The 8 Best Running Hats to Buy in 2018

Block harmful rays while you sweat with these top caps

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Whether the forecast calls for light rain or intense sun, a running hat is essential for staying comfortable and safe on the run. Not only can it protect your head and face from the elements, but a good running hat can also help wick away moisture and prevent sweat from running into your eyes. They also come in handy if you have too much hair or a lack of it and you need to either pull it back or keep your noggin shielded from the sun’s harmful rays.

With so many running hats available, it’s tough to decide which ones are right for your needs and preferences. If you run a lot in the heat, you should look for a running hat that’s lightweight, breathable, and has excellent moisture-wicking ability. For long runs, you may want one that can easily be stored in your pocket or shorts, so you can take it off when you don’t need it. Other cool features for running hats are UV protection, reflectivity, and adjustable fit. We’ve compiled a list of the best running hats with those features and more, so you can find that one that suits you best.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Adidas Adizero Cap

The Adidas Adizero Cap has the cool and useful features you want in a running hat, all at a very reasonable price. It features Climacool mesh panels to allow heat to escape and air to flow in, which will help keep you cool and comfortable. The hat’s moisture-wicking capabilities, UPF 50 sun protection, and non-glare under visor make it a perfect hat to protect your head and eyes from the heat and glare of the sun. The polyester/Spandex fabric wicks away water, so it’s also a good choice for rainy or sweaty runs. With the Velcro closure on the back, you can adjust the hat for a customized fit.

This extremely lightweight running hat comes in both men’s and women’s sizes and dozens of colors, so it’s easy to find a hat that’s right for you.

Best for Sweaty Runs: HeadSweats Performance Race Hat

HeadSweats hats and visors are known for their fast moisture-wicking capability and one of their most popular hats, the Performance Race Hat, does not disappoint. The hat’s fabric shell, made of breathable, moisture-wicking Eventure fabric, and the Eventure terry headband both keep sweat dripping into your eyes and wick away moisture to help you stay cool and dry. After a long, hot and sweaty run, you can simply throw this hat into the washing machine and not worry about it shrinking or losing its shape. Weighing less than two ounces, this lightweight hat gets high marks for its comfortable feel and classic style. It’s also very reasonably priced for such a high-quality running hat.

This hat comes in 12 colors and is available in one size.

Best Hat for Women: TrailHeads Women's Race Day Performance Hat

Designed specifically for women, the TrailHeads Race Day Performance Hat has the quality, fit, and performance that women want in a running hat. Weighing only 2 ounces, this super lightweight hat is extremely breathable and allows air to flow freely through it, to help keep you from overheating. The polyester fabric wicks away moisture, keeping you dry and comfortable. With a reflective trim, this running hat improves your visibility when running in low light conditions. The adjustable Velcro closure delivers a snug, customized fit and the back opening allows room for a ponytail. The hat is available in several different colors, so you’re sure to find one that suits your style.

Best for Men: Nike Aerobill Elite Adjustable Running Hat

Nike Mens Aerobill Elite Running Adjustable Hat Black
Courtesy of Walmart

The Nike AeroBill Elite Adjustable Running Hat helps keep you cool, dry and protected on your runs, thanks to the lightweight construction and sweat-wicking fabric. The adjustable closure helps you get a snug, customizable fit. Another cool feature is the hat’s interior sweatband that helps mop up the sweat so it doesn’t sting your eyes.

Besides being great for running the white color makes this ideal for anyone who plays tennis or who spends a lot of time in the sun since the light color will deflect heat.

Best for Long Runs: Patagonia Duckbill Cap

Patagonia Duckbill Cap
Courtesy of Patagonia

The Patagonia Duckbill Cap is extremely popular among ultrarunners, and with good reason. The design is almost entirely open mesh, allowing plenty of ventilation to keep you cool and dry during long runs. The front foam brim can be folded up so you can easily store the hat in your pocket or shorts. When you take it back out, it quickly rebounds to its original shape. It also features a dark underbill to reduce glare, a Coolmax fabric headband to wick away moisture, and an adjustable rear buckle with elastic to give you a snug fit. And when you’re done with a sweaty run, you can just throw it in the washing machine and it will look (and smell) good as new.

Best for Hot Weather Runs: 2XU Run Cap

With mesh side panels and multiple high-flow air vents for maximum breathability, the 2XU Run Cap is perfect for running in the heat. This extremely lightweight hat also wicks moisture away from your forehead, so you don’t have to worry about sweat running into your eyes. An added bonus is the fabric’s UV protection, to give you even more defense from the sun’s harmful rays. Users also like that it’s flexible and very easy to throw in a bag and stow when traveling.

Best Budget: LETHMIK Sport Cap Summer Quick-drying Sun Hat

If you’re looking for a lightweight, breathable, and comfortable hat that’s also very inexpensive, this one from Lethmik is an excellent choice. The fabric has UPF 30+ sun protection, so it’s perfect for summer running. Another great feature is its quick-release adjustable buckle. The hat comes in three colors—navy, black, and gray—and is so well-priced that you may decide that you want to have all three.

Best for Visibility: Asics Lite-Show Structured Cap

This unisex running hat from Asics has a built-in moisture management system and mesh panels to help keep you dry and comfortable. With its stylish, reflective patterns, it’s perfect for running in low-light conditions. The adjustable snap back allows for a comfortable, customizable fit. This hat has a bit more structure than the other picks on this list.

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