Starbucks, piercings and Band-Aids

May 1, 2008
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Some local Starbucks workers are looking like they tangle with cats.

Theyâ??ve taken to putting bandages over piercings to meet the letter of Starbucksâ?? dress code, which minimizes the number of earrings and other piercings visible to customers.

Band-Aids beat the hassle of taking them out, the workers say.

And perhaps assert a dash of flinty individualism.

Is Starbucksâ?? dress code appropriate?
  • So you can only be a little edgy/artsy in your dress and self expression at Starbucks?
    What happened to that Seattle slacker grunge look? Not corporate looking enough?
    I might be pretty conservative but think Gothic looks good with black coffee.
  • I think that Starbucks' dress code is appropriate. Those who choose to work in the foodservice arena should be conscious of how their appearance can at times make those they are serving uncomfortable. Perhaps I am more conservative than many others in my age group (I am 35), but I believe that in general, people have gone a bit overboard with regard to piercings and tatoos. Yes, everyone has a choice as to what they do to their own bodies, but in my opinion, too much of something can damage its original appeal -- and less is always more.
    • It is actually a health code issue not only a company policy.
    • How are piercings a health code issue? I'm more concerned if a worker is clean, washing hands, etc than whether or not their nose is pierced! It's Starbuck's choice to set their dress code, but I agree with the poster who said whatever happened to the edgy/artsy image they had in the past?
    • The facilities where piercings and tattoos are performed are generally regulated by state and/or local departments of health. The fact that a food service worker has tattoos or multiple piercings is not a health code issue, unless there is infection or some other factor that brings health code violations into question. Piercings in and of themselves are not a health code issue.

      I think it's mostly an issue of some customers not being crazy about being served food or drink by someone with multiple holes in his/her body. I don't blame them. I am one of those individuals.
    • How does a band-aid make the fact that there is a hole behind it less offensive?
      I personally don't care if the person serving my coffee has 1 or 100 holes in his/her body. As long as they are clean and friendly it's their choice. As a business woman if the number of piercings is a problem there is one of two ways to handle it. You ask them to take the pericings out (inforce a dress code) or not hire them. A dress code is a professional way of regulating your image. If an employee has a problem with the dress code then they should not have accepted the position.
      Placing a band-aid on it just leaves room for something to fall off and into food or drinks. Seeing multipule bandaids on a person is far more offensive than small metal objects.
    • As someone who has a daughter working for a popular retailer that hires and sells to many young people (often pierced, and often multiple times), you should know that there is a good number of people who will do piercings for friends (or just someone they met). These peope are not licensed in any way. That is where there might be a health issue - do you know if they person you are hiring or looking at got their pierced nose or eyebrow or navel or chin or (yes, some still get these) ear pierced at a licensed place or from a friend who might reuse needles or otherwise run the risk of spreading HIV, Hepatitis C, Staph (and what variety? resistant, MERSA, or??), etc. Although you might not worry about a piercing in an ear, eyebrow, etc., what about a nose, if someone has a cold, that is one more orifice for the spray to leave from and that surely isn't clean, but you wouldn't see it would you?
    • Mary,

      What? This may be surprising to you, but having HIV or Hepatitis C do not disqualify individuals from working in food service. An employer who refused to hire such an afflicted individual for a food service position would face even bigger problems from the resulting ADA lawsuit.
    • If you’re interested in details of Starbucks’ dress code, the company allows as many as two small or “moderately sized” earrings per ear, but no “visible” tattoos or facial piercings. There you have it.
    • All the more reason for me to support local, non-chain coffee shops with my hard-earned money.
    • starbucks blah
      I currently work at starbucks I have my lip and nose pierced. I also have about 20 piercings. I keep tem covered everyday witha turtle neck and I put bioplast in for my facial piercings. As for the bioplast I know im not suppose to have them but I buy the shorter ones, just to make sure you can't see it.I never asked was the bioplast okay to wear because if she can;t see it whats the point? so anyways rules are rules and if you can;t follow them then get te job that better suits you eith tatoos and piercings without the cover up just like i plan on doing in te future.
    • Really?
      I think your still being judgemental and close minded. Your offensive and territorial with no real sense of individualism. However, Starbucks gets to run Starbuck's like it wants to!

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