Best Cowboy Hats Review

Saddle up, cowboy! The image of cowboys galloping across the west in straw hats is a timeless one, and it’s a fashion statement that has withstood the test of time! Cowboy (and cowgirl) hats are a staple in today’s western riding community. 

While hats are never required for Western riders, as helmets are for English riders, they are commonly seen used for practical uses, like keeping the sun out of one’s eyes, and for competitive uses, like matching the rest of an outfit in a pleasure class.

In this article, I’ll be discussing some of the most renowned cowboy hat manufacturers in the USA, as well as reviewing some of their top products.  These companies include Ariat, Sheplers, Stetson, and Pinto Ranch.

Cowboy Hats Brands

As times have gone on and technologies have increased, cowboy hats are no longer the one-size-fits-all straw hats seen in paintings and pictures of the old west.  Today, there are sizings for them the same way there are sizings for helmets.

Cowboy hats can also come in many different colors, made out of many different kinds of materials.  There are straw hats, suede hats, leather hats, felt hats, and so on.

Anyone can wear a cowboy hat, not just western riders! They can be comfortable accessories for anyone spending time outside; their wide brims protect all areas of skin on your head and neck, and they can complete the look on any “western” outfit.

  • Ariat

While relatively new to the western world, Ariat is a renowned equestrian clothing manufacturer.  The name “Ariat” comes from the last syllable of the name of the famous Triple Crown-winning racehorse, Secretariat (i.e.- Secretariat).  

Ariat was known for making quality English riding boots, breeches, shirts, and show coats at affordable prices.  A few years ago, the company decided to enter the western market, the outdoorsman’s market, and the working market.

Today, Ariat makes English riding clothes, western riding clothes, outdoors clothes (such as hiking boots and trail shoes), and working clothes (steel-toed boots, fire retardant shirts, and pants, etc.)  

Ariat stepped into the western ring, so to speak, nearly overnight.  One day they were only making tall boots, and the next day they were sponsoring bull riders in the PBR.  Today, Ariat’s name and logo can be seen all over the place at competitive western riding events.

Ariat makes quality hats at reasonable costs, as is their mantra with English riding gear.  While Ariat doesn’t sell them directly from their website, their hats are sold at many western wear retailers and online shops.

Read more about How To Shape A Cowboy Hat

  • Shelpers

All western riders know the name Sheplers.  Shelpers has the biggest variety of western wear available on the internet!  If you know exactly what you want- Shelpers is the place for you.  

They specialize in only western riding gear and clothing, and they have more of it than any other online or in-store retailer.  Shelpers carry cowboy boots, hats, shirts, western-style jeans, and work boots.

They carry these products for men, women, and children, and offer huge varieties of colors and sizes. Because there is such a large variety of products, there is also a large variety of prices.  Some items from Shelpers can be reasonably affordable, and others can be a bit pricey.

But, the pricey items are made with the highest quality.  It really depends on what you are looking for and how much value the product has to you.

  • Stetson

It’s best to think of Stetson as the Mercedes of the western wear industry.  Stetson produces the very best and the very highest quality hats and boots.  Based in Colorado, the heart of the western world, Stetson produces western products enviable around the world.

Stetson has also been a reliable western brand for decades, producing products for both men and women.  Stetson’s brand sells not only products but a lifestyle. Their website, graphics, and marketing ventures depict an aesthetic, refined, western lifestyle.

Stetson sells itself as a high-end way to enjoy western life.  Yes, they sell products intended for outdoor use and work, but they spin it into a beautiful, sophisticated look.  For this reason, it’s surprising that Stetson can offer the best prices out of all three brands reviewed.

Learn How To Wear A Cowboy Hat

Best Cowboy Hats Reviews

1. Ariat Men’s Wool Cowboy Hat

One of these online retailers is Amazon! Amazon carries the Ariat Men’s Wool Cowboy Hat.  This cowboy hat is available in sizes 6 ¾” through 7 ⅝,” and comes in both “Chocolate (dark brown) and Black.  

It features the traditionally shaped cowboy brim with a leather braided rope or “hatband” around the top portion of the hat.  This cowboy hat has an absolutely timeless look. 

As we will see through further reviews, this is about as low of a price as cowboy hats come! Especially if you are looking for a cowboy hat for casual and practical use, this would be a great hat for you. 

Ariat’s Wool Cowboy Hat will protect your face from the sun, while also giving you the look of a genuine western rider or western worker.  It can be worn casually, on the ranch, or in the competition ring.

Best Cowboy Hats Brands
Pros Cons
-Affordable -Not many color options
-Classic look  
-Reliable brand  


2. Shelpers Resistol Men’s Sage 6X Midnight Western Felt Hat

A great example of this is the Shelpers `Resistol Men’s Sage 6X Midnight Western Felt hat.  This is an extremely popular cowboy hat form Shelpers.  While this isn’t an unreasonable price for professional hats, it is significantly more than the Ariat hat observed earlier. 

This hat looks extremely similar to the Ariat Men’s Wool Cowboy Hat, so why is it so much more expensive?  The simple answer is the name and quality. When you buy a Shelpers hat, you’re buying a brand that has proven itself to be a quality western manufacturer for decades.

You’re buying the quality that people in the western community know to be one of the best.  While Ariat does make high-quality products, Shelpers has the experience of decades to back their products, while Ariat has the experience of a few years.

The Resistol Men’s Sage hat comes in a classic dark brown color and also features a matching felt hatband wrapping around the upper portion of the hat.  It is a beautiful hat, and would be a great fit for anyone looking to own a Shelpers piece!

Best Cowboy Hats Reviews
Pros Cons
-Reliable brand -Expensive
-Quality hat  


3. Men’s Bozeman Wool Felt Crushable Cowboy Hat

Stetson’s Bozeman Wool Felt Crushable Cowboy Hat stands out in a crowd of cowboy hats for a few reasons.  While looking almost identical to the Ariat Men’s Wool Cowboy Hat and the Shelpers Resistol Men’s Sage 6X Midnight Western Felt Hat, the Bozeman is sold at a cheaper price point, and it is “spring-loaded.”

In other words, the Bozeman hat can get crushed or smashed or folded the wrong way, and still bounce back into its original, intended shape.  This is one of the hardest parts of owning a cowboy hat; they are difficult to store.

Good, new cowboy hats often have to be thrown to the wayside due to being folded or bent and rendered unwearable.  But, due to new technologies, the Bozeman will bounce back from being bent or folded and reform its original shape. 

The Men’s Bozeman Wool Felt Crushable Cowboy Hat can be purchased in Black, Light Brown, and Mushroom (a beige-type color).  It comes in sizes extra small through double extra large.

Product Review- Men’s Bozeman Wool Felt Crushable Cowboy Hat
Pros Cons
-Reliable, high-quality brand  
-Affordable price  
-Bounce-back technology  

 Conclusion

There are many cowboy hat options on the market and many competitive brands!  The western-wear industry has been a staple of American clothing since the settlement of the west.

The image of a cowboy riding across the plains in a straw hat, button-up shirt, and leather boots have withstood the test of time and continues to inspire both consumers and manufacturers to emulate this style.

I hope this article has helped you learn about some of the best cowboy hats and cowboy hat brands on the market today! If so, please share this article, and share with us your experience purchasing a cowboy hat!

Learn about Cowboy Hat Shapes

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