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Are you in hunt for the best beanie for backpacking?

What’s the best hiking beanie at the moment? Some outdoor enthusiasts prefer slouchy beanies for a relaxed look. Others may go for a neat and simple looking hat in natural colors. Here you will find great hiking hats for everything outdoorsy, from trekking, skiing and cycling to camping. From a no-itch wool hat to under-helmet beanies to hat that transforms into a mask or scarf – we have them all!

Scroll down to see the selection of beanies!

Best Hiking Beanie – Our Favorite

It’s up to you how you like to spend your free time.

Here we have listed a variety of different hiking beanies. All of them are great for outdoors, all – suitable also for everyday use and commute.

1. MERIWOOL Unisex Merino Wool Cuff Beanie Hat (click for more details)

A versatile Merino wool unisex hiking beanie.

Overall the best hiking beanie for men and women, our favorite.

Merino is famous for its breathable, odor-resistant and moisture wicking qualities. It also features natural bacteria resistance. Since the hat is made out of microfiber it is super soft, so no itching whatsoever. Due to its temperature controlling abilities, you can wear it almost all year long. You can even wash it in a washing machine (cold, tumble dry on low). However, to avoid shrinking better wash it by hand.

You can easily wear it as a long and loose beanie or folded into a cap with a rolled cuff for added warmth for ears.

BEST FOR: Camping, hiking, hunting, working, outdoor sports, skiing

MATERIAL: Merino wool

Read more: Best Merino Wool Beanie for Hiking

Best Hiking Beanie For Men and Women

Choosing a great hiking hat that is functional and actually looks great on your head can be stressful. A hat can completely change the impression of your personality. However, the great news is that beanies do look great for most.

Here is a collection of different hiking hats offering a wide range of styles.

2. Minus33 Merino Wool Beanie (click for more details)

Best hiking hat for women and men with UPF 50+ sun protection.

If you plan to spend the cold winter days on a mountain you may want to consider a winter hiking hat that protects against damaging sun rays. Sun can be quite harsh at higher elevation even in winter. Made out of 100% fine Merino wool, it has great breathability, as well as it is moisture wicking. The midweight fabric is used in a double layer which is perfect for winter. Outstanding water absorption abilities (up to 30% of its weight) without feeling wet or clammy. Machine washable.

Worth to mention, the production of the hat is environmentally friendly.

BEST FOR: Active winter activities

MATERIAL: 100% Merino wool

Read more: Best Hiking Hats For Women

3. Tough Headwear Store Helmet Liner Beanie(click for more details)

A budget friendly under-helmet beanie hat.

One of the most affordable breathable hats in the list.

A very well equipped cold weather hat. The most important feature is the brushed thermal lining that retains heat. Besides that, it also has sweat wicking, fast drying and wind resisting qualities. Thoughtful design – reflective icon in the front, 4-way stretch, 5 panel construction that offers great warmth for ears. You can easily wear this unisex hat under a cycling helmet. It’s not suitable for long winter hikes — it will get too cold.

This lightweight hat is recommended also by Runner’s World magazine.

BEST FOR: Cycling, skiing, snowboarding and running in cold weather

MATERIAL: 89% Polyester, 11% Spandex

4. FORTREE 2 Multifunctional Beanie Pack (click for more details)

A multi purpose lightweight unisex beanie.

You can wear this hat as a beanie, scarf or mask. It offers just the right amount of versatility that you want in a backpacking hat. Its self-twisting design allows to close the hat completely at one end or let it open for different hair styles. The beanie hat has a two color double layer which allows you to wear it on both sides. It is stretchy therefore one size fits most. Great option for summer camping, chilled summer evenings or spring and autumn activities.

The cotton and polyester fabric is soft, comfortable and resists pilling. Worth to note that this is also an eco-friendly hat.

BEST FOR: Jogging and cycling

MATERIAL: Polyester and cotton

5. Carhartt Men’s Knit Cuffed Beanie (click for more details)

A rib knit fabric beanie hat with a cuff.

The rib stitch knit fabric makes it stretchable. This unisex beanie hat is quite tall leaving a free space at the back that gives it a cool look. The cuff is adjustable. For extra warmth you can fold the bottom part into a cuff and have better coverage for your ears. Since the hat is made out of acrylic fabric it is very soft and doesn’t itch. It will be a great choice for a stylish look on a short winter hike.

The beanie hat is available in neutral and also bright colors.

Keep in mind that only hand wash is advised.

BEST FOR: Everyday use, short winter hikes

MATERIAL: 100% Acrylic

6. Columbia Men’s Columbia Watch Cap (click for more details)

Best beanie for men and women who love cold weather outdoor activities.

A bit pricier than the rest this hat earns trust because of the serious cold weather features. This classic looking hat not only has the sailor cap design, but also is useful for activities on water. It keeps the head warm and is as soft as cashmere. Packable and made to last more than one winter. It has only one layer, so it has the flexibility to fit well. One size fits most head sizes.

A great option if you are looking for a warm hat for your next winter adventure.

The beanie is machine washable.

BEST FOR: Hiking, walking, water adventures, long trekking in cold weather

MATERIAL: 96% Acrylic, 4% Nylon

7. FURTALK Warm Unisex Cuffed Beanie (click for more details)

A double layered unisex hat for active winter activities.

Perfect winter hat for active outdoor events that don’t last too long.

For longer activities like trekking you may want to look for a hat that offers more warmth. At the same time this hat won’t let you overheat when being physically active in cold weather. You can wear this hat in two ways. You can fold it or you can leave it unfolded and have the end loose and hanging at the back. The hat is stretchy therefore it fits most of the head sizes.

You can machine wash it in a laundry bag.

BEST FOR: Skiing, snowboarding, sledding, ice-skating

MATERIAL: 100% Acrylic

Woman hiking in the mountains with her dog

Photo by Bekka Mongeau from Pexels

How to Find the Best Hiking Beanie For Yourself?

How to find the best hiking hat for your needs?

Let’s make this super simple.

Generally speaking it’s mostly about these 4 simple things.

1. Purpose

Different hats are made for different activities.

Either you are planning to go on a hike, do sports or spending long time outdoors in hot or cold weather, it’s important to understand your needs first.

First of all, if you are looking for a beanie for hiking, pay attention to breathability. No matter if you plan a summer or winter hike, a breathable hat is good for sweat control. Secondly, look for lightweight fabrics for summer and warming or double layer textile for winter. Last, but not least, remember that natural fabrics like wool can be great both for warm and cold weather. They also suit for both demanding physical activities and less sweaty activities like walking.

Just one more thing. There are special purpose beanies like the one that you can use under a helmet too. Choose wisely.

2. Versatility

Some beanie hats for women and men are more versatile than others.

There are long beanies with a loose end and shorter beanies with a cuff that sits close to the top of your head. The fold around the crown is not just a matter of style, it also gives additional warmth to the ears. Some hats allow you to wear the beanie in both ways – folded and unfolded. Others are not that flexible.

However, if you need a top class trekking hat for winter, a slouchy beanie won’t offer the grip that you need. Look for well functional hats that also hold on well.

3. Material

Acrylic, nylon, polyester, cotton or wool are all great materials.

Natural fibers like cotton and wool have long been known for breathability and comfortable wear. But the new generation fabrics like acrylic, nylon and polyester are made to offer the same qualities. In some cases synthetic materials are more durable and pilling resistant. While in other cases wool’s ability to resist odors and adjust different temperatures may be exactly what you need.

Some hats are made of fabric blends that can combine qualities of different fibers. Such a method can offer stretchiness to otherwise stiff fabrics. Take this into account when choosing a beanie for yourself. Maybe a quality blend is what you actually need, not a 100% Merino hat. Besides that, a knit-like fabric finish gives flexibility too.

4. Design

A slouchy beanie, a classic sailor cap or something in between – the choice is yours.

The loose end beanies are comfortable and look cool on most heads. However, it is a specific look and won’t suit everyone. A classic cap may not look extra stylish, but will definitely look great for more people. Also, a hat that fits close to the head will serve better for physical activities like skiing, hiking or cycling.

If you commute with a bicycle on a regular basis, and plan to use a beanie for that, we recommend investing in a hat that is designed just for that. Or if you have other specific needs, try to find a hat that suits you the best.

What is your experience with men’s and women’s beanie hats? What hat do you use for winter hikes? What’s the best hiking beanie you have tried so far?

Featured photo by Julia Volk from Pexels

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