Six Clever Ways to Look Your Best in Scrubs

September 21, 2015

How to Look Your Best in Scrubs

Lazellion / flickr / CC BY-NC-ND

Your schedule may be crazy and your hours may be long, but that doesn’t mean you have to look as rough as your job. Scrubs are a universal thing in many healthcare environments, especially in hospitals. Everyone may be wearing the same thing, but you don’t have to wear it the same way. There are many things you can do to look your best in scrubs without violating policy.

#1 Choose a Complementary Fit

Scrubs come in many fits and styles. You can find designer as well as discount scrub sets at local uniform shops or specialty scrub stores. If you don’t find what you’re looking for in a local store, you can also buy scrubs online.

A Google search for “cute scrubs for women” will turn up a variety of online stores that sell everything from Grey’s Anatomy fashion scrub tops to plus size scrub pants. Try several different types of scrubs from V-neck to open collar. Choose something that’s suitable for your body type. For instance, ruffled, gathered and smock tops look fantastic on slim women.

Grey's Anatomy Scrubs

Grey's Anatomy Scrubs

Public Photos / Flickr / CC BY

When choosing scrubs, style is only part of the picture. Make sure they fit properly as well. Baggy scrubs will get in the way and make it difficult to do your job. Scrubs that are too tight will be uncomfortable to wear and you won’t be able to move properly. Proper fit will allow you to look your best and feel confident.

One last thought on scrub fit: not everyone has long legs, and scrub bottoms may be too long. It’s important to get those bottoms hemmed when they’re too long, since they’ll drag on the ground. This presents a tripping hazard, as well as the potential to pick up whatever icky things may be on the floor. Dirt and stains on the cuffs of your scrub pants are definitely not attractive.

#2 Accessorize Your Scrubs

Colorful floral scrub hat

Why not a scrub hat?

Andrea D Mueller / flickr / CC BY

There are plenty of ways to accessorize and personalize your uniforms and scrubs. Employer policies may restrict some types of accessories for safety purposes but there are many different ways to be fashionable. One example is your watch. There are many situations where you may need a watch, so why not wear one that’s cute and completely you?

If you carry a stethoscope, there are amazing ways to make it your own. Try a fuzzy dog cover, or maybe Betty Boop is more your style. A cover will add a little bit of character to your uniform. You can also turn your scrubs into an “outfit” by using decorative ID tags or stethoscope charms for personalization.

There are also other creative ways to make your scrubs uniquely yours without violating hospital dress code. Many places will embroider your name and title on your scrubs. If you work in a hospital, some shops may do this on a regular basis for hospital employees. They usually have the hospital logo on hand so they can perform this service. If this isn’t your thing, you could try a pin on your uniform as another way to dress up your scrubs. Be careful to adhere to your facility's policies on pins and accessories.

#3 Tattoos and Piercings in the Workplace

Tattoos and piercings are common forms of self-expression in our society, but may not be acceptable where you work. Workplace restrictions can vary, but if you're thinking about a new tattoo, it may make sense to place it under your work clothes where it won't be seen.

Tattoos as a doctor

It can work with some strategic placing.

Support Tattoos and Piercings at Work / flickr / CC BY-SA

Since tattoos in the workplace tend to be discouraged, you may find yourself looking for a way to cover them. One way is to wear a long sleeve or three-quarter sleeve shirt to cover tattoos on the arms. Wear a shirt that complements your scrub colors or a pattern that matches your personality. Just be sure your shirt doesn’t violate dress code.

#4 The Hair Completes the Look

Hair is an often-overlooked part of every outfit. It’s a way to express yourself and stand out. Whether your hair is short or long, you can wear cute bobby pins or hair clips to accessorize. Wear your bangs long or in a baby doll style. If you have short hair, wear it curly or straight. If your hair is long, find an artistic up-do that’s elegant or sassy.

Use your hair as the accessory that emphasizes your face and makes your smile shine. Also, don't forget about makeup. Check out this infographic for some useful tips.

#5 Beauty and Function for Feet

Your feet are important. You’re on them all day. Protect them with a comfortable and beautiful pair of shoes. Why wear dull Crocs? Wear brightly colored shoes or ones that match your scrubs. You can purchase elegant clogs that are healthcare appropriate, or sneakers in any color of the rainbow. Decorate your shoes with charms or character laces. Wear cute or silly socks to match your mood or the holiday. There are tons of options out there when it comes to covering your feet.

#6 Keep Your Scrubs in Good Shape

Let’s end with the most obvious. If you want to look good at work, you need to keep your scrubs in good condition. Workplace stains are an ever-present danger with jobs in healthcare. If you can, wear darker scrubs to ensure that these will be less noticeable. It’s also a good idea to keep an extra pair of scrubs on hand so that you can change and rinse the soiled scrubs immediately.

Regular and Army Scrubs

Scrubs and Accessories Come in Different Colors

Kenny Holston / Flickr / CC BY

If you have a position that can often be messy, you may choose to wear a scrub jacket to protect your scrubs from stains. Alternatively, for those who may get called into the operating room or similar situations, you might want to carry a pair of disposable scrubs to change into during these circumstances.

Wear and tear from washing and use can be rough on scrubs. It’s a great idea to always buy high-quality scrubs. They withstand wear better and resist stains more readily. Top-quality scrubs also stay crisp and don’t wrinkle as much as cheaper ones, so it will help you stay neat and clean.

Tips and Tricks

Smiling nurse jumping on a bed

Complete the outfit with a bright smile.

aye_shamus / flickr / CC BY-NC-ND

Most importantly, remember that facility policies always come first. Some dress codes may only permit certain colors or prints. It’s important to follow all guidelines to the letter. Many allied health jobs, as well as nursing positions, require scrubs as a uniform. This means there are many options available for the fit and style you like. Sometimes a specific color is required, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find other ways to dress up your uniform. Last but not least, your smile and good attitude are always the most noticeable and appreciated accessories in any setting.

What are your favorite ways to look good in scrubs? Feel free to share with us your personal experience in the comment section down below.