’t change the current law that will bring huge defense spending reductions in coming months, officials say.

Gen. Lloyd Austin, Army vice chief of staff, and the other service vice chiefs told a Senate panel that readiness and modernization efforts will be in danger under the sequester law.

Get the details in Army Times.

Soldiers: Get certified, get promoted faster

Soldiers have a growing range of opportunities to get certifications in their job fields, which can mean they get promoted faster and have a better shot at civilian jobs after the Army.

Incentives are on the increase for soldiers to earn civilian certifications related to their military occupational specialties. The Army is trying to make it easier to earn these credentials through its education system.

Find out more about what you can get and how it works. See this week’s Army Times, on newsstands now.

Online: The details on getting certified

The Army has released many charts to show soldiers what certifications are available in their specific military occupational specialties.

See the charts online at


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  1. I think is is funny how mad everyone is getting over the new tougher grooming rules. The current rules are not being enforced so what makes SGM of the Army think the new rules will be enforced. I know personally I will not go out of my way to tell a Soldier off work to go shave or take his earring out. If the tats are not grandfathered in there is no way anyone can say it’s not part of the draw down. What about special operations I have seen maybe one or two that doesn’t have tats are they getting kicked out too? I have deployed twice and worked with several different countries military’s and I am pretty sure the US is the only one that has high grooming standards, no drinking, no co ed living, and just relaxed standards during deployment. I used to love being in the Army but now I cant wait to get out. The new “Army Soldier” I dont want to fight next to because he will be a neat cut pretty boy too scared to kill and fight like we need him too.

  2. SSG Robert McNeilly on

    Ok the shaving while off duty or on leave is just stupid. I’ve been in 15 years and when I go on leave I grow my beard. I shave everyday while I’m on duty I like giving my face rest from the razor. The tattoo thing needs to be revised. I think the neck tattoos and hand tattoos should go. There not professional looking at all in uniform. But the sleeve tats why do we care as long as you can’t see it while in uniform why should it matter.

  3. Prior Service-E5 SGT Infantry on

    I do agree with tattoos on neck…. Why the hell would they want you to shave while off duty and the half over! God damn ridiculous. Just as long as the tattoos are not seen in uniform but the keepn clean cut while off duty is insane. Might as well move to Canada!!!!!! A!

  4. This all BS. The SMA is an idiot and very shallow. Instead of worrying about grooming standards, he should focus on a better NCOES system comparable to the Officer System. He could spend his time building coalitions and partnerships with industry to get Soldiers the civilian certifications some jobs require when a soldiers decides to end his service. Better prepare the force and maintain high standards that mean something and provide value to the Army. Looking pretty does not make you effective.

  5. Don’t worry about combat effectiveness and readiness, or more specifically lack thereof. Be worried about sideburns though. This is a classic example of the army focusing on things that are useless while ignoring the fact that we’re bogged down in a police action. Strangely enough, I’d rather see a less “professional” army, but one that was extremely good in combat operations. Take a clue from the Israeli army.

  6. Amazing! This blog looks exactly like my old one! It’s on a completely different subject but it has pretty much the same layout and design. Wonderful choice of colors!

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