If you're bald like me, especially if you shave your head, then you understand this dilemma.
You have to wear a hat when you go outside for longer than 15 minutes. You have to protect the top of your noggin from what will otherwise be the most painful sunburn. The skin at the top of your head is really thin, meaning the sun's singe would come with a few weeks of aloe treatments on your dome. It smells nice, but looks embarrassing.
It's also key to find a Flexfit-type hat so that you don't tan a crescent shape on your head for the summer. Nothing impresses quite like a total lack of self-awareness that you're bald.
However, if you're smart and wear a hat when you're outside, the sun still hits the bottom half of your head and your neck. They're going to tan, eventually, leading to a brutal tan line, funny looks from strangers wondering if just your skull is albino and relentless mockery from your well-haired friends.
Fine, fine. It's fine. Wearing the hat is better than not.
So, when I wear a hat, I want to look good, get protection from the sun's death rays and feel modestly cool under there. On a hot, humid day, there are few things more annoying than a hat that makes it worse.
That's why I was excited to give Imperial Headwear's new line of hats with Coolcare technology a try.
The technology claims, when wet, to be up to 30 percent cooler than your skin temperature. That's a big deal for a bald guy living in the Northeast, where it can get downright unpleasant in the summer.
I've played with the hat on a few times, and it performs better as the day goes on, primarily because it wicks away moisture and essentially uses it to keep me cooler. My sweat performs better in the hat than on my skin.
The hat breathes well, too, so just the right amount of sweat stays in the hat materials and just enough goes away so that I'm not walking with a water-logged towel on my skull. It's lightweight without feeling thin or cheap.
The design keeps the hat in contact with your head (or hair, I guess; it's been a while). That means no awkward bunching of the hat for a weird fit.
The Coolcore hat also had UPF 45-plus protection built in, so there's less worrying about throwing some sunscreen on your head and then sweating it off two holes into your round. You're protected, which is great.
The Imperial Coolcare hat is available in a variety of styles, including the Flexfit option. At about $25 per hat, depending on where you find it, it's a good gamer for those warm days on the course.