11 Types Of Aprons And Their Uses

We've all probably worn an apron in our lives for some reason or another. Whether you're baking at home or working in a restaurant, no one can deny how handy a good apron is. Depending on the apron, they offer different levels of protection from spills, messes, and even from debris flying from power tools! You may be surprised to find out just how many different kinds of aprons there are!

With some reading below, you may find that you've been using the wrong apron for your needs all along! Each of these apron styles brings a different level of functionality to the table. Each of the different aprons also gives varying levels of comfort for each individual. We've taken the time to gather up many different kinds of aprons for you to learn about. With this knowledge, you'll never find yourself with the wrong apron for the job again!

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Work Aprons

1. Bib

Apron on white brick wall

Bib aprons are probably the most known type of apron. These aprons have an adjustable loop that sits around the neck, and they tie around the back at the waist level. They offer good body coverage from the upper chest to the knee area. Bib aprons may be the most adaptable on this list. That is because of their coverage, durability, and usefulness. Many of these aprons also have pockets in the front.

They are suitable for both home and work, but you see them most often in restaurants. Bib aprons are popular among wait and kitchen staff because of their versatility. Their near full-body coverage means you don't have to worry as much about getting spilled on in either position. For these same reasons, they also make the most used cooking aprons for home use.

2. Waist

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Like most of the names on this list, the name waist implies the spot where this apron functions. Waist aprons end at the waist and offer only coverage for the lap area. To fasten waist aprons, they tie either around the front or on your back at the waist. The basic utility is the aim of these aprons as they don't offer much protection from spills and messes.

These aprons may be most closely associated with servers and other wait staff and restaurants. They generally have two or three pockets for servers to carry various items like straws, pens, and an order pad. Kitchen staff may also use these aprons, but the limited protection makes this situation less prevalent.

3. Bistro

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Bistro aprons are similar to waist aprons in many ways. They are also mostly worn by wait staff, often at upscale restaurants. Generally, there are several pockets on the front of them for whatever the server may need to carry. They also only offer leg protection and end at the waist. The primary difference between bistro and waist aprons is that bistro aprons are longer. They extend down to the shin area for more leg coverage.

4. Four-way

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Four-way aprons look similar to waist aprons from afar, but they have a different purpose. Four-way aprons are so appropriately named because they can be worn four different ways. They are made with layers so that you can take it off when it gets soiled, fold it a different way, then put it back on and have a clean apron. This allows you to have a clean apron all day without grabbing a completely different apron.

These kitchen cover-ups are mostly used by chefs and cooks or other staff that deal with food. This is because of the ability to quickly untie the apron from around your waist, fold it a different way, and have a new clean surface. Since hands and utensils are getting wiped on aprons, these are a favorite for many who work in a kitchen.

5. Waterproof

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Waterproof aprons are similar in shape and size to bib aprons, except they're waterproof. These aprons allow for water protection from the upper chest down to the shin area. The extreme durability helps when cleaning up around any possible chemicals or other unsafe materials that may splash on you.

They are used primarily by dishwashers and other positions where they deal with water a lot. They are also known as dishwasher aprons and are usually rubber or another highly water-resistant material. Waterproof aprons can also be seen in a wide variety of other occupations that deal with water and clean-up. They're popular among sanitation crew in factories and other settings that spray down large machinery daily.

6. Disposable

Everything that makes these aprons stand out from the rest of the list is in its name. They hold the same shape as a bib apron and offer similar types of protection. Generally made from plastic or another disposable material, these aprons are meant to be worn once and then thrown away. These aprons are all often used in the food industry at all different levels. It is inexpensive to purchase packs of disposable aprons, and they offer basic protection.

7. Cobbler

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This is the first apron on the list that you may recognize from outside of restaurants. Cobbler aprons are very popular in healthcare and housekeeping. They are worn a lot by CNAs and medical field staff. You may also recognize them from cafeterias, bakeries, and even from arts and crafts centers. These aprons stand out among the rest because they offer full front and back torso coverage. They tie at the waist on both sides. Cobbler aprons do not offer any leg protection.

8. Woodworking

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These tough and tear-resistant wonders are a variation of bib aprons. Woodworking aprons come in a few different types of materials. From heavy-duty canvas to leather, the material that's chosen has one important job, safety! Along with a variety of heavy-duty materials, they are also available with different amounts of pockets to fit your needs.

As you might have guessed from the name, these aprons are used among woodworkers and carpenters. They can find a home in other professions and at-home hobbies as well. The purpose of these aprons is to be able to use them around hand and power tools and rely on them to offer a secure layer of protection.

Domestic Aprons

9. Pinafore or Cross-back

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These cute and comfortable aprons are perfect for home use! They wear similarly to a dress or robe, so they can be worn around the house for as long as needed without discomfort. A big thing that sets these aprons apart from the rest is that you don't have to tie them! You simply slip a strap over each shoulder, and it crosses in the back, which gives these aprons their other common name, the cross-back apron.

10. Denim

Midsection of confident barista wearing smart watch. Young man is standing with arms crossed. Waiter is wearing apron in coffee shop, 11 Types Of Aprons And Their Uses

While denim aprons are also very appropriate for many fields of work, they offer a certain style for home wearing as well. For the most part, a standard denim apron wears the same as a bib apron. The only difference is the increased durability of the denim. There are heavier and lighter-weight versions, but they're great for a wide variety of tasks. Denim aprons work well for gardening, crafting, sewing, woodworking, and many more at-home hobbies.

The more durable versions of this apron can be seen in many occupations, not just with home hobbies. Denim's toughness makes it a good choice for professional carpenters, among other careers that need protection. Denim aprons also offer many different pocket variations and metal accents that add to their functionality.

11. Designer

Apron on mannequin

When you think about a traditional apron that a woman baking might wear at home, these are probably what pop into your mind. These aprons come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. They offer similar protection to bib aprons and wear the same for the most part. Designer aprons are made just as much to be seen as they are for spill protection.

Final thoughts

When most people think about aprons, they only consider a few kinds. They may think of bib aprons and waist aprons that they've seen in homes and restaurants. There are so many more apron options than those. Each apron offers different levels of protection, functionality, and coverage. Next time you find yourself needing an apron, make sure to consider all of the different kinds mentioned here and their uses!

For some fun apron gift ideas, click on the links below!

15 Apron Gift Ideas For Mom

13 Novelty Aprons For Men [Gift Ideas]

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