An optional new physical training uniform featuring the Navy's new "forged by the sea" tagline will hit exchanges in October. The PT uniform will come in unisex sizing and include a short-sleeved, navy blue moisture-wicking shirt and 5-inch running shorts, according to Navy administrative message 163/18.
The front of the shirt will sport a gold eagle over the left chest and the "forged by the sea" logo on the back. The shorts will have a Navy logo on the front left leg and a zipper pocket on the back right side.
New recruits will start getting the new PT uniform at boot camp in the next 12 to 18 months. The existing gold-and-blue PT uniform remains authorized for wear until a phase-out date is announced, the message states.
The Navy is also developing more comfortable black leather safety boots to be worn with working uniforms and coveralls. The boot will include a padded foam collar, a full-length liner made of moisture-wicking fabric, and a slip-resistant sole. It can be worn in hot or cold climates.
The boot is expected to hit some exchanges in Virginia, California, Florida, Japan, Illinois, Rhode Island and Hawaii this October, according to the message.
Effective immediately, sailors will be allowed to sport the Eisenhower jacket that best suits their uniform requirements, regardless of gender. Both styles of jacket, men’s and women’s, will now be designated as unisex and will immediately come in a wider range of sizes to accommodate male and female uniform needs.
"Many women find the lengths available for men's jacket sizes neatly cover the over blouse design," the message states.
Female sailors now immediately have the option of wearing their identification badges on the right side of their uniforms, as long as they're centered a quarter-inch above their name tag. This change is meant to allow for "the greatest visibility of identification badges worn on all female uniforms," according to the message.
Also approved immediately are Defense Contract Management Agency ID badges for any Navy personnel actively assigned to a DCMA billet, and Allied Submarine Command ID badges for sailors currently assigned to Submarine Force Atlantic. Those badges are optional and can be worn only while sailors are in those assignments.
The Navy will continue testing new slacks and skirts for female officers and chief petty officers. Feedback received from wear tests in Washington, D.C., and Rhode Island has been positive, the message states.
Testing to finalize pattern changes, fit and appearance will continue this summer. Improvements include straight-line service skirts and khaki and white service slacks with lower waistlines and reduced rise between the inseam and waist.
"Availability of the improved design skirt and slacks in Navy Exchange Uniform Centers is planned to commence at the end of calendar year 2018," the message states.
Also in the works is an updated Navy uniform mobile application. The expanded app -- which includes uniform illustrations, access to online exchanges and direct communication with "Navy Uniform Matters Ask The Chief" -- is scheduled to be available for download the week of July 23, according to the message.