Why focus on fabric when buying headwear?

Published - 17th July, 2017

Do you know what fabric you should use?

Buying headwear or any clothing product for that matter is no simple task, especially in the promotional industry. The colour, style and fabric are all important factors that have to be taken into consideration. Knowing the benefits and types of fabric, in particular, are vital for anyone looking to buy quality headwear for their promotional campaign.

So what are the primary materials used in the manufacture of headwear?


A natural fibre spun into yarn, cotton is one of the most commonly used fabrics to make headwear from.


  • Soft and comfortable.
  • Durable.
  • Versatile.
  • Accepts dyes very well.
  • Absorbent.

Because cotton is so versatile, there are many variations to it, making the fabric a mainstay all year round. Chino twill cotton, for example, is really soft and light, which is perfect for the warmer months of the year. Heavy brushed cotton, on the other hand, adds some real depth to the products, as well as working well in the cooler winter months. There are also other variants such as organic cotton giving environmental benefits and treated cotton like oiled cotton which gives a rugged look, whilst repelling rain.

To put it simply, cotton fabric is frequently used for baseball caps because it is so versatile.


Manmade fabrics are also key in the headwear industry. Polyester for example which is an oil based fabric, has many uses, namely in the sports industry


  • Immensely strong and durable.
  • Has brilliant colour fastness.
  • Holds its shape after washing.
  • Insulating and breathable.
  • Resistant to mould and bacteria.
  • Mixes well with other yarns such as cotton.

Loved for its wrinkle free appearance and typically cheaper cost, polyester is a crucial fabric to consider when buying headwear, especially if sports are at the heart of your next promotion.

Polyester is a great fabric to blend with other materials. For example, combining the strength of polyester and the soft feel of cotton together (Poly/Cotton) creates a cap that is breathable and highly durable.

Wool, cashmere and even bamboo charcoal are all fabrics that can be woven together with polyester. It is a truly remarkable fabric.

As a final point, polyester is the ideal material to decorate with sublimation printing.


A synthetic fabric made from the acrylonitrile monomer.


  • Soft.
  • Easy to dye.
  • Retains shape.
  • Machine washable.
  • Durable.
  • Insulating.

Due to its ability to be made into many thicknesses, acrylic is a great choice for snapbacks and beanies. The reason for this is that it holds its shape very well, which is particularly important for any snapback lover.

The same is said for beanies. Acrylic yarn makes a great beanie hat. A beanie has to stretch for the wearer but it returns back to its relaxed state without losing shape when it is not being worn. This durability is precisely the reason why it is the fabric of choice for these two product categories.

So in their rawest form, these are the primary fabrics that we use in our headwear but if you are looking at creating something truly unique, here are a few more outside of the norm – we hope that you like them.

Faux suede:

Made from a polyester, but having all of the tactile attributes of real suede, faux suede is a real head turner. Incredibly soft, available in striking colours and more importantly “on trend”, faux suede is a pick of the more unusual fabrics that are available.

100% Faux Suede Polyester Fabric 6 panel cap with buckle adjuster to the rear.

C6724 – Faux suede 6 Panel Cap


Whose wardrobe doesn’t harbour a piece of denim?  Thicker and stronger than regular cotton, this fabric has been used for decades and isn’t going anywhere. However, our chambray denim is a lighter alternative to regular denim. It’s great for staying stylish in the sun, whilst remaining true to the classic denim look.

C6726 – Chambray Denim unstructured cap

Sneaker Mesh:

Mesh is yet another form of polyester and it adds another dimension to the product’s breathability. One cap in our range actually comes fitted with Sneaker mesh to the rear panels – the very same mesh that you will find on your beloved running shoes.

C6621 Sneaker Mesh Colours

C6621 Sneaker Mesh Colours


Natural fabrics such as sheep’s wool are soft and very warm to wear. Having a cap made from wool or even cashmere (if you are feeling a little more adventurous) really does add a touch of class

C6723 - 100% Melton Wool Crown with contrasting cotton peak and buckle adjuster to the rear.

C6723 – Melton wool / cotton 6 panel cap

So as you can see, there is a lot to think about when it comes selecting the right materials. The look, the feel and the function of the fabric are the key factors to take into consideration when buying headwear.


To download your copy of our PLAIN label catalogue, click the link below, enter your name and email address and an email with a link will arrive in your inbox.  We hope this will help you with your headwear needs.

View the range on our updated catalogue page.


For more information about any of the above please contact the sales team on 01376 560380 / info@sharonleeltd.co.uk

For a better insight into all the changes that have happened at Sharon Lee in our Platinum year, head over to our recent blog – EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW IN OUR PLATINUM YEAR or if you are looking for a little inspiration when it comes to branding techniques check out – 7 INNOVATIVE IDEAS FOR HAT LOVERS which explains some of the exciting and eye-catching ways that will help get your customers brands seen.

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