What Are The Different Styles of Lab Coats?

Lab coats, like all other clothing, have also evolved. It might have started as a way for doctors to regain respect and trust as well as serve into the transition to a more scientific approach to medicine but has become an icon of the profession. If you ask people how they would know someone is a doctor and they will always say because of the white lab coat and stethoscope hanging around their neck. It has become a tradition for medical doctors to wear a white lab coat at work. But, while the length of the lab coat was said to have been a symbolism of the seniority of the wearer, the length of the lab coats these days is no longer a symbol of seniority. In fact, there are now different styles of lab coats according to its length. But then again, there are other styles of lab coats according to the number of pockets, the kind of closure or buttons, the fabric or weave as well as the different belt options available.

Not all lab coats are the same. And not every lab coat is created equally. Basically, the type of lab coat one chooses is dependent on the comfort as well as specific features the job he is in requires. Aside from the style and comfort, some important aspects that are put into consideration are stain resistance, wrinkle resistance, pockets and opening to access trouser pockets.

To see the difference, here are some examples of lab coats:

Full-length or Knee-length or Long Lab Coats – These are the lab coats which has length that ranges from 36inches to 42 inches. Usually, it reaches up to the knee of the person wearing it.

Unisex CornerStone 41.5 inch Full Length Professional Lab Coat
 Landau Classic 42 Inch Full Length Mens Medical Lab Coat
Short Length – These are the lab coats which range from 28 inches to 35 inches in length or thigh length.

Barco Uniform 31 inch Short Unisex Medical Lab Coat
Barco Uniform 31 inch Medical Consultation Men Medical Lab Coat
There are cases when lab coats are also identified as Tall, this is the case when there is 2 inches added to the length as well as the sleeve length to accommodate those who are tall with long arms.

Consultation Coats – These are the lab coats more often used by medical doctors during consultations, looks more like normal coats. Women lab coats are styled differently these days to appear more feminine and stylish than the classic white lab coat.

 Adar Women 30 inch Princess Cut Consultation Medical Lab Coat
Landau 30.5 inch White Poplin Men Consultation Medical Lab Coat
Lab Jackets – These are the lab coats, usually short, styled and fitted just like a blazer or a sports coat. These lab jackets make use of zippers as closures. 

 Men Landau 31 inch Zipper Front Professional Lab Jacket
Landau Women 26 inch Lab Jacket with Zipper

Some blazer style lab coats:

Landau Women 29.5 inch Blazer Style Medical Lab Coat
Cherokee Ladies Twill Blazer Style Lab Coat - 28"
Fitted Lab Coats or Fashion Lab Coats – These are lab coats that have slimmer fit, most of the time with back belts or princess seams to give a more feminine fit. Some are made to cut low and drape nicely. 

Landau Women 39 inch Medical Lab Coat
Some lab coats are made for men while others are strictly for women, but still there are those which can be used by both man and women. Some does not even look like a lab jacket or lab coat because of the cut or style. Maybe you would even be surprised to see a short sleeve lab coat or a ¾ sleeve lab coat. Usually, short sleeved lab coats are used where protection from substances such as acid is not necessary. This makes washing forearms really easier, like what microbiologists often do at work. There are also cases when cuffed sleeve is important or buttons at the end of the sleeves to secure it so it does not hang over beakers of chemicals.

Cherokee Women Knit Cuffs 32 Inch Short Medical Lab Coat
Adar Uniform 30 inch Short Sleeve Women Twill Consultation Coat
Still, there are some lab coats that are uber-fashionable, they don't look like a typical lab coat. On the other hand, even doctors and nurses would love to look their best, whether in their lab coats or in their scrub uniforms, so it is not a surprise that new styles keep cropping up.  Lab coats are no longer just white, lab coats are being made in colors, too, maybe because white lab coats are not that applicable to them or their work.

Trench coat style lab coat from Landau
Unisex Colored 40 inch Three Pocket Long Lab Coats
These are just some of the nicest lab coats I have seen in my line of work as consultant. And the thought that people want to look good as well as be comfortable wherever they may work, is one reason that drives me to do my very best at work.

Next time, let's talk about the fabrics. Btw, there are flame resistant lab coats too as well as butcher lab coats.  This made me realize that I do not think I was able to include those who work in the food processing industry as professionals who wear lab coats.