Best Running Hats

5 Best Running Hats for Sun and Performance

Last updated by Ori Adler on

A running hat is one of the most important pieces of equipment in a runner's wardrobe. It protects you from the sun, reduces glare, and holds your hair in place. 

However, not all hats are built the same. Some are better for running than others. Keep reading to discover five of the best running hats out there!

Best Running Hats

Keep reading to discover the best running hats out there!

1. American Hat Makers Road Crew Cap

If you're looking for a fun hat that offers the performance you need in a running hat while also being great for visibility, our Road Crew cap is the one for you. This hat has it all: style, comfort, and practicality.

This is a striking and versatile design. It will look just as good while you are out running as it will when you are simply hanging out with friends. So, while this is a good running hat, it is also a good hat in general. 

The snapback sizing system makes it easy to adjust for a perfect fit that won't fly away. This makes it especially helpful for runners who run in areas prone to wind.

Meanwhile, the sewn-in sweatband quickly wicks away excess sweat. This prevents it from building up, which is key on a long run. The Road Crew's bright colors and reflective strips will make sure you are highly visible outdoors - no matter the time or season.

The lightweight mesh and polyester allows for plenty of ventilation, keeping you cool. We paired this with a featherweight design that won't weigh you down. Together, these features make the hat enjoyable to wear even for extended periods of time. 

2. Nike Dri-Fit Aerobill Featherlight



This Nike option is also featherweight to keep you cool. The light, thin material is ideal for running. The AeroBill also features ventilation holes along the sides and front to keep air moving across your head.

The top is closed, so it holds a bit of heat in order to offer additional sun protection. This is a tradeoff that will appeal to those who care more about sun protection than heat loss.

The Nike Dri-Fit Aerobill Featherlight might make a good option in specific climates, where the sun is harsh but the weather is cool, or as a running hat for colder months.

A hook-and-loop closure system allows you to adjust the size easily. Because of this, you don't have to worry about getting your exact hat size before buying.

3. Headsweats Reflective Race Hat

If you're looking for a budget-friendly option, this running hat is one to consider. It is a nice hat that won't end up breaking the bank.

Despite being affordable, this hat is also very practical. The bright color and reflective striping around the rim greatly increase your visibility and the odds that you will be seen.

This makes it ideal for runners who want to be noticed, such as those who run in busy areas or less-than-ideal light conditions. 

Headsweats Reflective Race Hat also offers other hats and visors in other styles with similar levels of visibility. This one features a knit shell for breathability and uses a sliding adjuster for a better fit.

However, the fact that this hat stands out so much prevents it from being useful in universal settings. The design is definitely flashy and might not be the best for casual settings.

So it might not be the best choice for those who like to go on a run and then jump right into their next activity. 

4. Sunday Afternoons Eclipse Cap

This hat is quite a unique option. It features top-mounted vents that can be opened or closed. Open the vents to allow plenty of air on hot days, or leave them closed to get additional sun protection. This level of adjustability is unique in a hat but is highly appreciated. It makes the hat usable in both the summer and winter, making it a solid choice for a year-round option.

The Sunday Afternoons Eclipse Cap has curved sides, which prevent interference from sunglasses and make it more comfortable for longer runs.

Packing your hat up and transporting it isn't always easy. However, if you want to keep your hat looking good and prevent it from wearing out, it is necessary. Luckily, this hat has a folding bill, allowing you to pack it up easily.

5. Ciele GoCap Athletics

The GoCap is one of Ciele's signature styles. This hat has become popular partially because of its unique and sometimes outlandish designs.

The brand usually adds some playfulness and fun to its designs, which definitely stand out. It is available in a number of these different designs and a variety of colors. This gives runners plenty of options to choose from. 

This Ciele GoCap Athletics uses fabric that dries quickly, keeping you dry even on hot days. A multi-panel build gives it a comfortable and sleek fit. 

We like that it includes reflective accents. These increase visibility and improve the odds you will be seen while you run, which can be helpful for both road and trail runners.

Related: Best Sun Hats for Hiking & Outdoor Adventures

What to Look For in a Running Hat

Choosing a running hat that meets your needs is important. After all, it is more than just a fashion accessory. A running hat needs to be comfortable and keep the rain and sun out of your face.

Adjustability is key in making your hat comfortable and keeping it on your head. It allows it to fit you better since not everyone has the same head size. If possible, try to find one that is easy to adjust even when you are running so you don't have to stop.

The material a running hat is made of will be different from other hats. You want a moisture-wicking material and/or a built-in sweatband.

Coverage is also important. After all, the hat needs to actually block the elements. A wider brim can be very effective in this. While UPF is helpful, it doesn't replace sunscreen.

Related: Best Gardening Hats: Keep the Sun off Your Face this Summer

Keep the Sun Away While Running

A running hat is key to staying comfortable and keeping the sun out of your eyes when you're training. But finding one that won't make your head sweat can be difficult. This creates a difficult balancing game whenever you shop for a running hat. 

Luckily, each of these top contenders offers the key features you're looking for in a running hat. All you have to do is pick your favorite!

Need a women’s cap? We have a wide selection! Check out our caps for ladies too!

Related: Best Motorcycle Hats & Caps 

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