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Five Best Cowboy Hats

If you’re a working cowboy or cowgirl, competing in the arena, or, if you’re ready to look like the “real deal” it’s time to check out any of our “Five Best Cowboy Hats” brands to get you looking sharp! There’s a lot that goes into deciding the best hat for you. Some questions you should ask yourself is what kind of materials do you like? Do you like something traditional or unique? Are you leaning more towards a fashion hat or a working hat? What’s your price point? All of these things play a HUGE role in deciding which brand to go with to get your hat. Let’s dive in!


Founded by E.R. Buyer and Harry Rolnick. Buyer was the financier and former satisfied customer of brilliant hat maker Rolnick. Resistol was the first and only hat manufacturer to operate the entire felt hat making process; which includes over 200 processes! Presently, as a part of Hatco, Inc., Resistol is located in Garland, Texas. Their motto, “We Live it Everyday” is a statement to the brand and it rings true in every hat that is passed on to a lucky customer.

Resistol has a very wide selection of felt and straw hats; as well as apparel and accessories. Featured collections include the George Strait, the Cody Johnson line, the Tuf Hedeman, and the Jason Aldean line including so many more! Resistol is a brand that has withstood the test of time. Known as the true Cowboy brand, it is the go-to brand for anyone looking to buy a new hat. You can see below an inside peek at how one of their felt hats is made. Enjoy!

American Hat Company

Founded by Russian immigrant Sam Silver, and known for their development of the water-resistant straw hat, American Hat Company is a top player in the cowboy hat game. Over 100 years after the company was founded, American Hat Company is still the only cowboy hat company to product waterproof straw hats. Sam Silver always said,

“I am proud of the fact that a great many professional cowboys choose to wear our products over other brands. They always appreciate a hat that holds its shape and color.”

Some of the things that American Hat Company prides itself on is their unique style often designing new weaves and shipping the majority of their hats with an open and flat brim so you can have your hat custom shaped to reflect your own style. They also take special note of the quality of their hats, focusing on the “hands-on” approach for the full process and inspection. The last thing they make note of is the durability of their hats. Their hats are double lacquered and double pressed, while their felts are hand finished, making them the most durable hat on the market today.

Burns 1876

Burns hats are the epitome of a western classic. Everything you want in a hat and nothing that you don’t. This company has a style for everyone with several different color and shape options. Burns is the oldest same family-owned western retail business in the world. Miles Lamonie Burns, cowboy, fine leather craftsman, blacksmith, musician, husband, father, and visionary, founded Burns in 1876. Since its beginning, Burns has had six different shop names, six generations of ownership, and one family, one legacy, one culture: COWBOY. In our minds, this is what makes the difference between Burns and other hat companies out there.

JW Brooks Custom Hat Co.

Founded by award-winning western artist and CMT recognized country-western singer J.W. Brooks, JW Brooks Custom Hat Co is headquartered in Lipan, Texas. J.W.’s career in the hat industry started when he was just a senior in high school, working under legendary hat maker, Kevin O’Ferrel. From there, his career took off. He moved to Phoenix and worked for Aztex Hat Company for three years, gaining the attention of local western retailers in the valley. This led to him opening up custom hat shops in western retailers throughout Phoenix. J.W. saw an opportunity to go his own way and he took it. That jump is what started J.W. Brooks Custom Hats and he has never looked back. J.W. Brooks Custom Hats prides itself on creating a custom experience for anyone wanting to get their hands on a coveted, custom cowboy hat. You will have any options, as seen on their gallery page. Options such as hat quality, color, crown shape, brim shape, and even custom brim embroidery. The options are endless at J.W. Brooks, which is why they have made our top five.

Watson’s Hat Shop

Located in beautiful Cave Creek, Arizona, Watson’s Hat Shop is a must-see for any in the Phoenix Valley. We promise it’s worth the drive. Watson’s prides itself on using one hundred 100% pure beaver fur felt hats and using traditional hat-making methods. When creating your custom hat, you can choose from up to 29 different colors and 80 different types of ribbon in various widths. They can also create custom leather hatbands, braided horsehair hatbands, custom silver and gold hat bands with your choice of gemstones, and braided kangaroo hatbands, and custom silver hatband buckle sets. Whatever you have your heart set on, Watson’s can more than likely make it happen. Even if you aren’t sure what style hat would be best, pop on in the store and their hat experts will help you figure it out!

CLN Community & Event Sponsor

Hi everyone! I'm Krysta Paffrath, I am a proud Arizona native who has a passion for everything business and rodeo. I am beyond thrilled to be the Editor in Chief for Cowboy Lifestyle Network. With my background in digital marketing and rodeo, this was a natural fit for me to join the team. My adventurous and entrepreneurial spirit has guided me to work in many places like the WYO Quarter Horse Ranch in Thermopolis, Wyoming, a working cattle ranch in Seligman, Arizona, and many places in between. I am passionate about preserving the western way of life and working with different brands and rodeos to make that happen. If you're looking for a write-up, please shoot me an email at Learn more about me at Looking forward to hearing from you!

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