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When miles away from a first aid kit, your jammies will do
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Somebody is injured and there is no hospital, drugstore, or first aid kit in sight. This leaves only one option, someone is going to have to tear off a piece of their clothing to make a bandage or sling to help patch up that wound.

This is an action that, though seemingly a simple display of kindness, can say many things about the characters involved. If a character rips their clothes without hesitation, they're probably either a battle or survival pragmatist and if they do hesitate they could be a tiny bit vain or at least image-conscious. Or if said clothes were expensive and/or new, they are more mindful of the money they're wasting than the needs of others.

It also can be used to send romantic signals about the characters involved. It is not uncommon for the person ripping the clothes to be a girl and the injured party to be a guy she likes. The fact that it's usually a woman doing this can be seen as a form of mild titillation if played for fanservice.

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A subtrope of Clothing Damage. See also After-Action Patch-Up and Action Dress Rip.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • In one of the Anpanman theatrical shorts, Umeko-chan rips off part of the bottom of her kimono to wrap up Komusubiman's damaged foot (which he hurt by skidding down a mountainside, which snapped his sandal in two and rubbed a hole in his sock, which rubbed his heel raw). What makes it kinder was the fact that he hurt himself saving Umeko-chan.
  • In Attack on Titan, Christa rips apart her skirt to make a bandage and sling for an injured comrade. She apologizes for not having anything better to use, prompting him to blush and insist it's fine.
  • In Axis Powers Hetalia, Prussia does this for a wounded Hungary.
  • Berserk: When she catches up to Guts outside Promrose Hall, where he was looking for Griffith, Casca notices his arm is wounded and borrows his dagger so she can cut a bandage out of her sleeve. Casca had acted very hostile toward Guts up to this point, making this the first indication that she's kinder than she lets on. For extra symbolism, she ties it around his upper arm, where a knight would traditionally display his lady's favor.
  • In A Certain Magical Index, Awaki tears her jacket apart to bandage her wounds from her fight with Kuroko.
  • In the second part of the Fushigi Yuugi manga, Miaka uses her shirt as a tourniquet/bandage on Tasuki.
  • In Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, Relena rips off a piece of her expensive party dress to use on Heero's gunshot wounds.
  • In Saint Seiya, a flashback shows a young Seiya chasing a rabbit to a training field for female saints. He's seen by Shaina, who is about to attack him, but then he notices she has a wound in her arm, and he rips off a piece of his shirt to bandage it. This is later revealed to be the reason why she's so bent on killing him because that meeting caused her to fall in love with him for his kindness.
  • Sailor Moon: In the instance that provides our page image, Naru does this with her pajamas to make a bandage for Nephrite when they are hiding from Zoisite in a park after his attack. She hangs onto said bandage as a token to remember him by after he dies and eventually uses it on a wound Umino gets whilst trying to defend her to show she's moved on emotionally from Nephrite's death.
  • One story in the Tenchi Muyo! manga series has Sasami tear up a handkerchief to help make a splint for an injured wolf.

    Comic Books 
  • Red Robin: When attacked by the Widower Tim uses part of his cape to bandage his abdominal wound and to help bandage Pru's neck since the first aid kit packed in his Utility Belt only goes so far and they both have serious injuries.
  • Suicide Squad: During "The Janus Directive" crossover, a disguised Manhunter (who is Dressing as the Enemy) is almost garroted by Raven. Having cut his hand blocking the garrotte, he pulls off Captain Boomerang's scarf and uses it to bandage his hand. When Boomerang complains and claims the scarf is genuine silk, Manhunter responds "It's genuine rayon and I'll buy you another one!"
  • Wonder Woman (1987): When Hippolyta cuts off one of Darkseid's brainwashed minion's arms Donna reacts by quickly removing her own shirt to use as a tourniquet while yelling at her mother for the level of violence she's using against people who are not acting under their own will.

    Fan Works 
  • To break an enchantment they encounter in All That Glitters, Anna and Hans need to exchange blood. Hans then cuts strips of cloth from his shirt to wrap their wounds.
  • In The Broken Boy Hermione uses part of her robe to make a splint for Draco's injured ankle.
  • Couturiere has Marinette take the sleeve off her jacket so she can wrap up Chat's leg, dressing some of the wounds she inflicted while akumatized.
  • Emergency! :
    • In ''One Dark and Stormy Night", Johnny and Dixie are kidnapped after a Halloween event and Johnny is badly beaten. Dixie tears strips from her costume dress to bandage him.
    • Captain Stanley uses his flannel shirt to make bandages for Mike Stoker in ''I Will Carry You" and ends up hypothermic from it.
  • Maddie rips the sleeves of her dress in Home with the Fairies, chapter 5 "Up and Out", to make pads to soak the blood from her own period. In this Deconstruction Fic, ripping her dress was not trivial. "I had to use my teeth and rocks, and got some rug burns on my hands from all the pulling."
  • Hope for the Heartless: Avalina first uses the unconscious Horned King's shredded robe to bandage his body that was savaged during his fight against the entire Mad Pack. Later she uses the fabric from her own skirt and cloak to do the same to Taran's side and dislocated shoulder following the No-Holds-Barred Beatdown he received.
  • In It's Not Over Hermione uses her dress and Draco's cloak to make bandages for themselves after fighting Death Eaters.
  • In My Godfather Harry uses part of his robe to bandage Ron's badly broken leg.
  • Early in Pokémon Reset Bloodlines, Misty sees Ash being attacked by a flock of Spearow and Fearow. After he successfully fends them off using Counter , he collapses from exhaustion, and she uses an old shirt to bandage his wounds.
  • In the AdamTwelve fic "Thunder Rolls Again",Sgt. MacDonald uses his uniform shirt to tie off Pete's bleeding leg after Pete is shot.
  • In The Videus Charm, Harriet uses the sleeves of her robe to bandage her injured arm.
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    Films — Animation 
  • The Swan Princess: Odette rips some fabric off her skirt to patch up Puffin's wing after removing the arrow that had been shot through it.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In День Д (D-Day, the Russian remake of Commando) our hero takes off his shirt to bandage a leg wound and provide the requisite manly fanservice. Meanwhile his Arch-Enemy is ripping off his own shirt for no reason at all, before taking on the hero in hand-to-hand combat.
  • In the early Michael J. Fox movie Doc Hollywood, he momentarily agonizes over having to rip up some Armani shirts in order to treat a woman who's gone into sudden labor.
  • Dr. No: Bond has to do this so he doesn't touch the suddenly very hot floor during his water-pipe escape.
  • When Joe cuts his hand attempting to play Grievous Bottley Harm in Fear, Inc., Lindsey tears the bottom off her tank top and uses it to bind his hand.
  • In Hannie Caulder, Emmett rips up his last clean shirt and uses it to bandage his brother Frank's leg after Frank is shot escaping the Federales.
  • Parodied in Hot Shots! Part Deux, Ramada rips off a part of her (already scant) clothing to bandage Topper's flesh wound, at which point their compatriots present their little scratches in hopes she'll tear off more of her shirt.
  • In House of Wax (2005), Carly tears strips off the top she is wearing to bandage her mutilated finger.
  • In Jurassic City, after Stephanie gets injured, Pippi and Sarah use their coats to tend her wound and Doyle gives them his uniform to them to tend her wound.
  • In the film of The Manchurian Candidate protagonist Raymond Shaw is bitten by a snake and childhood sweetheart Jocelyn Jordan rips off her blouse to make a tourniquet before dashing off bra-clad on her bicycle to get help. Totally innocent, but love blossoms. Then it gets complicated.
  • Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears: After Wilson is shot, Phryne pulls a shirt out of his pack and presses it down on the wound in an effort to staunch the bleeding.
  • Primal: After being shot in the leg, Frank tears a strip off his shirt and uses it to bind his thigh.
  • Revenge (2017): After being shot in the shoulder by Jen, Stan uses his sock as a tourniquet to staunch the bleeding.
  • Janet rips her slip to make a bandage for Rocky in The Rocky Horror Picture Show just before the "Toucha Toucha Toucha Touch Me" number.
  • In San Andreas, Blake uses her white tank top to bandage Ben Taylor's leg after he gets an open wound.
  • In The Shallows, Nancy is forced to use her wetsuit to cover her injured leg.
  • Happens in Short Circuit 2 when Johnny is mortally wounded by Oscar and his mooks and rapidly leaking battery acid. Fred tears off part of the very expensive shirt he's taken pride in throughout the movie to bandage Johnny and try and slow his "bleeding".
  • In Slashers, Megan tears up Matthew's shirt and uses the strips to bandage Brenda's face and Rick's hand.
  • A Mormon missionary in States of Grace rips up his iconic white shirt to help a gang member who was shot in front of him.
  • In the 2013 horror movie Tasmanian Devils Alex takes off her shirt and puts it around the ribcage of Anderson.
  • Theatre of Death: After having his palm sliced by the killer, Charles hurriedly wraps his handkerchief around his hand as a makeshift bandage.
  • In Three Headed Shark Attack, both Maggie and Allison use their shirts to bandage some of the injured passengers.
  • In Timber Falls: Mike gets a stick stuck in his arm when he falls while chasing after Sheryl. He yanks it out and uses his bandana as a bandage.
  • In The Tunnel Natasha Warner takes off her shirt and uses it to bandage one of the guys that are with her.
  • The Uncanny: While trapped in the kitchen by the cats, Janet tears up her petticoat and uses it to bind the worst of her wounds.
  • XX: When Jess falls off a cliff and breaks her leg In "Don't Fall", she rips up her top and turns it into a tourniquet.

    Gamebooks 
  • Lone Wolf: On their (possibly second) meeting in Book 5, Shadow on the Sand, Lone Wolf witnesses wizard Banedon being attacked by a Drakkar warrior which he has to kill. He then tends to Banedon's wound with strips of the wizard's journeymaster robes.

    Literature 
  • In John Green's novel An Abundance of Katherines, Colin, the protagonist, receives a head wound, and Lindsey, a girl he met an hour ago, orders Colin's friend Hassan to take off his (Hassan's) shirt. When Hassan refuses (so that Lindsey won't see his man boobs), Lindsey whips off her own shirt to staunch Colin's bleeding.
  • Animorphs:
    • Rachel does this in one book, tearing a strip off her own leotard to bandage Tobias's wounds. Justified in that they've been thrown back in time 65 million years; she literally has nothing else to use that she knows isn't poisonous.
    • In the first book, Cassie suggests using Jake's shirt as a bandage for Elfangor, but the latter says that he's too injured and it wouldn't help.
  • Happens so often in the Chronicles Of Ancient Darkness series that you can start to wonder how long Torak's clothes were originally, if he's not naked by the end of the book.
  • Olivia Koudelka rips up her party dress to bandage Dono Vorrutyer after some thugs nearly castrate him in A Civil Campaign. This is the moment Ivan, hovering nearby, realizes that he doesn't have a chance with Olivia.
  • Dragaera series:
    • In Orca, Vlad has to bandage his Shoulder-Sized Dragon familiar's injuries with strips torn from his cloak. As one of the wounds he's tending is on Loiosh's long snaky neck, and must be covered loosely enough to allow breathing yet heavy enough to stop the bleeding, it's a good thing it's a long cloak.
    • In The Lord of Castle Black, Ibronka cuts strips out of her own cloak as bandages for Roaana after the latter is wounded in battle. It's used as a sign of their friendship and also to show the mindset of Dragaeran nobles; Ibronka's servant suggests using the cloak of one of the men they had fought and is promptly rebuked for it.
  • In Dragon Bones, Oreg's shirt is at one point used to bandage Ward's wounds.
  • In the second Dragonriders of Pern novel, F'lar and Lessa are wearing new outfits to a wedding. F'lar ends up in a duel with T'ron, during which he gets his suit cut up, and Lessa has to rip up her dress to make bandages.
  • Hawksmaid: When Matty finds the injured merlin Marigold, she tears up her underskirt and uses the strips to bind up the falcon.
  • In Hogfather, Susan does this to patch up the Hogfather's wounds after she saves him from being killed Deader Than Dead by the Auditors.
  • Joe Pickett: In Free Fire, Joe tears strips of his shirt and uses them to bandage the mangled hand of a survivalist while they wait for the medivac chopper to arrive.
  • In the 1924 novel Jungle-Born by John Eyton a village girl who's run away from her abusive father finds the Wild Child protagonist unconscious and badly injured from a tiger attack. To save him she strips off her one and only garment and tears it into strips to wash and bandage his wounds. The fact that this means they're now both naked probably isn't insignificant.
  • In the Mahabharata, Princess Draupadi once tore off a piece of her sari to fix a cut on Krishna's finger in this manner. Later, when she prays to him for help when her own brothers-in-law are trying to rape her in front of their court, he returns the favor by extending her sari so that the Kauravas can't strip her and eventually give up.
  • Discussed in the Modesty Blaise novel The Night of Morningstar. Modesty is attacked and injured while out on the town with her friends Dinah and Stephen. While trying to improvise a dressing for the injury, Stephen remarks that in films this is the point where one of the women present would start tearing strips off her petticoat, and jokes that it was careless of Modesty and Dinah to not have brought a petticoat with them. They make do with Stephen's handkerchief tied in place with Modesty's nylons.
  • After James Bond's hands are cut from barbed wire in No Deals, Mr. Bond, one of the agents he is rescuing rips pieces from her skirt to apply bandages to them.
  • In the Temeraire series, neckcloths are used for field dressing more often than not.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Angel. After bandaging Wesley when he gets an Impaled Palm from a Booby Trapped door, Cordelia points out that she doesn't have enough shirt for the rest of them.
  • ANZAC Girls: Matron Grace Wilson, faced with a catastrophic lack of supplies at the fledgling field hospital on Lemnos, gets her nurses to tear their white petticoats (including hers) into strips for bandages — but she makes sure those strips get sterilized before they're used.
  • Brennan grabs Sweets’s shirt in Bones to stop the bleeding when a guy gets shot during an undercover plot at a death metal concert. The scene is used for additional drama as well due to Brennan seeing Sweets’ scar-covered back and realizing he’d been abused as a child.
  • CSI: Cyber: In "Red Crone," a boy who cut his hand to offer blood to the Red Crone as part of the treasure hunt uses the bottom of his shirt to bind up his hand.
  • CSI: Miami: In "Hunting Ground", the Body of the Week is found nailed to a tree by an arrow, with a makeshift tourniquet made from his pants leg wrapped around his arm.
  • CSI: NY: Various detectives tear off parts of their shirts to bandage victims from time to time. Also:
    • In "What You See Is What You See," Mac uses his jacket to stem the flow of blood from the waitress' gunshot wound.
    • In "Charge of This Post," he borrows a shoestring from a bystander to bind a profusely bleeding artery in Flack's gut until the paramedics can arrive. Then he tears strips from his own shirt to stuff in the gaping wound to staunch additional bleeding.
  • In the final season of Downton Abbey, Thomas slits his wrists in the bathtub. After his friends break down the door and find him unconscious, Miss Baxter rips temporary bandages out of her petticoat while waiting for the doctor.
  • There was an episode of The Flying Nun where Sister Bertrille tore her habit to make a bandage.
  • An episode of Gunsmoke had Kitty shred up her petticoat to make bandages for an ailing Matt.
  • Star Trek, particularly Deep Space Nine, did this several times: the characters would find themselves without their advanced medical technology, so they (usually Bashir) would rip up their uniforms to make bandages.
  • Survivorman Les Stroud has done this after injuring himself in the wild.
  • The Swamp Fox has an episode where Mary Videaux boarded a British prison ship by pretending to be a Tory. She begins nursing the American soldiers, hoping to find a way to sneak them off to supplement Marion's dwindling brigade. She ends up turning the party dress she'd been wearing the night before into bandages for the guys' wounds.
  • In Untold Stories of the E.R., Dra. Candice Myhre takes her shirt off and uses it as a bandage for a guy who received a huge cut in his leg on the beach.
  • In Upstairs Downstairs (2010) Lady Agnes Holland uses an expensive-looking blouse to stem the blood flow of Beryl, after Lady Persephone shoots her and then kills herself, she even tells the staff to ignore Lady "Persie" who is already dead.

    Video Games 
  • In Bioshock Infinite, if you fail to spot the Founders' ambush in the airship station and end up stabbed with the letter-opener, Elizabeth uses her scarf to dress the injury. The scarf remains in place for the remainder of the game.
  • In the alternate fourth stage of Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, Richter and Maria can rescue Iris, a villager whose father is a doctor. Before they leave, Iris notices an injury they have on their arms and rips off her left sleeve to act as a bandage (as shown in the PC-Engine version), and even replenishes your health after the scene ends. She even brings up facts about infection and the like if the wound is left untreated in the PSP remake. Like father, like daughter.
  • In the final mission of Mass Effect 3, you can overhear a soldier trying to instruct a girl over the radio to make a tourniquet from her clothing to save another soldier whose leg had been blown off. The tourniquet doesn't work, and the soldier dies. Hearing enemies approaching, and knowing the practices of the enemy, the girl decides to use the soldier's gun to kill herself.
  • In Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, the Prince tears off one of his sleeves to bandage his own arm. (Later he tears off his other sleeve and the rest of his shirt just for the hell of it.)

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • STO Forum: Versus thread (rp): After Kang is stabbed in the shoulder by a Hirogen, Kanril Eleya tears a strip off Kang's Honor Guard cape to make a sling.

    Western Animation 
  • Used for humorous Fanservice in the Archer episode "Space Race Part 2". While being held hostage on a space station, Lana Kane opens her jumpsuit and removes her tank top to distract the guard so she and the rest of the ISIS hostages can overpower him. In an offscreen fight, Lanas jumpsuit is destroyed and Archer is shot in the arm. Left wearing only panties, Lana reaches for her tank top just as Archer is wrapping it on his arm as a bandage. This leaves Lana with nothing but space agency decals to cover her nipples with.
  • The Gargoyles episode The Journey had Elisa rip a strip from her dress to tend to Goliath's injured wing after he was shot by the Quarrymen.
  • Gravity Falls: In "Into the Bunker", Wendy wraps her wounds in a strip of cloth from her flannel shirt after a fight with the Monster of the Week.
  • Not clothing, but thematically similar, in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Rarity cuts off her tail to fix the mustache of a prissy sea-serpent who is suffering a Minor Injury Overreaction. It's done specifically to highlight how her generous nature outweighs her fashionista personality to set her up as the wielder of the Element of Generosity.

    Real Life 
  • In the case of Real Life occurrences, in the past it happened on the battlefield before medical personnel were deployed, and it can still happen now. Also in the areas after any disaster where you cannot locate a First Aid kit, where clothes will be used as makeshift bandages. Using things like belts and ties as makeshift slings is a common bit of advice in first-aid manuals as well.
    • A word of advice: Never use shoelaces as ties to hold dressings in place. Due to being so narrow, they can turn into an unwanted tourniquet and cut off circulation (normally a last resort for treating blood loss, as it can result in the loss of the limb). This last part only applies when the body part that's bleeding is still otherwise intact. If part of a limb has been completely severed off, a tourniquet is actually the first thing you should do.
  • Reader's Digest wrote about one of those incredible true stories of the one-hundred-pound girl dragging her six-foot injured boyfriend down a mountain. She stripped off her jacket to wrap a gash on her leg, her bikini top for his head wound, and said that "If the bottom half [of the bikini] had to come off too, it would have." Props, lady.

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