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Why Do Some Hats Have Eyelets?

By Taylor James


Updated on

Many hats have little holes in them, especially hats like baseball caps. If you’ve ever wondered if these holes have a purpose or if they’re just for style, you’re not alone. These holes, called eyelets, do have a purpose.

Some hats have eyelets for ventilation, which are typically sewn in or placed around the crown of the head. They are used to keep the head cool and keep the fabric around the hole from fraying. Hats that are commonly seen with eyelets are baseball caps and bucket hats.

The rest of this article will discuss whether eyelets are necessary for hats, when eyelets originated, and what other objects people use eyelets for.

Are Eyelets Necessary in Hats?

Eyelets may not be necessary in hats, but the added benefit of ventilation of eyelets makes wearing hats more comfortable, especially on hot days. Some hats might not have eyelets because they have a mesh material, which also offers ventilation.

Without eyelets or any type of ventilation in your hat, you may sweat more and become hotter than you usually would.

hat eyelets

When Did Eyelets Originate?

Eyelets originated in the 14th century. However, they weren’t always made or even used the way they are today and are more closely related to grommets. They started as a decoration and mainly were used for lacing clothes. 

Eyelets and grommets serve the same purpose. However, grommets are larger than eyelets, which is why eyelets are often utilized in attire like hats, clothes, and shoes.

W. H. Rodgers invented the first eyelet machine in 1859. 

Before this, eyelets and grommets were usually hand-woven. Many corsets and other clothing throughout history have featured eyelets or grommets in some way, mainly used for lacing up clothing.

Besides hats, eyelets are still used in many tennis shoes today, such as Converse, for example. Not only do Converse have eyelets for the shoelaces, but they have eyelets at the bottom of the shoe to provide ventilation, just like hats.

What Else Are Eyelets Used On?

Since eyelets have been around for a long time, there have been many uses for them. 

Eyelets are used in notebooks, purses, around different parts of clothing, and many other items, though they’re mostly seen in hats and shoes today. While their primary purpose is to provide ventilation, they are also essential to keeping the fabric of the hole from fraying.

Without eyelets, the material would eventually fray away, so the small metal ring holds the fabric in place.

Final Thoughts

Eyelets have been around for a very long time and are used for multiple different reasons. While eyelets have been used for shoes, clothing, accessories, notebooks, and many others, hats are one of the primary uses for eyelets today.

Eyelets in hats work to provide ventilation and keep the head cool. 

If your hat does get sweat stains find out how to remove them in this article.

However, eyelets also ensure that the holes don’t fray and eventually tear apart the fabric around the holes. Therefore, eyelets allow you to get more extended use out of the hat itself.

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.