Overbrimming With Style
Some people say that manners make the man, but others believe it all comes down to the hat. A cowboy hat lets your individuality shine while symbolizing the freedom and resilience of the cowboy culture—assuming you buy the right one, that is.
You don’t have to be riding across the plains in the blazing summer sun or freezing winter winds to benefit from the ageless and iconic style of the cowboy hat. A quality cowboy hat looks just as good with a suit as it does with a pair of jeans and a plaid shirt.
Cowboy Hat Culture
The cowboy hat is one of the most iconic pieces of clothing in American culture. As a symbol of adventure and independence, it stands tall on the frontier of fashion.
Anyone can wear a cowboy hat and look good in it, but there are a few rules you should follow. Putting a cowboy hat on your bed will bring you bad luck, while wearing one inside is simply bad manners.
Hat Form & Function
As a stylish and iconic symbol of cowboy culture, the cowboy hat is actually a functional piece of equipment designed to protect its wearer against the elements.
It has nestled its way into American fashion, becoming a favorite amongst movie stars and celebrities, as well as a functional piece of gear for everyone from cowboys to those seeking to add some Western flair to their outfits.
Your cowboy hat should fit snugly on your head, without being so tight that it gives you a headache.
If you can just fit one finger between the sweatband and your forehead, you likely have a perfect fit! Too loose, and you could lose your cowboy hat to a strong breeze or sudden gust of wind.
There’s a cowboy hat out there to suit each individual’s style. Whether you opt for a straw cowboy hat with a classic cattleman crease or a felt one with a brick crease, you’ll be making a statement as distinctive as the open range itself.
Lightweight straw cowboy hats are more breathable than felt ones, but still protect you from the hot sun, making them ideal for the summer.
Traditionally, felt cowboy hats are worn between Labor Day and Memorial Day, after which they’re swapped for cooler straw hats.
|Brand||Hat||Price Point||You’ll Love It If:|
|Stetson||Skyline||$$$||You love the classic cowboy look|
|Greeley Hat Works||Pure Beaver Sage||$$$$||You don’t mind splurging on a customized hat|
|Resistol||20X Conley||$$$||You want an entry-level cowboy hat|
|Bailey Western||Desert Breeze||$||You’re looking for a cool hat for summer|
|Rodeo King||Black 5X||$$||You want a customized look at a reasonable price|
|Rod’s Western Palace||The Specialist||$$||You want a home-grown American classic|
|Tenth Street Hats||6X Real||$$$||You value quality felt hats|
|Master Hatters of Texas||3X Dawson||$||You want something that completes a casual outfit|
|American Hat Makers||Hollywood||$$||You like the look and feel of a leather hat|
|Cavender’s||Bangora Ivory Cattleman Crown||$||You want a summertime classic|
|Bullhide||Bullhide Buffalo||$||You want to add some Western flair to your daily life|
|Justin||Plains 2X Wool Felt Cowboy Hat||$$||You want warmth and sun protection|
|Brixton||Cohen Cowboy Hat||$$||You appreciate quality products made without cruelty to animals|
|Burns||Competitor Saddle 4.25”||$$$||You want a hat that looks great with a suit|
Best Men’s Cowboy Hats
The Stetson Skyline is more than a classic; it’s a bestseller that defines the essence of the Stetson brand. Crafted from 6X beaver fur felt, this hat boasts a silky finish that looks equally great with a suit as it does a pair of jeans.
The combination of a Cattlemen Crease and Texas-style brim gives it a sturdy look that complements its ability to withstand the rigors of cowboy life.
It’s a perfect fusion of traditional Western style and modern sophistication.
- True to size, this hat fits snugly and securely
- Satin-lined beaver fur felt hat with leather sweatband and three-piece buckle decoration
- The Skyline is one of Stetson’s most famous and best-selling hats
- It can take a while to break in a new Stetson, which means it might fit a bit snug to begin with
Where to buy it: Amazon
Greeley Hat Works’ Pure Beaver Sage
Crafted from pure beaver fur, this premium stock hat is the epitome of luxury, ensuring you look like a million dollars—a reflection of its higher-range price tag.
The attention to detail and quality in every stitch make it a worthy investment for those who appreciate the finer things in life.
It comes with a 5¾” crown that can be shaped according to your specifications and a customizable 4¼” brim. Elevate your look and make a statement with a hat that’s as unique as you are.
- Use the Greeley Hat Works’ Hat Sizing Guide to find the perfect fit
- Top-quality beaver fur hat with customizable crown and brim
- Greeley Hat Works has been creating custom-made hats since 1909!
- The higher price range makes it an unsuitable choice for those on a budget
Where to buy it: Greeley Hat Works
Resistol 20X Conley
You can’t go wrong with a Resistol hat. True to its name, these hats are crafted to resist all weather conditions, from scorching sun and gusty winds to relentless rain.
Even this lightweight straw hat doesn’t compromise on protection—it keeps the sun at bay while ensuring ample airflow to keep you cool and comfortable. Designed for practicality, this hat features a sweatband that not only wicks away moisture, but also molds to the contours of your head, ensuring a snug yet comfortable fit.
- Self-conforming sweatband ensures a comfortable fit
- 20X quality straw hat with a Cattlemen crease, vented crown, and wide brim
- All Resistol’s straw hats are handwoven and lacquered to ensure durability
- This hat isn’t waterproof and may become misshapen if exposed to heavy rain
Where to buy it: Resistol
Bailey Western Desert Breeze
This cowboy hat is constructed from lightweight bangora straw, ensuring it stands tall against the elements and provides reliable sun protection. The 4½” Stockman crown takes breathability to the next level with its ultra-vented design.
A black band featuring the Bailey insignia adds the perfect finishing touch to a hat that combines style with practicality.
- Bailey Western hats are true to size and fit snugly
- This straw hat is made for hot summer temps, with a dri-lex sweatband
- A traditional high crown for ventilation
- Bailey brand known for craftsmanship and durable products
- Can be challenging to keep clean and is hand wash only
Where to buy it: Amazon
Rodeo King Black 5X
Crafted with precision and designed to make a statement, this entry-level cowboy hat embodies the spirit of the Wild West, but with a contemporary edge. Made from premium-quality felt and featuring a 4¼ inch brim, it provides optimal shade while standing the test of time.
Tailor the hat to your taste by selecting your favorite crown shape and brim design.
- A wide range of sizes, including the larger, sometimes hard-to-find 8”
- 5X black felt hat with 4¼ inch brim, 6” crown, and leather sweatband
- Rodeo King made its first hat in 1921—over 100 years ago!
- The felt is quite stiff to start with, so it may take a while for your hat to mold to your head
Where to buy it: NRS World
Specialist by Rod’s Western Palace
Made from a blend of beaver and rabbit fur, this entry-level cowboy hat combines luxury with affordability.
It’s the go-to choice for first-time buyers, providing both comfort and durability.
Whether you’re heading to the rodeo or simply adding a touch of Western flair to your look, the Specialist 4X is the ideal companion. The affordable price point makes it a smart investment for those seeking an entry-level hat that doesn’t compromise on style or substance.
- Available in sizes 6¾” to 7⅝”
- A felt blend of rabbit/beaver fur with a silk liner, leather sweatband, and three-piece buckle feature
- The Specialist line comes in five colors—black, chocolate, pecan, silverbelly, and gray
- The Specialist 4X is an entry-level hat, so won’t be of the same quality as the 10X or 40X
Where to buy it: Amazon
Tenth Street Hats 6X Real
This fur-felt hat has a soft finish that will add a touch of Western sophistication to your look.
Meticulously crafted, with a cattleman crease and high crown, it’s more suited to a night on the town than a day on the ranch.
With a rugby-encrusted bucket set, it exudes luxury and elegance, making it the epitome of refined Western style, as its higher-than-average price tag suggests!
- Leather sweatband ensures a comfortable fit that conforms to the shape of your head
- Fur felt comes with a leather sweatband, silk lining, and 4” brim
- Tenth Streets Hats is a family-run business and has been since its inception in 1921!
- Requires a bigger budget
Where to buy it: Tenth Street Hats
Master Hatters of Texas 3X Dawson
Constructed from 3X wool, this hat is a blend of style and quality that speaks volumes. The low cattleman crown adds a touch of modern flair to the classic Western design, making it a versatile accessory.
The silver conchos add a touch of sophistication.
Available in sizes ranging from 6¾” to 7¾”
3X wool blend with a Cattleman crease and silver conchos
Master Hatters of Texas developed hats for Wrangler Jean Company for over 20 years
Wool cowboy hats are water repellent but not waterproof, so this hat won’t stand up to a heavy downpour
Where to buy it: Cavender’s
This lightweight straw cowboy hat represents a commitment to individuality and quality.
This brand focuses on craftsmanship.
Buffalo’s dedication to quality is apparent by how they meticulously fit each piece of leather and hand-dipping hats in a special lacquer for added durability and water-resistant properties.
- Available in sizes from small to extra large
- 10X straw hat with leather sweatband and 4” brim
- Bullhide uses a special wire in the brim, so you can shape it according to your personal preference.
- Bullhide hats often run large, so you may want to order a smaller size than usual
Where to buy it: Amazon
Justin Men’s Plains 2X Wool Felt Cowboy Hat
This wool cowboy hat combines style with practicality and durability.
The 2X wool will keep you warm whatever the weather while the 4” brim will keep the sun out of your eyes.
This hat is sure to provide you with a timeless silhouette.
- Justin hats may run a little large, so order accordingly
- 2X wool hat with leatherette hat band and satin lining
- The crown height and brim width may vary slightly, giving you a unique look
- Limited color options available
Where to buy it: Sheplers
American Hat Makers’ Hollywood Men’s Leather Cowboy Hat
Crafted from genuine leather and meticulously stitched, this cowboy hat embodies the spirit of the Wild West with a touch of Hollywood glamor. The sewn-in sweatband is designed to gradually mold to the shape of your head, ensuring a personalized and perfect fit.
For added convenience, the hat also comes with two adhesive size reducers, allowing you to easily adjust the fit to your liking.
It’s not just a hat; it’s a piece of history and style that gives you an unparalleled and comfortable Western look.
- American Hat Makers make hats for large heads, with their 3X hat being 8⅛
- High-quality cowhide leather hat with sewn-in sweatband and 3” brim
- All American Hat Makers’ hats come with a lifetime guarantee
- The narrower 3” brim won’t provide as much sun protection as a wider brim.
Where to buy it: American Hat Makers
Brixton Cohen Cowboy Hat
Not only will this wool cowboy hat make you look good, it can make you feel good as well!
Crafted from 100% cruelty-free wool, it elevates your style while aligning with your ethical and environmental values.
The 3¼” brim offers protection from the sun, while the high crown allows for sufficient airflow, so you’ll always have a cool head, whatever the world throws at you.
- Available in sizes from XS to XL, with XL measuring 7¾”
- Cruelty-free wool felt hat with adjustable sweatband and grosgrain band
- All products are shipped using recycled boxes and biodegradable bags
- Sizes aren’t large enough to accommodate those with bigger heads
Where to buy it: Brixton
Burns’ Competitor Saddle 4.25”
This classic cowboy hat captures the essence of the West with its curved brim and cattleman crown.
Beyond its iconic style, the brim serves as a shield against the blazing sun.
Oils in the felt wick water away, keeping you dry in the heaviest of downpours. The Competitor also features a felt hatband with a silver buckle that adds a touch of sophistication to its rugged charm.
- Available in a wide range of sizes, starting at 6½ and going up to 8⅛
- Fur felt cowboy hat comes shaped with a with shovel brim and classic Cattleman crease
- The Competitor Saddle is available in 100% European hare, a blend of beaver and hare, or 100% pure beaver belly fur
- The price tag is comparatively high for a non-customized hat
Where to buy it: Burns
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What cowboy hats do real cowboys wear?
Real cowboys wear cowboy hats more often than any other design simply because they’re designed for the job. They keep the sun off your head during the day and insulate you against the cool evening breeze.
Q: What is the most popular cowboy hat?
The most popular style of cowboy hat is the Cattleman crease, which leading brands like Stetson have used to create tried-and-tested pieces like the best-selling Skyline 6X.
Q: What brand of hats are worn on Yellowstone?
Greeley Hat Works is proud to create all the cowboy hats made on the popular show, Yellowstone. You can view the full selection here.
Q: Is Stetson better than Resistol?
Stetson and Resistol both produce top-quality cowboy hats designed to withstand the rigors of ranch life.
Q: What is the best men’s cowboy hat on Amazon?
The Stetson Skyline 6X is arguably the best-value men’s cowboy hat available on Amazon.
Beyond the practicality of shielding us from the elements, a well-chosen cowboy hat is a statement of character, a nod to tradition, and a fusion of style and substance.
Whether atop a finely tailored suit or paired with the casual charm of jeans and a plaid shirt, the cowboy hat transcends seasons and occasions, ensuring your personal narrative is etched into every fold and curve.
The cowboy hat remains a steadfast symbol, reminding us that true style goes beyond trends—it’s a reflection of who we are and where we’ve been.
As we tip our hats to the timeless appeal of cowboy hats, may you find the perfect one to accompany you on your journey, whatever the weather or occasion.
P.S. Enjoy this article? Trot on over to:
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