A bucket hat is more than just a fashion statement. It’s a crucial gear for any runner who wants to enjoy their miles while staying protected from the sun.
But with so many options on the market, it can be tough to know which bucket hat is right for you. That’s why we’ve put together this handy guide on choosing the best bucket hat for your needs.
So before you head out on your next run, ensure you’re prepared with the perfect bucket hat by following these simple tips.
And if you are in hurry, we also prepare the top three running bucket hats we selected right below the guide!
About the Brim: Floppy Or Stiff?
The brim type is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a bucket hat.
Generally, there are two types of bucket hat brims: floppy and stiff. As the name suggests, a floppy brim is more relaxed.
This type of brim is ideal for short-brim bucket hats that are meant to be worn in casual settings.
Besides, if you tend to sweat a lot, you might want to avoid a floppy brim because it can cause your hat to feel heavy and uncomfortable.
On the other hand, a stiff brim is more structured. This type is often found on military bucket hats and is designed to offer more sun protection.
If you’re looking for a hat to wear on long runs or hikes, then a stiff-brim bucket hat is likely your best bet.
And we suggest you choose a 3-inch brim or above for the best coverage. Both of your face and neck will thank you later.
About the Crown: High or Low Height?
Another critical factor in choosing a bucket hat is the height of the crown.
A lower crown will stay firmly in place no matter how much you move. But it might not offer as much sun protection as a higher-crown hat.
Hence if you prefer to run in the early morning or late afternoon when the sun is lower in the sky, a lower-crown hat might be all you need.
But if you tend to run during the midday hours, when the sun is directly overhead, you’ll want a higher-crown hat for maximum protection.
On the other hand, if you have a larger head or lots of hair, you might want to avoid a low-profile hat because it can feel tight and uncomfortable.
Here are the summarized choosing principles about height:
- If you want maximum sun protection/a large head/lots of hair, choose a higher-crown hat.
- If you prefer to run in the early morning or late afternoon, a lower-crown hat is probably all you need.
About the Function: 4 You Must Need to Know
Of course, not all bucket hats are created equal. When it comes to functionality, there are certain features that every runner needs in their hat.
– Breathable Vents:
First and foremost, you’ll want a bucket hat with breathable vents that will help keep you cool and comfortable on even the hottest days.
Running can be tough enough without worrying about sweat dripping down your face.
So make sure your hat has plenty of vents to keep the air flowing and help you stay cool no matter how hard you work.
– Adjustable Drawstring:
Unlike baseball caps, most bucket hats have a loose, relaxed fit.
While this is great for style points, it’s not so great when you’re trying to keep your hat on while you’re running.
That’s why we recommend choosing a bucket hat with an adjustable drawstring. This will help ensure that your hat won’t slide down or blow off when you’re out on your run.
– Windproof Chin Straps:
Last but not least, you’ll want a bucket hat with windproof chin straps.
This is especially important if you live in a windy area or tend to run in the early morning or late afternoon when the strongest winds.
Windproof chin straps will help keep your hat secure, even on the windiest days.
– Moisture-wicking, Quick-dry Material:
The material of your hat is also important to consider. Ideally, you’ll want a hat made from moisture-wicking, quick-dry material that will help keep you cool and comfortable on even the hottest days.
While running sweat will inevitably happen, you don’t want it to ruin your hat or make it feel uncomfortable.
So make sure to choose a hat made from quick-dry material that will help wick away sweat and keep you feeling fresh even on the longest of runs.
Top 3 Best Bucket Hat for Running Reviews
Now that you know what to look for in a bucket hat, it’s time to start shopping. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of our top three favorite bucket hats for running.
#1. Best Overall: Outdoor Research Sun Bucket Hat for Outdoor Sports
Check the Price On Amazon / On Outdoor Research
Fabric: Nylon, Polyester, Cotton
Breathability: Breathable Fabric
Weight: 2.3oz (Ultra Lightweight)
Extra Points: Anti-sun-glare brim design, UPF50+ protection, Packable, Headband Inside
There’s a lot to like about the Outdoor Research Sun Bucket Hat. First, it can satisfy all your needs with its ultra-lightweight, breathable, and packable design.
No matter where you’re running, this hat will keep you cool and comfortable. It’s also great for hot days thanks to its UPF50+ protection and anti-sun-glare brim design.
Plus, the headband inside helps keep the sweat out of your eyes so you can focus on your run.
Sun glare can be a real problem when trying to enjoy the outdoors. But with this hat, you won’t have to worry about that anymore.
The Outdoor Research Sun Bucket Hat is our top pick for the best overall bucket hat for runners. This is the one for you if you’re looking for a versatile and functional hat.
I love my new running hat! It’s perfect for keeping the sun off my face and ears, and it’s water-resistant too.
The brim is really stiff so it doesn’t move in the wind, which is great because I’ve had trouble finding a hat that can stay put in strong winds.
#2. Best for Women: ROYAL MATRIX Women’s Running Bucket Hat with Ponytail Hole
Check the Price on Amazon (On Sale!)
Breathability: Breathable Mesh Inside
Weight: 3oz (Lightweight)
- 3.5” wide brim & 3.9” deep crown
- ponytail hole
- stylish design & various color options
Girls, look no further than the ROYAL MATRIX Running Bucket Hat if you’re looking for a stylish and functional bucket hat that will keep you cool and comfortable on your runs.
This cute and trendy hat is made from lightweight polyester fabric that’s both breathable and moisture-wicking.
Your hair will stay dry and out of your face thanks to the ponytail hole in the back.
And no need to worry about the sun either. Your face and neck will be protected from harmful UV rays with 3.5” wide brim.
You’ll also appreciate the stylish color pattern options that are available with this hat. Choose from various trendy designs to find the perfect look for you.
I live on the south end of Central Florida and I needed a hat that would cover my ears and face better.
This hat does exactly that. It is comfortable, allows my ponytail to stay off my neck, and shades my head, face, and neck. Good for running as well!
#3. Simple But Functional: Under Armour Men’s Iso-chill Bucket Hat
Fabric: 100% Polyester
Breathability: Mesh Panel, ArmourVent Tech
Weight: 3.03oz (Pretty Lightweight)
- machine washable
- iso-chill sweatband
- adjustable drawcord
Sometimes, the simplest design is the best design. That’s certainly true for the Under Armour Men’s Iso-chill Bucket Hat.
You can enjoy the breathability with the mesh panel and ArmourVent Tech. And you’ll stay cool and dry on your runs with the iso-chill sweatband.
Both the drawstring and chin cord are adjustable. Tired of cleaning your hat by hand? No problem. This one is machine washable too.
All in all, this is an excellent choice for a functional and affordable bucket hat.
I was so excited when I found this hat. It’s perfect for running in the sun. The adjustable fit is great, and it’s machine washable too, which is a must for me. I can’t wait to wear it on my next run.
Conclusion: Now that you know how to choose the best bucket hat for your needs, it’s time to start shopping!
With so many different options on the market, it’s easy to find one that ticks all of the boxes on your list.
Whether you prefer a floppy or stiff brim, high or low crown, there’s definitely a bucket hat out there that’s perfect for your next running adventure.
So don’t wait any longer; grab yourself a new running buddy today!