Appropriate Clothing in Laboratories

It is important to be properly dressed when working in a laboratory. Follow the guidelines below to ensure that your clothing covers your skin and protects you from spilled chemical, biological, or radioactive materials, falling objects, and other lab hazards.

DO:

Picture of closed-toe shoe ■ Always wear a shoe that completely covers the foot and protects your feet.
Picture of closed-toe shoe ■ Always wear clothes that cover and protect your legs down to your ankles.

DON'T:

Picture of closed-toe shoe ■ Never wear open toe or open heel shoes such as sandals, flip-flops or clogs. Shoes made of porous materials provide only limited protection in a spill and should be avoided. High heeled shoes should not be worn in the lab.
Picture of closed-toe shoe ■ Shorts, skirts and other clothing that does not cover your legs below the lab coat should NOT be worn.

Tip: On those hot summer days, bring long pants and closed toe shoes to change into after arriving at work. Change back to cooler clothes for the trip home.

Remember that appropriate dress is the foundation to being properly prepared to work in the lab. Lab coats, gloves, safety glasses or goggles are also needed to ensure that you are prepared for any incidents. Additional personal protective equipment may be necessary as well and should be selected based on the hazards of your work. For more information view the Personal Protective Equipment page.


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