A resurgence of early aughts fashion has seen a certain laidback hat style: trucker hats. From Von Dutch to Ed Hardy, trucker hats were a tried and true staple of Y2K-era fashion and, now, celebrities are welcoming this once-iconic headwear style back into their wardrobes. “Thanks to Hollywood’s It girls and style icons like Hailey Bieber, Kendall Jenner, and Rihanna... trucker hats have made a big comeback,” says Dallas-based personal stylist Sydney Woy.
The headwear has become so pervasive that it’s even made it to the most unlikely of places, the 2022 Met Gala. If megastars like Kylie Jenner are wearing a veil-like trucker hat on one of the most publicized red carpet events, then perhaps it’s worth considering a trucker hat as your next wardrobe necessity.
In researching the best trucker hats, we spoke to Woy and style blogger Kim Hancher to learn more about the trend’s origin story and what makes the piece so iconic. Together with their expertise and our internet research, we found the best trucker hats available right now.
Von Dutch Classic Trucker 51
Our top pick isn’t just the best trucker hat; it’s the most iconic. The snap-back Classic Trucker 51 from Von Dutch is the epitome of Y2K style, having been favored by everyone from Britney Spears to Gwen Stefani. But what we love most about it is the fit: While it looks like a trucker hat, it fits like a baseball cap, so there’s no risk of it feeling too loose. Wear it with your favorite sweatshirt and jeans.
Price at time of publish: $89
Size: One size fits most | Material: Not listed | Colors: Black
Yupoong YP Classics Retro Trucker Cap
Hop on the trend wagon for a fraction of the cost with this under-$15 pick from Amazon. It comes in over 30 colors and colorways and can be adorned with personal touches such as pins, patches, and embroidery.
Price at time of publish: $8 for Caramel
Sizes: OS | Material: 65% polyester, 35% cotton | Colors: Caramel, Black, Black/White, Brown/Khaki
Lululemon Trucker Hat
When it comes to wearing a trucker hat to the gym or on a hike, one of the most important features is a sweatband to help absorb your sweat. Perhaps no brand understands this better than athletic giant Lululemon: Its trucker hat was designed specifically for active lifestyles and includes a sweatband and mesh fabric back panel to keep you cool and dry while you move.
Price at time of publish: $38
Sizes: S/M, L/XL | Material: Nylon, polyester, Lycra®, elastane | Colors: Black
Altar’d State Take It Easy Trucker Hat
The Take It Easy Trucker Hat from Altar’d State is such a cute way to incorporate a happy graphic like a smiley face. Design-wise, it has a cushiony front panel, a mesh back, an adjustable snap closure, and a rope belt across the brim. Wear it with a cozy athleisure look for your next walk around the neighborhood.
Price at time of publish: $30
Sizes: OS | Material: Not listed | Colors: Beige
Best Color Options
Clare V. Trucker Hat
Clare V.’s Trucker Hat offers such a vibrant pop of color in the rigid style. Wear yours with a pair of jeans, sneakers, and a T-shirt until sundown, at which point you can throw on a neutral herringbone blazer to keep you warm as the temperature drops and dress things up a bit at the same time.
Price at time of publish: $49
Sizes: OS | Material: Not listed | Colors: Navy, Green, Cobalt w/Lips, Marigold + more
Aviator Nation Signature Venice Vintage Nylon Trucker Hat
The trucker hat may have gotten its name from truck drivers (you can read more on that in the FAQs), but the design is pretty deep-rooted in surf culture, too. Your friends will spot you easily at the beach in Aviator’s bright-hued Signature Venice Vintage Nylon style, which takes the classic trucker shape, just without the typical mesh backing.
Price at time of publish: $48
Sizes: OS | Material: Nylon | Colors: Neon Green
Mitchell & Ness Seattle Sonics Trucker Hat
This trucker hat by sports gear brand Mitchell & Ness looks like it came straight out of the ’80s when the hat type was a major part of mainstream fashion. It has Seattle Sonics-themed patchwork accents, mesh paneling, an adjustable snap closure, and a curved brim all in the team’s signature colors, deep green and beige.
Price at time of publish: $39
Sizes: OS | Material: 100% polyester | Colors: Green
Alo Yoga District Trucker Hat
If you look at the hundreds of glowing reviews of this hat, many compliment the shape and fit. Many rated it well for fit, including one reviewer who called it “the best hat” they’ve ever had based on how it wore on their head. Two others said it looked great with hair down and considered it “super high quality” for the price and all that it fashionably offers.
Price at time of publish: $38
Sizes: OS | Material: Not listed | Color: Black/White, White/White, Candy Pink + more
MM6 Maison Margiela Logo-Embroidered Cotton Trucker Cap
This flat-brim Maison Margiela cap is the perfect luxury find to add to your ever-growing hat collection. It’s soft and breathable, thanks to its cotton composition, which naturally offers decent moisture control (a major bonus in sultry conditions). Consider it your next staple.
Price at time of publish: $286 in Lilac
Sizes: OS | Material: 100% cotton | Colors: Lilac, Black, White
Von Dutch's Classic Trucker 51 is the most classic trucker hat style, which is perhaps the main reason we like it the best overall. However, it's worth noting that its great fit could be a reason why it became popular in the first place; while it looks like a trucker hat, it fits like a baseball cap, so there’s no risk of it feeling too loose. Of course, it is a bit of an investment, so if you want to get the look for less, you can't go wrong with the Yupoong YP Classics Retro Trucker Cap for under $20. (Some colors are under $10.) Since it's a bit plain, you can adorn it with personal touches such as pins, patches, and embroidery and still stay within a modest budget.
What to Look for in Trucker Hats
If you want something more than a solid-color trucker hat, Hancher recommends opting for a trucker hat with a larger front panel. This way, you can add patchwork to create something personalized. Of course, there are plenty of styles containing standout graphics that you can choose from. “This is what makes trucker hats different from a baseball cap, and you should look for something that stands out [and] has meaning to you,” she says.
From a technical perspective, features like a built-in sweatband can come in very handy, depending on how and where you plan to wear your trucker hat. If you plan on wearing your trucker hat while running or hiking, for example, Hancher says this feature is paramount. “This will feel better against your skin and catch the sweat running down your face,” she says.
Trucker hats are like baseball hats with a couple of key differences: They generally have a flat brim instead of a rounded one, plus a mesh back and a tall front panel that’s usually made of foam, Hancher says. Trucker hats also typically have a snap closure in the back, which allows for adjustments to the size.
How did the trucker hat get its name?
The trucker hat was first conceived in the 1970s as a promotional giveaway item from American feed or farming supply companies to farmers, truck drivers (hence the name), and other rural workers, as companies began to realize the cap's potential for advertising and promotion. After all, it does have a pretty big front panel.
Are trucker hats in style?
The hat style was popular in the early 2000s with brands like Ed Hardy and Von Dutch turning the retro styles into embellished caps. And, with the return of so many Y2K-era trends, the titfers are making their way back into our accessory closets.
Do trucker hats protect from the sun?
Technically, trucker hats aren’t considered sun hats. “If you want real protection [from the sun], you need a hat with a brim that goes all the way around your head,” Hancher says. However, because their brims are wider than the average baseball cap, they provide more protection and are a good choice in a pinch.
Why Trust Byrdie
Jessie Quinn has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Journalism from the Academy of Art University. As someone who came of age in the early 2000s, she’s all too familiar with trucker hats and is thrilled to see the return of this laidback headwear.
According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find enough trucker hats from Black-owned and/or Black-founded businesses to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at email@example.com, and we will evaluate the product ASAP.