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Ukrainian military rolls out first-ever female-specific uniforms

Ukraine’s military has introduced its first-ever combat uniforms made for the tens of thousands of women providing active service as troops expand inclusivity.
First-ever introduced women’s uniform. Photo: Ministry of Defense

For the first time, Ukraine’s Armed Forces have issued summer field uniforms specifically designed to fit the physical parameters of servicewomen, the Defense Ministry of Ukraine announced on 1 February.

An initial 50,000 sets of the new women’s lightweight camouflage uniforms, featuring ergonomic designs for enhanced comfort in combat zones, have been issued. The uniforms are available in sizes for heights ranging from 146 to 188 cm.

Co-developed by the military’s R&D section alongside NGOs and domestic manufacturers, the clothing was trialed by units including women volunteers.

Deputy Defense Minister Natalia Kalmykova stated:

“Many people worked on designing and introducing uniforms for women. After all, dozens of thousands of women are now serving in Ukraine’s army.”

With around 5,000 women currently deployed in frontline roles and more signing up voluntarily, “our task is to create decent conditions for their service,” Kalmykova stated.

The MoD ordered 65,000 sets of women’s summer uniforms and 100,000 sets of women’s underwear in 2024. Tenders for these items were announced in January 2024.

Efforts around implementing women’s combat uniforms began in 2022 at the direction of the defense minister and the initiative of civil society groups. After approving the camouflage design in August 2023, Ukraine’s military tested two types of female-adapted body armor on exercises to simulate real combat conditions before fielding them along with the new battle dress this winter.

As of last fall, Ukraine’s estimated 42,000 female soldiers had no uniforms of their own, having to adapt to men’s uniforms.

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