I fly a lot and through those flights I’ve observed a lot of different habits and behaviour, both good and bad.  People shouldn’t behave the same way in an airplane seat as they do in their own bathroom. You’d think that would be self-evident, but apparently not to everyone. To this end, The Washington Post just published a handy list of mid-flight do’s and don’t for seated passengers:

  1. Brush your hair. Running a brush through your mane once isn’t terrible, but if you’re really going for it, that’s when you’re going to start bothering people. “People don’t realize that the hair gets everywhere,” says one flight attendant.
  2. Tweeze your body hair. It is weird, it is wrong and should only be done in private.
  3. Shave. Duh.
  4. Brush your teeth or floss. First of all, consider the germs around you. Planes get cleaned quickly, and the tray table often gets neglected. Relegate this behavior to the bathroom, where it belongs.
  5. Clip or file your nails. Just like brushing your hair, engaging in nail care gets into the caution zone when DNA leaves your body and gets on other things or people. Do not clip or file your nails in your seat, particularly during meal services.
  6. Paint your nails. Painting one’s nails isn’t gross in itself, but the scent that comes with the activity is what will bother passengers around you.
  7. Apply deodorant. There’s something a little too intimate about applying deodorant to do it while on a plane. You’re having to shove your hand up or down your shirt and remind everyone of the existence of your armpit while potentially wafting around body odor. If you forgot to swipe a stick or roll-on before your flight and want to avoid offending neighbors with your stench, take your toiletry bag to the lavatory and apply in there.


  1. Apply moisturizer. Planes are so dry, you can probably get more moisture out in the Sahara. In addition to chugging water to stay hydrated, you may be tempted to apply moisturizer while aboard a flight. Go for it!
  2. Apply a sheet mask. You may look strange to other passengers, but it’s not an offensive behavior.

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