Support The Moscow Times!

Moscow Lifehack: What Is face Control at Moscow Clubs and How Can You Get Past It?

If you've lived in Moscow long enough and partied hard enough you'll probably have heard of face control. A ritual barbarism carried out by stern-faced bouncers at the city's more upscale establishments, it essentially involves you either getting the nod of approval or the brutal statement "tonight there is a private party." The latter is often combined with a gesture to the exit or an aggressive crossing of the arms.

Rejectees are plunged into an existential crisis. Why me? What did I do wrong?

Waving a foreign passport just isn't going to cut the mustard, and while the decisions and reasoning of heavies at the door are both mysterious and sometimes illogical — you may get in one week, and not the next — there are a few rules of thumb you can follow to improve your chances.

Firstly, dress to impress. It has been argued there is no such thing as overdressed in Moscow, unless you're aiming to get into a grimy but cool basement club. Secondly, Moscow is one of the few places where being a girl isn't necessarily an advantage — probably due to the abundance of supermodel types. If you're in a large group, split into smaller groups of three or four with a mix of genders. And the obvious. Be fashionably early, don't be loud in the line and definitely don't exude the air of being drunk and/or obnoxious. If you don't get in, take heart that you'll probably have a better time somewhere else.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

Once
Monthly
Annual
Continue
paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more