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  • Tailoring a White Coat

    My spouse is on the smaller end physically - certainly smaller than what a hospital size small is made for clothing-wise. The hospital provided personalized white coats (and scrubs) always look way too big on her.

    So my question is - do people get their white coats tailored?

    I've been in a "fully tailored suit" environment for the past decade post-college, so maybe I've just been indoctrinated in the mindset that to be fully taken seriously, you should dress sharply.

    Admittedly, I spend zero time in a hospital/practice setting, so maybe everyone's coats run bigger/smaller/ill fitting and no one really cares.  She doesn't seem to care and I haven't pushed it to her, but either way, just curious on others thoughts.

  • #2
    Baggy poor fitting white coats are very common and I don't think most people think much about it.  I prefer white coats to fit well.  If her white coat bothers her the easiest thing is to go to a scrub shop and try several different brands on.  I'm not sure what she has tried already but there are also some online companies that sell petite sized white coats.  I know Medelita sells smaller sizes.  I bought a fancy water repellant coat from them awhile back that did alright.  Since I'm a generic sized male I have gone to getting landau from allheart.com which probably has cheaper alternatives but I know they also carry xtra small women's white coats.

    Depending on the practice setting she may not want to spend a lot on something expected to get stained/ruined.

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    • #3
      Well your name "East Coast" says it all, in the rural West many of us do not wear white coats. I say this as a former East Coaster 

      In all seriousness, as a petite woman, when I did wear a white coat I did get it tailored.  After one month of residency where most people did not wear a white coat, I gave it up and never looked back.

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      • #4
        Most wear their coats pretty terribly as far as I've seen. I only get those that fit me well, also have tailored suits (that I dont wear), and like stuff to fit right. However, dont think people care.

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        • #5
          I knew a few people who tailored their whitecoats (on the East coast), I think it's worth the cost and they looked much better and more polished for it.  Most people probably wouldn't notice or care, it's likely more noticeable in a before/after or standing next to someone in a poor fitting coat, but I'm of the camp that presentation matters and even something as simple as the whitecoat can have an impact.  Of course, if you hardly wear your whitecoat then it likely isn't worth it.

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          • #6
            White coats are niduses for infection. Plus they're hot. Plus they're impossible to keep clean. Despite the name of this website, I don't wear one for anything but pictures.

            I do find the cultural differences fascinating. Americans certainly do become more formal as  you move West to East, but the least formal places I've seen are probably in places like Arizona (normal to wear shorts to a nice restaurant), Montana (where a cowboy hat is part of your formal wear) and Alaska (where no kidding I had people show up to my wedding reception wearing hip boots.) I find it fascinating to speak to a group of surgeons in the Southeast and they're all in suits and then go speak to a group of emergency docs in Oregon and they're all in jeans, t-shirt, and a puffy.

            But if you're going to wear one, and it fits you terribly due to height or habitus, then I think tailoring it is certainly reasonable. But I'd look into the more premiums brands first.
            Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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            • #7
              I don't even own a white coat

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              • #8
                I prefer fancy scrubs to white coats, agree they are overall hot and infection risks. Some research that says layering makes you look more professional though, Idk if that still holds as most arent sure you're the doctor anymore they arent even paying attention.

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                • #9
                  Medelita all the way. Imo there is no other white coat with wearing.

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                  • #10
                    I only wore a white coat for a couple medicine rotations my intern year. Hated it! Thankfully psychiatrists aren't expected to wear them. But if I did have to wear one on the regular I would definitely get it tailored as I also run on the small side.

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                    • #11
                      I have six white coats hanging in my office that I have not worn in years.

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                      • #12
                        I haven't worn one since medical school. They pulled on my shoulders and gave me a headache.  I would highly recommend she try going without one.  She will likely look more professional than in an ill fitting white coat.

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                        • #13
                          "I find it fascinating to speak to a group of surgeons in the Southeast and they’re all in suits..."

                          Not sure what part of the Southeast you were in.  Must have been a bigger city?  I haven't seen any doctor in a suit in the Southeast outside of metro Atlanta years ago.  Also, rare to see any specialty in a white coat in our area.

                           

                           

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                          • #14
                            I agree with doctorMom that the southeast is casual.  Maybe the docs were dressing up to hear Dr Dahle speak.  I wear ill fitting hospital owned scrubs with a Patagonia jacket most days.

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                            • #15
                              If you want to treat yourself, buy some nice scrubs. One of the best decisions I've made. I know you cant have your own at many hospitals, but if you can at your own clinic, do it. Nicer material, better cut, pockets like regular pants, a zipper (for the guys)! I love my iguana med 5410/7310 combo, but you really cant find it anymore, must be coming out with a new one.

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