The traditional boonie hat is a great choice for a hat, designed to protect the wearer from all kinds of weather - hot sun, rain, and even wind.
With their wide brim, they can help to protect your head, face and eyes, and even your neck.
Such great benefits while you’re outdoors, whether you’re out on a hike, going fishing or hunting, or simply in your backyard, doing some gardening or having a family cookout.
There are some really great boonie hats out on the market today, and just for you we’ve handpicked our Top 5 to show you.
After some brief reviews of our Top 5 picks, we’ve also got a handy buying guide which we hope will help you think about what it is you’re looking for in your perfect boonie hat, and help you to narrow your options down.
Following that we also have a brief section where we answer your most frequently asked questions.
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Best Boonie Hats - Comparison Table
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Best Boonie Hats - Reviews
Our first option is a rod made to be up to tournament performance standards, as the name suggests.
This is a great little boonie from Tru-Spec. And not only is it one of Amazon’s best sellers in this category, it’s also been awarded the coveted Amazon’s Choice award, only given out for products that offer the best combination of good quality goods available for a reasonable price.
Anything that’s made to military specs you know is going to be great quality - and this boonie hat is no exception. The brand, Tru-Spec, is from a leading supplier to the military market, and their hats use ripstop fabrics, specifically a 50/50 blend of nylon and cotton. They’re designed to be durable and resistant to tearing, ripping and general abrasion.
It features a handy chin strap to keep your boonie in place, which sports a cord lock for an easy and adjustable fit.
It’s brim is nice and wide - great for keeping the sun out of your eyes. And it has a built in map pocket which has proved popular with customers.
We also love the brass screen vents on the crown, which make it so breathable in hot weather.
Being a military camouflage boonie hat, it also happens to feature loops for extra camouflage, so it makes a great hat for hunting in. Or you could use the straps for carrying small items like torch or GPS batteries. So it’s really good for hiking and camping too.
The hat is both windproof and waterproof, so it would make for a good hat for a fishing trip.
There’s a variety of different cameo patterns you could go for, or you could opt for a plain black. And it’s not a one size fits all deal either, there’s a choice of different sizes.
And check out the customer feedback - after well over 500 customer ratings, the average Amazon customer rating comes out at an impressive 4 and a half stars out of a possible 5.
Here’s another boonie hat that seems to be flying off the shelves. It’s a good price, and customer feedback has been incredibly positive. After well over 3000 customer ratings the average customer rating still comes out at an impressive 4 and a half stars out of 5.
It’s made with 100% Textured Nylon Poplin, which means it’s really good at keeping its shape. It’s also machine washable which is great.
It’s perfect for spending many hours out in the sun - it uses UPF 50 sun protection technology to protect you from the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays.
Better yet, it also sports a large mesh panel for ventilation, making the hat real breathable.
And if you were to start sweating, it uses special omni-wick moisture management technology that quickly moves moisture from your skin into the fabric, where it spreads across the surface to quickly evaporate - keeping you cool and dry.
The brim is 3 inches wide and will provide adequate shade for your neck.
There’s also an adjustable drawcord and toggle to get a comfortable fit around your chin.
It’s available in 8 different colors. We particularly like the fossil and the steel, but if you want to really stand out the beet color is a great choice.
With regards to the size though, there’s just the one size available, and seeing as it’s marketed as a men’s hat, it may be a little too big for a lady.
This hat is simply flying off the shelves at Amazon, and with well over 1500 customer ratings, the average customer rating still comes out at an impressive 4 and a half stars out of 5.
It’s marketed as a fishing hat, which is fair enough because it’s waterproof and quick to dry, but has just about all the features we love in a boonie hat and it’s a great hat for the general outdoors.
It has a really wide brim that will keep the sun off both your head and your neck.
To keep your head ventilated there are mesh panels all around, making it really breathable and it will keep you feeling comfortable, no matter how hot and humid it gets out there.
It features an elastic drawcord to go around your chin, with a little toggle so you can adjust the fit to your liking.
It’s USP is that it’s UPF rated 50+, which is really high, and offers great protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
It’s made from 100% polyester, which makes it really lightweight and easy to look after.
You may not have specific sizes to choose from, but it’s available in 4 different colors (we like the khaki).
The satisfaction guarantee lasts for the entire lifespan of the product, and if for any reason you’re unhappy with it, you get refunded every penny you spent and you get a brand new hat free of charge.
Here’s another great best seller boonie hat for you - and this one comes at a fantastic price.
This is a great hat for when you don’t know what the weather is going to be like, since it’s great in both sun and rain. You’ve got a UPF rating of 50, meaning it will block 98% of harmful UVA and UVB rays. AND in the rain your head stays dry, since it's made from waterproof polyester.
And there’s more that makes it a great hat for the sun. There’s ventilation made possible by a mesh panel at the back, to help keep you cool, and to keep sweat from eyes and face, there’s a built in sweat band.
It’s a one-size-fits-most fit designed for both men and women, and you can adjust the fit using the adjustable chin cord.
It’s stand out feature though is just how wide its brim is - a whopping 3.8 inches. Guaranteed to keep your neck in the shade. Despite being so big though, it's really lightweight.
Customer feedback has been remarkable - after well over 3000 customer ratings the average customer rating on the Amazon page still comes in at an amazing 4 and a half stars out of 5.
If you’re after that much coveted cowboy look, then this is the one you should go for!
We’re not the only ones who think it’s a great little hat - there’s been well over 2000 customer ratings on the Amazon page, and on the whole they seem to really love it - it’s scored an average rating of 4 and a half stars out of 5 which is pretty impressive.
What we really love about it is the brim. It’s a broad 2.7 inches, but better yet it’s shapeable - you can simply bend the brim to provide the exact kind of shade you need for maximum comfort.
And the snaps on the side are great for giving that authentic cowboy hat look.
It’s made from a blend of cotton and polyester, so you get the breathability of cotton and the wrinkle and tear resistance of the polyester.
It has a UPF rating of 50+, to provide 98% protection from harmful UV rays.
It’s got a drawcord for your chin to keep the hat on when it's windy.
There are two colors available, brown and black, but better yet you can pick the right size for your head, just look at the size chart on the Amazon page to find the one for you.
Best Boonie Hats - Buyers Guide
OK, so let’s go over what you should look for in your boonie hat.
Some boonie hats are made from cotton, but most boonie hats are composed from a blend of synthetic materials.
What materials are used to make your boonie hat can have an array of different implications for its use. A boonie hat made from nylon would make a great hat for fishing for example, since they’re so good for wicking away rain and water. A polyester boonie hat on the other hand is great for holding its shape - it will even hold shape when rolled up!
A stiff wide brim is the boonie hat signature. Personally we like a wide brim, the wider the brim, the more protection you get from the elements. Though it’s typically something that simply comes down to personal preference and taste. Some people find that a hat with too wide a brim can be somewhat of a hindrance rather than a benefit.
Comfort is a foremost consideration for your boonie hat, especially if you plan on wearing it for several hours on a hike or fishing trip. A number of different factors can affect your overall comfort, there’s the material, which we’ve touched upon, and there’s the fit and any ventilation which we’ll go into very briefly shortly.
If you’ve searched for boonie hats before, you may have found that there aren’t too many unisex boonie hats, but there are plenty of mens and womens ones. It’s not just a marketing gimmick. A women’s boonie hat can be noticeably smaller than a man’s boonie hat.
Also, as a general rule, those with short hair are better off investing in a tight fitting boonie hat, whereas those with longer hair may be suited to a more loosely fitting boonie.
Chin straps are a really popular feature on boonie hats, particularly with regards to the military style variety. And with good reason too - a good chin strap can really help to keep your boonie hat in place.
Snaps on the left and the right of the boonie hat can help to balance the hat in place on a windy day if you don’t have a chin strap, or if the chin strap is loose. But even better than that, you can use them to style your hat in that much loved flamboyant cowboy style.
Whether the boonie’s wide brim is sufficient to protect your neck rather depends on where the sun is. Some boonie hats come with elongated coverings designed to protect your neck from the sun and also from insects and bugs. So if you intend to be out in blistering heat or in the wilderness, this is certainly something to think about.
Some boonie hats are ventilated, and this can often lend some much needed breathability when you're in high heat for an extended period. Oftentimes this ventilation is provided by way of a mesh on the top of the hat.
Amongst a boonie hat’s specs, you may well find a UPF rating. UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor. The higher the hat’s UPF rating the more protection it can offer you, blocking the sun’s rays more thoroughly.
Finally, to get your money’s worth from your boonie hat you want to be able to wear it time and again. To that end you’re looking for something that’s preferable machine washable, as most boonie hats are, and one where the color won’t run when you wash it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are boonie hats authorized by the army?
Army headgear has to be worn in accordance with its design. When the patrol cap, cover, or boonie hat is worn, no blocking, forming, rolling or upturning of brims or top is authorized.
Why do Navy Seals wear boonie hats?
The boonie hat was meant to supplement and replace the patrol and baseball caps that had been in service since World War II. As time has gone on the boonie hat has found a permanent place as part of the uniform of all US military services.