This Flowchart Will Help You Choose The Derby Hat Of Your Wildest, Horsiest Dreams

Horse-lovers, please forgive me. But isn't watching a horse race about three main things?

  1. mint juleps,
  2. horse names that double as romance novel titles (Bold Conquest. The Truth Or Else. Firespike!), and
  3. drop-dead crazy hats?

Of course (of course), it's also about the horses. There are a few horses I have known and loved: the slow, sleepwalking ones on the campgrounds and kitschy ranches of upstate New York and Connecticut, for example, or the ones that spoke to me from my television. Otherwise, I have never been much of a "horse person."

But, back to the hat thing. As someone who has watched a derby or two, I've realized the importance, and deep symbolism, of headgear in horse racing. In this democratic but ruthlessly competitive universe, everyone gets a hat, and they're all in a race against one another. The jockeys, of course, get neat-looking helmets, since it turns out that horses run pretty fast if you let them. (Safety first!)

More interestingly, spectators wear sublimely ridiculous hats and compete, silently and politely, for one another's attention.

No pressure or anything, but what I'm saying is this: You're really going to have to step up your hat game if you want to watch a derby like a true Southern belle.

That's why we've partnered with Maker's Mark on this flowchart. By answering a few simple questions, you'll find out where you fall on the Derby Hat Personality Spectrum. Whether you're cheering on from the stands or from the comfort of your local bar, we won't steer you wrong. You've got your mint juleps on lock. Now it's time to get that hat right!

This Bustle content is brought to you by Maker's Mark. Maker’s Mark® is a registered trademark of Maker’s Mark Distillery Inc. and is used with permission. Made with Care. Sip with Care™. Bourbon 45% ABV, Maker’s Mark Distillery, Loretto, KY.

Image: Cora Foxx