The Top Five Sailing Hats for 2021

The best sailing hats are generally made from lightweight, quick-drying fabrics. Some have cords you can use to keep them from flying away in a breeze while others are made to float in water.

When you’ve packed all your gear for a day out sailing, don’t forget your hat! For many sailors, this is the single most important item required for a day on the water.

These sailing hats for men and women are not specifically for Laser sailing, but for sailing in general. So if you need a new sailing hat, make sure that you check out the ones listed below.

ImageTitleRatingMore Info
Gill Race CapGill Race Sailing Cap

4.3 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Helly Hansen Logo CapHelly Hansen Men's Logo Cap

3.5 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
GILL Technical UV CapGILL Technical UV Cap

4.4 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Dorfman Pacific Men's Boonie HatDorfman Pacific Men’s Boonie Hat

4.5 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat

4.6 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Gill Technical UV Sun Hat with Hat RetainerGill Technical UV Sun Hat with Hat Retainer

4.0 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Chums Cap Eyewear RetainerChums Hat Clip Cap Retainer

4.3 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon

What Are The Different Types Of Sailing Hats?

Sailing hats are worn to help protect the sailor from the sun, wind, rain, and other elements. Like most things, sailing hats are made from different materials, come in different colors and styles, and are designed for different purposes.

There are 4 main types of sailing hats:

  1. Sailing caps: are probably the most common type of hat. Similar to a baseball cap, they fit well on the head but don’t protect the ears or back of the neck. They can be blown off quite easily, so some come with a retaining clip.
  2. Wide brim hats: usually have a stiffened brim to protect the wearer from the sun on all sides. Often they have a chin cord to prevent it from flying off.
  3. Bucket hats: are similar to wide brim hats but their brim is not as stiff. They are comfortable to wear, but may not provide the same protection as the wide brim versions.
  4. Yachting caps: are white with a black bill that has a black ribbon around the brim, and it is usually worn by officers on a boat or as a novelty captain’s cap.

Our Picks Of The Best Sailing Hats For 2021

When you’re on the water, it’s always best to stay protected and safe. A good quality hat is a great way to do that. However, with so many options, how do you know which one to choose? Take a look at some of our top hats for 2021…


Gill Race Sailing Cap

Gill Race Sailing Cap
Gill Race Sailing Cap

Gill is a brand we like because they make a lot of excellent products that are designed specifically for sailing. Hats are one of them and the Gill Men’s Race Sailing Cap wins a place on our list because it is designed with a close-fitting shape that makes this hat stay put once you’ve put it on. It comes with a low-profile fit and is made with lightweight quick-drying fabric finished with a water-resistant outer shell.

In addition, there’s a cord that you can attach to your shirt collar so if it does happen to get knocked off your head, the hat won’t travel far from reach.

Check out the Gill Men’s Race Sailing Cap. Click here for more info.

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Helly Hansen Men’s Logo Cap

Helly Hansen Men’s Logo Cap
Helly Hansen Men’s Logo Cap

The next spot in our list of the top five sailing hats goes to the Helly Hansen Men’s Logo Cap.

It is made from one-hundred cotton fabric which makes it comfortable to wear and also quick to dry when wet. It comes in a unisex, one-size-fits-all design so it is suitable for anyone to wear. Add to that the fact that it provides excellent UV protection from the sun and has a cool ‘HH’ logo and you have a top-notch choice when out on or around the water.

Click here to get more info and for the best price on a Helly Hansen Men’s Logo Cap.

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Gill Technical UV Cap

GILL Technical UV Cap
GILL Technical UV Cap

We can’t have a Gill product on this list without including their Technical UV Cap. This is a sailing hat that was engineered for comfort and sun protection. It has a low-profile design with a good-sized peak to keep the sun off.

The headband is made of a wicking fabric that helps keep you cool and has just enough padding to keep it comfortable for long days on the boat.

The fabric is water-resistant and quick-drying, and also provides UV 50+ sun protection. If that’s not enough, this hat also has a retainer cord complete with a clip to secure to a shirt collar or pocket to keep the hat from flying away in a good breeze.

Have a look at the Gill Technical UV Cap on Amazon here.

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Dorfman Pacific Men’s Boonie Hat

Dorfman Pacific Men's Boonie Hat
Dorfman Pacific Men’s Boonie Hat

Dorfman Pacific Men’s Boonie Hat is created with style, comfort, and function in mind.

Made from 80% nylon, this hat is lightweight and but durable.

It is great for long days out in the sun and is rated UPF 50+, has a 3-inch brim, and provides excellent sun protection.

It also includes a chin cord, as well as mesh-lined crown.

Make sure that you get the best price on the Dorfman Pacific Men’s Boonie Hat… check it out here.

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Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat

Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat
Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat

The final Best of the Best Sailing Hats goes to… Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat. It is well worth having on this list because it is designed for various uses.

The 2 3/4 inch crushable down-sloping brim is what makes this hat stand out. Because of the lightweight one hundred percent nylon fabric that it is made from, and the ventilated construction, it is also capable of wicking away moisture.

The chin-strap harness keeps the hat in place when the wind picks up, and it will provide UPF 50+ sun protection. The sleek design makes it a perfect companion for racing, sailing, boarding, rafting, and just about any other sport or activity that requires water.

Have a look at the Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket Hat… click here.

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Bonus – Gill Technical UV Sun Hat with Hat Retainer

Gill Technical UV Sun Sailing Hat with Hat Retainer
Gill Technical UV Sun Hat with Hat Retainer

Ok, as you may be able to tell, at Laser Sailing Tips we are a bit of a fan of Gill hats. So we couldn’t go without mentioning the Gill Technical UV Sun Hat with Hat Retainer.

I like this one because it has a stiffened brim, so it doesn’t fly up as easily in a breeze.

It’s also designed to wick away the moisture, so there is no need to get hot-headed when out and about.

And because it’s made by Gill, you know that the quality is going to be good.

Make sure that you have a closer look here for more info.

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The Top Hat Accessory… Chums Hat Clip Cap Retainer

Chums Hat Clip
Chums Hat Clip

We can’t give you a list of the top five hats for sailing without including this handy little extra.

The Chums Hat Clip has saved many a hat from going overboard and ending up lost at sea. It is durable but tough. It is 9″ / 23cm in length, and is adjustable.

Definitely worth it if you want to keep your favorite hat from disappearing over the side while sailing.

This has to be one of the best value for money sailing accessories around.

Click here for more info on the Chums Hat Clip Cap Retainer.

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How to Choose the Right Sailing Hat

Sailing hats are available in many different styles. When choosing a sailing hat, there are a few important things to consider:

  1. Obviously, this is your hat, so you don’t want to choose one that is too tight or too loose. The sailing hat should be comfortable for you to wear. It should not pinch your ears and it should be the right size for your head.
  2. The second thing to consider is the protection offered by the hat. If you are new to sailing, sun exposure can be a real problem and catches many people out, so you want to make sure that your hat provides good protection from the sun. If you are looking at a wide brim hat, the stiffness of the brim can be an issue when the breeze picks up. You need to make sure that the brim of the hat is large enough to protect your face and eyes from the sun.
  3. It is also important to check the material that the hat is made from. The material should be light and strong. Some are made from moisure-wicking material so you don’t sweat as much.
  4. Another thing to consider is if you want a hat retainer or clip so that it doesn’t get blown off. This is an all too common occurrence, even for hats that fit well, so you have been warned!
  5. And lastly, if fashion is important, you may want to look good on the water. With so many designs out there, you are bound to find something that you like.

What Others Are Saying About Sailing Hats…

General feedback and reviews of all these sailing hats mentioned above are positive. Features are usually what gets mentioned with added extras such as retaining cords or moisture-wicking capability getting much praise. Price and material also receive a lot of feedback. Essentially, each of these featured hats for sailing is the best available.

Comments posted by owners of these products verify our own thoughts and findings that price, construction, and function are all important elements in designing the perfect hats for sailing, and that’s why we have chosen these best sailing hats as our top picks.

A good sailing hat can mean a world of difference for your day on the water. So choose the right hat to protect you from the elements and to ensure you have as much fun as possible. For even more sailing hats for men and women, check out our favorites here.

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