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Tip of the hat to a new generation of sun-shielding chapeaus


Hats with SPF protection have traditionally been more about function than form, like your grandparents Boca Raton lab glasses instead of Ray-Ban Wayfarers. So we’re thrilled to see style being woven into special sun protecting fabric.

Your favorite fedora likely disrupts UV radiation to some degree. All fabrics and brims offer some protection. The difference is these hats have special sun-proof liners that provide additional shielding from UVB and UVA rays. The rating for hats and clothing is UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) instead of SPF. A fabric with a UPF 50 rating only allows 1/50th of the skin-damaging ultraviolet radiation falling on the surface of the fabric to pass through it.

Well+Good went shopping to find high-performance hats that don’t skimp on style. Not exactly Philip Treacy millinery we admit, but you certainly won’t need to hide under your hat with one of these. And nothing is chicer these days than protecting your skin from the sun.

The Adventure Hat from Shady Lady won the editor’s choice award from Organic Gardening Magazine, but it’s an ideal beach companion with 360 degree coverage. ($38; www.shadyladyproducts.com)

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Coolibar’s Seaside Resort hat comes with 1940’s style and a 50+ UPF. $44; www.coolibar.com

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The Nina hat from Wallaroo has an attractive crochet weave and still gets a UPF of 50+. $38; www.wallaroohats.com


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Despite the cheesy catalog shot and cheesier name, the Diva, this 100% cotton pique hat with a nearly 6″ brim is actually quite chic and easy to pack. It comes with a UPF of 50+, you provide the attitude. $55; www.shadyladyproducts.com