How To Fix Your Scrubs In A Crisis

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.

As a nurse working with the public, it’s important to look professional. So while anti-bacterial hand gel and a wallet are essential to keep in your bag, a nurse’s best friend can be a small collection of items that will keep you looking pulled together when your day…um…unravels.

Here are the bits and pieces that I always have readily accessible for my fashion emergencies.


Toupee tape

Next time there’s an award show on TV, check out how many actresses on the red carpet are wearing strapless dresses. I can assure you that most of them have some toupee tape on to keep everything in place!

Toupee tape, which really is designed to affix a toupee, is double sided. It comes in a variety of widths. The strips are approximately 1½ inches wide by 3 inches long. A perfect size for your purse!

When I was a costume designer, we must have gone through dozens of boxes of toupee tape on every show. It’s one of the greatest quick-fix items I know. For example, the tape can be used to hide unsightly bra straps. Just use a piece of tape on your bra strap and stick it to your clothing to keep the bra strap in perfect alignment.

If you’re wearing a scrub top that hangs open a bit and you’re not in the mood to give your patients a show when you bend over, just put a piece of toupee tape on one side of your top where it gaps, and secure the scrubs straight to your skin. Voila! No more risks of “exposure.”

Did your scrub pants come unraveled at the hem? No time to sew it back together? No problem. Just tape a piece of toupee tape on the inside of your hem and press the hem back in place on your scrub pants. You’re good to go. (Just remember to remove the tape before washing or dry-cleaning your clothing.)

You can find a tin box with 36 double-stick strips for about $9. It’s a reasonable price and, again, it can fit easily into your purse.


Sewing kit

Let’s say you get a rip in your scrubs—maybe when moving a patient you tear the armpit, or when squatting down you realize that your behind is now exposed (hint…that’s a sure sign that it’s time to buy new scrubs…the fabric has just worn out from too many washes).

But you’re at work, not at the uniform store buying new scrubs, and your rip has to be fixed, and right away.

For this kind of jam, make sure you have a mini emergency sewing kit. If you only purchase a single item for your fashion fixes, this is the one to get! It’s ideal not only because of its small size, but because it carries the basics when you’re in a jam.

Sewing kits come in fun, colorful cases and contain enough thread colors to invisibly mend your scrubs in a jiffy. And the price is right. I also keep a kit in my car for on-the-road emergency repairs.


Stain wipes

There is nothing that can make you feel like you want to go home and change more than when you get a big stain on your scrubs. For those moments, I keep packaged cleaning wipes in my purse. I like Shout Wipe & Go. For about $24, you get 80 individually packaged wipes. They’re so small you can put a couple of them in your in scrub pockets for any unfortunate mishaps at work. They’re fine on color-fast clothes and dry-cleanable fabric.

If you have a small stain, try to feather out your motions away from the stain. It will avoid creating a ring around your original stain.

Three small, simple things – toupee tape, a mini sewing kit, and wipes. They can take a fashion disaster and turn it into a minor inconvenience that barely slows down a busy nurse.


 What do you think? Share your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section below.


This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.


  1. I always kept a repair kit for glasses– little screwdriver and screws to repair the glasses that lost a screw for both patients and staff.

  2. You can get a little sewing kit at the dollar store (the truly only a dollar for things dollar store). I also keep a few safety pins pinned to the lining in my purse (smaller ones pinned on a big one). The little ones can do for a tear that is small, for a temporary fix, and the big one, you can put a new drawstring, or re-insert your drawstring, in your scrub pants if you have a big pin to pin the cord to and feed it all the way around! I have even folded 3 inch silk tape in half (sticky side to sticky side, length-wise), and made a temporary drawstring. Fabric glue is good if you have a hem come out, dab the glue, put a few paper clips on to hold the hem in, and in just a bit it will be dry and your hem restored. You can even buy fabric glue in tiny tubes to keep in your purse and they make one called “ok to wash” that will not come out so you don’t have to EVER fix that hem!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Perspectives: Epic Flood Creates Everyday Heroes

For the most part, our days can be fairly routine. We take our seat in our warm office chair, log-in at our cube, or...

10 DOs And DON’Ts A Travel Nurse Can Teach Us

So you’ve thought about becoming a traveling nurse. You’ve imagined yourself basking under the desert skies of Arizona, frolicking on the sun-soaked beaches of...

10 Signs You Need A Spring Vacation!

Wishing your next day off was a little sooner? Imagining a marvelous tropical vacation in the spring (hey, we can dream!)? You don’t have...