March 1, 2016  ·  style

Can you wear a proper hat?

Brimmed, grown men's hats—as opposed to knit winter hats, which are worn as needed for survival—might have the highest level of difficulty of all common men's accessories. While the Hipster Trilby and the stereotypical basement dweller's grey fedora are probably beyond redemption forever, there is absolutely a place (and just as importantly, a time) for a proper hat to keep the sun out of one's eyes or to be worn at a jaunty angle.

It goes without saying that as with everything else, a beautifully crafted and properly fitted hat needs to be the starting point. Unrefinery endorses Harlem's Hats By Bunn (if not their website). Bunn himself, besides making everything he sells and carefully fitting it to the buyer's head with ribbon and horsehair, can be counted on for his wisdom in selecting the right one. "That's too much hat for you," he says. "That hat's wearing you and not the other way around."

As for whether or not you can wear it rather than just admiring it in a plexiglas case in your dressing room, here's a handy scoresheet:

Starting score: your age, in years.
+15 If you are under the age of 8, however, because that s**t's cute.
+25 If there's an economic depression on. (Dark hats only.)
+30 If you are not a Person Of No Colour.
+20 If you are ridiculously good-looking (see: friend of the site Phelix Perine, above).
+50 If you are an R&B singer (see: Bobby Caldwell).
+20 If you have a Black Pass (Bobby Caldwell again).
+30 If you are a legendary writer who at any time did field reporting (the Hunter S. Thompson Clause).

Under 55: Wear with extreme caution. High risk of looking like a barista or anime enthusiast.
55-75: Should work for a garden party or on Easter Sunday.
76+: Rock it at will.

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