Military Headgear

Few things are as stupid as military hats.  Uniforms and Camo Patterns are always discussed and argued… but the one thing that everyone has given up on is the hat.

military_hat_box  

Most Nations have some variation of this thing.  It’s a classic military style for Officers… The US has a variation of this, North Korea’s is getting bigger every year.  It’s just out of control. The one thing that no one has said though… is that it looks freaking retarded.
The only guy that ever pulled off this hat was this guy:

Eric-Braeden-Rat-Patrol

And he was the Bad Guy.  A Nazi.  But the Nazi’s had it going on with the officer’s hats.  No one else has done that style hat anywhere near as well.

Then we had this thing…

FoodHat

You look like a Food Service Industry Worker with that hat.  This was for the Enlisted.  Yes, I had this hat too.  And it was stupid.  It never sat right, and really we only wore it when running through the airport and it would always fall off your head.  I don’t know anyone that liked them.  They always looked cute on your girlfriends head though.  Think about that.   I blame the Navy for this.

1774

The Cavalry Officers had a cool hat.  It was actually useful.  Wide brimmed to keep the sun off.  You know, the whole reason to wear a hat.  It actually did something.  But outside of the Cavalry, no one else has those hats.   The only people that have a hat that’s this functional are these guys.   And we all know these guys:

Staff Sergeant Sergio Mesa, Bravo Company drill sergeant.

That’s the hat that says your world has come to an end.  Those Campaign Hats strike fear into the hearts of men.  That’s a badass hat.   But we can’t give them to anyone else or they will dilute the authority and power of that hat.

The Army tried to do the Beret for everyone… because worn correctly it looks awesome with dress and field uniforms.   But the problem was most folks I saw couldn’t wear it correctly to save their lives.  So it either looked like a sack on their heads or a pancake, so they just gave up on Hats and just gave this to everyone:

27464

But I’m wondering if we should just do that with the dress uniforms.  Have a fancier ball cap.   I don’t know… For dress uniforms, I think the hat should be a lot nicer.  I’m thinking something more like the Cavalry’s Stetsons.   Something distinctly American that no one else can touch.

Any ideas?

18 thoughts on “Military Headgear”

  1. There were those weird bicycle helmet thingies, the bad
    Guys wore in Star Wars.

  2. Gregory Pecks 25 mission crush head gear in Twelve o Clock High, as far as field uniform the tried and true Boonie Hat stil rules

    1. MacArthur also wore something similar. I daresay he pulled it off, even with the corncob pipe.

  3. Working uniform in AF was dark blue long sleeve, tie, fruit salad, SP badge and blue pants with blue beret w/mailed fist sigal of SAC. Oh man I think I owe my marriage to this look! Still have the beret on my man cave wall…

  4. I always liked the patrol cap, that’s what we wore with BDUs. It was functional and comfortable. The way you shaped it and wore it was a little touch of individuality while in uniform.

    American berets are stupid looking. Everybody except SF, Rangers and Airborne should get rid of them.

    I like the idea of a dress Stetson for the Army. The cord around the crown could be in your branch color, like the cavalry hat in the example. The Marines shouldn’t change. The Navy is too wrapped up in tradition to change. The Air Force should go to those hats like bald guys wear, where the front of the hat snaps onto the brim. Here’s a pic https://www.google.com/search?q=snap+brim+hat&client=firefox-a&hs=1fM&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&channel=sb&tbm=isch&imgil=fByxcYdjh1PMXM%253A%253Bhttps%253A%252F%252Fencrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com%252Fimages%253Fq%253Dtbn%253AANd9GcS2OpTMaAuHuJsD1gNWQjB_0taFwikQl1DncgrEEF-LPS0Nu9pL%253B1024%253B678%253BOTblYx-6wG4CgM%253Bhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fwww.ebay.com%25252Fitm%25252FGENUINE-LEATHER-SNAP-BRIM-NEWSBOY-ASCOT-IVY-DRIVING-GOLF-CAP-HAT-MADE-IN-USA-BRN-%25252F150816674645&source=iu&usg=__02m0prA-Q–vDtxwXXMHhmD1hmM%3D&sa=X&ei=5oF9U9iAJqXKsQTq34LIAg&ved=0CFEQ9QEwAg#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=fByxcYdjh1PMXM%253A%3BOTblYx-6wG4CgM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fi1058.photobucket.com%252Falbums%252Ft411%252Fluckystarhats%252FDSC_0002-5.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.ebay.com%252Fitm%252FGENUINE-LEATHER-SNAP-BRIM-NEWSBOY-ASCOT-IVY-DRIVING-GOLF-CAP-HAT-MADE-IN-USA-BRN-%252F150816674645%3B1024%3B678

  5. I’m my experience the hat just got in the way. If I worked on the airfield, at times a daily occurrence, I’d have to ditch it because it was FOD. Most every other job I had, I’d have to ditch it in lieu of something much more functional–a hard hat. The only exceptions was the aforementioned boonie hat, due to functionality but that was lost because I’d have to ditch it because it was FOD. The other was the stupid red baseball cap REDHORSE had me wear for a time. Again because it was functional but I’d have to ditch it for a hard hat. I had the same flight cap issued to me at basic for 5 years because I can count on one hand how many times I wore blues.

    And so it goes. It isn’t functional, it’s just there to complete an ensemble. Unless of course you’re a special forces type then a beret is more than appropriate. Otherwise I see no need for it.

  6. I like the idea of Stetsons for dress uniform. I would prefer boonie hats wearing with camo. They provide all around protection and you are less likely to get some idiot wearing it backwards and then shading their eyes.

  7. BDU Capa were pretty functional and looked good if you knew how to eat then right. Yeah the beret looks cool if shaved, wetted and formed but it’s got about zero functionally. .. First keep the sun out of your eyes, but in the summer. .. to small to actually be warm in the Winter.

    As for the garrison cap/c-cap, Ogre or problem with it was that the ones we wore were made of that God awful polyester martial in that green color. .. take a look at the guys in WW2 with the wool caps in brown with colored piping. …

  8. I was in the 101st (101st AVN BN) when they were one of three/four groups who wore the beret. If I remember correctly everyone else wore the fatigue cap (class c), the c*nt cap (class b and seen above, third pic), and the green saucer (class a). I liked the beret and was disappointed when they made us go the way of everyone else. The beret was comfortable, looked good, and was easy to handle when you went indoors or on the flight line (zip it in a lower leg pocket). At the time, we were taught how to wear it and did so because it was a distinction. Something that as a unit we were proud of. I still have mine though the blue has faded to a mottled purple. Today…? I don’t know. But I don’t see a complete formation dressed out in Stetsons. (Weren’t the Stetsons only worn by Cav O’s?)

  9. Back in the 70’s stetsons were worn by various Cav units at Ft. Hood. Then a New III Corps commander arrived and dress jeeps went back to camo standard and distinctive uniforms were gone. Mostly I kept my Bus Driver hat in the locker and wore the flat cap in dress and my baseball cap with stripes and Bn Insignae everywhere with fatigues.
    Geoff
    Who wonders how you would protect and preserve a 10-gallon hat in transit?

  10. I happen to like the Service Cap (aka bus-driver hat). I couldn’t stand the black beret, for a whole number of different reasons.

    The dress uniform isn’t supposed to have just another dang hat. It’s your DRESS UNIFORM. Put the Service Cap on and drive on, dammit.

    Stetsons are Cav hats. Let ’em have them, and keep that kind of special tradition going. Personally, I think the berets should have be reserved for the Airborn/Ranger/SF folks. You want to wear a beret? Earn it.

  11. That’s not a hat that’s a cover! Berets belong on a Merlot swilling Basque sheepherder, pass the bota-bag! 😉
    I liked the look of the Vietnam-era stiffened Ridgway or “Jump Up” cap, tall in the back and short in the front, stiff like a Kepi.
    The Germans also had the less glamorous M43 “Mutze” – a soft field cap – and those can still be seen everywhere in Austria, worn by railroad and transportation workers…

  12. I think the peaked/”combination” cap is the coolets of the lot, the bigger North Korean and Russian ones being the coolest out of those.
    They are comfy, look amazing and authoritarian, suit almost every uniform and did I mention they’re cool?

    They’ll always be a personal favourite and not being from USA will never even come close to being compared to any wide brimmed felt hat.

  13. I just love the cavalry union officer uniform and especially the hat (see above.) Nothing else compares. At about the 14 minute mark of the movie, Dancing with Wolves, you will see a large Cavalry unit on horse, trotting by the protagonist, John Dunbar. The music helps, but I love to replay this clip often just to get a sense for the beautiful style of “dress” we use to have. Wish we still did. As for N. Korean hats? YUK! It does get larger and taller every year on these Lilliputians who are about 5’5″ tall.

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