I hate the sun. What type of hat should I get?
May 10, 2015 2:19 PM   Subscribe

I hate the feeling of the hot summer sun on my skin. What type of hat should I get to keep the sun off of me? I am an early 30s male living in Philadelphia. My style is pretty casual and I likely being wearing jeans and a t-shirt in the situations where I would wear this hypothetical hat I don't need to look cool in the hat, but I'd strongly prefer to not look goofy in it. I'd prefer to spend less than $100 but I am flexible on that.
posted by nolnacs to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (16 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Baseball cap is the typical non-goofy hat for 30s males. You could also do a bucket hat or fedora or a lot of other options, but all of those, in my opinion, have an element of goofiness that a baseball cap lacks.
posted by amro at 2:26 PM on May 10, 2015 [3 favorites]

I've been very happy wearing a Tilley hat - a T3 or TH4 Hemp. I got it to keep the sun off but it's also very good in rain. It keeps the sun off my neck.

All hats make everyone look goofy if you worry too much about looking goofy.
posted by BinaryApe at 2:34 PM on May 10, 2015 [6 favorites]

Start looking at straw panamas or fedoras, like these. They make a lot of these types for guys to play golf in the sun, so you can google terms like "straw golf hat." Yes, there's an element of goofiness or fuddy-duddyness to wide-brimmed hats, but they do keep the sun off you. A baseball cap won't protect the back of your neck.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:35 PM on May 10, 2015

Goofy is a matter of taste (which I can't say I've figured out myself), but it's definitely worth a trip to Goorin Bros. on Walnut.
posted by zachxman at 2:41 PM on May 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

A baseball cap won't shade your ears or the back of your neck. I have a Tilley LTM2, their broadest brim. It works really well and is machine-washable. I have received compliments on its look from strangers.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 3:03 PM on May 10, 2015 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I'm a mid-30s guy, and picked up a straw Panama hat at Goorin Bros. a couple years ago, and it works great. I don't worry too much about how I look - first, because I doubt anyone else cares, and second, because looking good comes second to not feeling like I'm about to get heat stroke.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 3:05 PM on May 10, 2015 [2 favorites]

Bucket hats are never going to look stylish, but they look non-silly if you get one that fits your head, in a neutral color (drab green, khaki) rather in white or with brightly-colored logos on it. No strings! Some people like exposed seams for a bit more relaxed style. They sorta fade into the background with jeans and T-shirts, and you can usually pick them up for $5 or $10 so you have one in your car or stuffed in your pocket or whatever and you don't worry too much about them getting wet or dirty or blowing off.

Sporting goods stores geared towards hunters always have a good selection; also try garden centers and birdwatching stores.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:08 PM on May 10, 2015

With much the same desires (but I also hate the autumn, winter, and spring sun) I recently found the hat that works for me (after years of random baseball-type caps).

The Australian Bush Hat.

It comes in prices from $10US to as-much-as-you-want, and a variety of colors and styles. I wear a drab green cloth number from the Bronx Zoo souvenier store ($28, same style about half that on amazon). There is a snap to fold up half the brim, so you can look full-goofy (unsnapped) or I-am-so-cool-goofy (snapped). As noted above, with hats, non-goofy really isn't an option.

The hats also have a tie that you can put under your chin if it is windy, or just let dangle out the back if it is calm.

Some of the hats (especially the ones for sale in the summer) have mesh in them. Solid ones are effective rain hats, so do not be fooled.
posted by hexatron at 4:31 PM on May 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

I also have a Tilley, and it's the only hat that's worked long-term for me. For one, it's designed to fit a little loose, and has a strap to hold it on in the wind, which does look goofy I'm sure, but it's so comfortable I don't care. Also, they come in huge sizes, which I need for my huge noggin. They're also incredibly well-made... it seems like it'll last forever. Expensive, yes, but totally worth it IMO.
posted by Huck500 at 5:05 PM on May 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

I really like my Dorfman Pacific safari hats. Wide enough to keep the sun off, but not floppy. There are better-made hats, but these are inexpensive enough to take off and hand to your friend when he says he likes it.
posted by bullatony at 5:06 PM on May 10, 2015

REI has a mess of good mens' sun hats; I'd go there and poke about.
posted by sebastienbailard at 5:24 PM on May 10, 2015

The secret to wearing a hat and not looking goofy is to wear it with confidence.

Like most sailors, I wear a hat out on the water. Golfers wear hats. Cowboys wear hats. Campers wear hats.
posted by SemiSalt at 5:57 PM on May 10, 2015

Response by poster: Thanks for all the suggestions. I think I will go check out Goorin Brothers tomorrow evening to try on some different styles.
posted by nolnacs at 6:08 PM on May 10, 2015

I've been wearing a Tilley for years.... well worth the money...
posted by HuronBob at 6:58 PM on May 10, 2015

I recently had to move from rainy Juneau, AK to the-sun-wants-to-kill-you San Diego, CA. Pretty much everybody who has to work outside seems to wear what I guess is called a lifeguard hat. I have also purchased the standard SoCal hat as I am a pale mother fucker who will surely die of skin cancer if I don't.
posted by Foam Pants at 9:24 PM on May 10, 2015

Adam Savage makes fedoras look pretty cool, even in a t-shirt and jeans, so there's that.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 1:07 AM on May 11, 2015

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