The Best Hats for Dinghy Sailing

September 24, 2021

The Best Hats for Dinghy Sailing

Why wear a hat out sailing? The Stats. 

Without a doubt, the risk of sun damage is high on the radar of sailors across the world. Those living in Australia have a 15% higher exposure to damaging ultraviolet rays. With ray reflection off the water and extended time outdoors; sailors have an even higher risk of sunburn. 

International skin cancer prevention campaigns within the sport of sailing demonstrate that a combination of sun-safe strategies is your best bet for complete protection. Wearing hats for dinghy sailing is one of the most effective ways to lessen the risk of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer.

Vaikobi has range of hats specifically designed for long days on the water, guaranteed to perform in the peak of the summer sailing months. 


Performance Caps for Sailing

The Vaikobi collection of ‘performance caps’ is made for dinghy sailing. Most sailors opt for its design as it doesn’t restrict vision when monitoring the racecourse and other vessels on increasingly busy waterways.

With water-resistant rip-stop outer fabric, they are one of the most durable options available on the market. With a classic but innovative design, Vaikobi has produced a cap that can accommodate all heads with a secure internal adjustment system and no external velcro.

The performance cap has a deliberately lightweight construction and fast-dry technology, so you aren’t stuck with a sopping wet head for the rest of the race after a capsize. In the event that your hat is knocked off your head, its reflective trim will make it easy to spot floating in the water. 

They are also available in orange, yellow and white that’ll keep you both highly visible and in style - one for you, one for your crew. 


Performance Visors for Sailing

The performance visor is another sailing sun hat option and an increasingly popular choice for those in Australia’s warmer and more humid areas. It is a common preference for those with thick or lengthy hair (which can be tied above the visor) and allows for added breathability during rigorous exercise.  

The visor design also allows the hat to be pulled down over the hair to rest more securely around the broadest part of the head. This design feature is perfect for windy days, where the risk of losing your hat on a fast-moving run is high. 

Much like the performance cap, Vaikobi visors are made from rip-stop fabric, making them highly durable without compromising comfort. A range of colours is available, including white, fluro yellow, and black, to complement the rest of your dinghy sailing gear. For very sunny days, our fluro yellow visor has a dark underside to minimise glare reflected from the water’s surface and further protect the eyes. 

Unlike a hat, a visor doesn’t provide a massive amount of sun safety to any areas of the exposed scalp, and sunscreen may be a necessary addition for complete protection. 


Performance Snap Back Caps for Sailing

The Snap Back Cap is a classic take on a more rigid hat, form-focused design, perfect for both on the water, in the boat park, and refreshments on the deck. With a snap adjuster on the back, you can quickly and easily refit your hat on the go. 

The absence of velcro will prevent damage over time to high necked rashies and other sailing garments. 

While made from a slightly thicker fabric, the navy, black and white snap back hats are made from 100% polyester mesh that still gives your head the chance to breathe on warmer days. These hats are also great for pony-tails, which can pass through the hole in the back of the cap and prevent them from flying off the head. 


So which sailing hat is best for me? 

As an overall response to the endless variety of hat options out there: the best sailing hat you’ll ever own is the one you’ll wear. It is every sailor’s individual responsibility to look after their current and future health by reducing the chances of developing melanoma.  

For the ultimate dinghy sailing clothing guide and more, click over to the Vaikobi watersports apparel page


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XXS   161 167  54 58 76 81 62 66 78 82
XS   165 172  56 63 82 87 66 70 82 89
S   169  176  61 68 88 96 71 76 90 96
M   174 181  66 73 97 104 77 85 97 102
L   178  185  76 85 106 114 86 95 103 108
XL   183  190  86 95 116 122 96 105 109 115
XXL   187  194  96 105 124 132 106 114 116 122


Size HEIGHT (Feet + Inches) WEIGHT (Pounds) CHEST (Inches) WAIST (Inches) HIPS (Inches)
XXS   5'3"  5'6"  119 128 30 32 24.5 26 30.5 32.5
XS   5'5"  5'8"  123 139 32 34.5 26 27.5 32.5 35
S   5'7"  5'9"  135 150 34.5 38 28 30 35.5 38
M   5'9"  5'11"  146 161 38 41 30 33.5 38 40
L 5'10"  6'8"  168 187 41.5 45 34 37.5 40.5 42.5
XL 6'  6'3"  190 209 45.5 48 38 41.5 43 45.5
XXL 6'2"  6'4"  121 232 49 52 41.5 55 45.5 48




Y-S 132 139 30 34 60 65 56 61 68 72
Y-M 140 148  33 39 65 71 61 68 72 78
Y-L 147 155  40 47 70 76 67 73 77 84
Y-XL 152 162 47 54 75 82 72 79 83 89







    HIPS     (IN)
Y-S 4'3" 4'8" 66 75 24 26 24 26 27 28


4'8"  73 86 26 28 26 28 28 31


5'  88 104 28 30 28 30 30 33
Y-XL 5' 5'4" 104 119 30 32 30 32 33 35

Fit Tips

If one of your body measurements is in between two sizes, order the smaller size for a tighter fit or the larger size for a looser fit. If your body measurements for hips and waist correspond to two different suggested sizes, order the one indicated by your hip measurement.

How To Measure

WAIST: Measure around the narrowest part (typically where your body bends side to side), keeping the tape horizontal.
HIPS: Measure around the widest part of your hips, keeping the tape horizontal.
CHEST: Measure the fullest area of your chest. Stand up straight and breath normally.



Vaikobi size guide