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Buying the Best Hat for Your Face Shape

Linda has written content for national fashion and beauty websites. She enjoys sharing style trends and tips with her readers.

How many times have you seen the cutest hat only to be disappointed when you try it on and say, “That beret makes my head look like a turnip!” Then you try on another one shrieking, “That floppy brimmed hat makes me look like a basset hound!”

Is there any hope of finding the perfect hat? Of course there is. Instead of trying on every hat in the store you just need to know which hat styles work best with your face shape.

Maybe Beatrice and Eugenie should read this article.

Maybe Beatrice and Eugenie should read this article.

Determine Your Face Shape

If you are not sure of your face shape here’s a quick and easy way to find out: pull your hair away from your face and look at yourself in the bathroom mirror. Use a erasable marker and outline your face shape on the mirror. Then match your face shape with one of the descriptions in the table below. Obviously, there are variations of each standard face shape so go with the description that most closely matches yours.

Which Shape Matches Your Face?

ShapeDescription

Round

The length and width are about the same. Very curvy. Anything but angular.

Long

Narrow and longer than wide. Angular, with high cheekbones and a tall forehead.

Square

Angular with a prominent jaw line, broad forehead and square chin. Length in proportion with width.

Heart

Broad forehead with wide cheekbones that graduates to a small, narrow chin.

Oval

Balanced proportions. High cheekbones. Chin is slightly narrower than forehead.

Round-Shaped Face

You round faced gals should look for a hat that elongates your features. Look for a hat brim that is wider than your face. A floppy brimmed sun hat or cowboy hat will give your face the length and balance it needs. Just make sure the crown of the hat does not exceed the width of your cheekbones. Choose a style with a high crown and asymmetrical lines. That will offset the perfect curves of your round face.

The high crown and wide brim of this hat is perfect for a round face.

The high crown and wide brim of this hat is perfect for a round face.

Long-Shaped Face

Women with slender faces should consider wearing a short crown to de-emphasize the length of your face. A moderate brim width is recommended. A brim that is too wide will hang down and frame your face making it appear longer. Conversely, stay away from narrow brim styles and high or peaked crowns. They will also elongate your face. A slightly flared brim (think floppy hats, cowboys and head-hugging cloches) will conceal your high forehead thus shortening the length of your face.

A cloche will visually shorten the length of your face.

A cloche will visually shorten the length of your face.

Enchanting Cloches

Square-Shaped Face

Your square face is a masterpiece of angles. That said, be careful not to choose an angular hat that compounds the geometry. Consider a beret that will add curves to the equation. Go for hat styles with a rounded brim. A bowler, with its soft curves and short, upturned brim will soften the hard angle of your jawline. Any hat that sits higher on your forehead will help elongate the lower part of your face. You can also give your hat a flirty little tilt to create a sense asymmetry.

A rounded bowler will soften the prominent angles of your face.

A rounded bowler will soften the prominent angles of your face.

Heart-Shaped Face

A heart-shaped face looks best in rounded hats and shorter brims. You should steer clear of wide, flat brims that draw attention to your small chin. A heart shaped face can carry off most hats however, buckets and boater styles can be particularly flattering. Be wary of brims that are too small. They will add unwanted width to your forehead. Conversely, wide brims will further narrow the lower half of your face.

A bucket hat will definitely flatter a heart shaped face.

A bucket hat will definitely flatter a heart shaped face.

Great Tips for Rocking Your New Hat

Oval Face

You of the oval-shaped face are the luckiest of all. Oval faces can pull off almost any style hat with great aplomb. However, certain hats can make your perfect symmetry appear long and narrow, so beware! Hats with deep crowns and wide, flared brims are the best for you. Check out menswear-inspired fedoras, bowlers and porkpies for a super flattering look.

A fedora is a fun look for an oval face.

A fedora is a fun look for an oval face.

You can use these general guidelines to help with your search, but don’t get to wrapped up in the details. Just go out there and have fun shopping for and wearing your new hat!

© 2012 Linda Chechar

Start a Conversation!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on May 14, 2015:

Kristen, thanks! Yep, now's the time of the year to start thinking about shading delicate facial skin from those harmful UV rays. Glad you stopped by for a read. Thanks for the vote!

Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on May 13, 2015:

Linda, this was so useful to know, especially for the spring and summer seasons to shade your eyes from the sun. Great hub! Voted up!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on January 19, 2014:

Vespawoolf, I love hats, but only have a few. My problem is I don't like the resulting "hat hair". When I do wear one, I feel compelled to wear a it for the entire day so no one will see my flat hair! I also think fedoras are a really cute look. Thanks for stopping in!

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on January 19, 2014:

I always wear a hat when spending time in the sun, so I was glad to learn that oval faces can wear most style. I will have to try a fedora for something new. This information was very useful. Thanks for sharing!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 25, 2012:

K, I know, I was the same way. I used to choose hats because I thought they were cute. Then I would try them on a t home and wonder why they didn't look quite right. Now we know the secret! Enjoy wearing your hats and scarves. Thanks for the read and votes!

Kristi Sharp from Born in Missouri. Raised in Minnesota. on September 25, 2012:

Great Hub! I only have one problem and that is..I want to wear all of them :) I have hats in all shapes and until now, I had no idea what looked best. This is going to help. It's no secret that I'm a stranger to style. Between hats and scarves, this fall is going to be my best ever. Useful & Up -K

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 08, 2012:

So glad you chose mine to read, Carol! Thanks for the vote and comment. I know, it is always a treat to learn new things from fellow Hubbers! Take care.

carol stanley from Arizona on September 08, 2012:

Thought this would be fun to read. As always your hubs are fun and creative. I usually go through my followers once a month and find a hub to read and comment. It is fun and I always learn something. Voted UP.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 07, 2012:

teaches, now you need to go out and buy some hats! ;) Have a wonderful weekend!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 07, 2012:

shai, yes I agree. Hats are such a civilized accessory that can be worn year round. They really add a special to almost any outfit. Thank you so much for the read and comment! :)

Dianna Mendez on September 07, 2012:

I like the hat suggestion for my face, round. I love this hat style. I really enjoyed reading your hub. Great article.

Chen on September 07, 2012:

Nice. More people should wear hats these days. Never thought about how they fit the face though, this is something to think about. Great job, great hub.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 06, 2012:

Leah, I guess it the same concept as choosing glasses to suit your face shape. I was at Target today and had to force myself not to go near the new fall hats. I can stand there forever playing "dress up". Same goes for sunglasses! :)

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 06, 2012:

Thanks, Om! Cloches are one of my favorites also. They hide my high forehead quite nicely and minimize the overall length.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on September 06, 2012:

QudsiaP1, weren't those hats just dreadful? I read Princess Beatrice sold hers on eBay (for charity) and it fetched over £81,000!

Leah Lefler from Western New York on September 06, 2012:

This is great! I never thought about which style of hat would suit my face best. I agree with Om, the cloches are really cute. Now I want to go to a hat shop!

Om Paramapoonya on September 06, 2012:

Nice hub, Linda! Your advice makes total sense. I love cloches, and you're absolutely right; they seem to complement my long face.

QudsiaP1 on September 06, 2012:

Wowzer lindacee!

Strange how when I read you hub title I could completely relate to the picture and thought back to the princess's hat fiasco.

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