how to wear a fedora hat

How To Wear A Fedora Hat: The Ultimate Guide

Wearing a fedora hat can add instant style to any look, but many people wonder, "how to wear a fedora hat" with confidence? The key is to avoid looking like you're trying too hard. You'll want your fedora to feel like a natural extension of your personal style, not a costume piece.

We'll go through all the nuances of how to wear a fedora hat so that you can rock this classic accessory with confidence.

It's all about finding the right fit, choosing complementary styles, and projecting an air of effortless cool. Whether you're drawn to the vintage charm of a wide-brimmed felt fedora or prefer a modern take on this timeless hat style, this guide will answer all your questions and equip you with the know-how to make the fedora your own. Ready to up your hat game? Let's break down everything you need to know about how to wear a fedora hat.

Table Of Contents:


Understanding the Fedora

Before you confidently don a fedora, it helps to understand a bit about its history and what defines this iconic hat style. That's what makes a hat more than just an accessory—knowing its backstory can boost your confidence when wearing it. Plus, you’ll be equipped to shut down anyone who mistakenly calls your stylish fedora a “trilby.”

A Blast From the Past

Fedora hats have a surprisingly long and fascinating history.  It first gained widespread attention in the late 19th century. Contrary to what many people assume, this “menswear” staple was originally worn by women. The play “Fédora,” starring the renowned actress Sarah Bernhardt, featured the hat as a key element of the lead character’s attire.

The fedora’s popularity quickly transcended gender lines. Throughout the first half of the 20th century, it became a staple for men across social classes. Everyone, from businessmen to Hollywood stars, embraced the fedora. It was seen as the epitome of sophistication.

Think iconic figures like Humphrey Bogart, Frank Sinatra, and even Indiana Jones,  These cultural icons all solidified the fedora's position as a timeless symbol of style. And guess what?  Even though hat-wearing in general declined in the latter half of the 20th century, the classic fedora has experienced a resurgence. Today,  men and women are once again drawn to its ability to add a touch of timeless elegance and individuality to their looks. 

Key Features of a Fedora

Here are the key characteristics that define a fedora hat:

  • **Indentation:** Fedoras have a distinct indented crown, usually pinched at the front and sometimes at the sides.
  • **Soft Brim:** The brim of a fedora is soft and pliable, often with a snap to it. This “snap-brim” is a key distinguishing feature.
  • **Materials:** While often made from felt, fedoras come in a variety of materials like straw, wool, and even leather. Different materials are often favored in different seasons.
  • **Ribbon:** Typically, a grosgrain ribbon band encircles the crown, just above the brim, and adds a touch of visual interest.

Choosing the Right Fedora

Now, onto the fun part—finding a fedora that speaks to your personal style. A lot of factors influence this, from your face shape to your typical wardrobe choices.

1. Finding Your Perfect Fit

When shopping for a fedora hat, finding the right fit is absolutely essential. Nothing ruins a stylish hat faster than an awkward fit. Measure your head circumference with a measuring tape, wrapping it just above your ears, and refer to the hat size charts for an accurate fit. Remember, a fedora hat that pinches or feels too loose won't do you any favors in the comfort or style department. Here's a great tip—aim for a fit where you can comfortably slip one finger between your head and the sweatband. That usually signals a good, comfortable fit.

2. Matching Your Face Shape

It may sound surprising, but certain hat styles suit specific face shapes. If you have a round face, a fedora with a wider brim and a center dent crown can add flattering angles. For a longer, narrower face, opt for a fedora with a shorter brim and a teardrop-shaped crown.

Face Shape Fedora Brim Size Recommended Crown Style
Round Wide brim (3 inches or more) Center dent, diamond crown
Oval/Long Medium to short brim (2-3 inches) Teardrop crown, center dent
Square Medium brim (2-3 inches) Center dent, pinched crown
Heart-shaped Short to medium brim (2-2.5 inches) Teardrop crown, fedora with a shallow crown

3. Considering Material and Color

Fedoras come in different colors and materials, from the classic felt fedora to more casual options. Wool fedoras are fantastic for warmth during colder months, while straw or lightweight cotton fedoras are perfect for summer.

If you're unsure, you can never go wrong with a felt fedora. When choosing your first fedora, opt for classic hues like black, gray, brown, or navy, these shades are universally flattering and super easy to incorporate this fashion accessory into different outfits.

Styling a Fedora for Women

For the ladies wondering how to wear a fedora hat, let's dive into outfit inspiration. This isn’t just a guy’s hat, trust me. When it comes to women and fedoras, versatility is key.

1. Channeling Chic Vibes

You can effortlessly incorporate a fedora hat into a variety of stylish looks. One of the best things about fedoras is they look good in a pinch.

For a timeless, elegant outfit, a wide-brimmed felt fedora in black or navy is stunning, pair it with:

  • A tailored blazer
  • A flowy blouse
  • Skinny jeans or tailored pants
  • Ankle boots or heels.

You'll exude sophistication. This kind of outfit is amazing for both evening occasions and adding a touch of flair to daytime events.

2. Effortless Boho Style

 If boho chic is more your style, opt for straw fedoras with a floppy brim in natural hues like beige or cream. It pairs well with:

  • A flowy maxi dress
  • A simple tank top and denim shorts
  • Leather sandals
  • Layered jewelry.

You'll radiate laid-back, bohemian vibes that are perfect for casual outings, festivals, and more. For a fun twist, try adding a colorful scarf or a few feathers to your fedora's hatband.

3. Keeping it Casual

Want to incorporate a fedora hat into your casualwear? Opt for a smaller fedora casually or even a trilby style fedora with a shorter brim. Pair it with:

  • Your favorite jeans
  • A graphic tee or band shirt
  • Sneakers

It'll add instant cool to an otherwise low-key outfit. Don't be afraid to experiment. Part of finding your personal style is about trial and error. Play around with different fedora styles and outfits to discover what makes you feel your best.


Figuring out how to wear a fedora hat isn’t just about following a set of rules. It’s all about understanding the hat's unique character.

The fedora hats allows for endless outfit combinations and helps showcase your personality. Use these guidelines but don't be afraid to personalize them.  Play with different styles and experiment.

You'll master the art of how to wear a fedora hat in a way that's uniquely you. Remember, confidence is your best accessory, so own that fedora shape look and enjoy the best sun hats for women.

FAQs About How to Wear a Fedora Hat

How Should a Fedora Sit on Your Head?

Your fedora hat should sit comfortably on your head, not too far back or perched precariously on top. Ideally, the brim will rest about an inch or two above your eyebrows. Experiment with slightly tilting it forward or to the side for different looks.

Do You Wear a Fedora Brim Up or Down?

How you wear the brim is a matter of personal preference. The classic "Indiana Jones" look features a brim that's tilted down in the front and slightly up in the back. However, don't be afraid to try it tilted up all around for a more playful vibe, or down all around for a mysterious air.

How to Correctly Wear a Fedora?

Wearing a fedora “correctly” is subjective. Focus on these elements: a comfortable fit, complementary brim and crown style for your face, coordinating colors and materials to the occasion, and, most of all, wearing it with confidence. When it feels like "you," you're doing it right.

What Does Wearing a Fedora Symbolize?

The fedora hat, steeped in history, has come to represent sophistication, style, and a hint of mystery. While it was once a mark of formality, it can now symbolize individuality and a nod to vintage style when incorporated into modern looks.  

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