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Winter headwear usually means one thing: beanies. We're talking about crisply cuffed, tiny beanies, ultra-bright neon beanies, and every other type of beanie under the chilly winter sun. It's the cold-weather accessory that keeps your noggin from freezing while also making you look more rugged and outdoorsy than you actually are. It is also, on occasion, a little tired. So, this year, why not change things up just a bit? If you're looking for a break from wearing a beanie every day, consider the winterized bucket hat.
Burberry brown fleece bucket hat, $470 at Ssense
The "formal beanie" that Mahershala Ali wore to the Oscars and the mid-1990s photos of Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher have taught us that the right headwear can take an outfit from good to absolutely legendary. And that is precisely where the winter bucket hat comes into play—it's the unexpected choice for cold-weather headwear. When you think of a bucket hat, you probably picture lightweight fabrics like nylon or twill and a cap that provides shade from the sun. But this season, several designers and brands have given the bucket hat a makeover in season-friendly fabrics like wool, felt, and corduroy. Which is to say that your trusty old beanie is no longer the only option when it comes to staying cozy and looking fresh.
Gucci wool GG bucket hat, $530 at Ssense
Carhartt WIP Pulford check bucket hat, $58 at Carhartt
Stussy check plaid bucket hat, $45 at Need Supply
If you're feeling something with a designer label, Burberry makes a fuzzy fleece style featuring the brand's iconic pattern, and Prada offers a simple gray wool-felt option with a logo appliqué at the front. (Not to mention: this boldly patterned and sherpa-trimmed hat from Gucci.) For something a little more low-key (and budget-friendly), both Carhartt WIP and Stüssy offer the style in snug-looking plaid fabrics. And if you want to wear some sporty and swaggy corduroy, look no further than this wide-wale style from Engineered Garments or this reversible option from Ralph Lauren, complete with an embroidered Polo bear.
Polo Ralph Lauren Kicker Bear reversible corduroy bucket hat, $78 at Urban Outfitters
The hat style is excellent at pulling double duty, too. Think of it as the beanie’s more structured and elevated older brother. You can dress it up with trousers and an overcoat for a stroll, but also put it through a serious beating with a puffer jacket and heavy-duty boots for a snowy commute to work. Of course, a bucket hat might turn more heads than your favorite beanie, but that's kind of the point. The payoff? You'll look wildly stylish and warm and toasty to boot—that's a risk worth taking.