Why buy a beach hat?
One of the best reasons to use a beach hat is for extra protection from UV rays while you’re strolling, lounging, or even working in the sun. Although you’ll probably remember to slather on your favorite sunscreen, adding a beach hat will give you a double dose of protection from those UV rays. They also can offer shade from the heat and protect your eyes from bright sunlight. Additionally, wearing just the right beach hat can accent the style of your swimsuit, cover-up, favorite sundress, or even your daily summer wardrobe.
What should you look for in a beach hat?
- Material: Beach hats come in many different materials, so you’ll want to consider your comfort and the style you’re going for when deciding. Some of the most common materials are straw, canvas, cotton, and polyester. A loosely woven straw hat will be especially breathable. Cotton and canvas are easy to clean and durable, making them great for packing in your suitcase or tote for that fun beach trip.
- Brim: For protection against the sun’s rays, start with a brim that’s at least 3 to 4 inches wide. You can find brims up to about 7 inches wide. If you’re going to be active playing volleyball or other sports, you may want a smaller-brimmed hat or visor, and you’ll also probably want a brim that’s sturdy, not floppy.
- Style: You can find beach hats in a wide array of styles, from a floppy straw hat with a pretty sash to a chic fedora in your favorite color. If you want to keep your hat safely planted on your head in high winds, choose a style with a chin strap (or perhaps add one to the hat).
How do you measure levels of sun protection in beach hats?
The beach hats that offer the most protection from the sun are those that are labeled with their level of ultraviolet protection factor (UPF), which measures the amount of protection an item of clothing offers against UVA and UVB rays from the sun. Even if you’re not someone who burns easily, look for a beach hat one with a level of at least UPF 50, ideally more.
Our Picks for the Best Beach Hats for Women
Lanzom Women's Wide-Brim Straw Panama Roll up Hat
Get fashion, function, and portability with this adjustable straw beach hat.
Pros: This highly functional fedora-style beach hat from Lanzom is available in 23 different colors and has a UPF of 50+. It’s made of a paper straw and polyester blend for lightweight and breathable comfort. It also comes equipped with an adjustable band on the inside, so its one size will fit most. The wide brim is perfect for shading the face on sunny days. Since it’s foldable and durable, you won’t have to worry about this hat getting crushed or taking up too much luggage space when you pack it for that beach getaway. You also won’t have to worry about losing this cute hat on a windy day since it has an adjustable chin strap.
Cons: Although the sizing on this hat is adjustable, it’s only by a small degree. Some may find the hat to still be too large for their heads. In addition, some were disappointed with the stitching on this hat and found it to be sloppy and out of place.
Bottom Line: Overall, if you’re looking for a stylish, functional, and packable beach hat that can keep you protected from the sun while still looking great, then this is the hat for you. It’s versatile, comfortable, and built to last, making it a great investment for anyone looking to elevate their summer wardrobe. In addition, it looks great off and on the beach, in dressy or casual occasions.
FURTALK Sun Visor Hats for Women
Protect your face from the sun and keep your ponytail perfect with this visor style hat.
Pros: With this visor-like beach hat, you don’t have to sacrifice your perfect ponytail or updo in favor of wearing a hat at the beach. The top is open, allowing you to put your hair in a messy bun or ponytail and stay cool without sacrificing shade and sun protection. It’s also a great option for anyone who finds full-headed hats to be too hot during the summer months. The brim provides high UV UPF protection, while the adjustable Velcro closure in the back makes it easy to get a perfect fit. The detachable chin strap also helps to hold the hat in place on windy days. The neutral color of this high-quality paper straw hat means that it will go with just about any outfit, making it a versatile addition to your summer wardrobe. Another great feature of this hat is that it is roll-up, foldable, and packable, making it easy to transport and carry in your beach tote, purse, or bag. It can even be stored in your car’s glove box for impromptu adventures. Despite being easy to pack, the hat still holds its shape well, so you won’t have to worry about it losing its form.
Cons: Some may be concerned about having the top of their head exposed and unprotected from UV rays, especially on those days when you don’t wear your hair up. And despite this hat being advertised as one size fits all, some customers found it to be either too big or too small. Additionally, there is a chance the inside material will rip or that the seams might come loose over time.
Bottom Line: This ponytail-friendly straw hat is a great choice for anyone looking for a stylish, comfortable, and practical solution for sun protection during the summer months. Its high-quality construction, packability, and adjustable sizing make it a versatile and reliable choice for any outdoor activity.
Women's Sun Straw Hat Wide-Brim UPF 50
This classic straw beach hat comes in 14 color/sash combinations and three size options.
Pros: This traditional straw hat is comfortable, stylish, and foldable for easy packing. It’s constructed of high-quality paper straw with a UPF of 50+. The over 4-inch brim protects sensitive skin from the sun’s damaging rays, while the inner sweatband absorbs sweat before it falls into your face. It comes in medium, large, and extra-large sizes and has an adjustable strap inside the rim for an even more custom fit. It also has a removable chin strap to help it stay put on those windy days.
Cons: This hat may be a bit too floppy for those who prefer a firmer brim. Due to the floppiness, some found it to be unstable and noted that it slid around and did not stay in place. Additionally, some users noted quality issues, such as loose stitching and scratchy and uncomfortable material.
Bottom Line: This is a classic straw hat for those who appreciate a timeless look while strolling on the beach, boating, gardening, or enjoying any other activity in the sun. This sun hat is a great choice for those in need of sun protection and style. You’ll love the wide brim and packable design, as well as the adjustable fit and cute bow. It also has UPF 50 protection, making it a safe choice for those with skin concerns.
CHOK.LIDS Everyday Cotton-Style Bucket Hat
This bucket hat is made of 100% cotton for a cool and casual day outside.
Pros: This 100% cotton bucket beach hat from CHOCK.LIDS comes in a whopping 40 different colors, so you should have no problem finding one in your favorite shade. It’s ideal for those who want sun protection without a wide brim. The natural cotton allows your head to breathe, and the eyelets provide more airflow for all-day comfort. It has a UPF level of 50+ and sufficient shade to provide a good degree of sun protection for your face and eyes.
Cons: The smaller brim of this bucket hat doesn’t provide as much coverage as a wide-brim hat for those who are looking for maximum sun protection. It doesn’t offer much shade, as the brim is very narrow.
Bottom Line: This beach hat is a great choice for those who want the comfort of cotton along with a smaller brim. It has a cute, casual style and is available in several colors to complement any outfit. In addition, the wide variety of color choices ensures that you will have a color to match every occasion.
Funky Junque Women's Baseball Cap Distressed Vintage
Get the sun protection you need for your face in a unique distressed vintage look with this baseball cap from Funky Junque.
Pros: This hat is perfect for shaking things up. This 100% cotton women’s baseball cap has a curved bill for an unobstructed view and a low-profile crown. You won’t run out of design options since it comes in 216 colors/styles, from an embroidered American flag to a dog paw for pet parents to playful phrases, such as “Bad Hair Day.” With a curved bill and low-profile crown, it’s a comfortable and practical choice for outdoor activities. The adjustable closure on the back of most designs makes it easy to get the perfect fit. Made of 100% cotton, this hat is both breathable and durable, making it a great choice for hot and sunny days. Whether you’re going to the beach or just running errands, this hat is a fun and practical accessory.
Cons: While this baseball cap-style beach hat may be a cute and stylish option, it is important to note that it may not provide as much sun protection as other types of hats specifically designed for sun protection, such as wide-brim beach hats. The brim of the hat is relatively small and therefore may not fully cover the face, neck, and shoulders, leaving those areas vulnerable to harmful UV rays. Additionally, the hat does not have a listed UPF rating, which is a measure of how well the fabric blocks out UV radiation. This means that it is unclear how much protection the hat actually provides against the sun’s harmful rays. Therefore, while this hat may be a great accessory for a beach day, it may not be the best option for those who prioritize sun protection.
Bottom Line: This unique distressed cap is a great choice if you’re looking for a stylish accessory that can show off your personality. Made of 100% cotton, it’s not only comfortable but also breathable, which is especially important on hot days. This cap is designed to fit most head sizes, so you don’t need to worry about finding the right size. Keep in mind that this cap may not provide as much sun protection as a wider-brim hat, so it may be best to use it for fashion purposes rather than for extended periods of time in direct sunlight. Overall, if you’re looking for a unique and stylish accessory to add to your wardrobe, this distressed cap could be a great choice.
Whether you choose a floppy straw hat, a hairdo-saving visor, or a baseball cap with personality, our favorite beach hats for women are easy to travel with, help block UV rays, and keep you more comfortable. Choose your favorite for a cooler, safer, and more fashionable day at the beach.