Wearing a hat can keep you warm on the coldest of days. More often than not though, a high quality, warm winter hat is an after-thought. You spent all this time researching the best layering options, the perfect wool blend and those bright moisture wicking sock! All very important to staying warm and staying alive while enjoying the great outdoors during the winter months. Keeping your head, ears and even neck covered on bitter, bone chilling day will not only keep your body core warm, but you’ll feel it in your fingers and feet as well!
(Quick side note: If you are looking for winter clothing that will keep you warm in sub-zero temperatures even if you get wet, see my article “Fortress Clothing – My Review!“)
If you stay dry all over, including your head, you’ll be warm and that’s the ultimate goal. But, there are so many options! Where do you even begin to find the warmest winter hat? Right here, of course! I’ve already done all the research for you, so all you have to do is find the perfect hat for your head and activity- and you’ll be all ready for your next adventure. In this article I will show you my picks for the top 37 warmest winter hats!
For other recommended emergency preparedness items see our “Recommended Gear” page of this website!
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Fortress is making waves in the outdoor gear industry. This face mask is made with the company’s special AERIS foam insulation. The insulation keeps you really warm in temperatures ranging from -35 to 50 degrees. The face mask will also keep you warm, even if you get wet. The extra-long neck cuff, make it possible to tuck this into your jacket for extra protection from the cold. It’s called a wind-skirt and it also keeps wind from stealing all your precious body heat. Pros: well made, special AERIS insulation, comfortable, wind skirt, keeps you warm- even when wet. Cons: bulky.
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This Fortress balaclava is treated with fire resistant materials- to protect those working outside in precarious situations. It’s made for the hard worker who spends hours at a time outside in the oil fields or other intense work. Like the other Fortress balaclava, this version is made with AERIS insulation. This insulation will keep you warm, even if you get wet! Pros: made for severe weather, wind skirt, warm. Cons: expensive.
These Balaclava hats are designed for people working out in the bitter cold for long periods of time. A lot of the people who purchase these work on things like oil rigs or other jobs where they have to stand outside.
Canada Goose is perhaps one of the world’s best winter gear brands. This is the gear arctic explorers wear when they head into fierce blizzards and bone chilling temperatures. The Arctic Hat Black Label is made with 675 fill Goose down. In general, the higher the fill count for down, the warmer the garment. In this case, this is exceptionally warm.
The inside of the hat is lined with coyote fur for ultimate softness and protection from the cold, wind and weather. The shell of this hat is treated with a water-resistant fabric, that will keep you dry in the most extreme weather. If you’re heading on a winter expedition this is the hat for you. It’s also a great hat for everyday errands, especially if you live in Alaska, Minnesota or other cold climate locations. Pros: really warm, high down count, water-resistant, comfortable, fur lined. Cons: sells out quickly, expensive.
4. Canada Goose- Down Pom Toque
Another warm hat from an incredible company. This hat is stylish and really, really warm. It’s made with 675 Fill power white goose down! That’s a whole lot of down insulation packed into this one hat! It’s like a sleeping bag for your head! This hat is part of the brand’s Basecamp -20D series. This series of gear is created with nylon outer shell that is water repellent, windproof and really warm. Pros: great design, lots of down insulation, water resistant, windproof. Cons: expensive.
5. Canada Goose- Fitted Beanie
This hat comes in at #5 on this list for its versatility, softness and warmth. This hat is a thin beanie, made with super soft and super-fine merino wool. Wool is a great insulator and it naturally wicks away moisture to prevent your head from getting too sweaty. The hat can be worn alone or with a ski helmet or big hood. It’s also treated with a water-resistant finish to keep rain and snow from penetrating. Pros: merino wool, super comfortable, warm, wicks away moisture, can be worn several ways. Cons: only water-resistant- won’t keep you dry in a monsoon or blizzard, expensive.
This is a great hat that mixes the style of baseball cap with a warm winter trapper hat. Think Elmer Fud and Babe Ruth. This is the hat if you want to be really warm while running errands around town or working outside on your house, shoveling snow or chaining up over a mountain pass. The exterior of the hat is lined with artic tech material which is designed to keep wet weather away!
The fabric blend blocks the wind, rain- keeping your head really warm at all times. The shearling ear flaps added extra warmth and comfort. You can snap the ear flaps up or keep them down, depending on the conditions. Pros: versatile, durable, water resistant and windproof, shearling ear flaps, warm. Cons: not intended for extreme activities.
This is a great, warm hat for the great outdoors. It’s designed to keep your ears covered, with contoured fabric- that molds to your head. It’s a great hat to wear hiking, backpacking, ice fishing and skiing. It’s thin enough to fit under a helmet as well. Pros: made with 100% fleece, blocks wind, lightweight and warm. Cons: runs small.
Mountain Hardware knows how to keep you warm in all sorts of conditions. This hat is a top seller because it’s lightweight, comfortable, blocks the wind and keeps your ears covered at all times! The hat is made with Polartec Windbloc- a trademarked product that literally stops wind in its tracks. If there’s going to be wind, this hat will keep you warm and protected. Plus, the fleece panel around the forehead, keeps the hat in place, all while staying comfortable. Pros: well made, blocks wind, great for everyday wear and on the mountain, full ear coverage. Cons: limited sizes.
This is a great lightweight, warm hat that you can wear from October to April. It’s a multi-season hat, depending on where you live- of course. This hat is made by Patagonia- one the world’s best outdoor gear brands. Patagonia doesn’t make anything unless they make it right! This hat is made out of fleece- which naturally wicks away moisture, dries quickly and keeps you really warm and comfortable. Pros: fleece, well made, warm, wicks away moisture. Cons: may not block 100% wind, limited sizes.
Do remember when fleece neck warmers debuted in the later 80s early 90s? You can thank Turtle Fur for that. This company has literally revolutionized the way we think about fleece. Turtle Fur fleece is warm and it keeps wind away all at the same time. Plus, this hat is super cozy and it comes in a variety of colors. Pros: 100% polyester fleece, double fabric around the ears, thin, easily fits under a helmet or hood and it’s affordable. Cons: one size fits all, isn’t waterproof.
This hat is a heavier/thicker version of the multi-season hat. This fleece hat has four layers of soft fleece polyester to keep your head nice and warm on the coldest of days. You can roll the cuff up or down to make sure it covers your ears at all times. Pros: made with original Turtle Fur Fleece, multiple layers for lots of warmth, comfortable and comes in a variety of colors. Cons: one size fits all, too bulky for ski helmet.
This hat combines the incredible warmth of wool with the unique Turtle Fur fleece. Does it get any better than that? This unique blend of warm fibers earns this hat a spot at #12 on this list. The hat is made out 100% merino wool. Wool is super soft, naturally wicks away moisture, incredibly warm and has anti-odor properties. The band of fleece on the inside keeps your head warm at all times. That special, soft fleece also keeps your head from getting to hot and prevents the hat from shifting while in motion. Pros: wool, fleece and fun Nordic design, well made, durable and keeps moisture away. Cons: hand wash only.
Do you want to defend your ears from the bitter cold wind? Okay, then. This is the hat for you! Made with Windbloc fleece this hat conforms nicely to your head and shields your ears from fierce wind no matter where it’s coming from. The hat features two layers, turtle fur and turtle fleece for added warmth and protection. It’s also coated with a special durable water repellent finish to keep snow and rain away. Pros: incredible ear coverage, 100% wind blocking material, warm and very comfortable. Cons: sounds can be muffled by wind blocking fleece.
The wind warrior hat does just what you think it would do: make you a warrior! Okay, it won’t give you super powers, but it does a super job at keeping the wind away from your precious body heat. The hat is made with 100% windproof fleece. It’ designed to fit snug around your head, while keeping the back of your neck and ears covered. It’s slightly odd looking- but hey, if you’re warm, who cares, right? Pros: windproof, trusted brand, high quality. Cons: odd style, one size fits all, too bulky for helmet.
SmartWool is by far one the most trusted winter hat brands on the market today. The company is known for making high quality products, designed to hold up to the coldest of temperatures. This hat is a blend of wool and acrylic material. This combination of fibers gives the hat extra warmth and stretch to fit almost any head size. This is a great hat for skiing, climbing mountains and running to the grocery store for eggs. It’s breathable, warm and wicks away moisture! Plus, merino wool naturally keeps odors on the down low. Pros: trusted brand, high quality, blend of wool and synthetic material, applicable to a variety of activates. Cons: One size fits all.
Another high quality SmartWool winter hat. This hat is mid-weight, which means it’s a little thicker than The Lid. The hat also made with 100% merino wool, which gives you added warmth and protection from bitter cold temperatures. Pros: 100% merino wool, cozy, breathable and can fit under most helmets. Cons: too bulky.
This is the perfect hat for an athlete on the go! Great for winter runs around the neighborhood, bike rides, cross country skiing or downhill. The hat is super thin, lightweight and can be worn under any hood, bike helmet or ski helmet. The hat is also made out of 56% merino wool and 44% polyester. This combination of materials makes this hat comfortable, warm, breathable and keeps moisture at bay. Pros: thin and lightweight, wool/synthetic blend, keeps you comfortable when exerting a lot of energy. Cons: may shift around the ears. One size fits all.
The Columbia Sportswear hat is comfortable to wear and does a pretty good job of keeping the cold weather away. This hat is designed to fit snug, making it possible to wear under a helmet. The hat is also made out of Columbia’s Omni Heat fleece- which is designed to keep your head warm and keep moisture away. It’s breathable, but doesn’t let cold air in. Pros: comfortable, fits snug, special lined fleece to keep head warm. Cons: runs big.
The North Face is a trusted brand in the outdoor gear world. Just about anything The North Face makes will keep you warm and make sure you don’t get soaked to the bone. This hat is reversible- so you basically get two hats in one! How about that? It’s made with a cotton/wool and acrylic blend of materials. Because of the cotton, you may want to wear this hat around the house or around town.
It’s not suited however for back-country adventures. Pros: reversible, wool and synthetic material give it warmth and softness, covers ears and is breathable. Cons: cotton blend, one size fits all.
This hat is made out of 100 % polyester fleece. It comes in a variety of bright colors and it’s really comfortable to wear all day. Double layer of fleece will keep you warm no matter what Mother Nature throws your way. The durability of this hat and its incredible warmth capabilities rank this hat at #20 on this list. Pros: fleece, windproof and breathable. Variety of colors to choose from, adequately covers ears for maximum protection from the cold. Cons: one size fits all.
This Norwegian based company has been mastering the art of beautiful, warm clothes since 1879. The company knows a thing or two about living and playing in harsh weather climates. The Stjerne Hat is made with 100% extra fine and extra soft merino wool. Merino wool works wonders at keeping you warm no matter what!
This hat is perfect for a quick trip to the grocery store, Saturday morning runs and walking your dog in the park. It’s stylish and warm! Pros: super fine merino wool, wicks moisture, well made, trusted company. Cons: one size fits all!
This hat is the one to keep you warm on and off the ski slopes. To be honest, I think If I had this hat, I would wear it all winter. The design is classic Norwegian- adding style to any outfit. Plus, it’s made with 100% Norwegian wool and lined with the brand’s exclusive weatherproof fabric.
This special fabric will keep you warm and dry in all kinds of conditions. Plus, if you really love this hat, you can get a matching sweater too! Pros: waterproof, wool, soft, comfortable and really warm. Cons: hand wash only.
This hat ranks #23 on this list because of its durable design and its made with both Norwegian wool and merino wool. How about that? The hat can also be worn alone, under a hood or with a ski helmet if you’re on the slopes. It’s lined with merino wool, which will keep your head dry and warm no matter what. Pros: fun design, multiple wool layers, warm and soft. Cons: runs small.
This hat is wonderful to wear in the back-country, on the slopes or running errands around town. It’s versatile and keeps you warm in a variety of temperatures and weather conditions. This hat is made out a 50/50 blend of super fine and soft merino wool and synthetic materials. It’s lightweight and can be worn under most fitted hoods and helmets. Pros: made from a trusted outdoor gear brand, merino wool blend, soft, keeps moisture away, breathable and comfortable. Cons: runs small.
This is the perfect liner to wear under another thicker winter hat or a helmet. It’s thin, stretchy and made out the perfect blend of wool. This is a great hat to wear no matter what you have planned for the day. Pros: manages moisture, keeps a thin layer of heat near your head, covers ears, natural odor resisting properties and it’s breathable. Cons: need another hat for added warmth and protection.
Wigwam is a wool sock company, now making wool hats. It’s mastered the art of wool socks for more than a century- so it knows how to keep people warm. It’s about time it added wool hats to its collection. This hat is a basic warm winter hat made out of 100% wool. Yes. That’s what I like to see. It’s stretchy too, which means it will stay in place and keep your ears covered at all times. Plus, if something happens to it or it’s in need of repair- it comes with a two-year warranty. Pros: made from a well trusted company, 100% wool, warm, manages moisture and breathable. Cons: one size fits all.
Another Wigwam favorites! This hat is made with 100% wool and fleece. The inside is lined with fleece to add extra comfort and warmth. The shell is wool, which naturally keeps moisture away. This combination of materials will be sure to keep your head warm at all times. Pros: Trusted wool company, made with quality material, warm, fleece lined for comfort. Cons: one size fits all, only one color available.
This is a great hat to wear all season long. It’s made with a stretchy mix of acrylic and wool- making it easy to wear and really warm. This hat is also budget friendly! At $15, you don’t have to break the bank to find a really nice, warm and high quality warm winter hat. It’s also breathable, so you don’t have to worry about getting too sweaty. Pros: affordable, warm, mix of wool and acrylic, soft. Cons: one size fits all.
The 80/20 wool blend ranks this hat #29 on the list of the warmest winter hats. The more wool in a hat, the warmer you are going to be. It’s lined with soft fleece, giving you added warmth and comfort for those long days outside. The Canada based company knows how to keep you warm and stylish all winter long. Pros: warm, 80% wool, moisture management, great design. Cons: may not cover ears adequately.
Chaos is an up and coming brand, dedicated to making really warm hats. If you haven’t heard about them, you soon will. This beanie is perfect for wearing on outdoor adventures or just around town. It’s made with 50% merino wool and other synthetic materials. It fit’s snug and covers your ears at all times. Pros: merino wool blend, warm, can be worn with a helmet for extreme sports or alone. Cons: One size fits all.
This beanie is packed with 650 fill down, making it one of the warmest winter hats you can buy. It’s also lined with a polyester shell to keep weather from penetration that precious down. That shell also keeps the wind away too! You may look like a raspberry while wearing this hat, but you will be warm! This is a great hat to wear around the campfire or ice fishing. Pros: down insulated, water/wind proof, well made, trusted brand. Cons: may be too hot for high intense activities.
32. Under Armour Men’s ColdGear Hood
This is another great layering piece to add to your outdoor gear collection. This is made with synthetic materials, designed to stretch and fit to your face and head. This hood is like a face mask- with the ability to cover your mouth when needed. Don’t worry, you can still breathe in this hood. Pros: stretchy, warm and keeps moisture away. Can be worn alone or with a helmet. Neck and ears always covered. Cons: one size fits all.
Spyder is the official gear of the U.S. Ski Team. So that right there should tell you the quality of this brand. Spyder makes gear designed to keep you warm all day, even if when you’re channeling your inner Olympic racer on the slopes. This hat is made with a blend of synthetic materials. It stretchy to fit close to your head. Pros: made from a trusted brand, warm, synthetic blend, wicks moisture away from your head. Cons: one size fits all, limited colors.
34. Buff Thermal Hat
Buff is a UK based company making incredibly durable and warm hats for all sorts of outdoor activities. This thermal hat is made out of 100% merino wool. It’s rated to keep you warm to -10 degrees. It’s the perfect hat to keep you warm and dry while working out or hiking up a big old mountain. The fun colors and slouchy fit also make it ideal for every day wear as well. We’re big fans of Buff. Pros: 100% merino wool, warm, soft, wicks away moisture, fun style. Cons: sell out quickly.
Burton is a mainstay in the winter hat arena. This hat is perfect for when you need a little extra warmth on those really cold days. It’s well made with a merino/synthetic material blend. This blend of material will keep moisture way-keeping your head dry and body warm all day. Wear alone or under a hood/helmet for added protection and warmth. Pros: blend of wool, warm, comfortable, breathable, versatile. Cons: runs small.
This is another winter hat brand you should consider when you need a warm hat. It’s thin, really thin in fact, but don’t let that keep you from trying this hat on for size. It’s made specifically for mountain adventures. The stretch keeps it close to your head and its windproof too. The hat is designed for climbers, skiers and winter campers who need just another layer to stay warm in the bitter cold. Pros: can be worn as a base layer or alone, depending on conditions. Cons: runs small, not water-resistant.
Helly Hansen has been making warm winter gear for decades. This company is dedicated to designing and creating the warmest, most durable winter clothes on the market today. The Mountain Beanie is lined with fleece, keeping your head from losing all that precious body heat. Plus, it’s really comfortable too. The hat covers your ears, keeping the wind from getting to you! Pros: trusted brand, well made, fleece lined, knit fabric for shell. Cons: one size fits all and may not protect you from heavy snow or rain.
What makes a hat warm?
Before we get into the warmest winter hats on the market today, let’s take a look at what qualifies as a warm hat, shall we? Okay. So, a warm winter hat will vary depending on your activity. If you’re skiing and wear a helmet, a warm winter hat will most likely be made out merino wool. A thin wool hat that fits under a ski helmet will wick away moisture and keep your head dry and warm all-day long.
However, that might not work if you are ice fishing in Minnesota in January. A warm winter hat for you might be down insulated, with ear flaps and neck warmer to keep you nice and toasty while sitting on the ice all day. With ice fishing you’re probably not going to be working up a sweat, so you need a winter hat that is well insulated.
Regardless of the hat you choose, you want to make sure it fits properly. May seem obvious to point this out, but you’ll be amazed at how many people are wearing hats that are too small or too big. The proper fitting that will fit over your ears and stay put, regardless if your hiking a glacier peak or talking a walk in the park. If your hat is too big, all the body heat you are trying to keep, will disappear into thin air. What’s the point of wearing a hat then? Try on a couple hats before you settle on the ONE.
Better yet, buy a couple hats and keep one in your pack or pocket in case you need more protection or your friend forgot their hat at home. In general, you don’t have to pay and arm and a leg for a high quality, well insulated, warm winter hat. In fact, some of the most popular warm winter hats run around $20 or so. I’ll list the price of each hat in this blog as a reference too. Okay, who’s ready to go shopping?
Please also check out our article entitled “Top 17 Ski Hats“.