a person with a beard

We’re answering the question can you grow out your facial hair while working as a nurse.

Can nurses have beards? Yes, in most cases nurses can have beards. It should be properly groomed and well kept. There are some facilities that might have stricter policies for various reasons.

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Can Nurses Have Beards?

As a male nurse who regularly wears facial hair, I can say that generally speaking, you’re not going to have any issues having facial hair.

Please note there are exceptions to this.

So if you’re a nurse who having facial hair is very important and could be a deal-breaker for a job, make sure to ask about the facility policy on facial hair before excepting a nursing job.

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What Are Some Nursing Jobs That May Not Allow Facial Hair

I’m not aware of a definite nursing job that doesn’t allow facial hair. From my experience it really is more of a facility to facility issue.

With that said let me mention scenarios where having facial hair could be more of a problem.

Having to wear an N95 respirator:

Generally those N95s need to fit pretty snug and securely on your face to create a good seal.

Facial hair, especially a lot of facial hair means you’re not going to pass the FIT test.

An alternative to the N95s are the powered air-purifying respirator or more commonly known as the PAPR:

The thing is some facilities may not have these readily available and even if they do…they’re a pain to use.

You might have to go to different places to get the hood and than the pump, it’s just not convenient when the N95 mask is probably in your units supply closet.

The only good thing about them is that the fit testing for the PAPR is a lot more straightforward than the ones for the N95 mask.

As a side note:
I’ve known nurses who keep their beards shaven just so they won’t have to deal with the PAPR.

Does That Mean You Can’t Have Facial Hair?

Nope. Not at all.

It just means you need to be aware of that.

If you work at a place where you might have to use an N95 mask maybe once a year it might be worth it to you.

Final Thoughts

Regardless of whichever option you pick. Please, please, please, make sure to keep it groomed and well kept.

Do you agree? Disagree? Have you had a different experience? Let us know in the comments below.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can nurses have long beards?

    Yes, nurses can have long beards, with some reservations. Regardless make sure it’s groomed and well-kept.

  2. Is it professional to have a beard?

    Yes, a well-kept beard can look very professional. Ultimately it’s up to the individual to decide if having a beard is professional or not.

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