Aprons are essential to restaurants, worn by everyone from the chef in the kitchen to the waitress serving tables in front. And while most think aprons are just for keeping clothes clean, they do so much more.
Restaurant aprons can do more than protect clothes including protect the wearer from bodily harm. Before buying aprons for yourself or restaurant, here are six things to consider to ensure you’re buying the right restaurant apron for the job.
What are you trying to accomplish with the apron?
Are you buying your restaurant aprons primarily for chefs or servers? Will these be front of house facing or only used in the kitchen? Remember that while a chef’s apron may be primarily worn to keep the chef (and his/her clothes) clean, it can also help keep your chef and staff safe if made with sturdy and/or flame resistant materials. And for your restaurant server aprons, think about their usage and need for pockets. Between collecting checks, carrying around change, and remembering orders, the more pockets your server aprons have the better.
How easily can your restaurant aprons be cleaned?
Most restaurant staff won’t be washing their aprons every night. When selecting aprons you’ll want something that can hold up to multiple wearings and staining. If you expect your aprons to receive a lot of staining, going with a darker colored one might make more sense.
In our experience, most kitchen aprons (e.g. aprons for chefs and line cooks) hold up well to typical grease, oil, and wine stains, and can be thrown into a regular washer. However, designer aprons and aprons treated with flame resistant material may require special, more expensive laundering treatment.
How important is cost vs. longevity?
When buying aprons for your restaurant staff cost is an important factor. While there are many great low cost restaurant aprons, keep in mind the wear and tear that will be placed on them. Are you running a fast/casual restaurant where staining is more likely? If so, your aprons will likely be washed more frequently. More expensive aprons tend to be made of stronger material and hold up better overtime, and through multiple wash cycles.
How visible will the apron be to your clients?
Even though aprons may be somewhat of an after-thought, they are a highly visible part of your servers’ uniforms. In addition, many modern restaurants utilize open kitchen settings, giving patrons a full view of the kitchen and its inner workings.
Depending on your restaurant you may want to invest in more stylish aprons to match your restaurant uniforms. That said, often times “designer” aprons lack the functionality of more traditional aprons, including multiple pockets and strong, long lasting material. Make sure to closely review the material and functionality of any apron before purchasing.
Are your chef aprons strong enough to safely hold sharp knifes?
Your chefs and kitchen staff will be handling knives and sharp objects everyday, often putting them into their aprons to hold. It’s important the aprons they wear are made of heavyweight, sturdy fabric that can handle the fast paced kitchen environment. Chef aprons need to be sturdy and able to withstand steady usage without tearing, as well as keep your employees safe.
What about the clothes underneath?
Length matters. Remember, the primary reason an apron is worn is to keep the clothes underneath clean. For chef aprons and other kitchen staff that are more prone to grease and spills, consider getting longer, darker aprons. For your restaurant servers, remember to balance the need for a stylish appearance with their need to carry checks and protect clothes from the occasional spill .
Take your time to pick the right restaurant aprons
As we’ve outlined above, the process of picking an apron isn’t as simple as just getting the cheapest option available. With so many to choose from, spend some time browsing collections to see the pros and cons of sturdy vs. cheap material, stylish vs. classic looks, and no-pocket vs. multiple-pocket options. Below are a few of our most common apron styles. As always, should you need any help picking the perfect restaurant apron or developing a uniform for your staff, call, email, or stop in our warehouse today to talk with us about designing the perfect uniform for your business.
Ready to get started? Start browsing restaurant aprons today
At Best Buy Uniforms we over 3,000 different pieces of uniform clothing to help you outfit your staff. Below are some of our most popular Restaurant Aprons.