The 8 best hats for sweaty heads

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ByMasha Vapnitchnaia

Though sweating is an important function of your body’s temperature regulation, it can also be a nuisance — like when sweat drips into your eyes on a hot day or during a workout. To help keep you comfortable, the best hats for sweaty heads are made from breathable, moisture-wicking materials such as polyester and nylon and have features like ventilating mesh panels and absorbent sweat bands. Some hats also have an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) rating to block UV rays while you’re out in the sun.

When sweat is a concern, you’ll want to choose a hat that’s made from polyester and/or nylon. Both materials are moisture-wicking, meaning they will help pull sweat away from the body and allow it to evaporate. They’re also lightweight, though polyester may be the more breathable option depending on the nylon’s weave. Hats with mesh panels and ventilation holes further help moisture escape and cool you down. Plus, each option below can be hand washed, and many can even be machine washed so you can easily freshen your hat as needed.

You can also look for features like a moisture-absorbing lining or inner sweat band to reduce sweat drips. In addition, some hats have safety features such as reflective details that will help keep you visible during nighttime walks and runs, or a UPF 50+ rating that’ll offer excellent protection from UV rays.

All of the best hats for sweaty heads are made to help keep you comfortable and cool, and they’re available in a range of styles and colors whether you’re wearing them to work out, go to the beach, or spend a low-key weekend outdoors.


The classic hat that comes in 56 colors

  • Machine washable
  • Available sizes: X-Small — XX-Large
  • Available colors: 56

This popular baseball hat has a 4.7-star overall rating on Amazon and more than 49,000 reviews. Made from a blend of polyester and elastane that’s moisture-wicking and stretchy, the cap is designed to keep you cool and comfortable. It also has a built-in band that wicks away sweat. What’s more, the front panel is padded with foam to maximize comfort. Though the hat doesn’t have an adjustable closure, it will offer some stretch and comes in five different sizes for the most comfortable fit. There are also dozens of colors to choose from, including black, white, gray, and various shades of blue.

One reviewer wrote: “I needed a baseball-style cap that would protect my head from the elements, my eyes from the sun, was comfortable for all day wear, and easy to clean on a weekly basis. This cap does all that. Just throw it in the washing machine, on a hand wash cycle. It comes clean every time and shows no sign of wear. Air dries quickly and wicks sweat well when you are hot. A very comfortable fit and durable.”


The breathable visor

  • Machine washable
  • Available sizes: One size
  • Available colors: 11

This sports visor is made from a knit polyester material that’s quick-drying and moisture-wicking — and, since the top of your head will be uncovered, the hat is extra breathable. The visor also has a terry sweat band to keep moisture off your face, and the black under-visor helps reduce glare. It’s only available in one size, but the stretchy elastic back helps create a comfortable fit. Plus, more than 1,200 Amazon reviewers have given it a five-star rating.

One reviewer wrote: “After my shorts and shoes, these headsweats visors are next item to ensure I grab on the way out of the house. They do a wonderful job of keeping my face and eyes clear of sweat, and most importantly, you won't feel like you're overheating wearing a cap. Quality and fit is very good. I have a slightly larger hat size, so the elastic can be a bit on the snug side. This doesn't bother me in the least. I have three different copies in black, white and orange. Love them!”


The foldable hat

  • Machine washable (according to reviewers)
  • Available sizes: One size
  • Available colors: 12

Convenient for traveling or tucking into a pocket, this unstructured hat has a foldable bill that makes it easy to store away when you’re not wearing it. The cap is made from lightweight, quick-drying polyester, offers UPF 50+ sun protection, and has an anti-glare brim. Plus, there’s a stretchy, adjustable strap at the back so you can find the best fit. It comes in a dozen colors and, according to a reviewer, the label notes you can machine wash the hat in cold water.

One reviewer wrote: “These can be soaked with sweat, thrown in a gym bag, washed, repeat! Great stuff.”


The adjustable, wide-brim hat

  • Machine washable (according to reviewers)
  • Available sizes: One size
  • Available colors: 14

This polyester sun hat has a wide brim and UPF 50+ rating for excellent protection from UV rays. The hat’s mesh panels provide great ventilation, while the moisture-wicking sweatband will help keep your face dry. The hat has an adjustable string that can be tightened for a better fit and a chin cord that’ll help prevent it from blowing off in the breeze. It’s machine washable, according to Amazon reviewers, and backed by more than 3,000 five-star ratings.

One reviewer wrote: “I have a pretty big head (23½") so I was concerned with getting a proper fit. This hat does not disappoint, it is fully adjustable and should fit just about any size head. The chin cord keeps it on in the strongest winds and the wide brim shades my eyes well. I like that it's ventilated as it reduces head sweat.”


The hat with reflective details

  • Machine washable
  • Available sizes: One size
  • Available colors: 8

Made from quick-drying polyester mesh, this lightweight baseball hat is extremely breathable. It also protects your eyes with an anti-glare underbill and has reflective details on the front and back to help you stay visible in the evenings or early mornings. Though it only comes in one size, the baseball cap has an adjustable hook and loop closure so you can find the best fit. Choose from eight colors, and you can also opt for packs of one, two, or three.

One reviewer wrote: “This is my favorite hat ever. It is very light weight and comfortable, fits well, soaks up sweat well during my trail runs and washes well. It also holds up well, as I had another one before this one that is still in great shape.”


The outback hat

  • Hand wash only
  • Available sizes: Small — XX-Large
  • Available colors: 3

If you’re looking for a less sporty style that’s still great for keeping you cool, this wide-brimmed hat is a great option. Made from a mix of moisture-wicking polyester and nylon, it has UPF 50+ sun protection, mesh panels for ventilation, and an elasticized sweat band. It also has braided detailing for a touch of style. The sun hat comes in five sizes and three colors for a customized look and fit, and it can be hand washed as needed.

One reviewer wrote: “This hat fits well and performs as promised. Lots of ventilation all around and if you wet it the evaporation keeps your head cooler. It will actually stop your head from sweating so much.”


The retro hat

  • Hand wash only
  • Available sizes: One size
  • Available colors: 8

The bright neon design of this retro-style baseball hat is a throwback to the ‘90s, as is the hat’s “fanny pack” zipper pocket that’s big enough for storing cash and cards. More than 1,400 Amazon reviewers gave the hat a five-star rating, and it comes in eight eye-catching color combos. It’s made from lightweight, quick-drying nylon and has an adjustable hook-and-loop closure. The brand doesn’t specify washing instructions, so it’s probably best to hand wash the hat to keep it looking great.

One reviewer wrote: “It’s very comfortable, light and fits perfectly. This 90’s retro hat got a lot of compliments while wearing it at the beach.”


The bucket hat

  • Hand wash only
  • Available sizes: Medium — X-Large
  • Available colors: 2

This polyester bucket hat dries quickly to help you stay cool and dry — plus, you can wet the hat and wring it out before putting it on so the water will cool you off as it evaporates. There’s also a mesh vent at the back for breathability and a mesh sweat band to keep perspiration off your face. The hat comes in several sizes, and the fit is adjustable thanks to a bungee cord inside of it. It also offers UPF sun protection, though the brand doesn’t mention the exact rating.

One reviewer wrote: “I am active and hard on hats. This hat is perfect for my lifestyle since it is portable, lightweight, breathable, and designed to be washed in a sink and hand wrung out.”