In an attempt to distinguish soccer fans from the people controlling them, the German Interior Ministry has ordered the police at this summer's World Cup to spruce up their appearance.
German police officer or German soccer fan? New rules will help distinguish between the two
While the uniform may be a give-away as to who wields the truncheon and who could possibly feel its force, the police authorities are looking to cut down on similarities in a bid to assert their authority and command respect.
Policemen will not be allowed to wear earrings, body studs, pony tails -- especially those in the style of German fashion guru Karl Lagerfeld, dreadlocks, three-day old beards or visible tattoos. Other hairstyles "which may be perceived as an expression of a marked individualist demeanor" were also banned.
Officers of both sexes in the 30,000-strong police force will be able to wear not more than one necklace and one bracelet each, as well as make-up provided it is discreet and "socially appropriate for a policeman or policewoman."
Female officers will also be able to wear earrings provided they are not more than five millimeters in diameter.
German cops to present a united front through dress code
"And that George Michael stubble has definitely got to go."
An Interior Ministry spokesman told Der Spiegel magazine: "We want German police to have a united front in terms of appearance."
The decree, which will be published next month, will stay in force until after the June 9 to July 9 World Cup finals. The order, which applies to Germany's federal police, matches regulations which already apply to state police forces.