The Ultimate Guide To Men’s Hats

As a men’s hat, the flat cap is quite old. It was first used in 1571 following an effort by the English government to empower the wool trade. A law was even passed by parliament which made it mandatory to wear it on Sundays.

15 Types of Hats For Men: Hat Styles To Enhance Your Outfits

Types of Hats For Men

  • Chris Dek
  • April 7, 2023

When it comes to improving an outfit, making a statement or showcasing your confidence to the world, the hat can be a useful, unique and bold accessory. From old detective movies to modern casual dress, men’s hats have evolved and changed with time, but always remained a staple of the masculine wardrobe. Fashionable, functional or somewhere in between, these men’s hat styles will enhance your outfit and take your look to the next level. If you’re shopping around, you may need different types to suit specific looks, occasions and scenarios, making it hard to choose the right one.

From classic to modern choices, here are some of the best men’s hat styles to know about for a stylish look.

Men

  • 1 Types of Hats For Men
    • 1.1 Fedora
    • 1.2 Trilby
    • 1.3 Panama Hat
    • 1.4 Bowler Hat
    • 1.5 Snapback Cap
    • 1.6 Dad Hat
    • 1.7 Newsboy
    • 1.8 Flat Cap
    • 1.9 Beanie
    • 1.10 Bucket Hat
    • 1.11 Baseball Cap
    • 1.12 Trapper Hat
    • 1.13 Boater
    • 1.14 Pork Pie
    • 1.15 Top Hat

    Types of Hats For Men

    Fedora

    The fedora is the iconic accessory of classic film noir Hollywood, and it’s not difficult to see why. Made of cashmere or wool, or occasionally animal felt, the fedora is the look of the leading man. Wear it with confidence, but allow the style to speak for itself, and consider maintaining a more neutral tone when determining the right fedora for you. It’s a hat with history that always makes a statement.

    Fedora

    Trilby

    The trilby may have a lot in common with the fedora and is often mistaken for the same style, but the trilby is more about fashion than function, hence its popularity among boy band performers in the early 2000s. The trilby was historically known as the hat worn by rich men and was often seen at horse races and other luxury events. If you do wear yours to the races, bring your sunglasses. Trilbies are lightweight and comfortable in warm months, but are traditionally worn back on the head and won’t provide much protection against the elements.

    Trilby

    Panama Hat

    If you’re searching for an effortlessly sexy look, the Panama hat might just fit your needs. A Panama evokes beachside escapes, romantic seaside adventures, and classic masculine confidence that people around you are sure to notice. The Panama hat is perfect for the hot weather in Miami and other tropical places, as it is traditionally made with plaited leaves from what is locally known in Ecuador as the toquilla palm plant. It owes much of its popularity to President Theodore Roosevelt and his work on the Panama Canal. Breathable, lightweight and versatile, Panama hates best match light summer fashions including white linen shirts and comfortable pants.

    Panama Hat

    Bowler Hat

    Take your look to the next level with a vintage-inspired bowler hat. Also known as the derby hat, the bowler dates back to 19th-century England and the London hatmakers Thomas and William Bowler. While it was historically worn by both middle and upper classes and as both semi-formal and informal attire accessories, bowler hats tend to add an upscale aesthetic to an outfit. Consider pairing yours with a classic waistcoat or other timeless pieces.

    Bowler Hat

    Snapback Cap

    When it comes to trendy and bold, there’s nothing like a ’90s-inspired snapback to add something special to your look. Snapbacks have a flat, wide brim, and a more structured design than some of the other ball caps on the list. This makes the snapback great for both formal outfits in need of a fresh accessory and more laid-back styles you’re looking to complete. The style dates back to the baseball team the Brooklyn Excelsiors, who introduced this iconic look in the 1850s.

    Snapback Cap

    Dad Hat

    Along with chunky white trainers, fanny packs, and whitewash denim, dad hats have made a comeback as accessories that are considered truly fashionable. They’re comfortable and breathable, thanks to the traditionally cotton fabric, which makes them a great option for casual outings and summer events. If you’re looking to add a little vintage to your look, the dad hat is the way to go.

    Dad Hat

    Newsboy

    When you want to capture that sleek British style, the newsboy hat more than does the trick. While the general shape and the front visor (known as a stiff peak) are similar to the newsboy hat’s cousin, the flat cap, the newsboy hat is rounder and fuller and known for its top button. It is traditionally a style of the wealthy, although the newsboy cap can be seen in rebel fashions looking to chic up edgy styles.

    Newsboy Hat

    Flat Cap

    If the newsboy hat is classically British aristocrat, the flat cap speaks to the farmers and chimney sweeps of old. Designed for real use rather than fashion, these old-school caps it is usually crafted of wool or tweed and lined on the inside, which helps to keep its wearer warm and comfortable, and protected from the elements. In the modern-day, this clean-cut accessory can add something special to an upscale casual look.

    Flat Cap

    Beanie

    The beanie may have started out as a surefire way to stay warm in the winter, but this timeless hat has become essential for any modern man’s wardrobe. It blends seamlessly into nearly any outfit, from the functional outdoorsman look to the city hipster, and can be used in fall, winter or spring to maximum effect. If you’re looking to get the most out of your beanie, consider neutral colors and an all-seasonal thinner material, or just invest in a few different kinds.

    Beanie

    Bucket Hat

    There’s no ‘90s throwback look more iconic than the bucket hat. Once used by fishermen to protect against the rain, the bucket hat became a staple of ‘90s street style and subcultures like skateboarders and fans of hip hop and other musical genres. Now is the perfect time for a bucket hat revival, so pull out your high tops and try out this cool look for yourself.

    Bucket Hat

    Baseball Cap

    The baseball cap matches just about any outfit. Rep your favorite sports team, street artist, or American landmark, all the while adding a cool look to your casual, outdoor, or even clean-cut style. There are many types of ball caps and cap styles, but the classics are classics for a reason and nothing can replace a comfortable and cool baseball cap.

    Baseball Cap

    Trapper Hat

    The trapper hat is another historical and functional piece that has become a fashionable statement piece for the handsome modern man. In this case, it preserved some of its functionality and is a must-have winter accessory for anyone in cold-weather climes. Tie the fur flaps down to keep your face and neck warm in cold winds, or bend them back for improved visibility and a more stylized look. For the trapper hat, embrace your outdoorsman, with flannels, boots, and all-weather vests.

    Trapper Hat

    Boater

    Make a statement in summer wear with the classic boater look. The boater hat is more European coast than the Panama hat, but because this semi-formal accessory is crafted with stiff straw material, it’s excellent for hot weather and sun protection. They traditionally have a flat top and a wide, flat brim and can be used to make a casual outfit more formal or a formal outfit comfortable and beachy.

    Boater Hat

    Pork Pie

    When you don a pork pie hat, you’ll be joining a fashion trend that has remained strong for centuries in some form or another. Famous actors like Buster Keton wore this classic accessory on the big screen and the pork pie was the first hat worn by women in the mid-1800s. The hat is small and round, and the brim is much narrower and curls up at the edge. Oftentimes, it is adorned with a ribbon or other chic pieces, which gives you the chance to make this look your own.

    Pork Pie Hat

    Top Hat

    Take formal to a whole new level with a modem, refreshing revival of the top hat. The top hat is an iconic piece that has stood as the symbol of luxurious and evening wear for centuries and it’s not difficult to see why. Add something special to your night on the town or at that next formal event by finding the right modern top hat aesthetic for the 21st-century man that fits your unique style.

    Top Hat

    Popular Men’s Hat Styles

    The most popular hat styles for men are the baseball cap, fedora, beanie, bowler, flat cap, panama, straw and bucket. With so many cool men’s hats, picking the right style for your outfit can be a challenge. From summer hats that are light and breathable to winter hats that will keep your head warm while looking trendy, the best hats for men are made with high-quality materials and come in stylish designs.

    Best Hats For Men

    If you’re leaning towards more classic styles, the fedora and panama are coming back into fashion as headwear becomes more popular. Brands like Bailey, Goorin, Christys’ London and Barbour make classy hats you can wear for a lifetime.

    For a hipster hat that even celebrities endorse, try the trilby, pork pie, flat cap or beanie. These kinds of hats can be worn with casual and professional outfits for extra flair. When paired well, these fashionable hat styles can elevate your look, but beware that it’s just as easy to create a fashion faux pas.

    Hipster Hat

    The most universal and versatile hat will always be the baseball cap. Cool caps are the ultimate accessory for men who want comfort and style in their active lifestyle. As one of the most popular hats, this type of cap is especially useful when you’re between haircuts and don’t want to style your hair.

    Cool Caps

    Ultimately, the right hat can complement any classy, dressy, casual or random outfit. Fortunately, you can’t go wrong with any of these styles.

    The Ultimate Guide To Men’s Hats

    Men’s hats – while born out of practical necessity, often evolve into fashion statements.

    Hats have performed a multitude of roles for men throughout time, ranging from simply blocking out the sun to acting as sigils of status.

    What about today? How can the right hat serve the right man?

    The Most Powerful Accessory: The Ultimate Guide To Men

    If you’re setting foot into the daunting realm of men’s hats, then you need to know the basics. Gentlemen, that’s why I’ve put this guide together.

    Enter the ultimate guide to men’s hats, RMRS-style
    Overview

    Overview – What is a Hat?

    Before we get down to brass tacks, we need a foundation. So, how do we define a hat?

    Hats are outlined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary with two definitions:

    • A covering for the head usually having a shaped crown and brim.
    • A distinctive head covering worn as a symbol of office.

    The definition gives us two themes: pragmatism and status. It’s not surprising, therefore, that there is such a hybrid approach to the construction of most hats.

    Brimmed hats have a few features in common:

    hat anatomy infographic

    • The crown comprises the top part of the hat. It’s the region that actually sits on your head. The “tip” is its highest point.
    • The pinch refers for any indentations on the crown.
    • Bands are usually strips that are decorative in nature, going around the crown and resting on the brim.
    • A brim, of course, is the hat’s edge. This often protrudes off the sides of the hat and the lower part of the crown. In baseball or flat caps, this is called a bill.
    • Some hats come with interior lining, which comes in various soft fabrics.
    • The sweatband lines the interior of the crown’s base. it helps guarantee a good fit keeps the shape.

    Brief General History

    Men’s hats have a long history. The first brimmed hat is widely believed to be the Ancient Greek Petasos. It was developed in Thessaly, a region in Greece hailed for its formidable horsemen. The Petasos was often made with felt or straw.

    Its utility found itself entering warfare, with the Boeotian helmet sporting a similar brim to offer protection against both the enemy and the sun.

    petasos mens hat

    Fast-forward a few thousand years, and we have a dizzying array of brimmed hats which range from the wide fedoras seen in The Godfather to the baseball caps sported by cheesy middle-aged dads all over the globe.

    Don’t worry, we’ll get to them all…

    1. The Fedora

    Few men’s hats are as iconic as the fedora. It epitomizes the classic man. It didn’t start that way, though…

    The fedora started as a woman’s hat in 1882. It came simultaneously into fame as a play by the same name wherein the main character – a woman named Fedora – wore the hat.

    Though it was an iconic women’s fashion piece for years, that all changed in 1924 when Prince Edward of Britain took a liking to them. At that point, it became a men’s hat. The fedora usurped other forms of headwear.

    The fedora is made traditionally of felt. Its crown features an indentation along the top and on each side of the frontal region. It is circled by a band and has a height of approximately 4.5 inches. The brim boasts a minimum width of 2.5 inches but can be much larger.

    fedora hat for men

    Should You Wear It?

    When it comes to men’s hats, the fedora is synonymous with classic style. If you’re the kind of guy who loves sport coats and blazers, then this may be a winner.

    It works best if you keep your look as classic as possible. This means suits, dress shirts, slacks, dress shoes, etc. This is the paragon hat for the classically-minded man.

    2. The Trilby

    This men’s hat is often confused with a fedora due to the similarity in appearance, but it’s not the same.

    Just like the fedora, however, it has its roots in the theatre in 1894. George du Maurier’s novel, titled Trilby, was eventually adapted into a live performance that featured the hat.

    Over time, it was swiftly adopted by the British aristocracy. It was henceforth made popular among horse racing circles. In England, a trip to the racecourse wouldn’t be complete without a tweed suit and a brown felt trilby.

    The main difference between a trilby and a fedora is the width of the brim, which is often an inch or less.

    trilby men

    Should You Wear It?

    These days, the trilby has somewhat of a controversial rep. It is often associated in tandem with the slovenly “neckbearded” man.

    What’s more, this men’s hat is also not functional. While the fedora shields your eyes from the sun, the trilby’s shortened brim offers no such protection. It’s more of an aesthetic piece.

    Should you wear them? That depends. If you have a medium frame or more, you’d be suited best with a fedora. The brim will only accentuate your width. This hat better compliments the look of a petite man.

    3. The Panama Hat

    Though it also resembles a fedora, one key feature sets it apart: Straw.

    During the 1500s and in the midst of the Spanish conquests, the conquistadors began noticing the elegant headwear sported by the natives of Ecuador. The hats were woven with straw. However, they were so well made that the Spaniards believed the material to be vampire skin.

    The name “Panama Hat” is actually a misnomer derived by travelers to South America. Their first encounters with the straw hat occurred in Panama before they arrived in Ecuador.

    This men’s hat is traditionally made using straw from the toquilla plant, found only in the rainforests of Ecuador. The general rule of thumb for Panama hats is this: the finer the fibers are and the closer they are in color, the higher quality the hat is.

    straw panama hat

    Should You Wear It?

    If you want to make a great statement in the Summer or – better yet – you live in a perpetually hot climate, then the answer is yes.

    As a men’s hat, the Panama not only keeps the sun out but keeps your head from getting too hot underneath. The perforated nature of the weave keeps air passing back and forth.

    If you are wondering “should I shave my balding head?” but are worried about sunburn then this will be your saving grace.

    The Panama melds style and functionality into one powerful tool.

    Also read:

    4. The Porkpie

    This hat made its debut in the 1830s as a women’s hat, but it was adopted by men at the turn of the century.

    It got its name through its appearance. The crown has a circular pinch lining a flat top, which likens to a British meat pie. It also showcases a brim that is angled upwards at the edges.

    The Porkpie was a hit with Buster Keaton, a silent film actor who was said to own thousands of them. It was also popular with college students in the 30s. Though it largely fell out of use in the 50s, it’s still a viable accouterment to any man.

    Most recently, it’s the signature accessory of Walter White, the star character of AMC’s Breaking Bad.

    instagram ig hats 01

    Should You Wear It?

    Since the Porkpie can be made of numerous materials, including felt and straw. If you fall in love with this style, you can acquire a collection to use in all seasons and a myriad of outfits.

    It’s classic, versatile, and stylish.

    5. The Boater Hat

    Though its history goes back as early as the 1860s, the Boater wasn’t worn by men until the 1880s. From then on, it became the formal staple for classic summer wear.

    These men’s hats experienced a golden era in the very early 20th century, where they were used by men in all manner of summer activities.

    It became closely associated with the FBI through agent Melvin Purvis, the man responsible for tracking bank robbers such as John Dillinger and Baby Face Nelson.

    As its summer use implies, it’s made with a straw called sennit. The Boater has a slightly oval and flattened crown and either a solid or striped ribbon that goes around it. The brim, like the top of the crown, is flat.

    Boater Hat 1

    Should You Wear it?

    The Boater is somewhat of a novelty these days, its heyday long since gone. It may teeter on being antiquated, but it is still a perfectly acceptable hat to wear in the summer. In fact, its rarity can even send a stronger message than a Panama hat can.

    6. The Akubra

    The word “Akubra” is allegedly derived from the Aboriginal word for “head coverin g .” It was birthed in Australia by Dunkerly Hat Mills Ltd, established in 1911. Their famous hat was dubbed “Akubra” on August 7th, 1912.

    It’s considered by some to be a cousin of the fedora. It resembles one in many ways; the felt construction, the pinches, the overall shape of the crown and brim. However, the Akubra is a much larger hat, the brim’s width being about 3 inches in width.

    akubra hat men

    Should You Wear It?

    Though over 100 sub-styles of the Akubra exist, they are designed with the rugged outdoorsmen in mind.

    If you happen to be a stylish man who also enjoys trekkin g the outdoors – be it hiking, horse riding, fishing, or braving the Australian outback, then the Akubra is a strong candidate.

    7. The Flat Cap

    As a men’s hat, the flat cap is quite old. It was first used in 1571 following an effort by the English government to empower the wool trade. A law was even passed by parliament which made it mandatory to wear it on Sundays.

    Since the law was only imposed on the working class, the flat became an intrinsic aspect of middle-class style, even when the law was abolished 30 years later.

    instagram ig hats 03

    By the 1920s, it was beloved by rich and poor alike – especially in the British isles, where the Scots still refer to it as a bunnet. After JFK made it fashionable not to wear hats outdoors, however, it fell out of style.

    The flat cap is traditionally made of – you guessed it – wool, though it often includes tweed and cotton. It’s rounded in appearance with a soft, bloated crown. Peaking out from under the crown is a short bill. The hat is adorned with a cloth-covered button on the top.

    Another variant exists with a more voluminous silhouette and 8 panels. The crown is pushed further over the bill. This variant is known by many names such as the Newsboy, Gatsby, Ivy, and Cabbie.

    It’s also the signature look of the Peaky Blinders, who are portrayed in the hit BBC show.

    Should You Wear It?

    The flat cap is becoming more common these days, and it’s a great time to wear it.

    Want to know when to wear it? Think of a baseball cap. The flat cap can be worn in the same contexts and serves as an upgrade to any outfit.

    Slap it on as a finishing touch, and give your outfit the extra edge that it needs.

    8. The Baseball Cap

    Out of all the men’s hats we’ve listed, none are so commonly used and abused like the baseball cap. Born from the 1860s and made from straw, it was first used by the Brooklyn Excelsiors, establishing itself as the hat of the sport.

    By the 1940s, latex rubber was applied to the inside of the cap to give it more structure. At that point, it more closely resembled the hat we know today. Did you know that it wasn’t even socially acceptable to wear a baseball cap outside of the field until the 1970s?

    The hat features a rounded, structured crown often with a button on the very top. Toward the front, there is an elongated bill.

    baseball cap men

    Several sub-styles of the cap have emerged over the years. The trucker hat originated from the 1980s as a promotional giveaway item from farm supply companies. It sports a single foam frontal panel, the rest of the crown perforated. This style is beloved by superstars like Lionel Messi.

    The dad cap holts six panels around the crown, and is said to be named after the baseball cap’s sudden popularity among dads in the 90s.

    Finally, the flat-brimmed cap, or the snapback, is the trendiest of the lot. This one is used often by the younger crowd, and the flat bill is meant to convey a sense of newness.

    Should You Wear it?

    The baseball cap is the most casual hat on our list. True to its athletic routes, it is only meant to be worn in the most laid back of scenarios. Do not take this into the office or a job interview, but enjoy it at the family barbeque.

    In Summary – Men’s Hats

    As you can see, gents, the possibilities out there. Much like watches, hats can be a practical and stylish extension to your personality. You just need to pick your favorite.

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