Merino Wool Rocks helps you find the merino wool clothes you need, whether to conquer the outdoors or find premium daily wear.

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Merino wool beanies, hats and headwear

Two years ago, I got a merino wool beanie for my birthday (basically Christmas) from 2 of my best friends. I absolutely love it! The girls surely know me well 🙂

I can’t find that exact model anymore but I have made sore research and find the best merino wool beanies, hats, and headwear available this year that will serve you well based on your activities, whether it is running during fresh Spring mornings or standing still in the Winter cold.

In a hurry? Here’s a quick overview of the 2 beanies we recommend for men and women. You’ll find more recommendations further down below.

Before we go on our extensive reviews, why should you even bother about merino wool beanies? What are the advantages compared to other material and how to decide which one you should pick?

Typically, acrylic and wool are two popular options in terms of material to keep you comfortable in any chilly, cold environment. Not only do we think that wool is superior, but merino wool is truly where it is at.

Acrylic is a popular synthetic because it doesn’t require any special washing instructions and it is generally cheap. And for headwear, the acrylic helps keep its shape and it is very lightweight. However, it doesn’t breathe well and will make you sweat on your forehead in no time.

With wool, on the other hand, we have something water-resistant as well as moisture-wicking and naturally breathable to the point of eliminating sweat. And while typical wool can be a bit itchy, merino wool has a real soft hand feel.

On the downside, you might need to be a bit more careful about how we treat it – so we wrote the instruction on each recommendation below.

It is also possible to find a mix of the 2 material or 2 different layers with the two. Depending on the ratio, different properties will be accentuated.

The cuff: very commonly, beanies have a cuff, a second layer, a folded edge that brings additional warmth on the ears and forehead. If the cuff is not sewed and the cuff is adjustable, you can choose to wear it without it and get more coverage on your neck.

Interior headband liner: Some beanies won’t have a cuff per se, but will have a windstopper fabric across the forehead and on the extended ear flaps to effectively blocks icy blasts.

Reversible: some beanies can be flipped inside out for two different looks.

Pony tail notch: a nice feature for women on the run

Reflective elements: to be seen when you run and ride at night

Visor: good if you want some extra sun protection on your eyes

Slots on the side so you can tuck in your sunglasses

A cheerful pom pom top it all off, adds a dash of fun to your winter look

Cuffed beanies: Basically the traditional beanies. The cuff usually sits just on top but slightly over your ears and around your forehead. This makes it great for keeping your head warm during the winter season. The extra layer of fabric across the forehead and on the extended ear flaps works as an extra windstopper and effectively blocks icy blasts.

Cuffless beanies to Slouch Beanie: In a list about the best beanie hats, we have to mention the slouch beanie. As possibly the only beanie around that doesn’t have a cuffed brim, the slouch beanie has many unique features. This beanie has a longer style that sits over the top of your ears and has extra material slouching down at the back of your head.

Fisherman beanies or knit beanie: Fisherman beanies got recently increasingly popular. It refers to hats with a thick, chunky ribbed material with a shallow crown and it will sit just on the top of your head – sometimes without covering your ears.

Hat liner: lightest weight – pocket hat you can wear under a helmet for biking or snow activities

Add to that other specialized headwear such as visor beanies, caps, balaclavas, headbands or berets, and you can see how this clothing item becomes quickly a fashion essential. In any case, we got you covered with the best merino wool ones available.

The best classic beanies

Its plus points: versatility. These are light enough to bring around with you at all times and will get you covered in most conditions, whether it is hiking, skiing or cycling to work. Between 230 and 250 g/m², these hats are best in moderate to cool temperatures.

If you are looking for something more specialised such as a lightweight liner to go under a helmet, something to protect you from the wind while running, something that would keep your warm in more extreme conditions for static activities, or simply something more stylish: keep scrolling!

  • Material: 100% australian merino wool
  • Wool weight: 18.5 micron (the lower, the softer)
  • Construction: 230 g/m²
  • Made for: Everyday Wear, Hiking, Camping, Biking, Fishing, Hunting, Snowsports
  • Features: double-layered, adjustable cuff
  • Care: machine washable
  • Price(estimate): $23

Its other main plus point: versatility. It is light enough to bring around with you at all times and will get you covered in most conditions, whether it is hiking, skiing or cycling to work. Available in many colors.

See on Minus 33 | See on Amazon


Also great:

The best Fishermans or ribbed merino wool hats

Fisherman styles beanies will typically be warmer than the ones presented above thanks to the ribbed structure of the knit. So they can be more suited for static outdoor activities and are surely more stylish in a urban setting.

  • Material: 100% merino wool
  • Wool weight: 18.5 micron (the lower, the softer)
  • Made for: Everyday Wear
  • Features: adjustable cuff
  • Care: hand washed in mild soap (!)
  • Price (estimate): $17.50

Nice finish quality for its price! Fisherman beanie are much warmer than superfine merino wool beanie. So if it is too warm or you are using it for activities where you are likely to sweat, some have reported some itching. We regret the mention of “Cotton” on their brand tag. Available in many colors.

See on Amazon


  • Material: 100% merino wool
  • Made for: Everyday Wear
  • Features: adjustable cuff, skull fit
  • Care: hand wash in mild soap (!)
  • Price (estimate): $40

Also great:

The best pocket merino wool hats

You would want to go for this type of hat if you need to bring something with you all the time. Either if you are a minimalist traveller, or if for those seasons we don’t know how to dress so having a hat in its pocket can save our ears from the cold. These hats are also great to wear under a ski of bike helmets.

  • Material: 100% merino wool
  • Wool weight: 200g/m²
  • Made for: active wear
  • Features: reversible
  • Care: machine wash
  • Price(estimate): $27-35

See on Icebreaker | See on Amazon


Also great:

The best Pompom merino wool beanies

The one my friends got me for my birthday is one with a huge pompom. Sure, I can’t wear it under a ski or bike helmet and it is not the best to pull in and out of my pocket when the weather is in between warm and cold, but it is also the best thing to keep me warm in the Winter!

  • Material: 50% Merino Wool, 50% Acrylic
  • Construction: single layer heavy cable knit construction
  • Made for: everyday wear
  • Features: cuff, cheerfull pom
  • Care: machine wash cold
  • Price(estimate): $36

See on Smartwool | See on Amazon


Also great:

Other merino head accessories: headband, caps, beret, baklava and more

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