Airports Made Simple sent me this note today: “I have a question for you – this occurred to me today as I was walking my dog. It’s cold here, so I typically wear a warm cable knit hat that fits over my ears or a beret/beanie that’s warm. However, as you know…it doesn’t protect my skin from the sun like my ‘summer hat’ (a large garden hat or wide-brimmed beach hat), and I sometimes forget the sunscreen in the winter. Besides always wearing sunscreen (which I should do anyway!!), is there a winter hat style that is warm and also provides sun protection for the face?”
This is such a great question! I am very fair myself, so I’m a lifelong sunscreen user, but sunscreen alone is sometimes not enough. (Did you know that, even on a cloudy day, up to 80% of harmful UV rays still get through?) So I also love my wide-brimmed summer hats, but in the winter, they just look… wrong. Airports Made Simple raises a good point: in the winter, can a hat protect you from both cold and sun? Does the perfect winter hat actually exist?
I love hats myself, and coincidentally, I happen to have a wide-brimmed wool hat, for which I braved the blog camera (oh, the lengths I go to for you, my wonderful friends!):
This hat was given to me, so unfortunately I don’t know from whence it came (there’s no label), but that may be as well— it’s not very exciting. (My daughter’s word for it was “frumpy”. Oh, the horror.) I mostly wear it when it’s wet here in the Pacific Northwest; like many who grew up in this part of the world, I don’t like using umbrellas. I may not be making a serious fashion statement, but at least it keeps the rain from coursing down the back of my neck. Maybe now I’ll be inspired to start wearing it more on fair-but-cold days! Better yet, why not find myself a wide-brimmed warm hat that has a modicum of chic?
My habitual first stop: Anthropologie (natch). I love their hats, and some are surprisingly well-priced, but a quick glance at the “Cold-weather Essentials” on their site yielded only close-fitting cloches and knit caps (and some fantastic arm warmers and scarves, by the by). Looking just at “Hats” (under Accessories) was more successful. Here are a few options, starting at just $48.00:
There were several more possibilities on the Anthropologie Hats page, including a beautiful clear rain hat (probably not much sun protection there, but you’ll be wearing it in the rain anyway), and several more wide-brimmed wool beauties. Fedoras for days! I also like their cloche styles; these tend to have a longer brim in front than back, so they do shade the face. Here’s one of my favorite cloches:
Of course, Anthropologie is just one shopping possibility, but I have to say I’m impressed with their wide variety of styles— and I have experience with their beautiful quality!
Special note for Airports Made Simple: Because I like to believe in a fashionable Utopia where practicality and elegance can peacefully coexist, I tried to pick hats that I could confidently wear while walking a dog! It’s true that whenever there’s a brim, there’s more of a chance of it blowing off, but these choices look like they could stand up to the wind pretty well, while protecting your skin. (The one I’m wearing here always stays on, even without a band. And the cloche styles tend to stay put too.) Let me know if these hats are not at all your style, and I will resume the hunt, and post a follow-up! Thanks again for the great question!
Last note: Many of these hats would be perfect for traveling, especially with winter more or less upon us now. When you’re planning your next trip, be sure to check in first at the Airports Made Simple blog! You’ll find everything from packing lists to bad-weather airport updates here, plus much more! (Need to find out if you can carry on a hat box, perhaps?) Even if you don’t plan to travel in the immediate future, this informative and entertaining blog will keep you up-to-date on all topics related to air travel!