Nurses: What We Wear

As a professional health worker, the nursing job requires a particular sort of clothing that is clean and most importantly, something that maximizes comfort when shifts run long and/or the nurse needs to do heavy lifting to care for and support patients.

Nurses should always wear clothes that are CLEAN. Scrub suits, which is the mostly used uniform for nurses should be washed very often. These are clothes that are exposed from patient to patient so it is important to undress after work and before going home. Failure to wear clean clothes while interacting with patients exposes them to harmful substances or diseases and may put them at risk.

In general, like in hospitals, clinics, and other health facilities, scrub suits are the most common uniform worn by nurses. The purpose is to increase comfort and range of motion, so that a nurse can move freely when lifting a patient or when bending over to care for a patient. It is important that the clothes to be not distracting or revealing and scrubs are perfect for this purpose.

The color varies according to setting. In hospitals, a solid colored uniform is favored, usually in white, blue or sometimes pink. In a different setting, like physician’s office or office nurses, pattered uniforms in multiple colors are often used, while in a home setting; uniform pants and a business casual top may be worn.

For the shoes or footwear, hospitals often require sneakers, and some also require that they are white. It is very important that nurses wear comfortable shoes in their nature of work: roaming and checking in patients and walking fast and running during emergencies. Non-slip soles are also important, and the arch support is definitely a must because nurses are always on their feet and on the go.

In other cases like in nursing homes, nurses wear clothes that provide back support under their clothes, like an extra undergarment, which is advisable if heavy lifting is required.


Wearing jewelry especially necklaces is not advisable in line of duties because these can get caught on equipment or necklaces can be tugged and present a choking hazard when nurses have patients who are children or mentally unstable. Wearing heavy make-up is also not advisable, it is important to look clean, natural and professional for nurses. The hair, especially for nurses with long hair should wear it up or keep their hair in place while working. Often, female nurses are required to wear a nurse hat to look more professional.

Nursing is a profession that requires both mental and physical preparation and it is important the every nurse knows how to dress up properly and adequately for it.