When I started in my lab for grad school, I was told “grab a lab coat out of that pile that you like best”. I found an XL (I’m a M) and later upgraded to a L when someone graduated the next year. I was swimming in a chemical-stained white-ish lab coat designed for no specific purpose other than to loosely look like a scientist.
The wide drooping cuffs caused me to knock over and shatter glass graduated cylinders in the cramped fume hood on multiple occasions, costing me hours of lab time in clean-up. My pens and tweezers didn’t have a good home in the coat so in my 3-room lab they were rarely within arm’s reach. My phone would swing around wildly in the lower front pocket, so I left it on the counter and relied on Bluetooth to listen to music which cut out if I ventured too far to the equipment on the other side of the wall.
Worst of all, I just never felt “good” wearing it, so most of the time I just didn’t. It was a self-imposed safety hazard caused by poor design. I honestly never even looked for a new lab coat online because I didn’t know better options were available and didn’t want to “waste” my lab’s money on what seemed like a luxury. If it costs less than a jar of common lab chemicals, is it really “expensive” for something that protects you daily for years and influences your happiness and productivity?
The purpose of The Lab Coat project is to use data-driven design crowdsourced from real researchers to create a lab coat that rivals “designer” coats for physicians but is tailored toward the needs of scientists - and for less than $50.
-Derek (founder of Genius Lab Gear)