8 Clever Ways to Style Your Scrubs this Halloween

By Caroline Ortiz - October 20, 2021

Whether you are looking for something to wear as a nurse or healthcare professional or want to put an old pair of scrubs to good use, they make an excellent base for many spooky and just plain cool Halloween costumes.

Medical scrubs are more than just clothing that identifies someone as a healthcare professional during their shift. They help protect patients from contamination and increased risk of infection. Also, scrubs have a psychological impact. The colors tend to be soothing, and the average person associates them with care or caregiving. This Halloween, consider eight ways you can style your scrubs to celebrate the spooky season.

Easy and Fun Scrub-Based Costume Ideas

  • Black Cat

Nothing says Halloween quite like the classic black cat. It’s a costume idea that fits well with scrubs, too. If you have black scrubs appropriate for your healthcare role, then the costume is pretty simple. Buy a headband with black cat ears on it. If you are feeling creative, you could add these accessories:

  • A short tail coming out the back of the scrubs — Make sure it is short enough that no one, including you, will trip on it.
  • Whiskers — Use makeup to draw them on your face or buy a face mask with them on it. Most healthcare environments require face masks today, so it’s a quick and easy way to make your black cat costume look more authentic.
  • Tuffs of fur out of a long black sleeve shirt and the bottom of the scrub pants — Again, only do this if appropriate for your healthcare environment.
  • Cat-eye goggles — If eye protection is part of your work clothes, then use black tape or an erasable marker to draw the outline of cat eyes on your goggles.

Finally, add some black shoes to complete the look!

  • Crayon

Like the black cat, a crayon costume is a natural with scrubs. Pick your favorite-colored scrubs and match them with a headband that has the top of a crayon on it. If you are struggling to find a top to complete your look, make one.

You could make a cone out of construction paper or poster board and then add a brim, so it looks like a crayon. You may also be able to convert a cheap witch hat into a crayon with some paint and markers. Now match your shoes and socks to complete the costume!

  • Bunny

Pink and white scrubs make for easy bunny costumes. Just add some ears and a little makeup to get the right look. You could also add a twitchy nose and whiskers to a face mask. Don’t forget the puffy tail on your backside.

If you want to be extra clever, make batteries out of potato chip cans and strap them to your back. Craft a tiny drum out of a roll of packing tape and be the Energizer Bunny!

  • Bottle of Pepto Bismol

What could be more appropriate for a nurse working a shift on Halloween? Break out your pinkest scrubs and tack on a posterboard version of the bottle label. You can tie it on using a ribbon or hang the label around your neck.

For authenticity, use an actual bottle as a template for your label. If you are feeling extra adventurous, write the back label out on the scrubs or on some poster board, so you look like the bottle from all sides.

  • Angel

There is a clear connection between angels and nurses, so put that to use as your costume idea. You can buy a halo headband and a pair of angel wings at the local store. Just wear your everyday scrubs with these clever accessories. It’s a perfect choice if you work the night shift. Imagine the stories patients will tell about the angel who came to them in the night to provide care!

  • Fruit

Pick the color scrub that matches your favorite kind of fruit, and then add some details to make the costume work. For example, if you are an orange, draw a stem on the scrubs or make it out of cardboard or construction paper. If you are a pineapple, create diamond shapes to mimic the skin of the fruit.

Make a headdress to add authenticity to your costume. Attach green construction paper leaves to an empty toilet paper roll and then perch it on top of a headband.

Don’t be afraid to mix and match colors for your scrubs, either. Yellow pants with green can make your pineapple look even more impressive.

  • Skeleton

For this costume, all you need is black scrubs, white felt, and your anatomy book. Cut the felt in the shapes of bones that make up the human skeleton and attach them to your scrubs using fabric tape or glue.

Keep it as simple as possible to cut back on the prep time. The fewer pieces there are, the less chance the outfit will malfunction during your shift, as well. And don’t forget to draw a mandible on your face mask!

  • Super Nurse

Superheroes are all the rage right now, so why not be a Super Nurse. Get creative with it. Design your super emblem and tack it to the front of your scrubs. Of course, no superhero would be complete without a cape.

Halloween Dos and Don’ts

Dressing up for your Halloween shift is a lot of fun, and it will add a bright spot to the day for your patients, big and small. There are some do’s and don’ts you should keep in mind, though:

  • Don’t do sexy nurse. There are many sexy nurse costumes, but they are not suitable for work. Any nurse will tell you the days of mini-skirt uniforms are gone forever.
  • Do keep your costume simple. An overly elaborate costume will interfere with your ability to work. Easy Halloween costumes will ensure the shift runs smoother.
  • Don’t go overboard with scary. Stay away from anything that covers you in blood. It’s not a good look for a nurse… while on shift, at least.
  • Do check the rules. Check to see if there are any specific rules about Halloween costumes at your place of employment.
  • Don’t wear something inappropriate for your workspace. For instance, if you work in the cancer ward or ICU, you wouldn’t dress up like the grim reaper.
  • Do use good judgment when choosing your costume. Ask yourself if what you are wearing might offend anyone. Keep it positive and fun. Devils, ghosts, and religious leaders are examples of costume ideas that might not be right for everyone.

If you are interested in learning more about earning your nursing degree online from Pacific College of Health and Science, visit admissions or contact us today.

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Caroline Ortiz

Caroline E. Ortiz is a board-certified nurse coach and an associate professor in the Pacific College of Health and Science’s Holistic Nursing Programs. She has developed holistic health programs for healthcare providers and general audiences, participated in clinical research of integrative medicine, and created a Spanish-language guided meditation library for Health Journeys. She is active with the National Association of Hispanic Nurses-NY Chapter and the Integrative Health Project’s work in Guatemala. Caroline is also a curandera (f., traditional healer) apprentice and curanderismo (traditional medicine of Mesoamerican roots) researcher.

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