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EMTs are one of the first healthcare professionals that see a patient. As first responders, they have the knowledge and equipment to provide emergency, life-sustaining care on the way to the hospital.
In order to deliver care rapidly, EMTs and paramedics need uniforms that are durable, flexible, and capable of carrying the utilities they need. To that end, EMT uniforms provide more storage, are more robust than regular clothing, and have specific features necessary for EMS professionals.
But what is the real need for EMT uniforms? How long does it take to become an EMT? And what are the best clothing options for emergency medical technicians in need of a uniform?
What is an EMT vs paramedic?
For Men and Women: EMT AEMT Star Life
- MICHIGAN ARTISTS & PRINTERS | this design was drawn and screen printed (silk screened) with pride by our skilled illustrators and printers in Ann Arbor. If you're ever in the area, stop by for a free...
- UNISEX MODERN FIT SIZING | this shirt is slightly tapered to be a little less boxy than the old style of mass-market t-shirt. Nothing drastic, and most people wear the same size in our shirts as they...
- SOFT FABRICS | Our shirts are a ringspun, 30/1 fine jersey knit on 100% USA-grown cotton. If you don't speak t-shirt geek, that means they are soft and smooth with a high thread-count, tight knit made...
The EMT Star Life’s design is drawn and screen-printed proudly by MICHIGAN ARTISTS & PRINTERS in Ann Arbor. The t-shirt is 100% cotton and machine washable, ensuring that you don’t have to hand wash clothes after a long shift.
The slightly tapered shirt gives it a sleeker, more contemporary look. The company promises that the clothing sizes are standard but recommends going one size up if you’re on the fence.
This t-shirt comes pre-shrunk, so you don’t have to worry about it shrinking after one or more washes.
The cotton is ringspun, then 30/1 fine jersey knit to make the t-shirts. This results in a soft fabric that is durable because of the high thread count. The shirt is not as thick as a gym class t-shirt, but it’s substantially thick and not see-through.
The ink used to print the logo is manufactured in North Carolina. The ink is crack-resistant since the company uses top-of-the-line printing presses and ovens made by M&R in Illinois.
The company has been using phthalate-free components for over a decade, and all of the clothes it manufactures are CFC- and carcinogen-free.
Smart People Clothing EMT Navy Polo
- 3.8 oz./yd2 / 130 gsm, 100% polyester interlock with moisture-wicking and uv protection performance
- Team fit
- Tear away main label
This polo shirt by Smart People takes your look up a notch. With its collar and two-button closure, you’ll have a smarter and more professional appearance while on shift.
The shirt employs moisture-wicking technology to help keep you dry. The shirt also has reflective logos for low visibility areas.
100% polyester. Easy to keep clean.
Below we’ve listed our top two recommendations for women’s and men’s pants. You can also check our bigger list of 10 EMT pants for men and women.
For Men: 5.11 Taclite Men’s EMS Pant
- QUALITY FABRIC CONSTRUCTION - Made from TacLite ripstop polyester-cotton fabric, this pants provides an efficient, breathable, and lightweight bottom for optimum comfort.
- COMFORTABLE FIT - Featuring self-adjusting tunnel waistband, fully gusseted inseam, and double-reinforced seat and knees. This men's pants will surely look great and move with you throughout the day.
- MULTIFUNCTIONAL POCKETS - The thigh-mounted cargo pockets offer internal dividers for sorting your essential gear, secondary cargo pockets at the calf offer additional storage, and a web strap for a...
The Taclite pants are the most popular option for EMTs and paramedics. These pants feature the TacLite ripstop polyester-cotton fabric, that offers comfort, breathability, and durability.
It boasts several features that make it the perfect option for an EMT uniform. The professional-looking pants have double-reinforced seats and knees, and a fully gusseted inseam, making the pants very durable.
In addition to moving with you throughout the day, the pants have a self-adjusting tunnel waistband that will keep you comfortable.
It features thigh-mounted cargo pockets with internal dividers to help organize your gear. There are pockets on the calf, too, offering additional storage, and the web strap will allow you to access some supplies conveniently.
The pants have a Teflon finish, giving the pants dirt, stain, and soil resistance. The Prym snaps and YKK zippers won’t break for years, making these pants worth every cent.
For Women: 5.11 Tactical Women’s Stryke EMS Pants
- QUALITY MATERIAL - Constructed using premium 80% polyester and 20% cotton mechanical stretch Flex-tac Ripstop Fabric, this pair of pants is sturdy and flexible for maximum performance.
- TEFLON-TREATED FABRIC - Coated with Teflon, these pants have a protective finish that resists stain, soil, and moisture without compromising breathability. The coating also makes it easier to clean...
- FULLY GUSSETED CONSTRUCTION - Featuring a gusseted inseam, this pair of pants offers optimum freedom of mobility and a more comfortable wearing experience without worrying about rips and tears.
The Stryke pants feature a premium Flex-tac Ripstop fabric, giving the pants a sturdy build. The flexible fabric doesn’t tear, so you won’t have to worry about having a second pair of pants at hand.
Like the Men’s Taclite pants, the Stryke pants have a Teflon coating. The protective finish makes the pants soil, stain, and moisture resistant. The breathable fabric is also easy to clean.
The tactical pants have a gusseted inseam, giving you complete freedom of movement without worrying about ripping your pants.
The several specialized pockets provide ample storage for all the gear you need on the job.
For Men: Timberland Men’s White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot
- Our White Ledge Men's Hiking Boots have premium full-grain waterproof leather uppers, seam-sealed waterproof construction, and rustproof speed lace hardware with hooks at top for secure lacing.
- LOOK NO FURTHER for trail-ready performance and style. Our selection of men’s hiking boots, waterproof hiking boots, casual boots, and casual shoes is designed to fit in with your outdoor-ready...
- TIMBERLAND HAS YOU COVERED whether you're looking for men's boots, women's boots, or kids boots. For the best in hiking boots, rain boots, work boots, casual shoes & boots & more, choose Timberland.
These boots don’t just look outdoor-ready. They feature a construction that makes them outdoor-ready. Getting water or body fluids in your boots can ruin your day, and cleaning and drying out boots can be a chore.
You don’t have to worry about any of that with these boots. The full-grain leather used and the seam-sealed waterproof construction make it fully waterproof. Further, the laces are rust-proof, making the boots perfect for an EMT.
For Women: Under Armour Women’s Stellar Military and Tactical Boot
- UA Storm technology repels water without sacrificing breathability
- Leather & 900D nylon textile combine for a soft & light upper
- Quick-dry minimalist design with polishable toe
The Under Armour boots boast a modern design, and the lightweight construction ensures that your feet won’t hurt or get too hot at work.
It features the UA Storm technology, keeping water out of the boots without compromising breathability. The combination of leather and 900D nylon makes the boots soft and light.
The low-profile rubber lug sole gives you traction on all kinds of surfaces, and the molded EVA midsole and TPU shank give you protection and support.
For Men: FAIRWIN Tactical Belt
- Tactical Belt Length - 49 inch, Width:1.5 inch, fit for waist 36-42 inches. Buckle Size: 2" in width and 5/16" in thickness.
- Heavy Duty Metal Buckle - This tactical belt features a military belt buckle made of heavy-duty metal.
- Quick Release Belt- Intuitive and smooth quick release functionality when you push the golden tabs down at the same time. If just one tab is engaged, the connection will hold and fully re-lock on its...
Durability and reliability are what EMTs look for in their belt. The FAIRWIN tactical belt is made out of 1000D nylon, which is durable, soft, comfortable, and eco-friendly.
It features a heavy-duty metal buckle that has a quick-release function. To release the belt, you must push all the golden tabs down simultaneously.
But the best thing about the belt is that it comes with a two-year warranty and a 60-day hassle-free return policy.
For Women: No Show Stretch Belt
- TARGET AUDIENCE --- Your adjustable belt could be used by your whole family with great elastic and adjustability. If you are losing weight, it is a good interim solution to falling pants problem. Also...
- STRUCTURE --- Stretchy belt strap+plastic buckle+plastic adjuster. The stretch belt has great elastic that allows plus size waist. The flat plastic buckle and adjuster is easy to unclasp and move.
- SIZE INFO --- This women belt suits for US size 0-16. Belt strap 1.18” wide,buckle length 1.96”, buckle width 1.49”.
This adjustable belt fits great in all sizes. It features a stretchy belt strap, a plastic adjuster, and a plastic buckle. The strap keeps you comfortable because of its stretchiness, and the plastic components make it convenient to unclasp the belt.
But what’s more desirable about the best is that it lies flat and doesn’t bulge under shirts and sweaters. This gives you a clean, professional look.
Need for Emergency Medical Technician Uniforms: Public Safety
Every day at work is different for an Emergency Medical Technician, which makes being an EMT a thrilling, often gratifying job.
EMTs are involved with every type of medical emergency and make life and death decisions that impact the lives of the patients and their families forever.
In addition to keeping an EMT safe and clean, an EMT uniform also symbolizes their role to the public. When there’s an accident or any medical emergency, the uniform makes people on the scene feel safe and reassured since they understand that medical help has arrived.
The uniform makes a paramedic stand out and look professional, and the standard attire indicates to the people that they’re healthcare professionals hard at work that are not to be obstructed.
What You Need to Know Before You’re Ready for the Field
If you want to help people and have decided to become an EMT, but you prefer wearing flip-flops every day, you will have to put a lot of work into building a new wardrobe. You will need to wear the standard paramedic uniform, which varies slightly from location to location.
It’s also important for you to remember that you may be eligible for reimbursement from your employer for the clothing you buy for work. For instance, many employers offer a $150 allowance for boots, and you can buy any boots as long as they cost under $150.
EMT uniforms aren’t cheap to put together. If your employer doesn’t offer reimbursement, you can itemize a tax deduction when you file your taxes.