5 Winter Hat Styling Tips, Because Beanies Aren't Your Only Option When The Cold Weather Accessories

This summer, I became a hat person. It was the perfect way to keep a protective style without an elaborate head scarf that had some of my, less in the know, friends asking "Did you not do your hair today?" The first hat was "borrowed" permanently from my roommate and, after the slew of compliments that came rolling in, I knew I needed surplus of my own hats in various colors and styles. With colder temperatures quickly approaching, I've found myself worrying about protecting the thing that's protecting my hair — how the bleep am I going to keep my hat on in the winter?

Fortunately, the fashion scene recognizes that hats are the business and they are becoming more plentiful and more stylish. Even better, you don't need to ditch your fashion-forward hat in cold weather. In fact, I have several tricks for keeping your ears warm (sans beanie) and protecting your hat's fancy fabric from pesky rain or snow. Even if it kind of looks like a beach hat, those wide-brimmed wool things are VERY warm. You may want to retire your straw fedoras, but you don't have to be hat-free until the next time the sun shines above 70. These hats are sexy and weather appropriate all year long!

1. Embrace Winter Colors

You may not know from the surplus of black, brown, and grey hats that are often sold, but hats come in all colors. My felt, deep burgundy boater's hat screams winter, warmth, and elegance. Worried about your ears getting cold in January? Wear a winter ear band under your hat to cover your ears, subtly. You can go funky or solid with your ear band choice, depending on your mood.

2. Go Big

Having a big afro means I have to buy larger hat sizes — that one size fits all crap just doesn't work with these curls. Floppy hat styles can easily fit over your ears to protect them from the cold.

3. Incorporate a Scarf

A creative way to avoid cold ears is to wear a scarf underneath your hat. For natural girls, this is ideal for eliminating snagging and keeping your protective style, but all hair types can tuck their locks into a braid and wrap the scarf snuggly around your hair. You can leave a little hair exposure in the front and pull the scarf down over your ears.

4. Think Outside the Hat Trends

Don't be scared to go rogue with your hat choice — there are plenty of funky hats that can be found in stores you wouldn't even think to peruse the aisles of. Recently, I bought this great colorful, mod-style hat while shopping with my mom at Frugal Fannies, a warehouse store in Western Massachusetts that caters to an older, more conservative demographic. I can rest assured that I won't run into someone else wearing the same hat as me, plus it was super cheap and well-made.

5. Dress Yourself Up In Your Hat

My favorite time to play with makeup is while I'm wearing a hat. My hair is back and my face is going to be on display, so I want to showcase bold lip colors, dramatic eyebrows, and make my eyes pop with volume-enhancing mascara. In my opinion, wearing a hat and a dress is literally one of the cutest things happening in fashion right now.

Image: Giphy; Kristin Collins Jackson