Now that summer is in full swing, we’ve rounded up the best summer hats for cancer patients, and included some helpful tips for choosing headwear in the hotter months.
We love spending time outside during the summer. Resting in the garden, eating outdoors, and going for walks are all great ways to enjoy the season.
No matter the activity, we’re always trying to stay cool, comfortable, and sun safe. We love choosing pretty and colourful summer hats to help prevent overheating and to keep ourselves protected.
If you’re experiencing hair loss due to cancer treatment, you’ll know that finding the perfect sun hat is even more important. Skin can become very sensitive to sunlight after chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Preventing sunburns, and managing body temperature, are both important parts of staying healthy throughout the cancer journey.
But, as we know, finding lovely hats and headscarves can be a bit trickier when it’s warm. You need something breathable, lightweight, and secure enough to stay put all day long.
We’ve rounded up our favourite summer hats for cancer patients, and included some helpful tips to make it easier to find your perfect head covering!
Summer Hats for those with cancer
1) Choose a Lightweight and Breathable Fabric:
In warm weather, it’s essential to find a hat or headscarf that will allow your scalp to breathe.
If the fabric you choose isn’t breathable, you’ll begin to sweat and the moisture on your scalp will accumulate. Non-breathable fabrics often trap moisture, too, and this means that the fabric can become damp.
If this happens, your scalp can become clammy and you might develop a chill – even on a hot day. Your scalp may also become itchy as the day goes on.
To avoid this discomfort, it’s best to look for fabrics that breathe well. Fabrics like cotton and bamboo allow air to pass freely through the fibres. This means that sweat can be evaporated, and your scalp will feel dry and comfortable.
Try to choose these fabrics:
Cotton is a wonderfully breathable fabric. It’s soft on the scalp, and won’t irritate your skin. Make sure that the cotton fabric you pick isn’t too heavy; fabrics become less breathable they heavier they get (because there are fewer spaces between the fabric fibres for air to escape through).
You should be able to tell from feeling the fabric whether or not it is light (thin and flexible) or heavy (thick and stiff). If you’re ordering online, don’t hesitate to contact the shop directly and inquire as to the thickness of the material.
One thing to note about cotton headscarves is that they might sometimes become damp. Cotton is very absorbent, and the fabric will take in any sweat you produce. If this happens, don’t worry.
Because cotton is so breathable, the moisture in the fabric will quickly evaporate, and you’ll be left comfortable and dry once again. In fact, this process of evaporation can have a lovely cooling effect on a hot summer’s day.
All this is to say that we love cotton summer hats for cancer patients because they’re lightweight, breathable, and comfortable.
The fabric we love most (yes – even more than cotton!) is bamboo. It’s breathable, lightweight, hypoallergenic and antibacterial, and super, super soft.
All these qualities mean that bamboo fabric is perfect for cancer patients. The gentle material won’t irritate your skin, and you’ll stay very dry and comfortable.
Most bamboo hats are made with a combination of bamboo fabric and a slight bit of lycra or spandex. This gives the bamboo a bit of extra stretch for a secure, natural fit.
The addition of lycra or spandex also means that the fabric will ruche nicely against your head. This leaves you with a bit of height and texture and prevents the hat from sitting too flatly on your scalp.
Silk scarves are a wonderful option for a special night out in the summertime or a fancy event. Silk is very smooth and lightweight, and we love the drape they give. A silk scarf feels a little more glamorous than some more basic styles.
Silk fabrics tend to trap moisture rather than letting it evaporate. This means that if you plan to wear a silk scarf for several hours, or on a very hot day, you may need to plan a quick stop in a washroom or somewhere private to quickly pop off your scarf, and dry off your scalp.
If you’re only wearing the scarf to an event, or in the evening when it is slightly cooler, you’ll likely find that you don’t need any further adjustments, and can stay dry and cool all night long.
2) Have fun with colours & patterns:
Lots of cancer patients tell us that it’s fun to choose bolder and more playful prints in the summertime. When the weather is nice, and the world is more colourful, it’s lovely to dress up.
The key is to think about your wardrobe and to balance your headscarf choice against the kinds of things you like to wear. Dark colours can easily be brightened with a pink summer hat. And equally, if you like bright colours, you might think about choosing a darker tone for your headscarf:
In all cases, try to balance solid colours and patterns. If you’re wearing a solid colour on your body, it’s the perfect opportunity to try a busier print up top.
Equally, if your wardrobe is full of florals and zippy patterns, then try to choose a headscarf that matches a single colour in your outfit. This way, your clothing won’t compete with your summer hat, and you’ll look effortlessly coordinated.
3) Look for a summer hat with a wide brim:
Summer hats are very helpful for keeping your skin safe from the sun. If you’ll be spending the day outdoors, look for hats with a wide brim. Floppy straw hats are perfect for a day on the patio or wandering around shopping.
If you’ll be on the beach, walking, or doing anything more vigorous, look for a sports hat with a brim in the front, or a “bucket” hat with a brim all around. To help keep your scalp comfortable, try wearing a wig liner underneath the hat. This will prevent any uncomfortable scratching or chafing.
You can also try tying a longer headscarf so that you have a nice gathering of fabric that spills over your shoulder. Then, pop a straw hat over the top for a really lovely, comfortable, sun-safe look.
If you’re looking for advice about tying headscarves, we’ve made a quick and simple video tutorial to help you out:
Whatever summer hat you choose, we hope you enjoy the rest of the warm weather in comfort and style!