With cowboy hats coming in many shapes, materials, and colors, it is easy for you to make your mark, but only if you know how to choose one that suits you. Nowadays, more and more people are wearing cowboy hats in an attempt to recreate the romance and adventure of riding on the dusty plains. Even though you may assume choosing a cowboy hat is a simple affair, in reality, it can be quite complex considering the large number of factors you need to take into account for a sensible buy.
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Your Cowboy Hat Is As Unique As You
Some of the most important factors you need to consider when buying a cowboy hat include the shape of the crown, the material, the occasion, and the price that represents fair value. If you visit a hat retailer, you will typically have before you cowboy hats made from three different materials; straw, fur felt, and leather. While fur-felt cowboy hats look and feel exclusive, they may not be ideal for wearing for sun protection as you may feel too warm. When the weather turns chilly, they can give you the warmth you seek. With their lightweight and breathable properties, straw cowboy hats are perfect for handling the harsh sunlight for extended periods in warm weather. Nowadays, leather cowboy hats are rare because they tend to be very costly.
A cowboy hat has a distinctive tall crown and a flat or rolled up large brim that protects your eyes, forehead, face, neck, and shoulders from the sun and light rain. A sweatband of absorbent material runs on the inside of the hat to give you a better fit and absorb the sweat to prevent it from getting into your eyes. A hatband running around the base of the crown is the usual accessory to decorate it; however, you can also use feathers or strings of beads to dress your hat up.
Cowboy Hats Come In Different Styles
Like other hats, American straw cowboy hats have two basic components; the crown and the brim. The combination of their styling leads to various styles. Some popular styles include:
Cattleman: It is among the oldest, most conventional, and most popular cowboy hat styles. It features a crown of four to five inches high, a single crease in the middle, and one on each side. The larger crown allows wearers to pull it down in windy or rainy weather. Nowadays, it is more worn at formal events and weddings.
Gus: It is similar to the Cattleman but with a more outback appearance. It has the same single crease in the middle of the crown, and on the sides, the crown of the Gus slopes down distinctively.
Pinched Front: It is another classic western style hat that combines features of two common crown styles, the teardrop, and the diamond. It is also called the Pinch Front Crease similar to fedoras and trilbies but has a more conventional cowboy hat brim that curls up slightly.
Montana: This style is also similar to the Cattleman but with some distinct differences. While the crown features the crease on the center and sides, in the Montana style, the creases on the back are smaller and less sharp. It has a sloping appearance with two pinches on the front and a more pronounced center dent. A variant of the Montana, the Tom Mix has a brim that turns up half an inch and has a more prominent pinch on the front.= that accentuates delicate jawlines, making it popular among women.
Gambler: The Gambler crease, also known as the Telescope crease, features a lower crown. According to Horsey Hooves, it does not allow hot air to accumulate and has a wide brim that provides excellent protection from the sun.
Open Crown: The crown is completely round and does not feature any creases. It looks like a sombrero, but the brim is smaller. The brim is round and flat without any upturn and is also popularly called the “10-gallon hat”.
Considering the shape of your face is a critical element in choosing a cowboy hat that you look good in. People with oval faces are lucky because they look good in all styles of hats. Those with round faces can go in for a slated brim and a high crown, while those with long and thin faces should choose a crown of medium height Cattleman’s crease. If you have a square face, you should aim to buy a round cowboy hat with a curved brim while those with heart-shaped faces benefit with a teardrop crease and a short brim.
While there is a large assortment of styles, you must get the fit right to look good. Buying a size larger is better than buying one that’s too tight as you can use foam strips to make the hat fit better. Try on hats of different shapes and colors till you get something you look good in.