Choosing Scrub Hats for Nurses: What to Consider

If you’re new to the world of nursing you’ll soon learn that scrub hats become an integral part of your everyday life as a nurse. They’re a mandatory part of your nursing uniform for two key reasons: to prevent contamination while keeping your hair clean and out of the way. 

The job of a nurse is a busy, high-pressured one, especially as a theater nurse working in and out of surgical wards throughout your shift. The last thing you need is to worry about hair in your face, what it looks like, or spreading germs. 

Here’s what to consider when choosing your scrub caps. 

1. What Type of Scrub Hat Do You Need? 

When it comes to choosing a scrub hat that suits you, there are four different variations to consider. These include: 

  • The ponytail: as the name suggests, this is the perfect scrub cap if you have long hair and prefer to tie it back into a ponytail, away from your face. They have an opening at the back, as well as a pouch that you can tuck your ponytail into 
  • The bouffant: this type of cap looks very similar to an oversized shower cap. It might not be the sleekest or chicest option, but it’s ideal if you have very thick, long, or curly and unruly hair 
  • The pixie: this is the perfect scrub cap for nurses with short hair — it’s actually made specifically for this purpose (hence the name). Check out this link for more 

There is also the option of disposable scrub caps for nurses who work in highly contagious environments. It’s generally a requirement to wear one of these if you work in this environment as they must be disposed of after use.



2. Scrub Hats and Fabric Type 

Now, bear in mind that you’ll have to wear your scrub cap for quite some time. In many cases, the entirety of your shift which is as long as 12 hours or more. This is why it’s so important to choose a comfortable scrub hat with the right fabric. 

There are four choices: cotton, rayon, spandex, and polyester. Each type of fabric suits a different environment. For example, if you work in a humid climate, cotton is breathable, cool, and light.

If you work in a very hot and dry climate, polyester is a good choice because of its moisture-wicking properties, stretch, and breathability. Rayon is also a good choice for these conditions. 

Spandex is stretchy, comfortable, and flexible — a good option if you’re wearing a scrub cap for many long hours. However, you’ll find that cotton and polyester are two of the most versatile and popular fabrics. 



3. Your Preferred Design and Color 

There is no rule book that states that you cannot bring a little character or personality into your scrub hats. Unless, of course, your employer states otherwise. Nowadays, there are a plethora of colors, patterns, prints, and designs to choose from.

Depending on your nursing specialty and where you work you could choose a scrub hat that suits the environment. If you’re a pediatric nurse, for example, opt for fun, brightly colored, and patterned scrub hats that could entertain children. 

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