All over the world, men have been wearing hats made of straw to keep their heads calm for years. Straw being lightweight and durable is an ideal material for protecting the head from scorching heat. Different types of hats are available, varying in quality, style, and feel depending on the material used to make them.
Usually, synthetic or natural straw materials are tightly interwoven and brimmed to make a typical straw hat. Small openings also help keep the wearer’s head cool, even in the hottest summers. These hats are available in varying styles and sizes, and people have used them since the Middle Ages. But amazingly, this accessory hasn’t lost its charm yet and is still widely in trend, being used for protection against the glaring sun.
How do you determine hat efficiency?
Primarily, the efficiency of the straw hat depends on the tightness of the weaving and the size of holes left open. The amount of sunrays the hat lets through depends on these two factors, determining the hat’s effectiveness against the sun. Hence, while buying a hat, the trick is to hold it up against the light to check its transparency. Straw hats usually have a UPF(Ultraviolet Protection Factor)rating.
For maximum sun protection, you may buy a hat with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor of around 50. Hats with a tighter weave pattern allow less sunlight to pass through, thus providing more protection. Since finer and faster weaves require more effort to be put in while constructing, making them more expensive than expected.
Popular styles of straw hats for men include the following types:
Boater Straw Hat
Being the oldest type, men for most of history adore it. During warm weather, people traditionally wear it as a formal hat. The legend goes that there was an official day (usually the second Saturday of the month of may) known as the Straw Hat Day when the males would officially renounce their winter hats and start to wear these summer boater hats.
These come from stiff straws, giving them a unique look with a flat, stiff brim and crown. Although it’s typically made for men, this timeless and fashionable piece of accessory is also widely used by ladies. Nonetheless, it is not an ideal aspirant for sun protection because of its short brim. You can explore more to get the best headgear for your wardrobe.
Panama Straw Hat
The Panama straw hat is ideal for a vacation due to its breathability and easy-to-wear nature. Typically made of pale toquilla straw, it is popularly paired with light silks or linen suits by men.
Panama straw hats come from weaving the straws very tightly. Hence more effort is put into making them, elevating their final prices. Though expensive, they are widely worn by vacationers and tourists because, along with looking classy, these hats provide excellent sun protection.
Fedora Straw Hat
Panama and Fedora look similar to the extent that it is difficult to tell them apart. Panama hats come from straw, fedoras from straw, and other materials like felt. However, the straw material used is the characteristic feature of a Panama hat; the shape is what defines a fedora hat.
Additionally, fedora hats have a low crown, a pinched front, and a moderately wide beam. These attributes of the fedora make it stylish and increase its effectiveness in sun protection. They are a popular favorite among men vacationers because of their lightweight and efficiency. As a cherry on the cake, it is super easy to pair them with almost every outfit without disturbing the style sense. Fedora hats look exceptionally attractive on men with long hair.
Lifeguard Straw Hat
Being named after the lifeguards of the California coast, the lifeguard straw hats are popular among anglers, gardeners, and lifeguards even today. These come from loosely woven thick straws, with a chin strap that you may adjust when required. Its uniqueness lies in its high crown.
Lifeguard straw hats are not the best choice in terms of protection from the sun. However, they look stylish and cover the wearer from harsh sun rays.
To get the best value out of the money to buy a men’s straw hat, one must ensure that it provides excellent sun protection and has a wide brim to shield the eyes and the face from UV rays, along with being lightweight and comfortable to wear.
Straw hats are an irreplaceable summer accessory for almost all outdoor activities and can keep the body cool and protect from harmful UV rays. Thus whether basking by the pool or beach, fishing, gardening, or traveling, a good hat must not be forgotten to keep oneself cool and protected. It is designed to give you style and protection simultaneously. What you prefer to amp your outfit depends on your style statement.