So, I have a slight obsession with hats! I started wearing hats about 4 years ago and can’t stop! I have a lot of women ask me, not only if they can pull off hats, but also what style they should wear. We’re all pretty familiar with what a fedora is, but should we try out a boater hat? I’m gonna give you some of the more popular styles of hats and what to look for. But first let me give you some terminology…..
The brim.- The length extending from the hat. When wearing the hat, it’s the inches from your face outward.
The crown.- This determines the height of the hat. Some hats have very short crowns, some have very tall crowns, such as the cowgirl hat.
The crown shape. - You will see this on the very top of the hat, some shapes are teardrop, oval, or just flat.
The dent. (mostly seen in fedoras) - The indents seen on the sides of the hat.
The inner band/"sweatband.” - The ribbon or fabric found inside the hat. This helps reduce the oils from makeup and sweat affecting your hat. Also, some companies will have elastic to tighten to adjust tightness.
Ok, so here is a quick grid of what styles to go for depending on your face shape. Although, in my opinion face shapes are subjective, some people have distinct face shapes and some are a combination. Therefore, try different styles. This is not a rulebook, but a guide! Use this as a guide in your next purchase of your new hat, but don’t be afraid to step out of the box!
The SQUARE face shape.
Goal: soften angular lines
Avoid: harsh angular lines, short brims
Wear: beret, floppy, gambler, cowgirl
The ROUND face shape.
Goal: elongate your face
Avoid: tight fitting hats
Wear: fedora, gambler, boater
The Diamond face shape.
Goal: Bring focus to eyes
Avoid: crowns narrower than cheekbones
Wear: fedora, berets, boaters
The OBLONG face shape.
Goal: make face less elongated
Avoid: deep crowns (which adds volume) pointed crowns, narrow brims which creates more length
Wear: floppy, fedoras, bolero
The OVAL face shape.
Goal: You have a proportionate face so go buy yourself a hat friend!
Avoid: A hat that is proportionate to your face, not too small or too big making you disproportionate.
Wear: beret, fedora, gambler
The HEART face shape.
Goal: creating balance and to not add more width to forehead
Avoid: Extremely wide brims
Wear: small to medium brims- panama, boater, beret
This is a classic hat, I would say the most popular especially in the fashion industry. The Fedora can be spotted by its “pinched” effect at the crown. You will also see the “dents” on the sides of the hat. The fedora is a broad term that encompasses a variety of crown styles and brim shapes. This style is great for many face shapes, so if you are a newbie to hats, my recommendation would be the fedora! The front can be either turned up or down and styles that let you do both are called snap-brims. This style is typically seen in wool or felt for fall and winter seasons. For a similar style for summer months, go for the panama.
This style is known for its flat, short crown top and typically a smaller to medium sized brim, traditionally worn with a two-tone ribbon. You have probably seen this style worn by barbershop quartets. Typically you see this in straw weaving patterns, however, I have seen this style in wool as well. This beautiful chic style is fantastic in wanting to add a new accessory to your outfits, but not drawing too much attention due to its smaller style.
The gambler hat crown is flat with a crease along the edge. The side of the crown is straight, the brim is medium to wide wider, and the edge is tightly curled up around the edges or a slight turned up western flair at only the sides. A side profile will be a flatter look and this hat is seen in almost all materials, therefore, it can be worn throughout all seasons. A distinct feature of the gambler is the large oval shaped crown. If you are looking for something different, I would go for the gambler. It’s a combination of a fedora and boater, but its own unique crown shape and wide brim. The curled brim is what truly makes this hat unique.
If you want to tap into your western cowgirl side, it’s time to get you a cowgirl hat! This hat has a tall crown, the wide brims are turned or curled up on the sides and turned down on front and back. This hat is made with felt, leather, or straw. This hat comes in many brim sizes and crown shapes, including a pinch crown. If you plan on buying a cowgirl hat, wear it with confidence my friend and invest in a quality hat - so it will last you forever!
This is the go-to summer hat. A legit panama hat are beautifully crafted, hand-woven masterpieces that are made from the toquilla straw in Ecuador. Because it’s considered a summer hat, the material is lightweight, light color, pinched front, creased crown hats with medium slightly downward sloping brim. The panama hat has a high crown, small to medium brim, and features a classic band or ribbon.
The bolero hat is associated with Spanish dancers, having a flat medium to wide brim and a low, flat crown. I would describe this hat as a combination of the boater hat and the sombrero. This style is very elegant and dramatic making a statement to your outfits.
The floppy hat is in my opinion the most feminine with a hint of drama. The crown is rounded, dome-like in shape and has a very wide brim. This style is seen in both summer and winter months. In the summertime, it is made with straw for air circulation and shade. The material used for the winter months is typically felt and has a band or cording. This hat is beautiful for face shapes that are angular, such as square face shapes to soften lines.
Hello, adorable little poof… this classic style is round with a flat crown. The beret is typically made with wool or cotton and lots of prints. What is great about the beret is the ability to wear it in a variation of ways. Either wear it tilted, wear it across your forehead, or slightly behind the back of your head. This is also a safe option if you are a hat newbie, be willing and open to styling it in different ways!
If you are ready for some hat shopping, here is a catalog I created of my favorite hat finds online!
Comment below of what you learned and your favorite hat style!
Talk to you soon friend!
Setar Trading. Hat Dictionary. Retrieved from https://setartrading.com/pages/hat-dictionary
Hats Unlimited. The Ultimate Hat Guide. Retrieved from https://www.hatsunlimited.com/hat-styles-guide/