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DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE

HEADQUARTERS AIR FORCE SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND

1 October 2017

MEMORANDUM FOR ALL PERSONNEL

FROM: AFSOC/CC
10 Bartley Street, Command Suite
Hurlburt Field, Florida 32544-5273

SUBJECT: Wear Policy for the Airman Combat Uniform (ACU)

1. Effective immediately, the following uniforms are authorized as the Uniform of the Day
(UOD) for AFSOC Airmen as daily functional clothing during in-garrison, home station
activities to include USSOCOM or AFSOC-sponsored events and off-station training or
exercises: the Airman Combat Uniform (ACU - previously referred to as multi-cam or OCP),
the Flame Resistant Airman Combat Uniform (FR-ACU), the Desert Flight Duty Uniform
(DFDU), and the Airman Aircrew Combat Uniform (A2CU previously referred to as Army
Aircrew Combat Uniform). Additionally, the Airman Battle Uniform (ABU) is authorized for
Airmen not issued an ACU.

2. When attending USAF-sponsored events, wear the ABU. The ACU/A2CU will not be worn
while attending any PME, formal classes and courses external to USSOCOM or AFSOC.
Additionally, the ACU/A2CU will not be worn while attending conferences and engagements
where other Air Force members are expected to primarily wear ABUs or FDUs.

3. AFSOC Airmen will use attached guidance until the approval of AFI 36-2903_AFSOCSUP,
Dress and Personal Appearance of Air Force Personnel. AFSOC members will present a
positive military image in and out of uniform, and on and off duty while wearing the ACU. This
policy will remain in effect from 1 October 2017 until superseded or rescinded.

MARSHALL B. WEBB
Lieutenant General, USAF
Commander

Attachment:
1. AFSOC Wear Guidance

AIR COMMANDOS QUIET PROFESSIONALS


1

AFSOC WEAR GUIDANCE ATTACHMENT

SUMMARY OF CHANGES

This document has been substantially revised and must be reviewed in its entirety. Major
revisions include:

Expanded wear guidance of the Airman Combat Uniform (ACU), all variations, which were
previously referred to as OCPs, Multicam, or Scorpion Pattern

Clarified guidance for ACU wear of patches, badges and insignias

Clarification on the prohibition to mix and match camouflage patterns

Clarification of the wear of rings

Authorized wing or group commanders to dictate wear of Airman Combat Shirt (ACS) for
those who work outdoors

Authorized wing or group commanders to dictate the wear of berets and ACU ball caps

This applies to all United States Air Force (USAF) military and civilian personnel assigned, ANG
gained units, AFRC gained units, deployed or TDY to AFSOC. The use of the name or trademark
of any specific manufacturer, commercial product, commodity, or service in this publication does
not imply endorsement by the Air Force.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter 1 BASIC UNIFORM STANDARDS ................................................................................ 3


1.1. Duty Uniform. ...................................................................................................................... 3
1.2. General Uniform Standards. ................................................................................................ 3
Chapter 2 SPECIFIC UNIFORM STANDARDS .......................................................................... 4
2.1 Airman Combat Uniform (ACU), Flame Resistant Airman Combat Uniform (FR- ACU),
and Airman Aircrew Combat Uniform (A2CU) .......................................................................... 4
Figure 2.1. Airman Combat Uniform ...................................................................................... 4
Figure 2.2. Airman Aircrew Combat Uniform ........................................................................ 4
Figure 2.3. ACU Coat .............................................................................................................. 6
Figure 2.4. AFSOC Patch ........................................................................................................ 7
Table 2.1. Authorized Duty Identifier Tabs (Left sleeve) ....................................................... 7
Figure 2.5. ACU Right Sleeve ................................................................................................. 8
Figure 2.6. ACU Left Sleeve ................................................................................................... 8
Figure 2.7. ACU Ball Cap, cloth back ................................................................................... 10
Figure 2.8. ACU Ball Cap, mesh Coyote Brown back .......................................................... 10
2.2. Airman Combat Shirt (ACS) (in ACU or ABU pattern).................................................... 11
Figure 2.9. ACS ........................................................................................................................... 11
2.3. Desert Flight Duty Uniform (DFDU or Tan Flight suit).................................................... 12
2.4. Airman Battle Uniform (ABU). ......................................................................................... 12
2.5. Improved Rain Suit (IRS). ................................................................................................. 12
Chapter 3 ORGANIZATIONAL CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT ........................................... 14
3.1. Functional Clothing Items. ................................................................................................. 14
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Chapter 1
BASIC UNIFORM STANDARDS

1.1. Duty Uniform.

1.1.1. The following uniforms are authorized as the Uniform of the Day (UOD) for AFSOC
Airmen as daily functional clothing during in-garrison, home station activities to include
USSOCOM or AFSOC-sponsored events and off-station training or exercises: the Airman
Combat Uniform (ACU - previously referred to as multi-cam or OCP), the Flame Resistant
Airman Combat Uniform (FR-ACU), the Desert Flight Duty Uniform (DFDU), or the Airman
Aircrew Combat Uniform (A2CU previously referred to as Army Aircrew Combat Uniform).
Additionally, the Airman Battle Uniform (ABU) is authorized for Airmen not issued an ACU.

1.2. General Uniform Standards.

1.2.1. Wing commanders, or designated representatives, may authorize replacement in-kind of


uniform items for enlisted members that have been rendered unserviceable during execution of
official duties. Replacement should be executed through the appropriate Logistics Readiness
Squadron (LRS), via AF Form 659, Personal Clothing Claim. When replacement in-kind is not
available, the AF Form 659 may be used for monetary reimbursement. ACUs, FR-ACUs,
DFDUs and A2CUs, are authorized to be replaced by LRS, as required.

1.2.2. Accoutrements.

1.2.2.1. Squadron and organizational patches must be based on official unit heraldry
approved IAW AFI 84-105, Organizational Lineage, Honors, and Heraldry. Procure patches
only from a manufacturer certified by the U.S. Army Institute of Heraldry IAW 32 U.S.C.
507, using the patch manufacturing specification drawing provided by the U.S. Army
Institute of Heraldry. Contact your local history office or the AFCENT History Office for
assistance or visit: https://portal.afcent.af.mil/afcent/staff/ho/Emblems/Forms/AllItems.aspx.

1.2.2.2. Nametapes and U.S. AIR FORCE tapes. Mandatory for all personnel.

1.2.2.3. Rank Insignia. Mandatory for all military personnel.

1.2.3. AFOSI Special Agents will follow guidance prescribed in AFI 36-2903, AFOSI
Supplement.

1.2.4. While in uniform, rings must be gold, silver, or other metal that is conservative in
nature. Rings made of silicon bands are authorized in black, brown, green, or gray.

1.2.5. Airmen that are in-garrison, home station may wear the squadron black morale shirt
with ABUs or DFDUs on Fridays.
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Chapter 2
SPECIFIC UNIFORM STANDARDS

2.1 Airman Combat Uniform (ACU), Flame Resistant Airman Combat Uniform (FR-
ACU), and Airman Aircrew Combat Uniform (A2CU). Any ACU pattern uniform
previously issued or acquired at no cost to the government should be worn by AFSOC
personnel, regardless of location.

2.1.1. ACUs are the UOD for AFSOC personnel.

2.1.2. When attending USAF-sponsored events, wear the ABU. The ACU/A2CU will not be
worn while attending any PME, formal classes and courses external to USSOCOM or AFSOC.
Additionally, the ACU/A2CU will not be worn while attending conferences and engagements
where other Air Force (AF) members are expected to primarily wear ABUs or FDUs.

Figure 2.1. Airman Combat Uniform Figure 2.2. Airman Aircrew Combat Uniform

2.1.3. FR-ACUs are authorized for Airmen performing missions requiring flame resistant
properties, as identified by the AFSOC Functional Area Manager (FAM).

2.1.4. Members assigned to alert missions upon being assigned and deploying personnel after
formal tasking and prior to departure will have all uniform items issued by home-stations.

2.1.5. Personnel required to wear 100% cotton uniforms for safety purposes, including 3E0X1
(Electrical Systems), 3E0X2 (Electrical Power Production), 3E1X1 (Heating, Ventilation, Air
Conditioning and Refrigeration), 3E4X1 (Water & Fuel Systems Maintenance), will wear the
ACU and be issued 100% cotton coveralls.

2.1.6. Color and thread guidance. All embroidered elements of the ACU may contain only
five thread colors.
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2.1.6.1. Spice Brown. Thread cable number 67196. Nametape, U.S. Air Force tape,
occupational/specialty badges, Commanders Insignia Pin, 2Lt, Maj and all enlisted ranks.

2.1.6.2. Black. Thread cable number 67138. All patch borders.

2.1.6.3. Khaki. Thread cable number 67193. Enlisted rank border.

2.1.6.4. Unit patches should only contain the colors: Black, Khaki, Bagby Green (thread
cable number 67204) and Olive Drab (thread cable number 67133).

2.1.6.4.1. Existing subdued AFSOC patches are authorized.

2.1.7. Trousers (ACU/FR-ACU) will be bloused or tucked into the boots with a bloused
appearance.

2.1.8. Coat.

2.1.8.1. Sleeves may be cuffed up or tucked under at the wrist (Exception: sleeves must be
rolled down to the wrists at all times during flight operations).

2.1.8.2. No Aircrew Style Name Patch (ASNP) will be worn on any portion of the ACU,
FR-ACU, or A2CU at any time.

2.1.8.3. Name and U.S. AIR FORCE tape embroidery will be Spice Brown.

2.1.8.3.1. Wing commanders may direct wear of nametapes written in local language by
personnel who have direct duty contact with host nation personnel (e.g. Combat Aviation
Advisors). Local language name tapes will be the same style, size, and embroidery as the
name tape affixed immediately above the standard name tape.

2.1.8.4. Officer rank will be Black except 2d Lt and Maj, which will be Spice Brown.

2.1.8.5. Enlisted rank will be Spice Brown with Khaki borders.

2.1.8.6. Commanders Insignia Pin may be worn for officers in the rank of Colonel (O-6) and
below when currently in command, as authorized by AFI 36-2903 Paragraph 10.3.24. The
pin will be Spice Brown and centered inch above the name tape, on 1 inch x 1 inch
subdued ACU pattern cloth. Graduated commanders are not authorized to wear the pin.

2.1.8.7. Occupational Badges may be worn centered inch above the U.S. AIR FORCE
tape with Spice Brown embroidery on ACU pattern background. A maximum of two
occupational badges may be worn

2.1.8.7.1. Chaplain Badge (mandatory). Wear inch above aeronautical, space or


cyberspace badge (if authorized) or inch above the U.S. AIR FORCE tape.
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2.1.8.7.2. Air Force Aeronautical, Space, and Cyberspace (optional). If authorized to wear
more than one aeronautical, space, or cyberspace badge, wear the badge that reflects
current job in the highest position.

2.1.8.7.3. No badges or other accoutrements will be affixed to shirt pockets.

2.1.8.8. Name and U.S. AIR FORCE tapes, Rank, Occupational Badges, Commanders
Insignia Pin and Nametape on hats will be attached with Velcro but may be optionally sewn
directly to the uniform. All items will either be attached with Velcro or sewn directly to the
uniform with no combination of the two on the same shirt.

2.1.8.9. Sleeve patches will be affixed via Velcro and will not be sewn directly on the
uniform.

Figure 2.3. ACU Coat

2.1.8.10. Sleeves.

2.1.8.10.1. Right Sleeve.

2.1.8.10.1.1 U.S. Flags will be cloth or infra-red (IR) and centered at the top of Velcro.
For home station in-garrison wear, the following patches are approved to be worn on the
right sleeve under the US Flag.

2.1.8.10.1.2 Higher headquarters (HHQ) subdued cloth patch (For example: Wing,
Group, AFSOC, and/or USSOCOM) will be worn on the right sleeve unless any of the
below approved patches are worn in place of higher headquarters patch.

2.1.8.10.1.3 Directorate subdued cloth patch.


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2.1.8.10.1.4 Inspector General (IG) identification subdued cloth patch.

2.1.8.10.1.5 Subdued cloth patches/badges of awarded campaigns/combat while


assigned to the awarding unit. (SOJTF-A, SOJTF-OIR, etc)

2.1.8.10.1.6. No other types of patches are authorized on the right sleeve (Exemption:
see paragraph 2.1.8.10.3.1).

Figure 2.4. AFSOC Patch

2.1.8.10.2. Left Sleeve.

2.1.8.10.2.1. While performing their duties, certain AFSCs may wear functional patches.
Subdued cloth or subdued IR Duty Identifier Tab will be centered at the top of Velcro
area. Authorized functional patches are included in Table 2.1.

Table 2.1. Authorized Duty Identifier Tabs (Left sleeve)

Current Duty Approved Tab


Combat Aviation Advisor CAA
Combat Controller CCT
Combat Rescue Officer CRO
Deployable Aircraft Ground Response Element DAGRE
Explosive Ordnance Disposal EOD
Fire Fighters FIRE
Force Protection (approved for OCN escorts) FP
Forward Area Refueling Point FARP
Medical (qualified medical personnel) MED
Office of Special Investigations OSI
Pararescue PJ
Security Forces SF
Special Operation Weather Team SOWT
Special Tactics Officer STO
Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape SERE
Tactical Air Control Party TACP
Tactical Call Sign A01
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2.1.8.10.2.2. Organizational unit of assignment subdued cloth patch.

2.1.8.10.2.3. If earned and awarded, subdued cloth joint qualification tabs may be worn,
(e.g., Army Ranger, Sapper, Airborne, Air Commando, SERE, etc.) above the unit patch.

2.1.8.10.2.4. No other types of patches are authorized on the left sleeve (Exemption: see
paragraph 2.1.8.10.3.1).

Figure 2.5. ACU Right Sleeve Figure 2.6. ACU Left Sleeve

2.1.8.10.3. Right or Left Sleeve.

2.1.8.10.3.1. The following patches will be worn on either sleeve in place of either the
HHQ or organizational unit patch: Weapons Instructor Course (WIC) patch (graduate or
instructor), USAF Test Pilot School and School of Advanced Air and Space Studies
(SAASS), Critical Care Air Transport Team Patch, Test Pilot School graduate patches,
and other completed equivalent schools. Patches will be subdued cloth and will have an
ACU patterned background with Black embroidery.

2.1.9. Undergarments are mandatory at all times. For flight operations, cotton, wool, flame
resistant material, or flame resistant blends will be worn. Undergarments and spandex made
of 100% nylon or 100% polyester are not flame resistant and, therefore, not authorized for
flight operations.

2.1.9.1. Socks will be Desert Sand, tan, Coyote Brown or Sage Green.

2.1.9.2. T-Shirt will be Desert Sand, tan, or Coyote Brown and will be tucked into
trousers.

2.1.9.3. Airman Combat Shirt (ACS) is authorized to be worn with the FR-ACU/ACU and
A2CU. See additional wear guidance at para 2.2.
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2.1.9.4. Sleep shirt or thermal underwear will be Desert Sand, tan, green, or Coyote
Brown and not visible, except at the neck. The sleep shirt and thermal underwear will be
tucked into the trousers.

2.1.9.5. Belt will be Desert Sand, tan or Coyote Brown.

2.1.10. Headgear.

2.1.10.1. Patrol caps will be worn with nametapes placed on the back using Velcro or
sewn down. Officer rank will be sewn to the front of the hat.

2.1.10.2. Chaplains wear chaplain functional badge sewn with Spice Brown thread and
centered inch above visor.

2.1.10.3. Campaign (floppy) hats are authorized, but will not have a nametape.

2.1.10.4. Headgear will not be rolled, tucked or otherwise formed. Hats will be worn in
their natural form and will not be hung around the neck.

2.1.10.5. Brim will have naturally curved appearance.

2.1.10.6. ACU Ball caps are optional, but may be approved for wear by wing commanders.

2.1.10.6.1. Officers will wear rank affixed with Velcro, or sewn directly to the hat,
centered in the front. Velcro backing will not exceed the square Velcro area of the
rank.

2.1.10.6.2. Enlisted will wear the subdued U.S. flag with the union in the upper left
corner affixed with Velcro, or sewn directly to the hat, centered in the front.

2.1.10.6.3. Nametape will be worn on the back of the hat, either sewn or with Velcro
to match the front, and will not exceed the Velcro area.

2.1.10.6.4. Nothing will be attached to the Velcro on the top of the hat.

2.1.10.6.5. Females are authorized to pull their bun or pony tail through the back of the
ball cap and hang no lower than the bottom of the collar.

2.1.10.6.6. ACU Ball caps may be constructed of solid ACU material or ACU with
coyote brown mesh back (see Figure 2.7 and 2.8). No other colors or color combinations
are authorized.
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Figure 2.7. ACU Ball Cap, cloth back Figure 2.8. ACU Ball Cap, mesh Coyote Brown back

2.1.10.7. Berets, when authorized, will be worn by designated personnel.

2.1.11. Boots will be Coyote Brown or Tan. After 1 Jul 20, all personnel will wear Coyote
Brown boots.

2.1.12. Cold Weather Items.

2.1.12.1. Coyote Brown or black scarves, earmuffs, watch caps, and gloves are authorized.

2.1.12.2. Coyote Brown fleece may be worn.

2.1.12.3. The Extended Cold Weather Clothing System (ECWCS) jackets (fleece, wind,
soft shell, wet weather, or extreme cold weather) may be worn without the pants; however,
the pants must not be worn without the jacket.

2.1.12.4. Wing or local commander authorize wear of Massif (fleece lined) Elements.

2.1.12.4.1. Massif Elements Jackets and Pants are authorized for wear. ASNP will no
longer be authorized for personnel after 1 Jul 18.

2.1.12.4.1.1 ASNP will be on ACU pattern background affixed with Velcro and
contain the following elements.

2.1.12.4.1.1.1. First line will contain first name and last name. Second line will have
rank abbreviated and USAF. Rank insignia will be embroidered and located at the
far left of the patch.

2.1.12.4.1.1.2. Officer rank will be Black except 2d Lt and Maj, which will be Spice
Brown; Enlisted rank and border will be Spice Brown.

2.1.12.4.1.1.3. An occupational badge in Spice Brown may also be included.

2.1.13. For clarity in supply stock inventory and ordering, the Defense Logistics Agency
(DLA) currently only recognizes the ACU and A2CU acronyms as the Army Combat
Uniform and Army Aircrew Combat Uniform.
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2.1.14. SAFETY WARNING: Personnel could sustain severe, life threatening injuries if FR
uniforms are worn improperly or mixed with non-FR clothing, such as polyester
undergarments and cold weather gear. To ensure safety, strict adherence to wear policies is
required. Uniform items must be purchased from an approved vendor on the approved U.S.
Air Force Product List. Refer to the Air Force Uniform Office page on the Air Force Portal
for approved No Melt No Drip undergarments and FR cold weather products list.

2.2. Airman Combat Shirt (ACS) (in ACU or ABU pattern).

2.2.1. ACS is authorized for Airmen who wear Individual Body Armor (IBA).

2.2.2. Wing or group commander may authorize wear of ACS as an outer garment for Airmen
who primarily or frequently work outdoors (e.g. HVAC technicians, flightline personnel) for
heat dissipation, or other operational reason.

2.2.3. When authorized for wear, the ACS will replace the ACU or ABU shirt as the UOD.
On days when no outside work is conducted or planned, the ACS is not authorized.

2.2.4. When wearing the ACS, a t-shirt is not required.

2.2.5. Sleeves may be cuffed up or tucked under at the wrist.

2.2.6. The subdued cloth or subdued IR U.S. Flag, rank, and nametape will be worn on the
right shoulder. The HHQ or unit patch will be worn on the left shoulder beneath the subdued
cloth or subdued IR Duty Identifier if earned.

Figure 2.9. ACS


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2.3. Desert Flight Duty Uniform (DFDU or Tan Flight suit).

2.3.1. Authorized for wear by individuals who are qualified in aviation duties.

2.3.2. Headgear. ACU patrol caps, ACU/desert campaign (floppy) hats, and ACU ball caps
are authorized. Eight point patrol caps will no longer be authorized after 1 Jul 18.

2.3.2.1. Headgear will not be rolled, tucked or otherwise formed. Hats will be worn in their
natural form and will not be hung around the neck when not being worn.

2.3.2.2. Officer rank will be sewn on the ACU patrol cap or floppy hat.

2.3.3. Scarves are not authorized.

2.3.4. Boots will be Coyote Brown, Desert Sand or tan.

2.3.5. Patches.

2.3.5.1. The subdued cloth AFSOC Command patch will be worn on the right breast, above
the right breast pocket.

2.3.5.2. When authorized for wear, permanently conferred graduated patches are worn in the
place of the HHQ patch and the HHQ patch is worn in place of the unit patch. WIC
Graduate, SAASS patches are authorized.

2.4. Airman Battle Uniform (ABU).

2.4.1. The ABU is an alternate uniform for all personnel unable to obtain the ACU.

2.4.2. Headgear. ABU patrol or campaign (floppy) hats are authorized.

2.4.2.1. Headgear will not be rolled, tucked or otherwise formed. Hats will be worn in their
natural form and will not be hung around the neck when not being worn.

2.4.3. Cold Weather Items.

2.4.3.1. The All Purpose Environmental Clothing System (APECS) jacket, AF Sage Green
fleece, or AF issue cold weather items (B Bag) may be worn to provide cold weather
protection. Local commanders may approve wear of the AF Sage Green fleece indoors.

2.5. Improved Rain Suit (IRS).

2.5.1. Must be the same pattern as the uniform and fleece (ABU or ACU).

2.5.2. Will be worn with rank and be zipped and snapped. Underarm venting may be
unzipped.
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2.5.3. Will only be worn outdoors.

2.5.4. Headgear is required, even when wearing the hood.

2.5.5. Authorized for wear with civilian clothes and PTG when rank is removed.
14

Chapter 3
ORGANIZATIONAL CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT

3.1. Functional Clothing Items.

3.1.1. Watch Cap. May only be worn if cold weather gear is layered under the shirt or a
uniform outer garment is worn.

3.1.2. Commanders may authorize the wear of scarves for sun, dust storm and cold weather
protection.

3.1.3. Rucksack/Backpack/Camelback.

3.1.3.1. May be carried on the left shoulder or on both shoulders, centered on the back, and
will not obstruct the ability to render customs and courtesies.

3.1.3.2. Color must match uniform pattern or be solid Coyote Brown or black.

3.1.4. Small, conservative, colored key-chain clip-on flashlights may be worn unless
prohibited for safety reasons or by other guidance.

3.1.5. Earplug cases may be attached to the uniform.

3.1.6. Helmet bands will match helmet cover pattern. Name and blood type may be sewn to
helmet band. Spice Brown embroidery will be used.

3.1.7. Nametapes, rank, and blood type tabs affixed with Velcro are authorized on body
armor.

3.1.8. U.S. Flags will be subdued cloth or subdued IR and may be attached on body armor
with Velcro. No additional colors or embellishments are authorized.

3.1.9. Ballistic eyewear, from the Authorized Protective Eyewear List (APEL), is required at
all times when performing duties requiring IBA and helmets.