- US Army
- Royal Army
Posted by Peace Keeper
The main current service uniform is known as the green service uniform or "Class A's." The Army reviewed various ideas in the late 1940s in order to create a distinctive uniform. Pride in the uniform became a major issue in morale and retention, due to use of drab colors. Also, many civilian workers were mistaken for Army personnel, due to massive use of Army surplus clothing after World War II.
Army commissions reviewed various factors of design, durability and appearance. Blue was considered because of its acceptance in men's clothing, but it would then have been too difficult to distinguish it from Air Force and Navy service uniforms and the Marine Corps and Navy dress uniforms. Several colors were reviewed, and finally green (shade 44) was designated the basic color for new dress uniforms.
The green uniform has been worn with minor variations since its official adoption in 1954. The green color was adopted in order to provide a color which was more military, and distinct from various uniforms of civilian service workers. It is scheduled to be discontinued in 2014. It features a jacket with four buttons. Enlisted soldiers wear insignia denoting their branch of service on their collars. Officers wear two sets of insignia consisting of the letters "US" on their collars and their branch on their lapels.
Proficiency badges, such as the marksman's badge, are worn on the upper left pocket flap. Above this are the ribbons for medals and commendations which have been earned for various actions, duties and training. Above the ribbons are qualification badges, such as the paratrooper badges and Combat Action Badge. A nametag is worn on the upper right pocket flap. Unit awards and foreign awards are worn above the pocket, with a regimental insignia above both. Special duty badges, such as the recruiter's badge, are worn on the upper two pockets of the jacket; the side on which they are worn varies by badge, and is specified by regulation.
On each shoulder of the uniform are unit patches. The left side will have the patch of the current unit the soldier is stationed with. On the right shoulder of the dress uniform the soldier may wear the patch of the unit to which the soldier was assigned while deployed to a combat zone. Tabs indicating Ranger or Special Forces qualification, if applicable, are worn above the unit patch on the left shoulder. A similar "airborne" tab is worn immediately above the unit patch if the command is designated as majority airborne, irrespective of whether the individual soldier is qualified as a paratrooper. As the shoulder sleeve insignia generally indicates merely the general-officer command to which the soldier is assigned, the soldier's immediate battalion or intermediate-level command is indicated by distinctive unit insignia of metal and enamel, on the soldier's epaulets.
The Army Green Service Uniform has being withdrawn from issue in the fall of 2009. Only the new Blue ASU is being issued. The Army Green Service Uniform will be withdrawn after July 2014.
The Army white mess uniform comprises the Army white jacket, black high-waisted trousers, white semiformal dress shirt with a turndown collar, black bow tie, and black cummerbund. The Army white evening mess uniform comprises the Army white jacket, black high-waisted trousers, white formal dress shirt with a wing collar, white vest, and white bow tie. The trousers are the same for all ranks.
The U.S. Army currently uses the Army Improved Physical Fitness Uniform (IPFU), manufactured by UNICOR. It is essentially a tracksuit, marked with the ARMY name. It is required during Army physical training.
The United States Army also issues special uniforms to Soldiers in aviation fields if they serve as pilots or flight crew members and other special uniforms are issued to medical and food service personnel.
Aviation uniforms historically include the one-piece flight suit, constructed of flame resistant Nomex fabric, which have been issued in Olive Drab Green or Desert Tan, depending upon the area of intended use. The current flight-approved uniform is the Army Aircrew Combat Uniform (A2CU), which is outwardly similar to the ACU. Outside differences to the ACU include: Sleeve pencil pocket flaps, velcro closures on all pockets, flight-suit style thigh pockets, and the addition of lower leg pockets, oriented in similar fashion to the flight suits. The A2CU is also constructed of Nomex, similar to the flight suit so as to present a smaller risk of fire-related deaths in aviation accidents.
Medical personnel may wear unit-issued hospital scrubs, but the official uniform for medical personnel assigned to medical activities such as hospitals and clinics include white pants, different versions of white shirts for male or female Soldiers, black or white low quarter shoes, and accompanying insignia. A personally purchased white cardigan can be worn with this uniform in addition to other authorized uniform items. Food service personnel may receive exactly the same uniform as male and female medical personnel with differing accoutrements, and mess hall supervisors may a similar uniform with black pants.