How To Wear A Baseball Cap Style Guide

From its early beginnings as the baseball cap worn by the Brooklyn excelsior’s baseball team in the 1860s, this humble style of hat has come a long way.

The modern baseball cap as we know it today was created in the 1940s. The peak or visor was introduced to protect players’ eyes from the sun.

The hat has become so popular, it is worn by people from all walks of life.

Read on to find out the different styles and styling for the iconic hat. In a hurry, check out these baseball caps to buy.


baseball cap

The snapback gets its name from the plastic adjustable snap system at the back of the cap.

The cab is constructed of six panels. The two front panels generally are of a stiffer reinforced construction. This gives the hat extra height at the front. Most caps will have a logo of some kind.

The cap will usually have a flat brim. Yet many like to curve the brim to personalise the style.

Although it had its peak popularity in the 90s and early noughties, the snap back cap is still around. An alternative is a strapback cap which is becoming ever more popular as a six-panel cap.

Check out a range of snapback caps at New Era

Five Panel Cap

baseball cap five panel

As its name suggests the five-panel baseball cap is constructed of five panels and a wide brim. 

Some five-panel caps have a stiffened front panel, whilst others have a less constructed front panel.

Many five-panel caps will have a strapback mechanism to adjust the hat.

The five-panel cap is popular on the streetwear scene with skaters and hipsters alike.

In the nineties and noughties, many couriers would wear five-panel caps. They were also popular in the hip-hop scene. 

Trucker Caps

Trucker caps

The modern-day trucker baseball cap origins date back to the 1970s when truckers were given these caps at truck stops. It was to help advertise products for various companies.

The cap is constructed of a five-panel design with mesh at the back and foam at the front of a cap. The material at the back of a cap allows for breathability. The peak is usually of a curved design. The snapback design caters for a one-size-fits-all.

During the nineties and early noughties, the cap was popular on the hip-hop scene.

Whilst having a dip in popularity in recent years,  the trucker baseball cap is a great choice of hat to wear in the summer months. 

Check out a range of trucker caps at New Era

Strap back

strap back baseball cap

The strapback is constructed in both five-panel and six-panel designs.

The adjustable strap at the back is usually made from the same fabric material as the cap or in some cases leather. Like snapbacks, the strapback caters for a one-size-fits-all.

The front panels of the strapback look good in both structured and unstructured styles. Opt for an unstructured style to allow it to sit lower on the head for a refined look.

Strap backs are perfect for a minimalist look when they do not feature a logo.

This style of cap is versatile enough to work with a variety of outfit styles.

Casually Smart

smart casual baseball cap
 smart casual baseball cap with overcoat

Caps work surprisingly well with a smart casual outfit.

To get this look right, make sure to steer clear of logos on the front of the cap. Go for a six-panel strapback cap in a dark tone.

Ensure the strap is of the same material as the cap. Curve the visor to give it character and to allow it to blend in with the rest of the outfit. A flat visor is more suited to the streetwear scene.

In the milder months match the baseball cap with a blazer.  Layer it with a simple t-shirt or button-up cotton shirt. Add a pair of light-coloured chinos on the bottom half. For footwear opt for business causal shoes, such as brogues loafers or chukka boots.

As the temperature drops the winter coats come out. Opt for a cap without a logo. Wear with a trench coat layered with a hoodie. On the bottom half, wear denim jeans and add leather sneakers or chukka boots.

Outdoor Wear

baseball cap outdoor wear
baseball cap outdoor wear

When the colder weather is upon us, a cap serves to add style and function. Even though it may not be as warm as a beanie, it does provide some insulation and protection from the elements.

For a more minimalist look opt for a cap without a logo.  A curved or flat visor works with a shell jacket, for a casual look.

Add either jeans or cargo trousers, and finish off with a pair of rugged sneakers or leather boots.


baseball cap beach
baseball cap beach

The baseball cap really comes into its own in the summer months.

Going back to its origins of shielding the sun from baseball players’ eyes, it does a perfect job when on the beach. Providing shade when needed and adding an element of style.

Go for a snapback or trucker hat for the beach. The mesh back on the trucker provides that extra breathability.

A simple vest or tank top and shorts are all that’s required to complete the look.  For footwear add some running sneakers or flip-flops.

Comfortable and Casual

baseball cap casual
baseball cap casual

All types of baseball cap work for everyday wear. Styling it depends on the individual.

Add some colour coordination by matching the cap with a colour from the rest of the outfit. 

A simple t-shirt or shirt is the look to go for.  Some comfortable cotton pants or jeans for leg wear. Complete the look with a pair of leather sneakers.

Laid back

baseball cap relaxed
baseball cap relaxed

Flipping the baseball cap to wear it backwards does have an aesthetic appeal. It can also serve to keep the sun off the back of the neck. Pulling off this look requires having a simple outfit to balance the look.

Go for a snapback cap for this to work.  Keep the dress code simple. T-shirt and shorts, or cotton utilitarian pants. For footwear a pair of sneakers, either running or leather complete the look.

By: Stephen Antonio