Beanies – 12 Intriguing Facts

Beanies are a head-hugging brimless cap typically donned in chilly weather, and in some parts of the US and Canada, they’re called knitted caps. Beanies are usually made of wool and are popular because of their versatility — they’re warm, easy to keep, and stylish. But these aren’t the only intriguing beanie facts!

In Fargo, North Dakota, people aren’t allowed to wear beanies, or hats of any kind, while dancing. They come in some 30 styles, like hipster, cuffed, and earflap variations. These hip hats are also worn by babies shortly after birth, new Google employees, and the Viking God Freyr.

Beanies are so cool that they’re still popular, even today. Keep reading to discover 12 intriguing facts about beanies that will make you want to buy one yourself.

It’s Illegal To Dance in Beanies in Fargo

Beanies are designed to keep the head warm, which is why they’re often made of wool or synthetic fibers that can retain heat. While it’s nice to wear your beanie on a cold day, you need to take it off if your plans include dancing in Fargo, North Dakota, USA. In Fargo, it is illegal to dance while sporting headgear, and you risk criminal charges!

There Are More Than 30 Types of Beanies

Many adults and children wear beanies to keep them warm when the outdoor temperatures drop. Previously, beanies were common amongst outdoor workers to protect them from dust, dirt, grease, dangerous objects, and cold wind. Today, people of all ages wear beanies.

Due to their rising popularity, beanies today come in many different shapes (like animal-shaped beanies) and sizes — and more than 30 styles. Some of the styles available today are: cuffless, cuffed, hipster, slouch, earflap, and many more. Beanies are so versatile that there’s a matching beanie for nearly any outfit!

beanie hat

Beanies Are Popular in Hot Temperatures, Too

You may be thinking, why would anyone wear a beanie when the weather is scorching? Simple answer: beanies are stylish. In the 90s, beanies were trendy among celebrities, especially hip-hop rappers and rockstars. Read more about the difference between summer and winter beanies here.

In some parts of Asia, you can see people styling up in beanies, even in temperatures soaring above 98.6°F (37°C). You can wear a beanie during the summer, and it won’t be excessively hot if it’s made of breathable materials. Merino or alpaca wool is ideal in both hot and cold climates — they make you feel warm in cold weather and cool in warm weather. These super popular EINSKEY Slouchy Beanies on Amazon are a good example.

The Scandinavian Vikings Wore Beanies

Scandinavians keep themselves warm with beautiful, thick beanies. Some of the beanies have decorative pom-poms on top, inspired by the pom-pom hat or helmet worn by the Viking God Freyr. In 1904, a statue depicting the God wearing a pom-pom hat was discovered in Södermanland, Sweden.

Google Gives New Employees Propeller Beanies

You may not see people donning propeller beanies on the street, but these beanies were once popular and made appearances in the American children’s television series “Time for Beanie.” Today, propeller beanies are more worn for comedy or satirical reasons. However, at Google, freshly hired staff, also known as “Nooglers,” are given propeller beanies during onboarding.

The Most Expensive Beanie is a $200 Canadian Tuque

Tuque is the Canadian beanie and a winter staple in both Canada and all over the world. The most expensive Canadian tuque on the market costs a whopping $200 — but why? The most expensive tuque uses 35% qiviut (taken from muskox), 35% cashmere (taken from the cashmere goat), and 30% wool (taken from sheep) for its interior, and 100% merino (taken from merino sheep) for its exterior.

Babies Wear Beanies Right After Birth

After delivery, babies need to keep their heads warm, and beanies provide the perfect protection! These snug hats mimic the mother’s warm womb and prevent unexpected chills from cold winds and air conditioning. Unless it’s winter, a newborn baby doesn’t need to wear a beanie outside of the hospital, but a cute little hat won’t hurt as long as the baby is comfortable in it. Check out these incredibly popular baby beanies on Amazon.

Find out more in this article about baby hats.

College Students Wore the Hat in the 20th Century

The beanie hat first emerged in the United States in the early 1900s. During that time, the slang word for “head” was “bean.” But even though the beanie existed in the 20th century, the fad wasn’t as widespread as it is today. 

College students notoriously donned this tight-fitting hat around campus. When the 50s rolled around, freshmen at some universities, like Lehigh University, would wear the hat during the fraternity initiation process.

Benedictine College Continues the Beanie Tradition

The tradition of newcomers wearing beanies for initiation has long died off, for better or for worse! However, Benedictine College, a college based in Kansas, still touts this long-held tradition. The school encourages freshmen to wear beanies during their first week of class, though the trend fizzles out by week two.

It Was Popular With the Working Class of the 1900s

In the early 1900s, many working-class citizens became beanie fanatics for more practical reasons. Blue-collar workers like mechanics, welders, and many other tradesmen realized that this tight-fitting cap could keep their hair from falling into their eyes while on the job. Beanies all but replaced brimmed hats in the 1900s workforce, as the brims would block their view.

Some Beanies Have Brims

Though the classic beanie doesn’t have a brim, some edgier versions sport a <1” (2.54cm) brim at the front. These beanie variations are more fashionable than practical, but they do come in handy when on the slopes on a bright, sunny day. Check out the popular RW Knitted Cotton Rasta Slouchy Beanie Visor on Amazon.

The Baseball Cap Evolved From the Beanie Hat

The beanie is usually a brimless hat these days, but its “ancestry” dates back to the traditional brimmed baseball cap. Much like a baseball cap, beanies fit snugly around your dome, leading many to question whether the beanie is simply an evolved form.

Final Thoughts

Discover more about why beanies are so popular here. Beanies are versatile headgear that everyone living in a cold climate should have in their closet. Unless you’re dancing in Fargo, you can wear a beanie anytime you like. If you want to wear a beanie in summer, it would be best to wear beanies in breathable fabric such as merino wool alpaca wool.

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