Marines are always prepared for action and always dress the part whether at work, having fun, or attending a formal event. Staff Sergeant Daniel Walters says dressing the part also means having multiple uniforms. "Utilities, service charlies, service bravo's, service alpha's, dress blue bravo's, dress blue alpha's, dress blue charlies, dress blue delta's, and the list can go on and on" says Walters.
On base Marines frequently wear the desert or woodland utility outfit, which is the standard work uniform. When off base civilians will most likely see a Marine in what's called 'service charlies'. There are also differences in the uniforms based off of gender. For example the women's charlies don't have pockets and they don't tuck their shirts in because of the shape.
Most uniforms have multiple pieces and all Sergeant Stephanie Bowens says all Marines know exactly where every button, pin, and article of clothing is supposed to go. "We first learned at boot camp. We were initially taught and it was first instilled in us from the get go. When we first got our uniforms our drill instructors pretty much yelled at us and got us in line and made sure we're by the numbers and make sure the uniforms look the way they look today" says Bowens.
Marines are required to wear their service charlies every Friday and many say they don't mind because it's one of the favorites. The overwhelming majority of Marines are in good shape and their uniforms prove it. "We wear our uniforms to make sure that we look good all of the time. And for us to upkeep them, of course it costs money, but we want to do that and spend money on our uniforms. You want to look good you want someone to walk up and be like 'gosh that Marine looks amazing' and that's a compliment that we mostly get all the time" says Bowens.