After workplace bans woman’s bright pink hair, she fires back with ‘terrible wigs’

Feeling stifled by the demands of her new job that required her to hide her colorful pink hair, Emily Benschoter, 29, found a creative way to express herself.

The Georgia woman, who works in hospitality, was given an ultimatum: cover up her hair or get a job elsewhere.

She decided to obey the ultimatum… with a twist. She worked around the company’s demands and fired back!

Over the summer, Emily Benschoter landed a front-of-house role in the hospitality industry and without a face-to-face interview, her new manager had no idea what she looked like.

Shortly before her start date, Benschoter reached out to her new boss, ensuring he was aware her hair is pink and confirming it would not be a problem.

It was a problem.

Offering solutions, her manager suggested she color her hair to a natural tone, gets a wig or finds a new job.

Credit / Getty.

“Dying my hair for a job I work at for 40 hours per week wasn’t an option,” Benschoter told Newsweek. “I am a self-expressive person and I feel very confident with pink hair, so I came up with a solution to keep the job and my hair.”

Her solution was to continue expressing her colorful personality with outrageous wigs, that she shared on social media.

Her first TikTok video, which shows her wearing a muted blonde wig, was posted July 19, 2023. It says, “When you have pink hair, but corporate does not approve, so you wear terrible wigs.”

The clip, which went viral with 921,000 views, attracted scores of netizens, applauding her creative compliance to company rules.

One user writes “If anyone asks if this is your hair, you MUST respond with ‘Sho’nuf it’s my hair, I paid for it!”

And a second asks, “They think this is better?”

Benschoter – the first person seen by customers who enter the office – replied, “MY POINT EXACTLY. At this point I’m purposefully picking terrible wigs so that customers notice and ask questions.”

Since then, millions of people have become invested in her wig clips, eager to see her ever-changing looks. “The worse the wig, the better,” Benschoter said. “It is a way to open up the conversation with the customers who think it is insane that I have to cover my pink hair.”

Her series of wig clips continue to attract audiences praising her commitment to self-expression.

Her exaggerated styles include a mane of dark, wavy crimped hair, a peruke (a 17th century wig worn by barristers) and a genie wig – with a bald scalp catching one thick ponytail – which drew seven million views.

“OMG. That you wore this wig instead of pink hair kills me. DYING,” shares one followers.

Meanwhile, a few cyber citizens defended the need to maintain a professional workplace appearance.

“Can you blame them? They have a level of professionalism to uphold,” writes one while a second adds, “We have to make sure our hair colors are appropriate in a business setting. [I don’t know] why this is so hard.”


Siiigh. Besties y’all really loved this wig. Got a few more in the mail. Stay tuned 😅 . #corporatelife #corporatetiktok #corporatehumor #maliciouscompliance #coloredhair #pinkhair

♬ original sound – Erich

And though Benschoter is having fun with making a statement of dislike towards the restrictive rules, she said, “It’s dehumanizing that I can’t be accepted at face value because my hair is a non-traditional color. It’s so superficial that my hair color is an obstacle.”

We applaud Emily Benschoter’s conviction and think she’s found a hilarious way to loosely follow the rules while staying true to herself. But we also understand that companies have the right to determine workplace conduct and at work, she’s representing the professional brand, not her personality.

While we don’t know what company employs her, it will be interesting to see how this plays out…

Please share this story and let’s see what others have to say about Benschoter’s looks in the workplace!