Best Hats for Running Reviewed
An avid runner needs the best accessories they can get. A running hat is almost as essential as running shoes. They will help you shield yourself from direct sunlight and the adverse effects of UV rays. Sunscreen might also help in similar situations, but these caps will do a better job. The hats will also help you remain focused on the task at hand, without sweat dripping down your face and impairing your vision.
The best running hats have several benefits and guarantee to help improve your performance on the track. The options in this review come highly recommended by fitness enthusiasts and professional athletes. They may look simple, but they will definitely have some significant impact on your training. Even though the market is flooded with a variety of caps, we have filtered through the chaff, to offer you the best there is.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 10 hrs of research
Top 10 Running Hats Reviewed
1. Adidas Adizero Cap
One size only
Adidas is one of the best, if not the best brand when it comes to sporting apparels. That is why it is not surprising to find that they have one of the highest rated products. The Adizero cap continues to meet runners’ expectations and sets the bar higher for its counterparts. What separates it from other caps in the market is the fact that it is tailor-made for the athlete who wants to take their craft a notch higher.Read more
It has a non-glare under visor, so there’s no chance of interference by reflective light. The cap has a hook and loop Velcro feature. As such, it is effortless to adjust and offers a perfect fit. However, they come in only one size, which perfectly fits most adults. Unlike some brands, this model has both male and female versions.
For the men’s version, you can choose one of the seven different color variations; black, core blue, night grey, shock lime, white, sharp grey, or clear onyx. For the female version, you have even more varieties with nine different color options. What also makes this a superb hat is the 3-D embroidered logo, which sits on the front like a crown. The design also stands out, and the colors are quite easy to match.
The fabric is 87% polyester and 13% spandex, which bring about the cap’s top attributes. You can rest assured that it will shield you from ultraviolet rays. The material is so light that you might even forget you have the cap on you. It also has a sweatband lacing on the inside, to ensure that sweat is wicked away.
Cleaning this running hat will not frustrate you, regardless of how much sweat the band accumulates. All it needs is some hand washing, wringing, and letting it out to quick dry in the sun. Afterward, the cap will once again be in prime condition, ready for another run. The hat has breathable mesh for ventilation purposes, enhancing your comfort during hot temperatures.
2. NIKE AeroBill
Cool casual design
Sizing issues reported
Nike is another big player in the sports apparel industry. Over the years, the brand has transcended expectations and has become a fashion icon as well. That is why their apparels are also excellent for other casual activities. You can even wear the AeroBill when hiking, and you still won’t look out of place.Read more
If you minimize your time outdoors when during hot seasons, Nike has the solution to your problems. The cap is well ventilated with AeroBill technology to keep cool all through. You can adjust it and experiment with it until you get a proper fit. It has a hook and loop closure system, which ensures that you are always comfortable. The fact that it also comprises of 97% polyester and some spandex also contributes to great fitting.
The reflective pull-tab design, with a Nike logo, makes it easy to lock: it has the same principle as a heel loop on a shoe. There are both female and male versions of this cap. Women with ponytails can slip their hair through the cap hole: if they have a Paula Radcliffe (female world record holder: London marathon) kind of look.
The unisex version has up to 26 different color combinations. You will have an easy time coordinating the caps with your existing wardrobe. All the different designs have the trademark 3-D Nike swoosh. They are versatile, making them wearable for social gatherings, school, and even for work.
3. TrailHeads Race Day Performance
Money back guarantee
Outdated strap design
Coming in at only 2 ounces, is the TrailHeads Race Day Performance running hat. It is an excellent choice for people who don’t like feeling weighed down when running. The dark underbill and multiple color choices, make it a hat worth investing in.Read more
The running cap has a reflective strip around the bill for safety when training during darker hours. As mentioned earlier, the area under the visor is blackish. The features will help improve your visibility during the day to reduce reflection. If you are still feeling skeptic about it, then take advantage of the money back guarantee. You will have nothing to lose in case you dislike it. It is rare for apparel manufacturers to convey such confidence in their product. That is why you can put your mind at ease when making this purchase.
Both variations of these hats are available in seven different colors. The best part about them is that you can use them in diverse sporting activities, be it tennis, hiking, golf, fishing, and of course, running. Because of the lightweight polyester fabric in its construction, air moves freely, thus discouraging sweating.
Over the years, TrailHeads as a trademark has quickly risen in its ranks in the market. For a brand that started in 2002, it has done quite well for itself by surpassing many established older brands. The company has done so by responding to market needs, acting on them swiftly, and providing consistent quality. These hats are just an example of the many other quality products they have. The company also manufacturers neck warmers, gloves, and headbands.
4. Under Armour Fly Fast
Few color options
Super lightweight, sweat-wicking, breathable mesh, and fast drying qualities are precisely what you want in your women running hat. The Under Armour Fly Fast offers all of that, making it an ideal selection. There is more than what meets the eye when it comes to this cap. It has Anti-odor technology, which prevents bacteria from multiplying and causing havoc. Therefore, if you are also obsessed with hygiene, you are definitely going to get your money’s worth with this purchase.Read more
If you are not always confident about one size fits all models, you will love how it stretches all round to accommodate almost all types of heads. The elastane material on the insert stretches to comfortable levels. As a result, you won’t feel as if it’s too tight or shaky. It stays in place properly, and will not be knocked off when it gets windy. Users also have the option of adjusting the Velcro strap at the back of the cap.
Even though these cap models are for females, many men have been able to pull off wearing them: especially when it comes to the black options. Users like that its visor is more extended compared to those of other brands. The reflective UA logos on the front and back make it an excellent choice for working out in low light conditions.
5. Outdoor Research Swift
Exceptional locking mechanism
Easy to clean
Sizing issues reported
Outdoor Research hat for running is another purpose-driven company. The brand’s products are highly revered and are always of the highest standards. Their significant association in outdoor activities assures buyers that they will get research-driven and well thought out products. The caps have a cleaver design, geared towards keeping your head cool.Read more
It has a superb hook and loop strap, which also hides the ends well. The design complements people with smaller heads who often have to deal with loose and unsightly straps. This feature gives the illusion that the cap was made almost exclusively for you.
The mesh liner on the sides will keep you cool. However, it also makes the cap’s design standout. The headbands on the sides also wick sweat without difficulty. However, the band is typically white, which makes dirt visible and the color also shows through the outer mesh. You can always machine wash it when you need to and return it will still restore to its default state. With over 24 color options available, you can readily find one that suits your preferences.
6. PUMA Evercat
Few color options
Puma running hat features as the third giant in this guide. Other than making some of the most iconic running shoes, they have also ventured into making caps and other products for matching. The Puma logo on the Evercats is proudly visible on the front and back of the cap.Read more
The brand's slogan is “Forever Faster,” which is what you will be, without any sweaty or heat-related distractions. This model is not restricted to sports alone; people commonly use them in other activities as well. Even after years of use, the cap will hold its shape well. It will still look as appealing as it did when it was still new.
It comes in one-size fits all, and you can adjust its fitting with the Velcro straps. Thanks to the 95 % polyester, and 5 % spandex, it has suitable properties that will have you looking to purchase one more pair. One other exciting feature the cap has is that users can effortlessly bend its bill. You can position it how you feel like works best for you.
7. Lululemon Dash & Splash II
Lycra fabric used
The Lululemon Dash & Splash II hat for running is an upgrade to the previous version. What makes this model stand out is that people to use them in water sports like surfing. Reason being, the caps have excellent moisture wicking capability. Therefore, you should consider purchasing it if you have been looking for a water-friendly alternative.Read more
The combination of nylon and Lycra makes it easy to wash, breathe, and stretch comfortably. Additionally, it is quick drying, so you will not have to wait too long for it to dry up. The cap will work as an excellent shield during your day runs. The ample mesh fabric will enhance aeration to help cool you down.
It has an adjustable back closure that makes it fit most people since it’s a one size fits all model. The Lululemon Dash & Splash II is a running hat for women. However, the ‘eternal wave starlight’ color variation is also popular with men.
8. Columbia Watertight
Old school strap design
If you are looking for an all-weather kind of running hat, then this is the perfect model to help meet your needs. You can gladly add it to your running gear collection, as a piece that you can use no matter the season. The cap consists of 100 percent nylon shell, and an inner polyester mesh that makes it able to withstand drastic weather changes. Thanks to its design, you can confidently wear it whether it is sunny or it abruptly starts to rain.Read more
The hat for runners is celebrated because it has a universal kind of fit. Its adjustability mechanism works perfectly, enabling it to fit different people. That is also what makes it an excellent gift option since you won’t have to worry about the recipient’s head size. Cleaning will be frustration-free since dirt and stains effortlessly come off in a single wash.
Buyers get to choose from three different colors of black, graphite, and pine green. The cap is unisex, and its colors are neutral. Their neutrality is also advantageous for antiglare benefits. With this kind of hat, you won’t have to reschedule your runs or training session. You will be confident enough to keep going despite the weather uncertainty because of all its amazing capabilities.
9. Fitdom Lightweight Sports
Money back guarantee
Quality issues reported
This Fitdom hat for runners has continuously proven that it has what it takes to be among the best. The running hat is extremely light in weight and has a streamlined design. Therefore, you won’t feel a vertical or horizontal drag when running.Read more
The cap’s ventilation is on its sides to take maximum advantage of the wind direction, and forward motion. The positioning of its reflective strips is also commendable. You are most certainly going to be visible enough for motorists to see you. You can easily customize the fit, to make it stay in place as you run.
In case you find it lacking, you can always return it and get a full refund. The manufacturer is also responsive to the client’s needs. They are ever ready to welcome their customers as part of their development community. The model has continuously challenged some of the best brands in this list. The brand focuses on originality. They do not mimic more prominent brands but build on their customers’ feedbacks and points of view.
10. Nylon 2XU
Relatively new company
2XU offers another running hat that can bravely take on wet weather conditions. It comprises of 100% nylon material and will certainly come in handy in case it unpredictably starts raining. For ventilation purposes, the brand uses breathable panels on all four sides. The design works effectively and will always keep you cool.Read more
The cap’s attributes make it popular among athletes who want a waterproof and exceptionally ventilated alternative. Its lightweight nature makes it user-friendly since it will not interfere with your runs. You can also purchase it if you are looking for an option you can substitute with a versatile everyday hat.
The design and shape will hold up even after a long period of consistent usage. It is also one of the most durable caps on the guide. The best thing about it is that it also comes at an affordable price point. Being a relatively new brand, 2XU has made significant headway in the market by producing quality products time and again.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Be self-assured on the track
As you’re running, you definitely do not want a hat that might slip off. If that happens, you risk losing time during a race or losing your focus during training as you frantically pick it off the floor. Such a hat may also slip down your face and cover your eyes. That is why a good fit is essential so that the cap does not interfere with your performance. It is good to note that most of the hats in this list are labeled as one size fits all: this means they are suited to fit most adult’s heads. However, each person’s head has its own distinction.
For example, some people have lots of hair and have to select an option that will be a good fit based on that. If you have a ponytail, the cap you choose must account for this. You can pull such your ponytail through the port of the hat, and your head will fit better. Such designs often have the most convenient adjustment mechanisms. Most of them have either a hook and loop mechanism or a plastic snap. Therefore, you will have the easiest, frustration-free time whenever you adjust your cap.
As you adjust your cap, you must ensure that it stretches across your head, and has a snug fit. Your head tends to move around and shake as you engage in such physical activities. A snug will help prevent your cap from moving around as you jog or run. Moreover, you will likely encounter winds, and if your hat is loose, the chances of it falling off are increased significantly.
Synthetic materials are usually the best when it comes to moisture wicking.
Sweating is the body’s natural way of cooling down, especially when partaking in strenuous physical activities. Running is no exception to the body’s natural reaction to a workout. Sweat, is inevitable, even though uncomfortable since nobody likes to be drenched in it.
The cap materials have moisture-wicking capabilities. As such, you will find some in this list with fabrics that absorb the sweat from your hair, before it seeps through to your face, and probably to your eyes. Others have materials like nylon, which allow you to wipe the moisture away and then proceed, without waiting for hours for your cap to dry out.
Some of these products have a thinner fabric, to encourage the evaporation of sweat; all the while keeping you cool. Some caps consist of some of the best sweat-resistant materials, right here in this guide as well. These are specialty items, best suited for budding athletes, who want to run with minimal disruptions.
Find what works for you
As earlier mentioned, sweat is something athletes have to contend with. The designs of these products try to mitigate sweat, to minimize discomfort. As such, each brand has its own unique ways, architecture, and materials, geared toward the cause.
These caps are highly ventilated, with rows of mesh, placed in selected areas. Their designs and mechanisms have evolved in numerous ways, from how they keep people cool, to how they adjust and look. They are also lighter than ordinary looking baseball type hats.
When it comes to adjustability, some have unique locking mechanisms, developed in recent years. Such models are often marketed as a one size fits all cap. However, they do not always have some of the benefits that other caps have.
A cap with a looser fit works to your advantage when it gets hotter. The looseness will promote ventilation, consequently reducing your body temperature. Fortunately, the options in this list all have effective adjustment mechanisms. You won’t have to stop in the middle of the race or training, just to adjust your shield.
Some caps make it convenient to go running in the wee hours of the morning, or late in the evening. Such hours are often dark, and thus harder for people to see you. You run the risk of oncoming traffic hitting you. These models have reflective strips and materials, which make you more visible to motorists. The bonus is that working out during such hours also helps tone your muscles due to the drop in temperatures. It is true to say that these hats not only protect you when the sun is up but also when it sets.
A reputable brand is a safe bet
You should always look for products from recognized brands. We say that because of many reasons. For one, there is a guarantee of quality, and the option to match with your other apparels. Some brands have few color options, and designs that fail to blend well with others.
For instance, you want to avoid wearing a green cap, a blue shirt, and grey shorts, from different brands. That way, you won’t end up looking like a clown. If you are on the look out for a blue hat, make sure you have something to match it to. Better yet, ensure that you own shoes from the same brand to get a more complete and refined look.
Moreover, choosing from a recognized manufacturer could ensure you coordinate well with your teammates, choice of sporting apparels. If you purchase from other random brands, you risk not blending with your teammates.
Big players in the sporting industry have invested heavily in their research, to find out what you really need. Small manufacturers can only try to emulate what others have done though they cannot reach the same levels.
Express yourself in different ways
Even though these models are best suited for running, they are not restricted to other applications. You can use them as fashion accessories; therefore, get one to revamp your overall look. They look good on all genders and are suitable for several occasions. For this reason, the choices available from this list provide you with many color options and designs, from the best brands.
Once you get used to these caps, it will be hard to leave home without one. Besides, the caps in this list will allow you to switch up your look. You can wear them ordinarily, sideways or backward. You can also pair them with your sunglasses: a trendy look popular with travelers.
The designs we have chosen are popular with many in the sporting fraternity: from golfers, tennis players, and even footballers on the bench. You cannot miss them in the entertainment industry as well. It’s not surprising to find a movie director wearing one. The media has also popularized these caps by showing numerous ways of incorporating them to one’s style. Most women like these models since they can also hold up a ponytail.
The list has many color combos, and patterns you can play around with to get a picture-perfect look. They are fashionable, besides being functional and practical. According to statistics, ordinary people purchase most of these caps compared to athletes. That shows how widely accepted they are in society.
The icing on the cake is that you will experience all the benefits listed above, and still keep cool on the hottest days.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
While on the trail, light bounces off from multiple surfaces and directions. If you take a light color for your under visor, you will increase the intensity of the reflected light. On the other hand, a dark under bill will minimize the strength of this glare. You will also reduce the blinding effects of direct sunlight.
In contrast to caps with dark under bills, light-colored options are the best selection for hotter days. Their fabric reflects almost all the wavelengths of light. Darker colors, like black, absorb nearly the full light wavelength spectrum, which is then converted to heat. You do not want to encourage that. Therefore, you should select a brighter cap to maintain a cool temperature on the track.
Other Factors to Consider
Being fit and healthy gives you a new lease on life. However, you need always need to equip yourself with the proper gear. Whether you like to lift weights, practice yoga, or run; you should not take for granted how something like a good pair of shoes, socks, or hat can affect your routine. Aside from improving your performance, the products on this list will also make you feel and look good. Additionally, hot weather will no longer be an obstacle for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: What are the best running hats?
The best option is one that is in line with the criteria used in this guide. It should be compatible with the season you plan to use it. For instance, if it is often raining, get a hat that is appropriate for that kind of weather. The same applies to all the other weather conditions. The cap’s material also plays a significant role when it comes to weather resistance. Additionally, the fabric needs to be comfortable.
It should also be from a reputable brand so that you can be confident in its quality. Ensure that it is also versatile so that you can use it for different applications. The cap’s features should make things easier for you in terms of convenience. Lastly, get one that fits you perfectly, or has excellent adjustability so that it stays in place as you run.
q: How do I wash my running hat?
As with most apparels, they come with a tag that shows you the most suitable way to take care of them. However, if you do not find such information, rest easy knowing that these products are easy to maintain. The reason for this is that the caps in this list are typically made of synthetic materials. However, the same cannot be said for natural materials like cotton, since they require a lot of effort to maintain. Besides, organic materials are dirt magnets. You have to clean them more frequently than synthetic ones.
Avoid washing your cap using strong detergents, or machine-washing them if you are not sure of what to do. Taking things to the extreme might even cause a discoloration in your fabrics: a good old hand wash and some air-drying work best in most cases.
q: How is wearing running hats beneficial to runners?
Others believe wearing running caps weighs them down during the run; however, the pros outweigh the cons. The most clear-cut reason why running hats are recommendable is that they keep you cool during your dash. The caps absorb sweat on your head, cooling you down as the sweat evaporates into the air. Your running experience is bound to get better when your body temperature cools down as you run.
You might also want to buy a running hat if you have long hair. It allows you to control your hair by preventing it from absorbing heat and whipping all over your face. A cap with a ponytail hole also keeps your hair in check. Running hats also give your head a streamlined shape, which means lesser resistance as you run, making you a tad faster. Other than that, they offer excellent protection from elements such as the sun and rain that can otherwise bring discomfort.
q: How do running hat fabrics correspond to different seasons?
The running gears are made of fabric ranging from polyester, wool, polypropylene, bamboo, cotton, spandex to nylon. These fabrics all have different qualities and are interchangeable depending on the season.
Cotton, per se, absorbs moisture and keeps you warm, therefore making it ideal for cold seasons. Polypropylene is water resistant; you can count on it to keep you dry if you run in the rain. The plastic-based polyester repels UV rays making the fabric excellent for hot summers.
Wool hats, on the other hand, are usable all through the year due to their temperature regulating properties. They are incredibly breathable and will keep you cool when it is hot and keep you warm when it is cold.
Lastly, we have eco-friendly bamboo fabric. You can opt for one if you are an environmental enthusiast. It is anti-bacterial, sweat-wicking, super soft, and comfortable.
q: Which are the different running hat designs?
They come in different designs and yet again, choice of use narrows down to the runner’s needs and preferences. The cold winter does not stop some people from going for a run. Beanies are very warm hence recommended for such seasons. They offer a secure fit around the ears protecting you from feeling cold as well as absorbing sweat. Moreover, these hats only require one wash per week.
Visors are quite trendy, and the fact that they are super lightweight gives them an edge over other types of running hats. Suppose you want to feel the wind blow over your head as you run, this cap will deliver just that as it lacks an upper covering.
Buyers can also opt for fitted running hats, snapbacks, or strap-backs, which fit multiple people because of their simple adjustment mechanisms.
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