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10 Best Straw Cowboy Hats That Feel (and Look) Cool

straw hats on wall
Written by Holly N.

Nothing Says Summer Like a Straw Hat!

A straw cowboy hat will complete your summer style whether you’re sunning yourself on the beach or sweating away on the ranch. Breathable and lightweight, a straw cowboy hat protects you from the blazing sun and keeps you cool.

Although straw hats have been around since the Middle Ages, the first straw cowboy hat only reached the market in 1875. Since then, straw cowboy hats have earned their popularity year after year. Unlike the traditional felt cowboy hat, a straw hat is cool and breathable, shading your face from the harsh sun while allowing a breeze to keep you cool in the hottest temperatures.

straw cowboy hat on hay bale

Source: Canva

Straw Hat Stats

Straw cowboy hats aren’t usually as durable as felt versions, yet some companies offer lifetime guarantees. These brand’s warranties reflect their confidence in the product’s ability to last.

Hats made from straw are generally less expensive than felt cowboy hats and require much less maintenance.

The best straw cowboy hats are handwoven to ensure a tight weave. They’ll also carry a higher X factor rating, indicating the tight weave and narrow reed for durability.

Why Straw vs. Felt?

Felt cowboy hats are durable and versatile. You can wear them all year round but might find them a little too warm in the summer.

This is where straw cowboy hats excel—lightweight and breathable, they’re more appropriate and comfortable in hot weather, shading you from the sun just as a felt hat would while providing more airflow to keep you cool.

The Season for Straw

According to tradition, you should wear a straw cowboy hat from Memorial Day to Labor Day and a felt hat the rest of the time.

straw cowboy hat on wood background

Source: Canva

Best Straw Cowboy Hats

Count Brand Hat Price Point You’ll Love It If:
1 Stetson Stetson Men’s Llana 10X Straw Cowboy Hat $$$$ You love the Stetson style and quality
2 Greeley Hat Works Twister 20x Pre-Shaped $$$$ You want a breathable straw hat to keep you cool
3 Resistol Resistol CoJo Vaquero Bangora 4 ¼” Brim Straw Cowboy Hat $$ You want to look like Cody Johnson
4 Shorty’s Caboy Hattery 24K 4 ½” Brim $$$$ You want a customizable design
5 American Hat Makers American Hat Makers Bozeman Straw Cowboy Hat $$ You want a lifetime guarantee
6 Tecovas Cattleman Straw Cowboy Hat $$$$ You like the durability of a handwoven product
7 Bailey Western Bailey Western Men’s Desert Breeze $$ You want a breathable straw hat to keep you cool
8 Ariat Twisted Weave $ You want a stylish, entry-level cowboy hat
9 American Hat Company AMR 4″ BRIM STRW LO 5050 $$$$ You want a waterproof straw hat
10 Rodeo King Jute Open Crown 4-1/2in. Brim Straw Cowboy Hat $$ You need something durable

Best Straw Cowboy Hats

Stetson Men’s Llana 10X Straw Cowboy Hat

This tightly woven cowboy hat is made from Shantung straw, which is one of the best types of straw for hats because it’s fine, durable, and lightweight.

Side vents guarantee sufficient airflow, while the dri-lex sweatband wicks moisture away from your head.

stetson straw hat

Click to see it at Amazon

Key Features:

  • Stetson has a great reputation and over 100 years of experience with hatmaking
  • Shantung straw is lightweight yet durable
  • Drawstring closure keeps hat secure in windy weather

Key Drawbacks:

  • Higher price range

Where to buy it: Amazon

Greeley Hat Works Twister 20x Pre-Shaped

This straw hat comes with an X rating double that of the Stetson, indicating a high-quality hat that won’t lose its shape in the rain. It comes with a standard 4¼” brim and classic cattleman crease.

Key Features:

  • Greeley Hat Works is known for producing high-quality, robust products
  • 20x rating guarantees durability
  • Classic design will complement any outfit

Key Drawbacks:

  • There are no returns on straw cowboy hats

Where to buy it: Greeley Hat Works

Resistol CoJo Vaquero Bangora 4¼” Brim Straw Cowboy Hat

Resistol makes hats that survive the rough and tumble life of a working cowboy, and this straw hat is no different. It will protect you against sun and rain, while allowing a breeze to filter through the vents, helping keep you cool.

vaquero straw hat

Click to see it at Amazon

Key Features:

  • Resistol is one of the leading cowboy hat brands
  • Machine washable for easy maintenance
  • Molds easily to the shape of your head

Key Drawbacks:

  • Sizes may run a little small

Where to buy it: Amazon

Shorty’s Caboy Hattery’s 24k 4½” Brim

With its 4½” brim, this straw hat gives you a little extra sun protection and shade than the other products reviewed so far.

Aside from that, everything else is customizable, so you can choose your preferred crease, crown shape, color, and binding to create something that reflects your style and personality.

Key Features:

  • Shorty’s is the only woman-owned and operated custom hattery in the US
  • Customizable design allows your creativity to flow
  • Tightly woven for extra durability

Key Drawbacks:

  • Shorty’s only accepts returns on defective straw hats, so make sure you order the right size!

Where to buy it: Shorty’s Caboy Hattery

American Hat Makers’ Bozeman Straw Cowboy Hat

The fact that this straw cowboy hat comes with a lifetime guarantee tells you everything you need to know about its quality. Completely weather-resistant, it offers as much protection from the rain and wind as it does from the sun.

Handcrafted from medium-weight straw, it will hold its shape whatever the weather and comes with an elasticated headband for day-long comfort.

bozeman cowboy hat

Click to see it at American Hat Makers

Key Features:

  • Comes with a lifetime guarantee
  • Weather-resistant and holds its shape in the rain
  • Comes with size reducers so you can find the perfect fit

Key Drawbacks:

  • Limited colors available

Where to buy it: American Hat Makers

coupon code for american hat makers

Tecovas Cattleman Straw Cowboy Hat

Like Stetson, Tecovas uses hard-wearing Shantung straw for this hand woven cowboy hat, ensuring its durability and longevity. Designed to last a lifetime, it comes with a ventilated crown, leather headband, and angled 4” brim.

Key Features:

  • Excellent quality at an affordable price
  • Handwoven from durable Shantung straw
  • Available in a wide range of sizes

Key Drawbacks:

  • Only available in one color

Where to buy it: Tecovas

Bailey Western Men’s Desert Breeze

When making this hat, Bailey Western opted to use Bangora straw, which is a type of paper yarn known for its ability to stand up to the elements.

The ultra-vented crown allows for plenty of airflow, while the dri-lex sweatband keeps you cool and comfortable.

bailey hat

Click to see it at Amazon

Key Features:

  • Lightweight yet sturdy
  • Superior ventilation keeps you cool on the hottest days
  • Can withstand rough conditions

Key Drawbacks:

  • Sizes may run a little small

Where to buy it: Amazon

Ariat Twisted Breeze

This entry-level straw cowboy hat from Ariat features a simple yet classic design, but it may not be durable enough for tough, working environments. If you’re looking for something to wear to the races, however, this stylish hat will ensure you stand out.

ariat straw hat

Click to see it at Amazon

Key Features:

  • Affordable, entry-level straw cowboy hat
  • Provides lightweight protection from the sun
  • Stylish enough to complete any summer outfit

Key Drawbacks:

  • More suited for a day at the races than a day on the ranch

Where to buy it: Amazon

American Hat Company’s AMR 4” BRIM STRW LO 5050

The American Hat Company was the first to make waterproof straw hats, and this offering shows just how far they’ve come. Double-pressed and double-lacquered for extra protection and resilience against the elements, this stylish straw cowboy hat can be shaped according to your individual preferences, so you can get an extra-wide brim with the crown shape of your choice.

Key Features:

  • Double-lacquered for added resilience
  • Weather-resistance and waterproof
  • Can be customized according to your individual preferences

Key Drawbacks:

  • Comes with a higher-than-average price tag

Where to buy it: The Best Hat Store

Rodeo King’s Just Open Crown 4½ in. Brim Straw Cowboy Hat

Also known as the Golden Fiber, jute is a natural fiber that gives this hat a golden, silky finish. It’s also lightweight, durable, and breathable, ensuring you stay comfortable all day. While the brim width and crown height are standard, you can customize the hat with your choice of crease and brim shape.

Key Features:

  • Jute is durable and breathable, with a stylishly silky finish
  • Designed to withstand the rigors of ranch life
  • You can choose a crease and brim shape to suit your style

Key Drawbacks:

  • Hat may become discolored if exposed to lots of moisture

Where to buy it: NRS World

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What hats do real cowboys wear?

Cowboy hats were invented for a reason and remain one of the most popular and practical types of headgear for cowboys. While some may shun wearing a hat at all, and others opt for a more casual look with a baseball cap, most cowboys still prefer the cowboy hat to any other style.

Q: What makes a quality straw cowboy hat?

A good quality straw cowboy hat should be tightly woven from high-quality straw to ensure durability and weather resistance.

cheap straw cowboy style hats

Source: Canva

Q: What does 100x mean on a straw cowboy hat?

The X factor rating system was originally used to indicate how much beaver fur was used in the felt. When it comes to straw cowboy hats, it has a slightly different meaning but still refers to the hat’s quality. In a straw hat, 100x indicates that it’s tightly woven (usually by hand) using a heavier straw that will last longer.

Q: Which is better, Stetson or Resistol?

Both Resistol and Stetson have been manufacturing quality cowboy hats for many years, consistently producing high-quality products that stand the test of time. This makes it challenging to rate one above the other. If push comes to shove, you could say that Stetson is arguably better at creating more classic, stylish pieces for special occasions while

Resistol focuses on hats more suited to the working environment.

women riding mules in bryce canyon

Horse Rookie Susanna wearing her American Hat Makers Roughstock straw hat on a trail ride

Parting Thoughts

When Memorial Day rolls around, it’s time to put your felt cowboy hat into storage and opt for something cooler and lighter. A straw cowboy hat can protect you against sun, wind, and rain and keep you feeling as cool as you look. It’s the perfect accessory to complete any summer outfit, whether you’re off to the races or just mucking about at the barn.

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About the author


I am Holly, an equestrian enthusiast whose journey with horses began at the age of six in the UK. I've ventured from competing in various local events such as showjumping, cross country, showing, and gymkhana to a more serene but equally enthralling role in South Africa. Presently, I reside and ride in the breathtaking landscapes of South Africa, employed as a trail guide at Wild Coast Horseback Adventures.