January 08, 2014
Even though scientists have debunked the previously accepted gospel that you lose most of your body heat through your head (turns out to be only 10%), that doesn't mean wearing a hat in cold weather doesn't keep you warmer. Whether on your way to the office, or just to the store to grab more marshmallows for your hot chocolate, sporting the right headgear can help you look good while keeping warm.
THE USHANKA SIBERIAN RABBIT FUR HAT
Also called a shapka-ushanka (шапка-ушанка) or trooper hat, is a Russian fur cap with ear flaps that can be tied up to the crown of the cap, in the back (as pictured above), or at the chin to protect the ears, jaw and lower chin from the cold. The thick dense fur also offers some protection against blunt impacts to the head. While no match for a helmet, it offers protection far superior to that of a typical beanie cap should the wearer fall and hit his or her head against ice or packed snow. Besides being the warmest, most comfortable hat you will ever own, looking like a barbarian from the steppe can have its advantages.
THE WATCH CAP
Serving the world's navies for centuries, the watch cap is so named because it kept the wearer's head warm during their turn "on watch." The watch system allows a crew to operate a ship 24 hours a day by assigning crew members regular periods of work duty aboard ship. Using the typical dogging system for watch periods, an unfortunate seaman may be on deck in inclement weather for a period of up to four hours. This navy blue watch cap is made with a heavy gauge, tightly knit wool, which not only keeps you warm when you are dry, but when you are wet as well. Stay warm and dry with a piece of clothing field tested in some of the harshest conditions worldwide.
Similar to the Watch Cap, the Tuque (pronounced /ˈtuːk/; also spelled touque or toque) is a wool cap designed to provide warmth in cold weather. Differentiated from other wool beanie style caps by its a small, round, close-fitting, brimless style, the tuque got its name in Canada from the French word toque, originally referring to a traditional headwear and now used for type of chef's hat (short for toque blanche, meaning "white hat"). During the 1837 Patriotes Rebellion, a red tuque became a symbol of French-Canadian nationalism. The symbol was revived briefly by the Front de libération du Québec in the 1960s. However, you're more likely to be mistaken for Bill Murray cum Steve Zissou while wearing a red tuque south of the border, the Canadian border that is, than a Québecois separatist.
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