Thanks to TikTok, we’ve gotten a front-row seat into the not-so-glamorous parts of working in the food service industry. From needing to dismiss customers who aren’t wearing a mask, to having hours unreasonably cut by a boss, people who work in customer-facing jobs know that it can be incredibly demanding and often feel like a thankless role.
In October 2021, some Hooters waitresses were upset after the company issued them new shorts that were noticeably different from their previous bottoms. What was so bad about the shorts? Here’s a look at Hooters' new uniform for its waitressing staff and how the restaurant chain responded to complaints from its employees.
Hooters employees refer to their new shorts as "panties" and "undies."
Hooters employee @lexiusxoxo took to TikTok to share the restaurant chain’s new uniform. “Soooo Hooters got new panties. I mean shorts,” she wrote alongside a video of her modeling the extremely short and revealing bottoms, which only partially covered her backside. Audio that kept repeating "Ain't no f---ing way" could be heard in the background of her clip, which appeared to have been filmed inside a Hooters location.
Fellow Hooters employee @sick.abt.it also took to the platform to share her thoughts on the new shorts. "Love my job but don't love wearing undies to work," she wrote alongside her video, where she's seen inside a bathroom, holding the bottoms up to the camera. Overlaying her video, she wrote: "All right so we all know why half the Hooters girls want to quit ... and it's because of the new shorts."
Many females took to the comments of her video to share how uncomfortable they would feel if they were required to wear that to work. "Just when you thought they couldn't get any more revealing," one user wrote. Another chimed in: "My roast beef would hang right out omg."
Hooters amended its uniform policy to give employees a choice.
Three days after posting her initial video denouncing the new shorts, @sick.abt.it returned to the platform with some good news. In a new post, she explained that her previous TikTok went viral and the CEO of Hooters contacted her to inform her that she could wear her old uniform to work again. "Couldn't have done it without all of you," she wrote in the caption.
In an email to Insider, a spokesperson for Hooters confirmed that employees would now be given the choice. "As we continue to listen and update the image of the Hooters Girls, we are clarifying that they have the option to choose from traditional uniforms or the new ones. They can determine which style of shorts best fits their body style and personal image," the email said.
The spokesperson also added that the company “appreciates the feedback, both positive and negative, regarding a more accommodating and inclusive image policy on tattoos, jewelry, nails, hairstyles as well as new uniform options."
It was further explained that the shorts were "the result of a collaboration with Hooters Girls and have been worn for months in several Texas markets with overwhelmingly positive feedback." Because of the shorts' success in those select locations, the uniforms were rolled out in other states. However, as the chain has now realized, not all employees were comfortable with it.