air force
An Air Force servicemember is shown working at the 561st Network Operations Squadron at Petersen Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado, July 20, 2015. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

The U.S. Air Force has relaxed its policy surrounding how its service members can wear their uniforms. The sleeves of the uniforms for "pilots, navigators and airmen" will will now be allowed to be rolled up when they're not on duty on a plane, reported Tuesday.

The Air Force officially announced the policy change Jan. 23.

The new policy, which applies to those wearing a Flight Duty Uniform or Desert Flight Duty Uniform, will permit service members "to pull the sleeves up to within 1 inch of the elbow using the Velcro, already incorporated in the suit, to hold them in place," according to Air Force spokesman Maj. Bryan Lewis.

However, they "will still be required to have sleeves rolled down to the wrist when performing aircrew duties in-flight," Lewis added.

While the policy surrounding uniform sleeves was not directly attributed to efforts to boost recruiting, it followed the announcement that the Air Force had updated its policies on service members displaying tattoos, many of which are on arms. Before the tattoo policy update, the Air Force was turning away recruits for its "25% coverage rule" that restricted body ink to covering no more than one-fourth of a recruit's body.

"As part of our effort to attract and retain as many qualified Airmen as possible we periodically review our accessions policies,” Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James said earlier this month. "In this instance, we identified specific changes we can make to allow more members of our nation to serve without compromising quality. As a next step in this evolution, we are opening the aperture on certain medical accession criteria and tattoos while taking into account our needs for worldwide deployability and our commitment to the profession of arms."

In addition to the sleeves and tattoo policies being updated, the Air Force has been testing its maternity uniforms for service members who are pregnant. It has also introduced a new blue service dress shirt made from a material that stretches more.

It was not immediately clear how much these recent changes would cost, but it incurred charges of $3.2 million when it replaced uniforms in 2011, CNN reported.

The Air Force's announcement was in line with other branches of the U.S armed forces updating their respective uniforms. The Navy was expected to introduce its new, lighter-weight, flame-resistant uniforms in October, it announced last week.