What do scrubs say about your nursing personality?

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Hospital fashion has always been interesting to me. The type of scrub top you pick out in the morning in some ways seems to reflect your personality.

For example: Flowery, bright tops tend to be paired with cheerful, optimistic personalities. Dark colors and solid scrub sets tend to be worn by those who have more practical dispositions. Is this a stereotype? Or is it an age thing?

I used to wear funny scrub tops (you know with dogs, cats, old people, silly ones) and over the years I have become one of the “boring” nurses. I usually wear one of my work sweatshirts and black scrub pants and black clogs. Sometimes I feel badly that I’m not “fun” anymore but then I remember how many layers I have to wear to work to keep warm (a tank top, a long sleeve shirt, and my sweatshirt!!) so it is just easier to have monotone colors to pick from! Plus, I don’t want to look like the nursing version of Punky Brewster!

I work with a nurse who just had the most beautiful silk scrubs made while he was back home in the Phillipines. They are GORGEOUS! I can’t imagine actually wearing those to work in though…one word: Betadine. Then those beautiful scrubs are history. I may have tons of betadine stains on my scrub outfits but my clothes are so boring you can’t see them!

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Rebekah Child

Rebekah Child attended the University of Southern California for her bachelor's in nursing and decided to brave the academic waters and return for her master's in nursing education, graduating in 2003 from Mount St. Mary's. Rebekah has also taught nursing clinical and theory at numerous Southern California nursing schools and has been an emergency nurse since 2002. She is currently one of the clinical educators for an emergency department in Southern California and a student (again!) in the doctoral program at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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5 Responses to What do scrubs say about your nursing personality?

  1. Marcy

    No scrubs are not a reflection of your personality. I wear the standard issue scrubs the hospital provides. When I have a chance to wear my own scrubs I wear what is appropriate for my area-bright/colorful for kids, classic/tailored for adults. I want to demonstrate professionalism. I like when my patients have respect and trust in me. I don’t want to come across as a sex kitten/joke/wore my pajamas to work.

  2. stephanie

    My scrubs reflect more the mood i’m in on a particular day. I always strive to look professional, even when I wear cartoon print tops! I used to hesitate, but enough elderly patients have told me how much they appreciate the bright, friendly prints I frequently wear, that I never worry about it anymore.

  3. Ranay

    Mostly, I dress for the mood I’m in @ 5 o’clock in the morning or the mood I hope to be in for the day :) Sometimes it’s just what I have left to wear…Navy and orange? Have done it :) I say go Bengal’s LOL! or whatever I think of LOL!

  4. Tricia

    What do animal prints say?

  5. Jenna

    I work in a PICU, and the majority of nurses wear the hospital-issued scrubs. I think I’m one of the few that wears my own bright & patterned scrubs to work. I think it comes down to practicality. It makes sense to wear hospital issued scrubs in an ICU or Emergency room, because who knows what’s going to get on your scrubs. I prefer the feel of my own scrubs over the hospital ones, so I’m hesitant to start wearing the others.

    I have some plain colored scrubs too that I wear from time to time. No reflection on my personality, just a pair of scrubs I put on. I’m still my typical upbeat, happy self in them!

    PS: Betadine comes out with dishsoap and cold water, as I found out just a few weeks ago!!! I got some on my white sweater at work, and was able to get it out in 5 minutes! No stain at all!