Uniforms are an important way for employees to engage with and take pride in their company and their unique role within it, but there are lots of misconceptions about uniforms too. At HeathBrook, we are passionate about creating iconic, high-performance workwear, so we've debunked six common myths about uniforms and where they came from.
1. Combat boots fit both feet
This fun myth was actually true back in the 1800s, as combat boots worn as part of a soldier's uniform were interchangeable. This was so that the soldier could pull on his boots quickly without checking which foot was which. But it was actually uncomfortable for the soldiers, so by World War 2, interchangeable boots were a thing of the past. We have a wide range of safety and occupational footwear - all of which we promise are comfortable to wear.
2. School uniforms are a recent addition
In countries where a school or nursery uniform is less common, you may assume that they are only a recent innovation, however, in England, there is evidence of school uniforms dating back to 1222. One school in Sussex has had a virtually unchanged uniform for over 460 years.
3. Men and women need to wear identical uniforms
There have been countless debates about gender-specific uniforms, especially in recent years where uniform codes have had to become more accessible for everyone. Some companies do choose to have the same uniforms for all genders, but it isn't mandatory. According to British law, uniforms do not have to be identical for men and women but the standards imposed should be equivalent. At HeathBrook, we with our suppliers, recognise the importance of diversity in uniform, respecting gender, religion and personal circumstances.
4. Uniforms eliminate individuality
Many people over time have criticised uniforms for getting rid of individuality and creativity, especially in schools. However, throughout time, uniforms have been updated, innovated and customised by creative individuals. Uniforms can, in fact, be an important way to recognise people in a role of authority or of a specific rank, marking them as unique.
5. McDonald's uniforms were always red
Though many of us associate McDonald's with bright red and yellow, in 1973-74, the company actually trialled a dark and light blue design with no red anywhere! Over their long history, they have experimented with charcoal, blue, red stripes, white uniforms and more!
6. The marine Quatrefoil design prevented friendly fire
There is a common army myth that the braided design on a marine's hat was designed to help snipers identify and avoid shooting their comrades. Some claim the quatrefoil design dates back to 1812, however, it would be impossible at the time to see the design so far away, no matter how bold.