Embroidery Service
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UK Manufactures
since 1950

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Embroidery Service
(*from just £2.50)

Free UK Delivery
(*on orders over £75)

UK Manufactures
since 1950

Speedy Delivery
on all Stocked Items

How to Care for Nurses Uniforms

Nurses are among the unsung heroes of the healthcare industry, tirelessly working to provide the utmost care to their patients across hospitals, residential care and in people’s homes.

Alongside the dedication and skill required, for nurses uniforms are a huge part of the role, providing infection prevention and control, identity, and instilling patient confidence.

They also need to withstand the rigours and demands of the profession, not to mention maintain the amplified importance of preventing cross-contamination which was heightened by the Covid pandemic.

As a long-standing and reputable uniform and workwear supplier, we understand all the necessities of uniform – cleanliness and hygiene alongside keeping nurses comfortable, confident and presentable.

In this blog, we’ll provide essential tips on how to care for and maintain nurses’ uniforms, from making the right initial choice to helping keep them pristine and defect-free.

Choose quality uniforms

The best way of ensuring the longevity of nurses’ uniforms is to invest in high-quality clothing. Choose uniforms made from durable fabrics that can endure frequent washing and daily wear. Opt for materials that are comfortable, breathable, and if possible, stain resistant. At Harveys Workwear, our collection of nursing uniforms are made from hard-wearing fabrics and specifically designed with both functionality and comfort in mind.

Always follow the manufacturer’s care instructions

It sounds obvious but it’s a good idea to read and follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. Washing and maintenance guidelines often vary depending on the fabric used. For instance, our 195gm polyester / cotton blend tunics can be washed up to 80 degrees ticking both the infection prevention and durability boxes.

Sticking to these instructions will prevent premature wear and help to extend the life of the nurse uniform, ensuring it looks professional and feels nice to wear for longer.

Commercial laundering or washing at home?

The NHS is renowned for setting the standard when it comes to general guidance on the wearing and caring of healthcare uniforms.

According to their official Uniforms and Workwear Guidance document, scientific studies show washing uniforms and workwear at home is just as effective as commercial laundering when it comes to removing micro-organisms.1

Washing at 30C with detergent will remove most Gram-positive micro-organisms including MRSA and a 10-minute wash at 60C will remove almost all micro-organisms.1

So, to conclude, washing at home is perfectly acceptable!

But to ensure optimum longevity, cleanliness, hygiene and infection prevention and control, the following tips are worth bearing in mind.

How to wash a nursing uniform

Pre-treat stains

Nurses’ uniforms are often exposed to various stains and substances – without going into too much detail!

Pre-treating stains before washing will make it easier to lift them during the machine cycle. Use a stain remover or a mild detergent directly on the affected area, gently rubbing it in, and allow it to sit for a few minutes before washing.

Wash separately

We’re all ‘guilty’ of mixing our washes from time to time – we either think we’ll get away with it or an accidental rogue red sock will end up in the white wash (horrors!). To avoid potential mishaps which may ruin the appearance of your uniforms, it’s best to wash them separately from other laundry. Sorting uniforms by colour and washing them with similar-coloured items will help maintain the aesthetic of the uniform and prevent discolouration.

Use mild detergents

Harsh detergents and bleach can be abrasive on fabrics, causing them to deteriorate over time. Regular washing detergents are more likely to be kinder to the fabric while still effective at removing stains and odours. According to one local NHS provider, evidence shows there is no significant difference in the activity between biological and non-biological detergents when it comes to micro-organism removal.2 At Harveys Workwear, we recommend using detergents that are free from bleach and harsh chemicals for the best results when it comes to caring for our range of healthcare uniforms and workwear.

Avoid overloading the washing machine

Something else we can be guilty of – cramming too much into the washing machine! Overloading can make the washing and cleaning process less effective. Follow the recommended load size for your machine to allow the garments enough room to move freely during the wash cycle.

Fabric softeners

While fabric softeners can make clothes feel softer and smell nicer, they can also diminish the absorbency and breathability of nursing uniforms, interfering with the moisture-wicking properties of the fabric. But, of course, we understand the need for comfort – and a nice fragrance – so this is a point to merely consider!

Dry with care

We get it, you’re in desperate need of a clean uniform for the next day but you’ve left the wash a little late – it’s tumble dryer to the rescue! However, when it comes to drying nurses’ uniforms and healthcare workwear, air drying is the best option. The high heat from dryers can cause clothing to shrink and weaken the fabric. If using a dryer, choose a low heat setting to minimise potential damage.

Iron with care

You may be able to avoid ironing by drying your uniform on a hanger but if ironing is required follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for ironing temperature and maybe use a pressing cloth such as a clean tea towel to protect the fabric from direct heat. We don’t recommend ironing embroidery, embellishments or logos as this often damages them.

Wrapping up on the care of nurses’ uniforms

Caring for nurses’ uniforms during the laundering process – and healthcare workwear in general – is vital to ensure their longevity, appearance, and comfort.

And by investing in high-quality uniforms from the start, our Harveys Workwear tips will help to keep them in tip top condition!

Thanks to our NHS and healthcare sector heritage, experience and expertise, we pride ourselves on providing high quality, affordable workwear solutions with exceptional customer service to match.

From nurses uniforms tunics and trousers to unisex scrubs, you’ll find a wide range of colours, sizes and styles across all our healthcare uniform ranges.

If you need any assistance or help regarding an order, or you have an embroidery service query, speak to our friendly team on 0161 624 9535 or via our contact form.

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