Running With A Hat: The Benefits and The Ideal Hat

The weather was fair and I decided to run outdoors when suddenly, the sun went full blast in the middle of my run. At that time, I wasn’t wearing a running hat and I was running towards the rays of the sun. As I got home, I realized how much easier that run could’ve been if I had worn a hat.

Wearing a hat when running outdoors is ideal because it protects your face from the harmful effects of UV rays during sunny days and prevents too much rainfall from getting to your eyes on rainy days. Furthermore, it manages the amount of sweat from getting to your eyes by wicking away the moisture in your head.

There are plenty of reasons why wearing a hat when running could be beneficial. Ahead, we will talk about the benefits of wearing a running hat as well as the best conditions where running hats may help. We will also talk about the type of hat that is ideal for running and I will give you a few recommendations for such hats.

This is a photo of me wearing a hat taken just before I go for a run.

Why You Should Wear A Hat While Running

1. It Keeps Your Hair In Place

One indirect benefit of wearing a running hat is that it keeps your hair in place when running. Especially for the ladies (or guys) who have long hair that gets in the way.

Sure, you can tie them, but… how cool is that?

2. It Provides Shade For Your Face

As much as I’d love to run early in the morning to avoid too much sunlight, there’s just no way I could function as well as I usually do 2 hours after waking.

Wearing a running hat provides me with the much-appreciated shade that I need to protect my face from sunburn and other harmful effects of too much sunlight.

Pair that with a pair of sunglasses and I’m good to go for a sunny day run.

By the way, if you’re looking for a guide in choosing the perfect summer running outfit, I made an article that will walk you through everything you need. I highly recommend you check it out.

3. Keeps Your Vision Clear On Rainy Day

Have you ever run during heavy rain? Large raindrops get to your eyes and making it harder to see more clearly.

Wearing a cap limits the amount of water that gets into your eyes allowing you to see more clearly and focus on your run.

I’ve created a rainy day gear guide to help you navigate your running gear through rainy days. If you’re reading this during the rainy season, I highly recommend that you also check that out.

4. Manages Sweat From Getting To Your Eyes

Runners feel discomfort from anything ranging from chafing, knee pains, or as simple as sweat going to the eyes.

A hat reduces the amount of sweat that goes to the eyes which helps you focus more on your stride to help you perform better.

5. It Looks Cool

Besides the fact that running hats help you manage sweat and provide shade to your face, they look cool too.

But let’s be clear here, your personal preference affects how cool you look. You can blow up your outfit by wearing an uncool, multi-colored hat or you could be rocking these Under Armour caps.

6. Protects Your Head

I can’t tell you how many times a running cap saved me from cuts when trail running.

I run in deep forests a lot. And with that, comes the occasional cuts I get from small branches in the trail. Running hats provides a little bit of protection in my head so I don’t get cut easily.

When To Wear A Hat

Technically, you can wear a hat every time you’re going out for a run. But where it’ll help the most is when it’s sunny or when it’s raining.

What Type Of Hat Is Ideal For Running

Technically, any hat is okay to be used for running, however, not all caps are ideal for running.

In general, running caps should be:

  • Moisture-wicking: Ideally, your running hat should be made with moisture-wicking fabric like nylon or polyester to prevent it from absorbing your sweat.
  • At least UPF 30: You want a hat that is effective at blocking the UV light. Find a hat with at least UPF 30 fabric.
  • Breathable: You want to make sure that your hat is breathable and lets heat escape. You can easily figure that out by checking if there are any vents in the cap.
  • Quick-drying: You should choose a cap that dries quickly to be able to handle your sweat.
  • Adjustable fit: You want a cap that you can adjust to fit your head perfectly. You don’t want a cap that gets blown by the wind or is uncomfortably tight when you run.

Fashion caps ren’t designed for vigorous activities so they absorb sweat making them heavy and uncomfortable to run with. Also, most fashion caps don’t have enough mesh vents making it harder for heat to escape.

Recommended Hats For Running

Under Armour Shadow Cap: Stylish and effective. The Under Armour Shadow Cap is rated UPF 30 that helps block the harmful UV rays. They have mesh panels that let your head cool when running goes hard. In addition, they’re sleek and have a modern, low-profile design making them the perfect companion for a city-run.

TrailHeads Running Hat: Love trail running? The TrailHeads running hat is made exactly for that. It’s light, breathable, and fits perfectly making them perfect for hardcore trail runs.

GADIEMKENSD Running HatWhen you’re running long distances and you want to keep a cap handy just in case it gets sunny, you want a hat you can easily store. The GADIEMKENSD running hat is foldable which you can easily keep in your pocket. In addition, they provide UPF 50+ UV protection making them one of the best running hats on this list.

Nicho Mauricio

Running wasn't always my favorite sport. I was a CrossFit athlete and I loved every bit of it. But since the pandemic began, I was forced to stay away from the gym and train at home instead. Things got boring. That's when I decided to trail run with my friends. I instantly got hooked. So I started training and researching all things running. As a beginner, I want to buy only the best running gear and do only the best practices. This blog is where I share what I've learned in my journey and my experiences as a runner.

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