If you're a runner, you know the frustrations that come with staying active in colder temps. But the best winter running hats are here to take the sting out of your favorite outdoor activity — whether it's subzero and snowing or just a little brisk out.
When it comes to choosing your new cold-weather athletic gear, it's all about finding a hat that strikes the perfect balance between temperature regulation and design. You'll want one in a textile that's both warm and moisture-wicking, like sweat-resistant fleece or wool. But, you'll also want one that covers your head fully and securely (including your ears), like a snug-yet-stretchy beanie or a baseball cap with ear flaps.
After you consider those two critical elements, you can start to think about nice-to-have technical features, like caps that are designed with reflective panels, styles with an opening to pull your ponytail through, or those with USB-rechargeable headlights so you can get a run in any time of day or night.
Ready to see the best running hats that will totally change your game this winter? Keep on scrolling for eight highly rated picks on Amazon — all under $35.
We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team.
1. A Fleece Baseball Cap With Drop-Down Ear Covers & A Ponytail Hole
This fleece baseball hat is designed by TrailHeads, a small, family-run brand based in Connecticut near the Appalachian Trail, where they test out the products they create — so you can trust that it does its part in keeping you warm in the elements. Its ponytail-compatible back and reflective trim make it perfect for runners, while its versatility makes it a cold-weather essential — the ear covers and back can be worn up or down and you'll appreciate the brim on especially sunny days.
Plus, one reviewer who called it "the perfect winter running cap," added that it "somehow isn't stifling and feels breathable." You can grab it in two solid shades, opt for one in plaid, or choose from the brand's ponytail-friendly headband or insulated beanie.
- Available colors: 2
2. A Breathable, 100% Merino Wool Option With UPF 50+ Protection
For a lightweight pick that helps to regulate your body temperature, opt for this merino wool beanie from Minus33, another noteworthy family-owned business that specializes in the textile. While synthetics are often the go-to for moisture-wicking properties, wool is equally as effective as it's both porous and absorbent. In addition, this hat is fire- and odor-resistant, and offers UPF 50+ sun protection. With over 2,000 five-star reviews, shoppers have called it "the perfect hat."
- Available colors: 20
3. This Three-Piece Beanie, Gloves, & Scarf Set That's So Warm
This three-piece beanie, gloves and scarf set conveniently covers all your bases. Each garment is crafted of a breathable poly-blend fleece that's moisture-wicking, lightweight, and brushed for extra softness. The insulated beanie offers four-way stretch for a secure fit. The scarf has a pull-through loop design, so you can customize how snug you prefer to wear it. The gloves are touchscreen-friendly and have extra grippy silicone palms. One happy shopper who wears them every day in winter described them as "extremely warm yet very flexible/lightweight."
- Available colors: 3
4. This Cozy Beanie With Reflective Stripes For Extra Visibility
If you prefer to take your runs before dawn or after dusk, this fleece beanie is a great option for keeping you safe. It has a stripe of reflective tape on either side, so any driver coming from behind will easily spot you. Aside from its extra visibility, this hat is made from a moisture-wicking polyester fleece that's super stretchy and can be worn slouchy or taut depending on your preference. "I wore this hat on a 32-degree morning for an hour-long walk, and it kept my ears and head nice and toasty," one reviewer shared. "The reflective strips are a nice touch in low light/dark situations."
- Available colors: 12, plus 2 multipacks
5. This Best-Selling Beanie With A Built-In, Rechargeable LED Headlight
Another pick that's great for added visibility, this highly rated knit beanie features an LED headlight at the front. This USB-rechargeable light can be easily removed and has three adjustable brightness settings for up to eight hours of glow time. You can also get replacement lights if you need extras — and the USB dongle is attached to the light itself, so no extra charging cords are needed. Plus, with an IP54 waterproof rating, it'll keep you dry in a downpour. Just note that the fabric is made of a soft acrylic that will definitely keep you warm but may not be as breathable. That said, more than 2,900+ positive ratings from shoppers is plenty of praise for the convenience it brings for outdoor adventures at night, from exercising to camping.
- Available colors: 13
6. This Cozy Balaclava That Can Be Worn So Many Ways
Depending on your desired level of coverage, this adjustable balaclava can be worn as a beanie-and-neck-gaiter combo, a scarf without the beanie, a beanie without the scarf, or as a full-on ski mask — but keep in mind that the two pieces are stitched together so you won't be able to remove either part fully. The back has an adjustable drawcord, so it'll stay snug and secure no matter how you wear it. And, the soft, fleecy viscose knit is both breathable and windproof. "This is perfect for almost any time in the winter," explained one reviewer. "Fit, comfort and breathability is perfect. It works for me down to the teens."
- Available colors: 4
7. These Printed Skull Caps That Keep You Dry
This lightweight skull cap is ideal for runners and cyclists alike, thanks to its flatlock seams and snug fit. Its made of an ultra-stretchy, micro-polyester performance fabric that's super effective at wicking moisture while also keeping you warm. One reviewer called it "just the thing for winter runs" while another described it as being the "right weight" to not get "too hot and sweaty but enough to stop wind blowing through [your] ears."
One thing to note, however, is that the manufacturer suggests that this topper is not recommended for freezing temperatures — so you may want to layer it beneath another hat if it's below 40 degrees. And, if you prefer solid colors to bold prints, the brand also offers black and pink options.
- Available colors: 8
Also Nice: This Genius Bluetooth-Compatible Beanie With Built-In Headphones
This Bluetooth beanie is an innovative two-in-one option that eliminates the need to tuck in earphone wires and offers you one less thing to worry about forgetting as you head out for your jog. While the acrylic-blend fabric itself is not moisture-wicking, reviewers mentioned that it's warm but not too hot and the sound quality is "amazing." The headphones are removable and USB-rechargeable (cable included), lasting up to 18 hours on a single charge. Best of all, they operate with one-touch controls, and can even be used for hands-free calls.
- Available colors: 5
You May Also Like: These Affordable Fleece Headbands That Act Like Moisture-Wicking Ear Muffs
For anyone who prefers the look and feel of a sweatband to a full-coverage hat, this windproof headband is every bit as effective at protecting your ears from the cold. Designed with soft polar fleece, it effortlessly wicks moisture and regulates your body temperature. Shoppers especially loved the way it seemed to contour to their head shape without slipping.
"I just went running with this headband/ear warmers and it made all the difference," raved one. "I realized toward the end of the run this was the best outdoor running experience I've ever had in the winter."
- Available colors: 6, plus 5 multipacks