Water Resistant vs. Water Repellent vs. Waterproof: What They Mean (and What’s Best for Your Needs)

It’s that time of year for those people who live in regions with the four seasons.  Snow is no longer exciting, and bouts of rain and wintery mixes start occurring in a seemingly endless cycle.  It’s the perfect time to get a hat to keep your head dry!

While most well-crafted hats will offer some level of protection from rain and precipitation, we have some that offer a little extra insurance for those who spend extra time outside in inclement weather.  The three distinctions you’ll see on, as far as water resistance goes, are “Water Resistant”, “Water Repellent” and “Waterproof”.  These three terms are mainstream designations that are often applied to products like tents, clothing, electronics, and, of course, hats.

Water Resistant and Water Repellent

Our “Water Repellent” hats are better at blocking water than something labeled as “Water Resistant”.  “Water Resistant” hats are good enough if you plan to spend time outside, but only if it’s brief.  In other words, a “Water Resistant” hat might get you from the parking lot to the post office in a hard rain, while a “Water Repellent” hat could get you from your house to the post office.  We have Litefelt® hats made from a specially-treated wool that makes them “Water Repellent”.  Check out these Pantropic brand Litefelt® hats.  We’ve recently added some new colors!  Tilley brand hats are special styles built specifically for those who enjoy the outdoors, and they’re excellent at repelling rain.




Our “Waterproof” hats are strong enough that you could wear one of them to deliver the entire town’s mail in a downpour and still have a dry head when you’re done!  We have amazing P2i hats that totally block precipitation from getting to your head… this technology makes water bead off fabric like you won’t believe!  Watch this awesome video about P2i to learn more.  P2i treatment also keeps sweat from saturating the material of the hat, making treated hats well-suited for sports like golf and tennis.  Both “Water Repellent” and “Waterproof” are sweat-wicking, but “Waterproof” hats are a safe bet for long-term protection.


For a more detailed explanation of water resistance in the products you buy, check out this article.