5 ways to breathe life into old scrubs

By | 2021-05-07T17:42:41-04:00 August 20th, 2015|3 Comments

There comes a time for every set of scrubs, even your favorites, to be retired. Whether they’re worn out — they can only last for so many wash cycles — or just aren’t serving you anymore, give your old faithful scrubs a new purpose.

Try one of these five ways to repurpose your scrubs and get a new perk from your old uniform.

1. Donate to an organization

You can donate your scrubs to an organization that accepts them, such as Global Links, an organization that utilizes hospital surplus to supply hospitals in poor communities around the world. Scrubs should be clean, without tears, and should not have a name embroidered on it, although institutional names are OK.

2. Fashion a new shirt

If you’re savvy with a sewing machine, follow this tutorial by Jillian at Refashionista for a casual summer shirt that will keep you cool and relaxed.

3. Honor a retiring nurse

Fill a shadow box with a folded scrub top, a stethoscope or lanyard, or other mementos for a retiring nurse to commemorate their legacy, or a new nurse to welcome them to the profession. Check out this beauty on Pinterest for inspiration.

4. Make a tote

The only thing more useful than wearing your scrubs is carrying your stuff in them! Check out this scrub tote bag and create your own.

5. Keep for rags

Use scrubs to dust, wipe down your car after a car wash, or clean up detergent spills in your laundry room. The rags can be washed, making it a reusable resource, and saving paper towel waste in the process. Double bonus!


Your turn

How do you repurpose old scrubs? Share your creative ideas with our Scrubbed In readers.


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  1. Avatar
    Reagan September 19, 2016 at 2:28 pm - Reply

    Thanks I needed that

  2. Avatar
    Cindy Knapp February 19, 2021 at 12:44 pm - Reply

    I am retired from nursing and I have bags and bags of colorful holiday and solid scrub tops and pants, all in great condition. I would love to donate to an organization that will cause them to be reused by less unfortunate. I do not want to donate to Salvation Army they will just resell!

  3. Avatar
    Shelia Brown June 8, 2021 at 9:46 am - Reply

    I, also, have bags of cute nursing sets (tops and pants). I would to give them to
    Someone or an organization that could use them. They are all like new

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