Who's wearing white?

Nurses General Nursing


Hi everyone,

This is a bit of a frivolous question, but I'm curious to know what people think (especially RNs) about wearing white, especially white dresses? I bought a number of old US Army Nurse Corps dresses on Ebay -- I like the way they look, and they're very comfortable. I also received a few compliments from people, especially elderly patients, who said that I "look like a nurse." However, some of my classmates (I'm in a BN accelerated program) think I'm nuts -- I'm the only one who dresses like this ("old fashioned," I suppose, with my white hose and white NurseMates shoes) as everyone else appears to copy the "ER" look with scrubs. Just curious to know if I'll be laughed off the unit when I begin working as an RN (hopefully in the US of A in the summer of 2005!) by my colleagues.

No offense to the people who wear scrubs, but they're just not for me, and I like the fact that I'll probably be identified as a nurse (as opposed to RRT, porter, or whomever else) because I'll be wearing a white dress. Besides, vomit, blood, fecal matter can always be bleached out, true?

Anyone else wearing white these days?:rolleyes:

warrior woman

285 Posts

White is a nice idea, but not too realistic or practical anymore, especially when you get splashed with every bodily fluid known to mankind!!:eek: But hey, whatever blows your hair back....

Specializes in Med/Surg, Ortho.

We had to do the white dresses and hose thing in LPN school in 1992. I delt with it. Dont think it would work for me now in the "real world". The thought of somewhat digested breakfast splashing on my white nyloned legs gives me the hebegebees!!! White i can deal with, whites, pants, shirts even lab coats all together at the same time, but i gotta have those legs protected somewhat. And truely, dresses in nursing really arent the most practical thing if you are working a busy unit. IMHO.


12 Posts

White dresses are okay, but not for me. They don't work when you are doing your limbo, backflips and other manuevers around the unit. Just my personal preference and experience! Ann


105 Posts

Specializes in RN Spanish Translator.


There is a Nurse that works in the hospital in my city that wears white and her nursing cap. Believe me when I say this......SHE LOOKS LIKE SHE OWNS THE PLACE!!! She looks very professional and she receives many compliments! One of my previous nursing instructors said that she has received so many letters written to the hospital about how professional she looks. (These letters went into her personnel file.) The way I understand it is that elderly people with vision problems can identify "THE NURSE" by the white uniform and white cap. It keeps them from being confused about who is the nurse. So RNBN2B, wear your white if you want to and be proud! Just have an extra nicely pressed white uniform in your locker or vehicle because it will get dirty! :eek:

sharann, BSN, RN

1,758 Posts

You will graduate soon and will soon learn that your patient will KNOW you are a nurse when you ennter their room and TELL them you are their nurse. "Hi I'm RNB2B your RN for today....."

Wear a large RN on your uniform. You cant expect to earn respect by wearing a white dress. YOu will earn that by treating the patient as if he/she is the most important person in your life, and giving them great care. Patients are like dogs...they can smell when you a B.Sing them, and when you are for real.


66 Posts

I have a few sets of white, feminine scrubs that I wear from time to time just for kicks...I'm just glad I wasn't wearing them when my pt opened a very full colostomy bag which spilled all over my pants!!!:eek:

BadBird, BSN, RN

1,126 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care.

I think that white uniforms look like students and ice cream vendors. Give my my blue scrubs anyday.


259 Posts

Seems like body fluids splashed on you look bad no matter what color you're wearing!!

Tweety, BSN, RN

33,537 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac.
Originally posted by nursemaa

Seems like body fluids splashed on you look bad no matter what color you're wearing!!

Also, I wonder in the "old" days when nurses wore white I guess they never got splashed. Guess nursing was different back then.

To the original poster. Be clean, professional and comfortable. No matter what color you wear. If you got a bargain on white, by all means where white. Don't worry what others say. Don't wear white for approval, and don't not wear white because of disapproval. :)

I wore white fresh out of nursing school, and then soon started wearing colored polo shirts with white pants for many years. The last five years or so I've been wearing colored scrubs.

Nurse Ratched, RN

2,149 Posts

Specializes in Geriatrics/Oncology/Psych/College Health.

I wear white all the time at the hospital. I don't think it attracts any more bodily fluids than any other color ;). I am easy to identify by my patients. Even when they can't remember my name, they know I'm the only one they see in white, so they ask for me that way. It works for me but not for everyone. Since my facility does not have a "uniform" code (meaning all people in a certain position should dress similarly) everyone does what works for them.


20,964 Posts

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis.

No one wears white in the OB unit in which I work. But then, we do our own csections and tubals in our OR, so white is not exactly practical anyhow. It is exceedingly difficult to keep "white" inOB.

Like I said in ANOTHER thread about wearing white:

My patients know I am their RN--how?

I wear a badge that clearly identified me as such, prominently on my uniform.

I behave as a professional RN in that: I don't wear perfume, loud makeup, long nails or messy hair. I don't chew gum on the job.

I introduce myself as Debbie****, their RN for the shift.

If that is not enough for the patients to know "who their nurse is" no amount of wearing white will be. THEY KNOW, trust me.;)

Another thing about wearing whites that disturbs me, almost ALL OF THEM are somewhat transparent, meaning you see THRU them. ONLY THE THICKEST, (and therefore most uncomfortable materials) will be oqaque, or non-transparent. I prefer my undies INVISIBLE, myself. This was pointed out in another thread by fergus, I believe, and it's another reason I prefer not to wear white.

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