5 Types of Cowboy Hats

There are many different types of cowboy hats, each with its own unique purpose and style. While the exact number of varieties is up for debate, most people agree that there are at least five main types of cowboy hats.

Here is a brief overview of each type:

1. Cattleman

Cattleman type of cowboy hat

The most popular type of cowboy hat is called a cattleman. It's been around for quite some time and was created as an alternative to rodeo riding, which many people did back in those days because it offered more excitement than just being on horseback all day long!


The style has one tall crown with wide brim that sits at about five inches in height; there are two creases down each side where they meet the center fold-over point (which also gets decorated).


The larger crown was beneficial for cowboys when it would rain or was windy, as they could pull it down further so it would stay on better. Said to be the Gentleman’s style of hat, it is commonly worn at weddings and other formal events. It is a popular style in both felt and straw.


A common variation of the Cattleman is the Brick, which has a squarer brim. Biggs is another common variation of the Cattleman style, as the creases are smaller and higher up on the crown, pinching nearly to a line. The sides of the brim also tend to fold up slightly more.

2. Gus

Stetson Gus cowboy hat type

The Gus crease is quite similar to the Cattleman style. It has a more Outback appearance than traditional hats; it doesn't have as many angles or straight lines on its crown and sides like other styles do, but this makes up for that by sloping down at an angle rather than being perfectly flat like most others are.


The "reach-and grab" nickname comes from some people claiming they can easily grab hold of any object with just one glance in these types of hats because there's so much going on visually when you look through them!

3. Pinched Front

Stetson Pinched Front cowboy hat type

The Pinched Front is a classic western style that combines two common crown styles, the tear-drop, and diamond. The front bout has a partial dent on each side for strength while retaining its elegant profile to keep it from being too casual or folk-looking.


The brim generally slightly curls up at this hat type which makes it perfect if you're looking into something formal enough but still need something with some personality!


The Pinched Front style tends to accentuate delicate jawlines. It is a popular choice among women and you will see this style come in many different designs and colors.

4. Montana/Tom Mix

Tom Mix cowboy hat style

The Montana hat has three creases on its crown, but they're not as pronounced or large. It also features a smaller back fold to each earflap that makes them less bulky than other styles of hats in this category


The Cattleman may be similar enough with their straightforward design - made for cowboys who work outdoors all day long-but there are some distinct differences worth noting when you wear one out around town!


The center dent is more pronounced than the other two and pinches on the front, creating a sloping appearance. The Tom Mix is a take on the Montana hat, but it has a more prominent pinch on the front of the crown. In addition, the brim has a ½ inch upturn.


The Tom Mix set the standard for most fashionable hats in the 1920s and 1930. It was commonly worn among movie stars in old westerns. It is also similar to the Gus, but it has a larger crown.

5. Gambler

Gambler cowboy hat type

The Gambler crease, or Telescope crease, comes from Mexican cowboys, known as Charros, who traveled from South America to Mexico and Nevada for ranch work. The hat is ideal for hot climates, as the lower crown prevents hot air from accumulating and the wide brim offers excellent sun protection.


The Gambler is most commonly felt or fur. It was made popular by Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind. It soon became a top choice among many wealthy landowners as an alternative to the traditional cowboy hat.