Covering tattoos for clinicals?

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    Hey everyone. We're starting clinicals here pretty soon and I need some advice.

    Before I knew I'd be going into nursing - when it was just an idea far off in my mind - I had gotten a few tattoos. Some of them are visible. I love my tattoos and they're all very well thought out and in very good taste. I have a baby mermaid on my right inner forearm for my daughter, a tattoo of my deceased grandfather's birthmark which looks like a bird on my left inner wrist, and a hummingbird on my neck for my mom. I can cover the one on my neck with my hair but the other two are tricky.

    See, it's really difficult for me to wear a long sleeved shirt beneath my scrubs. I take a certain medication that causes diaphoresis whenever I get the least bit warm. Deodorant doesn't last long and after a couple hours I begin to feel sick. This problem has actually caused me to vomit because I felt over heated and was sweating profusely. I can't switch meds because I don't have insurance at the moment and this is the only med paid for through my prescription assistance program.

    So, I found this great product online called Tatjacket. Basically, they're these skin colored sleeves that fit over your arms to cover tattoos. The best part is that they're made of a stretchy material that wicks moisture and keeps the skin cool - so it's not like wearing a long sleeved shirt. I've talked to others about them before and they've all said that they actually feel cooler when wearing the sleeves than when they're not. So I emailed my instructor about them. She emailed me back and told me that I could "easily buy a much cheaper white long sleeved shirt". She also expressed concern for covering a tattoo on my chest and the tattoo on my neck. I've tried explaining to her the whole problem but she doesn't seem to get it. The tattoo on my chest is covered by my scrubs and the tattoo on my neck is covered by hair...she's also made comments about covering my tattoos with bandages as well. In my opinion, these sleeves are no different than bandages as they're skin colored and they're much less noticeable.

    Here's the website: cover up tattoos | tattoo cover up | tattoo cover - TatJacket

    Tell me what you guys think! And thanks so much - sorry for the long post!
  2. 10 Comments so far...

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    I don't think the tat sleeves would be any cooler then a long sleeved shirt...just an opinion...they would have to be thicker than nylon to be able to cover up the tats right?
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    All it takes is for one stuck up but head to report seeing the one on your neck for you to be in violation. Make very sure it is covered. I would suck it up and wear band aids. Why aggravate the instructors? Some of the can be very petty.
  5. 0
    This has worked for me in the past for a tattoo on my leg that I once needed to cover:

    http://www.igia.com/
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    Thanks guys. After reading so many posts on this site, I am pretty sure my instructor isn't near as difficult as any of yours! She allowed a girl last semester to not cover a tattoo on her neck because the girl had short hair and no one thought covering with a bandaid would be a good idea.

    And the sleeves are a LOT cooler. They're made out of the same material as bike shorts. Plus, I wouldn't have all that fabric doubled up on my torso.
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    As someone who is heavily tattooed, I understand that most facilities do not appreciate the art of tattooing as much as I do. If you want to look clean and professional, you must cover up your tattoos (all of them - even the ones you "think" no one can see). You may think that your hair covers up the one on your neck, but really your hair should be up and away from your neck and shoulders. Put a 4x4 over it. You said your instructor has already expressed concern about them. Why risk ******* off your instructors and the facility? Most hospitals have written guidelines for tattoos and they strictly prohibit them. Respect your instructors and your clinical facility. Don't forget, they are the ones who will be writing you letters of recommendation and possibly hiring you one day!
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    Thanks again, but like I said - I am not concerned about covering the tattoo on my neck. My instructor doesn't believe in covering tattoos with bandages or gauze as it draws unnecessary attention to the area and makes the patients uneasy. Many patients in the past have told my instructor and the clinical site that they would rather see tattoos than bandages - they don't want to be cared for by someone covered in bandages.

    I am also not saying that I don't want to cover my tattoos - I am totally willing to cover them. I'm just trying to come up with a solution that will work for ALL parties.

    And not ALL hospitals or facilities require that a student/employee cover their tattoos. I used to work for a temp agency for nurses and CNAs. I have worked at all the facilities that we will be visiting. Only one has a policy about tattoos and it only pertains to tattoos "not in good taste". In every facility, there are many nurses/doctors/CNAs that flaunt their tattoos. I also understand that for many students, the school doesn't decide how they dress or cover up tattoos, the site does. That is not the case here, I assure you. I am not trying to disrespect my school, my instructor, or my clinical site. I am just trying to figure out a way to cover my tattoos without causing harm to myself.
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    If you think the tat jacket is the best thing for you, then just get it. You had mentioned she told you to use bandages for your neck, which is why I suggested a 4x4. Best of luck to you!

    Quote from chinacatSN
    She also expressed concern for covering a tattoo on my chest and the tattoo on my neck. I've tried explaining to her the whole problem but she doesn't seem to get it. The tattoo on my chest is covered by my scrubs and the tattoo on my neck is covered by hair...she's also made comments about covering my tattoos with bandages as well. In my opinion, these sleeves are no different than bandages as they're skin colored and they're much less noticeable.
  10. 0
    Ah. I guess I was a bit unclear. I said that she expressed concern about covering the tattoos on my neck. She doesn't want me to use bandages - she just thinks that if I wear a long sleeved shirt under my scrub top, the long sleeved shirt will come up higher on my neck or something.

    Anyway, I guess I'm stuck with wearing a long sleeved shirt. I tried the tatjacket things and they are UNCOMFORTABLE. I bought one of each size (they only have Medium and Large) and the tops (the cuff that goes around your bicep) cut deeply into my skin. I have scrawny arms so I can only imagine how painful they would be on someone with larger arms. The material used is nice - very cool and silky nylon/spandex blend.

    Anyone know where I can find some SUPER THIN long sleeved white shirts?

    Thanks everyone.
  11. 0
    Quote from chinacatSN
    Ah. I guess I was a bit unclear. I said that she expressed concern about covering the tattoos on my neck. She doesn't want me to use bandages - she just thinks that if I wear a long sleeved shirt under my scrub top, the long sleeved shirt will come up higher on my neck or something.

    Anyway, I guess I'm stuck with wearing a long sleeved shirt. I tried the tatjacket things and they are UNCOMFORTABLE. I bought one of each size (they only have Medium and Large) and the tops (the cuff that goes around your bicep) cut deeply into my skin. I have scrawny arms so I can only imagine how painful they would be on someone with larger arms. The material used is nice - very cool and silky nylon/spandex blend.

    Anyone know where I can find some SUPER THIN long sleeved white shirts?

    Thanks everyone.
    I found super thin long sleeved t-shirts at Target in the sleepwear area. You can sort of see your skin through them, but I wouldn't say they are sheer. They do cover my wrist tattoos.


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