What Is A Dad Hat? Everything You Need To Know

Dads get a bad rap, yet we’re always stealing from them and making the supposedly uncool things they do and wear cool again – jokes, pants, bodies, and now hats. Everyone is wearing them from your actual dad to the 20-year-old Instagram influencer showing off her latest dance moves to the frat kids at the local university, and even children. Paparazzi are always catching celebrities in their dad hats, whether they’re wearing sweats or rocking a more fashion-forward look, one thing is clear: the dad hat is here to stay.

What exactly makes a hat a dad hat? Well, I’m glad you asked. Dad hats used to mean a baseball hat with a snapback but the phrase has recently evolved and developed in recent years.

Simply put, a dad hat is a 6-panel baseball cap with unstructured front panels and simple logos. Dad hats lack the extras of snapback, trucker, and fitted caps. At their most basic, they are something your dad would wear. If you’re still struggling to picture what exactly a dad hat is, here is a breakdown to help you visualize so you can be well-informed and impress all your friends.

Curved Brim


Remember the days when you would get a new baseball hat and you would have to break in the brim? I would put rubber bands around it to curve it, put it in a laundry bag and wash it and wash it, trying to soften it up and give it a more lived-in appearance. Gone are those days! 

Now, a dad hat will have a pre-curved brim. Mainly because these look good on everyone but also because sometimes dads are just too busy to deal with breaking in a brim. With work, kids, wives/partners, and hobbies, who has the time? A pre-curved brim intentionally looks more comfortable and relaxed.

A snapback trucker hat tends to have a flatter, wider brim and are usually much stiffer.

Relaxed Fit


Since dads have the reputation of being easy-going and relaxed, it only makes sense this is part of what makes a dad hat an actual dad hat. They are usually made out of a soft cotton or canvas fabric and feel light –  as if you’re not really wearing a hat.

This makes them an easy go-to accessory to just throw on, whether you’re hanging around your house, meeting up with friends, or heading out for the day. Comfort is key when it comes to anything “dad” related.



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Again, like a dad, their hats tend to be unstructured, simple, and faded. Ok, ok, that was a generalized stereotype about human behavior but when it comes to dad hats it’s a very true characteristic. Logos tend to be simple, much like the hat itself.

If you’ve ever been to a convention of any kind and received free swag with the name of the company on every pen, post-it note, and coffee mug, this is what you can expect from a dad hat logo. And if your dad hat came as a free promotional gift, even better. That’s very “dad” of you.



True to standard dad behavior, dad hat colors tend to be more basic shades such as navy, gray, burgundy, black, and white. That way they match with pretty much any t-shirt/cargo short/fanny pack combo in case you’re going for the entire dad-look. Just borrow a kid if you don’t have one of your own. 

The Closure and Sizing


In keeping with the theme of easy and casual, your standard dad hat typically has a velcro or slide closure. When it comes to sizing, that’s the easier part because dad hats are one size fits all. Zero thought involved, just the way we like it.



As with anything, you can find dad hats at a variety of price points. Sure, you can spend hundreds of dollars on one from Gucci or Burberry, if you’re into that sort of thing, but that kind of defeats the purpose, in my humble opinion. 

You can definitely find dad hats anywhere for a much more reasonable price. It’s not hard and you’ll feel better about it when your hat inevitably gets sweaty and dirty.

Where To Wear


The short answer is anywhere. With anything. Wear it with jeans, shorts, golf clothes, pajamas, khakis, whatever you want, really. Are you having a bad hair day? Throw on a dad hat.

Are you having a day outdoors? Fishing, hiking, going to the beach? Throw on a dad hat. Going to brunch on a Sunday after staying up way too late the night before? Throw on a dad hat. Running errands and trying to avoid making eye contact with strangers? Dad hat.

The point is dad hats are here to stay and we’re not even mad at it. They are cool, casual, comfortable, and go with pretty much any outfit for most daytime occasions. Next time you’re out and about rocking your dad hat and you walk by someone also rocking their dad hat, in true “dad” fashion, give them a high five and make a quick dad joke. You’ll be bonded for life.

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