September 2, 2020

10 Best Sun Hats for Hiking

Scott Kimball

Written by

Scott Kimball


Hiking can be a lot of fun and great exercise, but the excessive rays from the sun during the hotter months often make hikers have to call it a day well before their legs get tired. Thankfully, the market has responded by creating a seemingly infinite array of sun hats to help protect hikers against both the heat and the damaging UV rays of the sun. However, this bounty of hats also oftentimes makes it hard to choose the right one, leading many hikers to wonder what the best sun hats on the market really are.

Sun hats can provide varying degrees of protection from the sun, and may even provide protection from other things, such as mosquitoes. As well, they may be made with different types of fabrics, some of which are a good deal more comfortable and breathable than others. The more protection and comfort the sun hat offers the hiker, the more expensive the hat is likely to be.

For those hikers who are wondering how to go about choosing the best sun hat for them, we've assembled a list of what we believe to be the 10 best sun hats for hiking currently available, with links to listings on Amazon. This list encompasses a wide variety of styles and price points, allowing hikers of all different needs to find the perfect option for them. Whether you're going out in an incredibly hot climate with a lot of pests or simply going for a light stroll out around the neighborhood during the summer, hikers of all shapes and sizes should find a sun hat on this list that's right for them.

10 Best Sun Hats for Hiking | Today I'm Outside

Table of Contents:

The 10 Best Sun Hats for Hiking

Connectyle Outdoor Mesh Sun Hat

From Connectyle, this is a mesh sun hat with a 3" wide brim and a closable drawstring to help keep it secured to your head. This hat features a very basic design, but it's stitched together nicely and made from some fairly comfortable polyester. It's lightweight and breathable, with the mesh allowing a little bit of ventilation on long and notoriously sweaty hikes.

For those who like to accessorize, this hat comes in over 10 colors and is perfect for both men and women. The drawstring is adjustable, meaning this sun hat should be able to fit comfortably on most adult hikers' heads regardless of size. The brim of the hat is solid and provides solid protection against UV rays, both keeping you cool and protecting your skin and eyes.

If you don't want to spend too much on a sun hat yet don't want to get the absolute cheapest sun hat on the market, this breathable sun hat from Connectyle represents the perfect middle ground. At an incredibly affordable price, it provides a very basic sun hat design with sturdy and durable stitching. It's essentially one-size-fits-all, so it will be a good option for a lot of hikers.

American Hat Makers Cabana Outdoor Mesh UPF Sun Hat

This sun hat from American Hat Makers looks a little bit more like a cowboy hat than it does a traditional sun hat for hiking. However it's wide brim and exceptional quality make it a great sun hat for hikers who appreciate the fashion statement. A good deal more expensive than most other sun hats on the market, this hat offers maximum protection from the sun and incredible quality that easily surpasses the competition.

If you require a little bit more protection from the sun, or if you just happen to hang out in incredibly sun-drenched locations, this heavy-duty sun hat may be the way to go. It's high-quality stitching and materials are liable to last you the better part of a lifetime and it's stylish to boot. While it may cost a bit more than the average hiking sun hat, this hat is still a good deal compared to other heavy-duty sun hats of the same type, even from the same manufacturer. It's "Made in the USA" branding may be a selling point for many hikers.

Overall, this hat would certainly be worth the money for those who like it's design and think they'll get some good use out of it. It's thick lining provides a hefty amount of UV protection while still being just as lightweight and breathable as even the most basic designs. If you're serious about hiking and want to keep the sun out of your eyes for good, you may wish to spend the extra money.

Q Headwear Outdoor Sun Flap Hat

Here we have another fairly basic design with a drawstring, once again made out of some fairly lightweight and breathable polyester. However, this khaki sunhat features a flap on the back that will help keep the back of your neck cool that makes it stand apart from some of the others. For many, these little flaps can make all of the difference when facing the sun (or standing with your back to it) on a long hike.

Apart from it's khaki design and flap on the back, this sun hat is fairly similar to the Connectyle outdoor mesh sun hat, just with a little bit shorter of a brim and a little lower quality when it comes to the stitching. It likely won't be too noticeable, but this is a slightly flimsier feeling product overall. Still, it is just as lightweight and comfortable and, when the flap is taken into account, provides comparable protection from the sun.

While this certainly isn't the ultimate sun hat on the market, it is workmanlike in what it provides for the wearer in terms of both comfort and protection. If you don't want to spend too much and simply need some comfortable protection from the sun, this sun hat offers just that. However, keep in mind that those with larger heads may find this hat to not be all that "one-size-fits-all", as it's a little on the smaller size.

BAVST Men Women Outdoor Sun Hat

Now for an even cheaper sun hat that still somehow manages to provide UPF 50+ protection against UV rays. While it's tantamount to something you might pick up at the gas station or a truck stop, this hat still definitely provides the wearer with what it advertises, and does so at an incredible bargain. It's not going to last you nearly as long as some of the more durable and expensive sun hats on the market, but, in a pinch, this hat won't disappoint.

It's brim is a little under 3", which means you should get appropriate coverage from the sun in most situations. The brim goes all the way around and slants down, a style which oftentimes makes the brim feel wider than it actually is, which can be a good thing. As with many other sun hats, a drawstring helps this hat accommodate hiker's with varying head shapes on long journeys.

YOYEAH Outdoor Sun Protection Hat

Another polyester hat with UPF 50+ protection, this hiking sun hat from YOYEAH bests much of the competition with it's fashionable design, breathability, and wide brim. As well, it features some nice stitching that sets it apart from some of the cheaper options available.

This sun hat doesn't have a whole lot to offer to the wearer that the Connectyle outdoor mesh sun hat doesn't as well. However, those who prefer the design of this hat, or just want to save a couple of bucks, may opt for this one instead. With both, you are getting a very comfortable and lightweight hiking sun hat of good quality that won't break the bank.

The brim is nice and stiff, with thick lining to keep the heat out and protect against the sun. As well, there is once again a drawstring that will help secure this hat to your head, no matter the size, even on windy and rainy days. If this hat is your style and you don't need anything more, you should be able to get some good use out of it.

Home Prefer Mosquito Net Hat

For these who need to protect against more than just the sun, this hiking sun hat from Home Prefer includes a large mesh veil to protect against mosquitoes and other pests. While the hat itself is comparable in quality and design to the Connectyle outdoor mesh sun hat, the included mesh veil is what sets this particular item apart from the competition.

Both the hat and the veil have their own separate drawstring, which means that this hat can be made to accommodate pretty much anyone. The hat itself has a 3.2" wide brim that goes all the way around the hat, and the veil hangs down a little before the edge. This means that you essentially have full protection from both the sun and bugs, with UPF 50+ protection from UV rays.

While this hat has nothing to offer that the others don't unless you're worried about mosquitoes or other pests, the little addition of the adjustable mesh veil at little to no extra cost when compared to the competition certainly makes this a sun hat that will stand out for certain hikers. It is reasonably priced, unisex, and comes in 10 different colors.

Mental Uluru Outback Outdoor Adventure Canvas Wide Brimmed Sun Hat

From Mental, this unique hiking sun hat features a two-tone design that gives it a little bit of style the others don't have. Still, this sturdy little sun hat has a unisex appeal that would be perfect for either men or women. Featuring a 3" brim and a 100% cotton drawstring, this is certainly an exceptional hat that many buyers will be interested in.

Apart from it's cotton drawstring, cotton is incorporated into other areas of the design to allow for a little bit more breathability than you get with the polyester hats. At little to no increase in cost, this little improvement in the fabric quality goes a long way to make this hat more comfortable than some others on long hikes. With comparable protection from the elements, this hat may be the one to beat for many.

The hat comes in three different color styles, each of which would likely be appropriate for wearers of any gender or style preference. It is a little bit large, but that also means that it'll fit well on those who traditionally have trouble with the one-size-fits-all nature of sun hats. With the 100% cotton drawstring, adult wearers of all sizes should feel comfortable and secure.

Blubandoo Water Activated Cooling Crystal Safari Hatbandoo

For those who want to try out something unique, this sun hat from Blubandoo uses a special cooling method to go above and beyond the mere shade and sun protection that traditional hiking hats allow. With unique cooling crystals embedded in the fabric, this hat works proactively to keep the heat out and the coolness in when you're out on exceptionally long hikes. For those who have problems keeping cool, this may be the hat for you.

This hat is made from a mixture of cotton and linen, which would be enough to keep most hikers cool in and of itself. Even without the selling point of the unique cooling element, this is a very well put together hat that would appeal to a great deal of hikers. Although it comes at a higher price point than many hats of a similar style, the combination of high-quality materials and it's unique cooling crystals certainly make this a great hat that will strongly appeal to a good deal of hikers.

If you like to go on really long hikes in the blazing sun, the comfort and coolness of this hat really can't be understated. The soft fabrics prove their worth and then some under duress, as the cotton and linen cause none of the itchiness that most polyester fabrics are notorious for. Whether or not a good deal of this functionality is a result of the cooling crystals or not may be up for debate, but this is an incredible sun hat for hiking nonetheless.

Mega Cap Juniper Men's Olive Wide Brim Outdoor Sun Flap Hat

From Mega Cap, here is another sun hat with a flap on the back, this time providing a slightly larger range of coverage than the Q Headwear Outdoor Sun Flap Hat. However, this increased degree of coverage also comes with a slightly higher price tag. Still, this is a well put together hat that will certainly hold it's own against the sun when you're out hiking.

There is no drawstring, but there is an elastic enclosement around the brim that should keep this hat secure. As well, the draped flap on the back should provide a little bit of weight, anchoring the hat to your head while you're out on your hike. It features a wide brim, and the exceptionally wide flap at the back should provide shade not only for the back of your neck, but much of your head, as well.

Eylets and mesh side-panels allow for a little bit of ventilation in a mostly-successful attempt to keep hikers cool. It's certainly not the most well-ventilated hat, but that'll only prove an issue if you're in extreme heat. Overall, those who like the impressively large, flowing flap on the back may find this to be the hat for them.

WZ.Tricolore Unisex Summer Sun Caps UV Protection Camouflage Mesh Hat

To round out this list we have a hat quite unlike any other, being essentially a traditional baseball cap with an attached mesh veil for added protection from the sun. Of course, this novel design works incredibly well when out on a hike given both the already incredibly functional design of the baseball cap and the unique cooling protection of the veil.

The veil buttons on and off, protecting from both UV rays and the heat of the sun. As well, the veil provides a good deal of protection against mosquitoes. It is made from polyester, but the material feels soft and shouldn't be too uncomfortable on your skin, even after long periods. With the veil taken off, the hat still functions as a basic baseball cap, with a unique design that comes in a variety of different color styles that should appeal to both men and women.

While this hat doesn't provide the most heavy-duty protection, and may just appear to be a glorified baseball cap with a gimmick to some, others may find the novel design the perfect accessory to take out on their hikes. It isn't as overwhelmingly large as some of the other hats on this list, doesn't cost too much, yet it still provides a good deal of comfort and protection from the elements when out on your hike.

10 Best Sun Hats for Hiking

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10 Best Sun Hats for Hiking


Scott Kimball

From a young age I was introduced to fishing, hiking, camping, snowboarding and more through family, friends, and scouting. After 20 years of learning and participating in these outdoor activities, I share what i've learned (and continue learning) with you.

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