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Pros and Cons of Polyester Hats

By Taylor James


Updated on

Hats are made in an enormous variety of styles, from an endless array of different fabrics. While this aspect of the accessory might not come to mind for the casual hat wearer, the material from which the hat is made plays a huge role in determining its best uses and overall quality.

Polyester hats are extremely common today, making up a large percentage of the more casual, laid-back accessories. These New Era caps on Amazon are a good example of hats made from 100% polyester.

It’s easy to see why this fabric has made such an impact in the hat-making industry – but is it really always the best choice? Let’s find out; here are the pros and cons of polyester hats:

Pros of polyester hats

  • Sweat-wicking
  • Durable
  • Resistant to shrinking and wrinkling


Polyester is known and loved for its moisture-wicking traits, making it a great option to wear during hot weather or when performing sweat-inducing activities. Keeping you dry as you’re out and about under the sun, this exercise-friendly accessory will ensure you remain comfortable under harsh conditions.


Along with its ability to absorb sweat, polyester’s durability makes it a fabric ideal in activewear, including hats worn during outdoor actives like hiking and running. Able to be easily blended with a wide variety of different fabrics, polyester can cater to various different needs within the ‘exercise’ niche. Its other practical characteristics, such as the ability to dry quickly and hold its shape, further allow it to take the place as one of the top preferred athletic materials for hats.

Resistant to shrinking and wrinkling

Not only are polyester hats great at retaining their shapes, but they are also resistant to shrinking and wrinkling. Always staying smooth and ready to go, these hats are incredibly easy to transport, too. They can go in your backpack and still look great once you reach your destination.

When being used in sports or physical activities, polyester hats might need to be frequently washed. When it comes to hats in general, the constant maintenance that is required might not be ideal; many hats are known to shrink in conditions of excess moisture and severe heat.

Cons of polyester hats

  • Not very breathable
  • Not environmentally-friendly
  • Not the most comfortable

Not very breathable

While some polyester hats can be somewhat breathable depending on their design and the fabric blend, it does not tend to be quite as breathable as other more natural alternatives like cotton. Polyester can be naturally more robust and tough, making it a not-so-ideal fabric for optimal ventilation.

Black snapback hat
snapback – denyshndra@123rf.com

Not environmentally-friendly

As a synthetic material made from plastic and usually derived from petroleum, polyester requires a significant amount of energy to be produced; naturally, this process results in the emissions of greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere, making it a less than ideal fabric environment-wise. Polyester is also not biodegradable due to its primary material, meaning it will remain on the planet for far longer than it will be used or necessary.

Though its often accessible pricing can be attractive, it might also make the fabric itself more commonly used in fast-fashion scenarios, one of the most environmentally harmful industries in the world.

Not the most comfortable

Polyester is known for its ability to hold its shape well; while this can be a great feature for some purposes, it means that hats made from this material will not mold themselves to the head, leading to a less comfortable accessory.

About Taylor James

As Philip Treacy once said, “How a hat makes you feel is what a hat is all about.” And on that note, I hope you enjoy your hats and find the site useful. Learn more about Hat Realm's Editorial Process.