How To Avoid Hat Head

Above: When your style and your hair both need to hold their swagger
Above: When your style and your hair both need to hold their swagger

Your style shouldn’t be compromised just because you need to keep your hair intact. And your hair shouldn’t get cramped simply because you want to channel Brody Jenner in your baseball cap or a little Pharrell Williams, J.T. or Boy George’s fedora fashion.

“Most men find that after wearing a hat or a toque their hair will be flat and lack volume and shine,” says Benjamin Parker Thigpen, Celebrity Groomer for Old Spice.  “Guys also sacrifice hair styles, because their styling product can’t keep a shape after being under a hat.” Here’s how to avoid having hat head once and for all:

Rule No. 1: Care about your hair
Pretend all you like that the way you look doesn’t matter, but we know the truth.

“Style starts with your head,” affirms Benjamin Parker Thigpen. “No guy wants to have hat lines around the sides and back of his head as a result of wearing a hat—your overall style will take a hit.”

Rule No. 2: Use the right hair products
For hair product virgins, if you want the best of both worlds: great hair/fab hat then you’ll have to embrace the fact that you will need to incorporate a hair product into your daily grooming routine. (FYI: you’ll probably like it.)

According to Benjamin Parker Thigpen, “hat head is more determined by hair thickness versus the type of hat you’re wearing.” Pairing the right product for your hair type is key.

Fine, thin hair: “For fine hair, it’s best to use a very small amount of product before you wear a hat,” says Benjamin Parker Thigpen, who recommends applying a Gel, as “it won’t weigh your hair down,” but will still keep your style in place. Applying the product pre-hat is key to avoid flattening your hair.

Thick, coarse hair: Thicker, coarser hair types on the other hand, “soak up product faster,” so they require the weight and demand a product with a heavier formulation, such as a Putty or Pomade to shape and then hold the hair’s style in place. Once this product is in place, chances are your hair won’t budge.

Rule No. 3: When in doubt, tip your hat and reapply
Still worried about keeping your cool and your ’do under control? There’s no shame in having the best of both worlds and “wearing your hat for a shorter period of time, while you restyle your hair with your favourite product,” says Benjamin Parker Thigpen. It’s all about balance and, at the end of the day, your comfort zone. If you still see hat head marks when you look in the mirror (despite your wingman’s reassurance that there are none), no problem. “Rub a small dab of gel into those hat head indentations. It works like a mini-eraser and helps to bring back the original style.”

Adriana Ermter

Adriana Ermter

Adriana is an award-winning writer and editor. The former beauty director for FASHION magazine and editor-in-chief of Salon and of Childview magazines has hosted beauty videos for, as well as contributed to Men’s FASHION, Chatelaine and, Flare and, Huffington Post Canada, National Post,,, and She lives in Toronto with her very spoiled feline, Trixie-Belle, and a fantastically large perfume collection.

You may follow Adriana on Twitter: @AErmter and on Instagram: AdrianaErmter.

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