How to Properly Wear the Navy Service Uniform

officer image by Snezana Skundric from

Your Navy service uniform must be pressed and clean when you get evaluated by superior officers. It's important to know the proper attire and the myriad details regarding your uniform, as when you wear it you are representing the Navy and your country. Looking your best as a sailor includes wearing a clean hat and a pressed shirt, and pinning ribbons and medals in the proper fashion.

Organize all components of the uniform. This includes shirt, pants, jacket, cap and decorations.

Put on the garrison cap. The cap fits squarely on the head. Place the hat with the fore and aft crease centered between the eyebrows.

Wear a blouse, if you're female. The blouse must fit over the bust line with 4 inches extended beyond the waistline. The center of the blouse shouldn't be pulled out when you extend your arms straight forward.

Wear a shirt, if you're male. A male Naval officer's shirt should fit over the chest. Wear the shirt with a white t-shirt underneath and at least 4 inches below the waistline. The back of the shirt must lay flat from from shoulder to shoulder.

Wear a skirt, if you're female. The skirt should fit comfortably over the body without pulling the side pockets open. The length of the skirt should range no more that 1 1/2 inch above or below the knee crease. Wear the skirt with its zipper centered in the back.

Wear slacks or pants that fit comfortably. For female officers, slacks should fit comfortably on the waistline with two fingers being able to separate your slacks and waist. The thigh areas must hang straight. The slack length should result in a hem turn-up of 2 inches. Male officers must also be able to fit two fingers inside the waistband, to ensure comfort. Wear the pants so that the side pockets don't protrude out while the thigh area hangs straight down. Length rules are similar to the female slacks, with a male officer wearing his pants turned up no more than 2 inches.

Wear a jacket. Both male and female officers should wear jackets that fit comfortably over the chest and shoulders. The arms should be able to move freely without discomfort. The bottom of the jacket should comfortably rest a few inches below the waistband. The jacket's cuffs should rest at the wrists but not go beyond the end of the hands.

Wear insignias, badges and ribbons. Rank insignias are centered 1 1/2 inches below the point of the collar and above the pocket. Personnel will wear sewn-in rank badges on the left sleeve between sleeve hem and shoulder seam. Wear ribbons centered and placed 1/4 inch above the left breast pocket. Both male and female placement tags should be centered 1/4 inch above the right breast pocket.

Wear a belt. Latch the buckle in line with the opening of the shirt and opening of the pants. The tip of the belt should extend 2 to 4 inches past the buckle.