Sir Richard Branson Of Virgin Atlantic
Sir Richard Branson has changed mandatory rules for female flight attendants. Here, Branson poses with flight attendants on his star at his Hollywood Walk of Fame star unveiling ceremony, October 16, 2018 in Hollywood, California. Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Virgin Atlantic on Monday made major changes to its styling and grooming policy, announcing it will no longer require flight attendants to wear makeup and have made trousers their standard uniform. The U.K.-based airline has been known for iconic red uniforms, which featured a pencil skirt and standard shirt.

"Our world famous red uniform is something all of us at Virgin Atlantic are incredibly proud of. As an airline, we have always stood out from the crowd and done things differently to the rest of the industry. We want our uniform to truly reflect who we are as individuals while maintaining that famous Virgin Atlantic style," the company's executive vice-president of customers Mark Anderson said in a statement.

"Not only do the new guidelines offer an increased level of comfort, they also provide our team with more choice on how they want to express themselves at work. Helping people to be themselves is core to our desire to be the most loved travel company."

When it comes to makeup, the flight attendant should continue to use the airline’s suggested color palette, which is described in the company’s handbook.

The changes are considered a step forward for flight attendants, many of whom have faced sexism in the airline industry.

Sara Nelson, a former flight attendant who serves as the International President of the Association of Flight Attendants, told PBS’s NewsHour Weekend in February 2018 that every flight attendant confirmed that to differing degrees they have been confronted by sexism, sexual harassment and sexual assault.