what do I need to know about buying a cowboy hat

What Do I Need to Know About Buying a Cowboy Hat? Ultimate Guide.

Howdy y’all! If you’re looking to buy a cowboy hat, but thinking what do I need to know about buying one, then this post should help you out.

There are a few things you need to keep in mind to ensure you find the perfect hat for you. So, as a mad hatter myself, I’m here to guide you through the key factors to consider when purchasing a cowboy hat.

First and foremost, it’s important to consider the materials that you want your hat to be made of. Different materials offer different benefits, and the choice largely depends on the purpose of your hat. Secondly, cowboy hats come in a variety of styles, and it’s helpful to understand the differences between them to find a style that suits your personality and facial structure. Lastly, finding the right fit is crucial to ensure your hat is comfortable and stays in place.

In this article, I’ll guide you through each of these factors in detail, providing tips and advice on how to choose the perfect cowboy hat for you.

Key Takeaways:

  • When buying a cowboy hat, consider the materials, style, and fit.
  • There are many different styles of cowboy hats, each with unique features and benefits.
  • The right fit is essential to ensure your hat stays in place and is comfortable to wear.

Choosing the Right Cowboy Hat Style

When it comes to choosing the perfect cowboy hat, style is a crucial factor to consider. There are several different styles of cowboy hats, each with its own unique look and purpose.

The most popular styles include:

ClassicThe classic cowboy hat generally features a high crown and wide brim, perfect for protection from the sun.
RodeoA rodeo cowboy hat tends to have a lower crown and a shorter brim, allowing for ease of movement while on horseback.
GusThe gus style of cowboy hat has a more rounded crown and shorter brim, offering a more casual look.

When choosing a cowboy hat style, it is important to consider your individual preferences and your face shape. For example, those with a more round face may want to opt for a hat with a more elongated shape, while those with a longer face may prefer a hat with a wider brim to balance out their features.

Ultimately, the style of cowboy hat you choose should reflect your personality and fit your intended use. Whether you’re looking for a rugged and traditional look or something more contemporary and stylish, there is a cowboy hat out there for everyone.

“Remember, the style of cowboy hat you choose should reflect your personality and fit your intended use.”

Understanding Cowboy Hat Materials

When it comes to cowboy hats, the material is just as important as the style and fit. There are several materials to choose from, each with its unique strengths and weaknesses.

StrawLightweight, breathable, and ideal for warm weather; inexpensiveNot as durable or long-lasting as other materials; less formal look
FeltDurable and long-lasting; can be shaped and molded to desired styleMore expensive than straw; can be heavy and hot in warm weather
LeatherDurable and long-lasting; provides excellent protection from the elementsCan be heavy and hot in warm weather; more expensive than other materials

When choosing a cowboy hat material, it’s essential to consider your needs and preferences. If you’re looking for a hat for a summer event, a straw hat might be the best option for its lightweight and breathable nature. If you are seeking something more durable and long-lasting, a felt or leather hat might be a better fit.

Remember that, regardless of the material you choose, proper care and maintenance are essential to preserve the hat’s quality and longevity.

cowboy hat materials

Finding the Right Cowboy Hat Size

Getting the right size for your cowboy hat is crucial for comfort and style. To determine your size, measure your head circumference with a tape measure. Place the tape measure above your eyebrows and ears, about a half-inch above the top of your ears.

Use the following chart to find your hat size based on your head circumference:

Head Circumference (in inches)Hat Size
20 3/46 5/8
21 1/46 3/4
21 5/86 7/8
22 3/87 1/8
22 3/47 1/4
23 1/87 3/8
23 1/27 1/2
23 7/87 5/8
24 1/47 3/4
24 5/87 7/8

Keep in mind that some hats may run larger or smaller than their labeled size, so trying on multiple sizes is recommended. When trying on a hat, make sure it sits comfortably on your head without feeling too tight or too loose. It should sit snugly just above your eyebrows and around your entire head.

Tip: If you find a hat you love but it doesn’t fit quite right, consider using foam hat sizing tape to adjust the fit for a more comfortable and secure feel.

cowboy hat size chart

Consider Your Budget

When it comes to buying a cowboy hat, setting a budget is essential. Cowboy hats can range in price from under $20 to over $1,000, depending on the materials used and the level of craftsmanship.

While it may be tempting to invest in a more expensive hat, it’s important to consider your personal budget and choose a hat that offers both quality and value within your price range.

One way to stretch your budget is to look for hats made with synthetic materials, such as polyester or nylon, which can mimic the look of more expensive materials like felt or leather.

Keep in mind that a higher price tag does not always guarantee better quality. Take the time to research reviews and compare prices from different retailers to find the best deal for your budget.

cowboy hat and budget

Shop from Reputable Retailers

When it comes to buying a cowboy hat, it’s essential to shop from reputable retailers who specialize in Western wear. This helps ensure that the hat you purchase is of high quality and an authentic piece of Western fashion.

One tip for finding reliable sources is to do your research online before making a purchase. Look for stores with a strong online presence, including positive reviews and a professional website. It’s also a good idea to check if the store has a physical location so that you can visit and try on hats in person.

Avoid purchasing cowboy hats from generic fashion stores or street vendors, as these aren’t likely to provide true Western-style hats and may even sell counterfeit products. Remember, a cowboy hat is a symbol of tradition and heritage, so it’s important to honor that by choosing a high-quality hat from a trustworthy source.

Trying Before Buying

When it comes to purchasing a cowboy hat that fits just right, trying the hat on in person is crucial. Don’t be tempted to simply order online based on measurements or size charts. Every hat is unique, and what may fit well in one style or material may not in another.

When trying on hats, start by measuring your head size properly to ensure you try on hats that fit you. Hold the hat by the brim, and place it on your head, making sure it sits snugly but comfortably. The hat should fit securely on your head without being too tight or too loose.

Another thing to consider is your face shape. Depending on whether you have a round, square, oval, or heart-shaped face, certain cowboy hat styles may be more flattering than others. Don’t be afraid to try on a few different styles to see which one looks best on you.

buying a cowboy hat

Make sure to try on the hat at different angles and positions to ensure it fits well and looks the way you want it to. It’s also important to check the height of the crown to ensure it doesn’t sit too high or too low on your head.

Overall, taking the time to try on cowboy hats in person is crucial to finding the perfect fit. Don’t be afraid to consult with the store associates for help and advice. With patience and trial and error, you’ll find the ideal cowboy hat for your style and comfort preferences.

Caring for Your Cowboy Hat

After investing in a high-quality cowboy hat, it’s important to take proper care of it to ensure its longevity and maintain its shape. Here are some essential tips on how to care for your cowboy hat:

Tip #1: Clean Your Hat RegularlyTo remove dirt and sweat, use a soft-bristled brush or a clean, damp cloth to wipe the hat in a circular motion. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or detergents, as they can damage the materials. If your hat is stained, take it to a professional cleaner who specializes in Western wear.
Tip #2: Store Your Hat ProperlyWhen not in use, store your cowboy hat on a hat rack or in a hat box to maintain its shape. Avoid storing it in a cramped space or laying it flat, as this can cause the brim to warp or curl. If you’re traveling, pack the hat in a hat carrier or wrap it in tissue paper to protect it from damage.
Tip #3: Handle Your Hat CarefullyWhen putting on or taking off your cowboy hat, handle it by the brim, not the crown. This will help prevent the crown from becoming misshapen or dented. Additionally, avoid placing the hat upside down or on its brim, as this can also cause damage to the shape.

By following these simple guidelines, you can keep your cowboy hat looking great and ensure it lasts for years to come.

cowboy hat maintenance

Customization Options

For those looking to add a personal touch to their cowboy hat, customization options are available to make it unique. From hatbands to feathers, these additions can give your hat a distinctive look that reflects your style.

One popular option is to add a hatband, which can be made of leather, beads, or any other material. It can feature intricate designs or simple patterns to complement the color of your hat. Some hatbands also have conchos, small decorative items that add character to the hat.

Another way to customize your cowboy hat is to attach a feather. This can be done by sliding it behind the hatband or inserting it into the crown of the hat. Feathers can be from various types of birds, such as peacock, pheasant, or turkey, and can add a touch of color and personality to your hat.

For those who want to make their cowboy hat truly their own, it’s possible to personalize the hat with initials or logos. This can be done with embroidery or even engraving for a more permanent option. Customized hats make great gifts or can be a way to show support for a favorite sports team or organization.

Custom cowboy hat with hatband and feather

Before customizing your cowboy hat, be sure to consult with a professional hat maker or retailer to ensure that the modifications are done correctly and do not harm the hat’s structure or material.

Additional Accessories and Tips

Accessorizing a cowboy hat can enhance the hat’s style and make it unique. You can add a hatband, chin strap, or even feathers to your cowboy hat to give it a personalized touch.

A hatband is a decorative band that wraps around the base of the crown. It can be made of leather, ribbon, or another material and can feature studs, conchos, or other embellishments. A hatband can add a pop of color or texture to your hat and help it stand out.

A chin strap is a useful accessory for keeping your hat secure on windy days or when riding. It can be made of leather or another durable material and attaches to the inside of the hat with clips or loops.

Feathers are a popular addition to cowboy hats and can add a touch of Western flair. You can attach feathers to the hatband or tuck them behind the sweatband for a subtle effect. Just make sure the feathers don’t obstruct your view or make the hat too heavy.

When wearing a cowboy hat, it’s essential to maintain proper etiquette. For example, if you’re indoors, it’s polite to remove your hat. If you’re at an event or gathering, it’s customary to tip your hat to greet people or show respect. Also, be mindful of the ways you wear your hat; a low brim can indicate shyness or aggression, while a high brim can suggest confidence or friendliness.

Remember that a cowboy hat is a statement piece, and the way you wear it reflects your personality and style. Experiment with different accessories and styles to find the look that suits you best.

cowboy hat with hatband and feather


Buying a cowboy hat can be an exciting experience, but it’s important to keep a few key factors in mind to ensure you find the perfect hat for you. Remember to consider the material, style, and fit, as well as setting a budget and shopping from reputable retailers.

When trying on hats, take the time to find the right size and don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles. And once you’ve found your ideal cowboy hat, make sure to take good care of it to keep it looking its best for years to come.

With these tips and advice, you’ll be on your way to finding the perfect cowboy hat that not only looks great but also reflects your unique style and personality. So, saddle up and enjoy the ride!


Q: What do I need to know about buying a cowboy hat?

A: When buying a cowboy hat, there are several key factors to consider. These include the style, materials, fit, budget, and where to shop. By understanding these elements, you can find the perfect cowboy hat that suits your preferences and needs.

Q: How do I choose the right cowboy hat style?

A: Choosing the right cowboy hat style is a matter of personal preference and face shape. There are various styles available, such as the traditional western, cattleman, and gambler. Consider your style preferences and how the hat complements your facial features to find the perfect fit.

Q: What are the different materials used in cowboy hats?

A: Cowboy hats can be made from materials like straw, felt, and leather. Each material has its own pros and cons, such as breathability, durability, and appearance. Understanding these differences can help you make an informed decision and choose a material that fits your needs.

Q: How do I find the right size for a cowboy hat?

A: Finding the right cowboy hat size involves measuring your head circumference and referring to hat sizing charts. It’s important to ensure a comfortable fit that doesn’t squeeze or feel loose. Following a step-by-step guide can help you find a hat that fits perfectly.

Q: What should I consider when it comes to my budget?

A: Setting a budget is important when buying a cowboy hat. Consider the quality and value of the hat within your price range. Look for retailers that offer a range of options and consider factors like material, craftsmanship, and brand reputation to find a hat that offers the best bang for your buck.

Q: How can I ensure I’m shopping from reputable retailers?

A: When purchasing a cowboy hat, it’s crucial to buy from reputable retailers who specialize in Western wear. Look for stores with positive reviews, customer testimonials, and a wide selection of authentic products. Avoid buying from unknown sources or online marketplaces to minimize the risk of counterfeit products.

Q: Is it important to try on cowboy hats before buying?

A: Yes, trying on cowboy hats is essential to ensure a proper fit and style. When trying on a hat, pay attention to how it sits on your head, the comfort level, and how it suits your personal style. Taking the time to try on different hats will help you find the perfect one.

Q: How do I care for my cowboy hat?

A: Proper care is essential to maintain the shape and longevity of your cowboy hat. This includes cleaning the hat, storing it correctly, and handling it with care. Following specific guidelines for your hat material will help you keep it in excellent condition for years to come.

Q: Can I customize my cowboy hat?

A: Yes, cowboy hats can be customized to reflect your personal style. Options include adding hatbands, feathers, or even personalizing the hat with initials or logos. Customization allows you to create a unique hat that stands out and showcases your individuality.

Q: What other accessories can I add to my cowboy hat?

A: Enhance the look of your cowboy hat with accessories like hatbands, chin straps, and other decorative details. These can add a touch of personal style and make your hat more versatile. Additionally, consider practical tips for wearing a cowboy hat confidently, such as adjusting the brim or securing it during outdoor activities.