OK, I’ll admit I don’t know for a fact it is the single best hot weather hat in the world. I can say it is really a good one and I have worn it extensively in the deserts of the American west. Best is one of those keywords that people like to search for, myself included. I promise you won’t be disappointed by one of these hats on a hot day, I honestly adore mine.
So what hat am I talking about? I actually had to do a little research to discover that my hat is the Henschel Breezer with Coolmax Band. I picked mine up at Saguaro National Park. Trail had gotten one earlier at the SanDiego zoo earlier in the year and was loving it so she got one for me too. A fair number of national parks sell them in their gift shop with the name of the park embroidered on the band.
Why it’s “the best”
It has good hat fundamentals with a nice fit and a fairly attractive and classic profile. The brim is the perfect size for shading the sun out of your eyes for most of the day and preventing sunburn on your face. It is sturdy and can stand up to some rough treatment and still come out looking decently after brushing it off. Mine has deformed just a bit from having stuff piled on top of it in the truck but for the most part still looks good. The stitching and materials are excellent. It stands up to modest rainfall pretty well but is designed more for hot and sunny days.
The real star of the show with this hat is that the sides of the crown are an open mesh material. This both allows heat and sweat from your head to escape and allows cool breezes to pass through which I can attest is a wonderful thing. The top is solid as is the brim so rain and other falling material won’t pass through. The hat will get wet, but you won’t. So often with hats, I want to take them off to get some circulation but there is no need with the Breezer. The sweatband is also very nice and does a good job keeping your eyes clear and your head dry. The underside of the brim can get a bit sweat stained as a result but the mesh covering on top of the brim keeps that from being visible to others. A nice touch.
Best of all, it’s not a very expensive hat, retailing around $25 – $35 depending on where you buy it. As of this writing, the one I linked to on Amazon above is $25 + shipping. I likely paid closer to $35 at the national park store when I got mine. As a bonus, Henschel manufactures most of their hats in the US and notes which others are specifically imported. I like to support business local to the regions we travel in and from the US when there is a good product to be had.