ATLANTA, Ga. (CNN) – Body ink got a blessing but most of the bling has been banned at Starbucks.
Baristas and other employees are steaming since they’ve been told engagement rings and precious gems need to stay in their jewelry boxes.
Starbucks says an engagement ring, anything with a stone, isn’t welcome on its workers, even though tattoos and nose studs are okay.
The changes are part of a new dress code introduced at retail stores earlier this month, brewing up a ‘bitter taste’ on social media.
One man wrote: “To Starbucks: my wife just said you’ve instituted a policy that she can’t wear her wedding ring to work anymore. Where are your brains?”
Another: “Now my wife can’t wear her wedding ring during her shift? So whose name do I put on the lawsuit when she’s harassed?
And then this one: “I would rather see a wedding ring and a watch than someone’s “mom” tattoo.”
A Starbucks spokesman said the changes are based on federal food safety guidelines and it is not about the engagement ring specifically. Plain bands can still be worn.
Customers are divided on the issue.
“I think they should have the right to wear it. They are engaged. That is alright if it doesn’t get in the way of the work,” said customer Roland Metzler.
“If there’s science behind it, then I think it makes sense,” said customer Kevin Martinez.
“I think we should probably follow Europe’s lead when it comes to food safety. They seem to do okay.”,” said customer Eric Satz.
Some workers have signed an online petition asking Starbucks to reverse its decision.
A Starbucks spokesman said the company hopes to more than double its food service in the next five years, which is part of the reason behind the rule change.