With in-the-moment inspiration from celebrities like Bella Hadid and street style stars like Patricia Manfield, now is the time to capitalize on the hottest hat trends of 2019. But making the most of out of this underappreciated accessory isn’t just about finding the perfect look—it’s also about the perfect fit. This is especially important if you’re shopping online, where hat sizes can vary widely and often differ slightly from brand to brand. Your best bet is to use a size chart and work with an accurate sense of your hat size. Whether you’re looking for a new sun hat for your next tropical getaway or an everyday pageboy cap to throw on in the winter, read on for how to measure your hat size for a perfect fit, every time.
The best way to measure hat size is to use a tape measure, specifically the soft kind used by tailors. If you don’t have a flexible measuring tape on hand, you can also use a string or shoelace and then lay it flat alongside a ruler.
To get an accurate hat size measurement, position the tape measure about 1/8 inch above your ear, then gently wind it horizontally across the middle of your forehead, over the top of your other ear, and around to make a circle. The tape measure should be neither too tight nor too loose and should approximate the position in which a hat would naturally sit on your head.
Pinch the spot where the ends of the tape measure meet, then jot down the number. Be sure to get the measurement down to the millimeter or eighth of an inch for accuracy. Because hat size measurements are so specific, it may be useful to double-check your work.
The final step in how to measure hat size is to check your measurements against a size chart. While many designers offer a size chart specific to the brand, refer to a general hat sizing chart when no brand-specific measurements are given.