You’re about to visit a sweltering hot place, so you’re looking for some kind of sun protection.
Sunscreen is not an option, because let’s be honest: That stuff’s smelly and sticky.
Borrowing your wife’s sun hat isn’t an option either, because (1) It’s hers, and (2) It probably has the sort of frills that’d attract the wrong kind of attention.
The good news is, you don’t have to look far to find the best sun hats for men. All you have to do is read our guide on choosing the best sun hats, browse through our recs, and decide which one suits you best.
What to Look for in a Sun Hat for Men
You might be thinking “Duh, that’s what I’m buying a sun hat for!” But we think it’s important to dig a little deeper into how a sun hat can protect you, exactly.
The most obvious consideration is the brim of the hat. The wider the brim, the less likely you’ll burn your head. Seems straightforward, doesn’t it?
Of course, you don’t want a mini-UFO on your head. You also don’t want a brim that’s too small to provide any sort of protection, no matter how stylish the hat looks otherwise.
Many sun hats for men have neck flaps. They protect your nape from the heat, but they’re not exactly the best-looking accessories to wear. Plus, there’s the issue of ventilation (i.e. your nape overheating from getting covered), but we’ll get to that in a bit.
Another thing to look at when considering how much protection a sun hat can provide is the UPF factor. It’s basically like the SPF factor, except for clothes instead of human skin. The highest UPF factor is 50+, so if protection is your priority, look for a sun hat with “50+” on the label.
You know how closed spaces heat up after being under the sun for too long? The same principle works with hats. If your hat doesn’t have any sort of ventilation, you’ll feel your head (and neck, if the hat has a neck flap) heat up from the inside. Obviously, that defeats the purpose of wearing a sun hat in the first place!
Luckily, sun hats with neck flaps usually come with mesh. That way, the heat won’t be trapped inside the hat, and any sweat your body produces will have room to evaporate.
Comfort and Fit
A sun hat for men can have all the protection in the world, but if you’re not comfortable wearing it, you might as well not wear one at all.
Your hat should neither be too tight nor too loose. To get the right hat size for you, wrap a tape measure around the widest part of your head, write down the measurement in inches and centimeters, and match the result to a standard hat size chart. Make sure you’re looking at the right chart: There are separate ones for adults and youths.
Don’t forget the material your sun hat is made of. Does it feel nice around your head, or do you feel like your scalp barely has room to breathe? Does the hat feel like it’s barely there, or does the material scratch and irritate your skin?
Most sun hats aren’t designed for durability, but they should at least emerge unscathed from being crammed into your backpack, or getting blown away by the wind. If the material looks like it’s going to tear if you so much as pull at it, it’s probably not the best sun hat for men you’re looking for.
You’ll notice that “style” is at the bottom of our list. That’s because, if you have to choose between utility and beauty, we’d generally recommend the former.
That said, if you don’t want to look like a discount sheikh, there are sun hats for men that look great while still offering the protection you need. Granted, they’re a bit pricier than most, but hey: Better that than a nasty case of sunburn!
These are the Best 9 Sun Hats for Men:
Don’t worry: If aqua blue isn’t your thing, this hat also comes in more masculine colors like army green, khaki, light gray and navy blue.
Colors aside, this one has just about everything you need in a sun hat. Brim that’s wide enough to shade your face? Check. Neck flap to protect your nape? Check. Mesh above the neck flap to aid ventilation? Check. A UPF factor of 50+? Check
- Provides all-around protection without sacrificing comfort
- Some of the available colors may not be for men
Despite its name, JFH’s outdoor safari hat isn’t just for safaris. Depending on the design you choose (and there are 24 of them), you can wear this hat at a backyard BBQ and not look out of place at all.
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Compared to the last item on our list, this one’s made of tougher material. There’s a mesh wrapped around the crown, which makes it a one-size-fits-all hat, and provides ventilation to boot.
- Might be challenging to wash
Now, this one gives a whole new meaning to “all-around protection.” Aside from your head and nape, DDYOUTDOOR’s fishing cap also protects your face. The neck flap is detachable, so you can wear it like a traditional brim hat, like a fishing cap, or like someone who’s going on an undercover mission in the forest. If you have a lady in the family who’s into fishing, there’s a rose red version of this cap as well.
- Protects your face, as well as your head and neck
- Might not be suitable for small heads
EINSKEY’s sun hat for men and women is as traditional as it can get. It doesn’t have any neck or face flaps: Just a wide brim and an adjustable drawstring. Since it comes in neutral colors — dark gray, khaki, light gray and navy blue — it’s suitable for both sexes. The mesh is located on both sides of the crown, ensuring that you stay ventilated without trading off protection.
- Simple design makes it suitable for everyday use
- Lacks the additional protection provided by neck flaps
What if there are days you need a hat, but not a hat’s brim? That must’ve been the thought process of whoever created this one. If, for whatever reason, you don’t need the brim, simply fasten the brim’s sides to their corresponding buttons on the crown. The hat comes in army green, black, coffee brown, grey and khaki — colors that make it easy to pair this hat with almost any outfit.
- Simple yet elegant design
- Brim is too short, even when fully extended
Don’t let its simple looks fool you. Although it looks like a run-of-the-mill fishing hat, Home Prefer’s sun hat for men comes with UPF 50+ rating. As we’ve explained earlier, 50+ is the highest possible rating for a hat that’s able to protect against UV rays.
The hat has two drawstrings — one at the back of the crown, the other around the chin area — which means this one can go with almost any head size. Also, you can choose from 15 colors, including army green, black, dark gray and navy blue.
- High UPF factor
- Design may be too basic for some people
If it’s not too hot outside, a simple baseball cap might suffice. Then again, why go for just any baseball cap, when you can cap it off (excuse the pun) with UPF 50+ protection?
Being the simplest hat on this list by far, it’s also the easiest to clean. And if a black or gray cap is too drab for you, you can always go for one that’s light blue, khaki, or (if you’re adventurous enough) two shades of purple.
- Low maintenance
- May not provide enough protection for more extreme weather conditions
Like the first item on our list, this one has UPF 50+ protection, a neck flap, a wide brim, and an adjustable chin strap. Unlike the first item on our list, the mesh on this one covers more of the crown, and the neck flap can be detached if you want a simple hat instead. It also comes in fewer colors: army green, black, dark gray, khaki, light gray, navy blue, purple and rose red.
- Detachable neck flap makes for a versatile hat
- Comes in fewer colors
You don’t have to be an Aussie to pull off an Aussie hat. Whether you’re going to the Land Down Under or not, this hat is stylish enough to pair with any casual outfit. At the same time, it’s wide-brimmed enough to shade your face on hot days. It’s about as basic a sun hat as you can get, though, so don’t expect any added protection to your face and neck.
- Simple yet elegant design
- No extra protection for the face and neck
A sun hat isn’t just a fashion statement. It’s also a way to let you enjoy the outdoors even when the heat gets unbearable. As long as you know how to choose the right sun hat for you, you can have a hat that not only lowers your risk of sunburns, but also adds pizzazz to your overall getup.Best 9 Sun Hats for Men Click To Tweet
What’s your experience with sun hats? Do they help with the hot days, or do good old-fashioned hats work just as well? Let us know in the comments — and maybe drop some recs on sun hats for men while you’re at it!