From mandatory high heels to a ban on glasses, Japanese women have been busy pushing back against restrictive and anachronistic dress codes in the workplace in 2019.
Some Japanese companies deciding to ban women from wearing spectacles at work has led to widespread condemnation and sparked heated discussions on social media.
According to Japanese media reports, the companies have “banned” eyewear for female employees for various reasons. Domestic airlines said it was for safety reasons, companies in the beauty industry said it was difficult to see the employee’s make-up properly behind glasses, while major retail chains said female shop assistants give off a “cold impression” if they wear glasses. Traditional Japanese restaurants said that glasses simply do not go well with traditional Japanese dress.
It was not clear whether the “ban” was based on company policies, or rather reflected what was socially accepted practice in those workplaces. But the topic has led to heated debates on social media.
The hashtag #glassesareforbidden has been popular in Japan and the topic continued to attract tweets.