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hat sizing for you

Fitting it Just Right: How Tight Should a Hat be

How tight should a hat be? We bet you asked yourself this question at least once if you’re a hat buff as we are. And, even though it’s a simple one, this question baffles lots of people. The answer might not be so simple, but we will break it down for you in order to find a perfect hat for any occasion.

There are several steps you should take into consideration and each one of them is crucial in order for you not to make a mistake. Owning a hat that doesn’t fit right is like owning a pair of shoes that are the wrong size. In other words, you can’t do it. Or you can, but you will look silly. Also, keep in mind that there are different types of hats out there. Every single hat has its own philosophy and if one fits you right, that doesn’t mean another one will fit as well. So, in this article, we’ll also see how to determine the fit on various popular hats out there. But, before we start all of this, we will take a step back and start from ourselves and the most important thing. Where does the hat lay? On your head. We won’t cover that detail here, you can check other articles of ours for detailed instructions, but still, we will see how measuring your head the right way is important for the hat fitting process.

Also, one more thing to keep in mind is your face shape. We talked about it thoroughly in one of our previous articles and to be honest, it’s a great read if you want to learn more about picking the right hat for you. Face shape plays a huge role when it comes to picking and fitting the perfect hat. So, without further ado, let’s dive into one of the biggest issues any hat lover may have – how to determine the hat fits right?

Basics of Hat Fitting

There are a few things you should take into consideration no matter which hat you try to fit on your head. Those are:

  • Fabric
  • Hat size chart
  • Proportions

Fabric is extremely important even though you may think it isn’t. Why? It’s simple. Different materials behave differently. For example, Leather and straw hats are very static and aren’t stretchable. Even if you manage to stretch them a little bit, in most cases you will damage them as they aren’t really meant to be stretched. Other materials such as wool or cotton fabric behave better if you try to stretch them. On the other hand, if you wash your hat, you need to know that materials such as wool are prone to “shrinkage” which means that they will shrink to some degree. So, if the hat fits you sort of “okay” the first time you try it out, it doesn’t mean it will have the same fit after you clean it in the washing machine. This, of course, doesn’t apply for every single hat.

Another thing to keep in mind is a hat size chart. You can find various size charts online. Most of them display the same information and it’s very important to check this out before buying a hat. Of course, combine this with the measures you came up with after measuring your own head. For example, if your head measures show you that you are in between two sizes in the hat size chart, then it’s usually advised to pick a hat which is a size up as it will have a bit more room. Anyways, numbers don’t lie and therefore, the only thing you can trust besides your personal feeling of how the hat sits on your head are these measures.

Another important thing to take into consideration is the proportion. Proportion is extremely important whatever you may be doing. If the trousers are too long, and you are a small person, you won’t wear them, right? Again, we talked more about proportion in our article about how face shape dictates which hat you’ll pick. But, you don’t exactly need to be Einstein to know some things. They are pretty self-explanatory. Like, if you have a big head, it wouldn’t make sense to pick a hat that is even bigger. It will make you look like a “Barbie” doll. The same goes if your head is tiny.

These are all things you should keep in mind before buying any type of hat. If you want to spend some serious money, you want to find a perfect fit right? So, as they say, measure once, cut twice. In general, we’ll now cover some of the clear indicators you should follow that will show you if your hat has a good fit.

  • If you can fit in average one finger in the space between your hat and your head, that’s a good indicator you have the right size
  • The hat should sit above your eyebrows and don’t obstruct your sight.
  • A tight fit isn’t good. You should aim for a “snug” fit. That’s the perfect fit. If your hat sits too tight, you’ll feel like you have some sort of weight on your head and you may feel some tension. The hat shouldn’t move around but at the same time, it shouldn’t be rock solid as well.

We bet that you knew about some of these, but if you didn’t these are great indicators to have in mind when trying out a new hat. Next, we’ll cover some of the most popular hats out there and talk more about what is perfect for you should be looking for when it comes to them specifically. 

Baseball Cap

Baseball caps are probably the easiest ones to find the right fit for. They can be adjusted according to the size of your head with the help of adjustable strips they have on the back. Also, you can wear it any many ways. Tilted to the side, backward or normal. You name it. It’s so versatile and it’s no surprise that this hat is used by many people around the world.


Fedoras are also extremely popular among the younger and older population as well. It’s very stylish and therefore people love to wear it when they want to feel like ladies or gentlemen. It’s easy to realize if the fedora fits your right or not. Firstly, you need to make sure that it fits strong enough that a common breeze won’t take it off. But, at the same time, the fit shouldn’t be so strong so that you feel like you have some weight on your head. In other words, aim for a snugged fit.


Beanies are winter type hats. Although people wear it during the summer as well, they are specially made to keep your head and ears warm. But, nowadays they serve as a fashion statement and it pretty much doesn’t make a difference if it’s winter or summer – you can wear it. How to know it fits you correctly? It’s easy. Beanies are often made from wool which usually has some synthetic material added to the mix. What this means is that you can stretch beanie a lot. And by a lot we mean it. There isn’t a head type that this hat won’t work for. The same goes for other beanie type hats. If you buy one, you can be sure it will fit you.

Flat Cap

Flat caps are also becoming more and more popular among the younger generation as well. Older people have been wearing this hat for quite some type. But, ever since a show called “Peaky Blinders” aired on TV, younger people fell in love with these hats. And they should. It’s a great hat which looks great on most people. It has a somewhat tight fit so you really need to test it out before buying. As with other hats, you should aim for a snugger fit – the one which isn’t too tight and too loose at the same time. 

To sum up, before picking the hat for you, see how it fits. It doesn’t matter if the hat looks good if you pretty much can’t wear it for more than 30 minutes. Hats are made to be on the head for longer periods of time and therefore, you need to do some testing before buying your hat. Hopefully, this article has helped you out and hopefully, you learned some new things when it comes to hat fitting. You need to take this very seriously as we get mails on a regular basis from people who ask us if it’s possible to widen or to narrow the hats. Guess why? Because they bought the hat with the wrong fit. So, to avoid getting into this situation, just follow the rules from this article. In most cases, we think you’ll pick the right fit, and as a disclaimer, we need to say that even if you follow everything we say, it might happen that still, the fit isn’t right. Yeah, it happens and in that situation, don’t be sad. Just buy a new hat!