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The Hat That Helped Me Vent this Summer

Stetson’s Grand Canyon hat, found at  Tenth Street Hats  | all photos by Charde Kelly

Stetson’s Grand Canyon hat, found at Tenth Street Hats | all photos by Charde Kelly

The summers in Los Angeles are kind in comparison to New York City. I never much enjoyed the season in NYC, with its swampy feel from June to August. It wasn’t just about the sun beaming on my back as much as it was the combo of oppressive humidity thickening the air and the swarms of people hustling to wherever they’re going on sidewalks or by subway.

I remember always wearing sunglasses and a fitted baseball cap. A visor had to be perched over my lenses when I was out and about, with my low-cut hair and head guarded from the rays, but quietly steaming. Those four little holes on top (they’re called eyelets, FYI) never quite provided the ventilation they’re supposed to. When I’d walk indoors or get under some tree shade, the first thing I’d do was either take my fitted off or lift it just enough that it was on, but not really—crookedly sitting at an angle to let some air in. Like some variation of that old T.I. look.


As I wrap up my fourth L.A. summer, I can tell you that things are different for me here. I enjoy being—and staying!—outside. The skies are clear, the foot traffic is low and the humidity level is mostly far from sticky. That said, I do much more hanging out. I choose the outdoor dining option at restaurants. I’m taking my daughter on walks. It’s great. I still wear a bunch of baseball caps. But there’s one head-topper that’s really given me everything I need: Stetson’s Grand Canyon hat.

It’s nylon mesh, meaning that air flows through it freely. No hot head here! Now when I get out of the sun, I’m not scrambling to get my hat off anymore. I let that thing rock. It looks good.

I got mine from Tenth Street Hats, a Cali’-based shop I’ll be returning to often. You can find the Stetson I’m cooling in here. We’re falling into autumn soon, but still have some heat headed our way before things cool out for good. Cop one to pop on for a little while, then tuck it away for spring 2020. As they say: If you stay ready, you don’t have to get ready.