Living with hats – what sun hat to wear for running

As I write this I still have a scabby nose as a result of being treated for a pre-cancer on my sun-maxed-out skin. It is making good progress at the moment.

Having bought a broad brimmed three season felt hat, and a linen sun hat, I now want a hat to run in. A sun hat for running is, I have realised, something I need to sort. My regular runs amount to many hours a week in the sun, with a weekly long run (when marathon training) lasting over three hours alone. I will still supplement the hat with sunscreen cream but cream alone is not enough.

I have used a lightweight running cap that wicks sweat away, but it does not shade much of the face. It shades the eyes, and would shade the nose if the sun is directly above, but doesn’t do much if the sun is shining from the side. I have also tried a running cap that has a bit at the back like a Legionnaire but once I am moving along the back bit just trails in the breeze. That style still doesn’t shade the face as much as I would like.

Factors to bear in mind as I search then:

  • Not too hot in use.
  • Brim all around
  • Not likely to blow off in wind

My first try was this.


Extremely ugly (which I can probably put up with for a solution that works). As it was only £5.99 it seemed worth a try. The mesh around the top looked like it would get rid of excess heat and the brim looked nice and broad.

It did not work! Despite looking ridiculous when it was worn with my normal runners kit I had been willing to give it a try. It is snug enough not to be blown off. I could see from my shadow that the brim was providing good shade to my face and nose.

But HOT! It seemed okay for a while but then I felt the heat building up, and up! The mesh sides that looked so cooling end up against the side of the head so no breeze blows through there as I had expected.

Solution? I could save it for cooler days but I think it would still end up being too hot. Or, I could cut the whole of the top off (even more ridiculous looking). I will keep that option in reserve.

The search continues.

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