What Is a Boonie Hat

Rayward Apparel

No matter the season, when it's sunny, you need sun protection! Otherwise, you may risk harmful sun exposure and other heat-related issues. So what is a good article of clothing that can get you through a hot sunny day? The answer is a boonie hat! If you are an outdoor person, then this versatile wide-brimmed hat is perfect for you. Keep reading to learn more about the advantages of boonie hats.

Rayward Apparel Boonie Hat

What is a Boonie Hat?

A boonie hat is a type of wide-brimmed sun hat. They were initially made popular by military and police forces operating in areas with hot or tropical climates. While similar to a bucket hat, the main design difference is that boonie hats usually have a stiffer brim than most bucket hats. Nowadays, however, you'll often hear the terms "bucket hat" and "boonie hat" used interchangeably. And what about that name? The word "boonie" comes from an abbreviation of the word "boondocks," slang for a place considered off the beaten path.

The boonie hat was first introduced during the Vietnam War. Military unites like the Green Berets found them practical for protection against the intense weather of Southeast Asia. The hat began to come with camouflage, which further helped the Berets in combat operations. After the war, many veterans brought these hats home. In civilian use, they've remained popular thanks to their practical effectiveness! In addition to many nations employing them in their military and police units, it's now easy to spot these hats all around town.

Why You Need This Hat

If the military is drawn to a hat's functionality, then this is definitely something you should look into yourself! Many people neglect the importance of protecting their head from the sun. Wearing a boonie hat can prevent serious and painful sunburns. The hat's brim also cuts back on glare and helps keep your head cool, which keeps you comfortable. Lastly, the hat is great for keeping rain off your face, which happens often in tropical climates.

Wearing a Boonie Hat fishing

What to Look for In a Boonie Hat

When searching for a boonie hat, the key component is the brim. To make the hat most effective, you want a brim that is wide enough to cover your ears and neck. Next, it should have a chin strap or similar method of securing the hat around your head. Lastly, you want a well-designed and long-lasting build. A well-built hat should last several years. Because they are used by militaries around the world, these hats need to be durable and easy to maintain.


In conclusion, a boonie is an excellent multi-functional hat. It offers more protection from the sun than almost any other hat. While it has a military background and use, it is still great in more casual settings. Rayward Apparel designed the UPF 50+ Sun Ops boonie hat to offer the same functionality and benefits as mentioned in this article. Plus, it's UPF certified, which will offer you even more protection from the sun. Grab one today and let the hat serve its purpose as it has done many times!