Former CIA Chief of Disguise Explains How Spies Use Disguises

In this videoJonna Mendez, the former CIA Chief of Disguise explains how disguises are used in the CIA. One, that’s a job? Seriously, I thought that was only a thing in cartoons and Spy Kids. Two, turns out studying disguise is surprisingly relevant to staying safe during travel.

With women, you have a broader range of what you can do. You also have one extra step: you can turn a woman into a man. I would mention that it’s almost impossible to turn a man into a woman. What we do is always additive — we can make you taller, we can make you heavier, we can make you older — we can’t go the other direction. You want to be the person that gets on the elevator and then gets off and nobody even remembers that you were really there. That is a design goal at the disguise labs at CIA.

Time to wonder what my dead giveaway mannerisms are, I’m sure my wife will have no qualms with naming them…


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