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A couple of years back in Miami, a 24 years old construction worker was moving a large sewer pipe using a pulley. Unfortunately, the cable holding it broke, and the pipe of about 7 pounds fell on his head. Well, he should have died, but he did not- he was wearing a hard hat.
A hard hat is personal protective equipment that workers in construction and other related fields are required to wear to prevent serve injury to the head. Hard hat area! This is a common sign on boards around the work area to impress on workers the importance of hard hats.
Most times, when you see a picture of a smart-looking worker with a bright-colored blue, yellow, or white hard hat, you will know it’s not fashion; it simply for safety! The buying guide will provide the ten best hard hats on the market.
The Ten Best Hard Hats Are Reviewed Below
Evolution Deluxe 6161 Full Brim Hard Hat with HDPE Shell
Evolution deluxe is an affordable and durable hard hat suitable for construction work of all sorts. The entire material overlying the outer part of the hard hat is of High-density polyethylene (HDPE). The hard hat is strong and able to withstand huge weight should heavy objects fall unexpectedly on the head. Regardless of the strength of the hat, it’s lightweight and never a burden to the head.
Wearing a hard hat for a long time can be discomforting if the weather is hot. To avoid excessive heat during summer, evolution hard hat is the best option. At the top of the hat are small holes perforated at the sides to allow air into the head. Added to that is the Egyptian cotton core, which is PU coated to absorb sweat. It’s fixed around the head and also tested to ascertain it won’t react with sweat to cause skin irritation.
Bending, climbing, and other various movements while using hard hats can make it come off if it’s doesn’t fit properly. To avoid this, the hard hat has a 6-point suspension with firm but soft straps to adjust the fit as suitable. Also, it comes with a full brim to provide extra protection to the ears, protect against sun glare, snow, and all sorts of debris. It meets ANSI/ISEA Z89.1-2009, Type I, Class C requirements.
- High-density polyethylene (HDPE) material
- 6-point suspension and straps
- Meets the ANSI requirements
- Vented to lessen heat
- Brand: Evolution
- Model: Deluxe 6161
- Color: Grey
- Color may peel over time
Lift Safety DAX Fifty 50 Carbon Fiber Full Brim Hardhat
Lift hard hat is a popular brand common amongst workers for proper protection. The impact is what most workers fear- from falling objects and if individuals fall while at the site. Carbon fiber is used to ensure the hard hat is strong enough. In a bid to further reinforce the shell, the fiber is coupled with resin. The reinforcement is three times stronger than usual hard hats. It meets the Meets ANSI Z89. 1-2014 requirements for Type 1, Class C.
For comfort during use, the dome-shaped hat is built using clarino leather, which is perforated for ventilation. The inner is designed to absorb shock and add to the overall comfort of the user with the introduction of EVA foam.
Lift safety Dax hard hat has a simple adjustment knob behind to either tighten or loosen its grip around the head. As expected, the 6-point suspension system is equally present to give additional firmness as well as a brim for protection. Despite the perforated holes, the sweat can still occur around the head, so there is a moisture-wicking foam as well as a microfiber liner. The hard hat is durable and easy to carry around and fits into any size of head. It’s of the best hard hats for small heads.
- Moisture-wicking foam
- 6-point suspension
- Adjustment dial
- Carbon fiber
- Perforated clarino leather
- Brand: Lift Safety
- Model: DAX HDF50C-19WC
- Color: Black/ White
- Easy to adjust
Pyramex Ridgeline Full Brim Hard Hat
Pyramex is a big name in the market and certainly one of the best hard hats out there. Pyramex gives all-round quality with no compromises. The famous ABS material is a significant part of the build making the hat sturdy and also ultra-light. The ABS material offers protection beyond impact from falling objects. It also has electrical insulation properties which are suitable for construction and electrical work.
The suspension system is a four-point type that allows good fit plus adjustments as necessary. The hat can be adjusted in any direction for a perfect fit. So, should a user intend to look up, it can be adjusted slightly backward and any other way that soothes. There is a pressure pad for ample ventilation alongside a sweatband, which be cleaned after each use. The user can always adjust the fit even after wearing the hat, and this is considered easier than other types of hat that may need to be adjusted before use.
Although it has a 4-point suspension, it can be increased to 6 for added firmness. Pyramex Ridgeline uses a full brim design for increased comfort and snug fit. And importantly, it meets ANSI Z89.1-2009 standards, type 1, Class C, G, and E.
- Adjustable 4-point design
- Moisture absorber
- Adjustment dial
- ABS tough plastic
- Brand: Pyramex
- Model: Ridgeline
- Color: White/ Yellow/ Lime/ Orange
- 17 colors
- Sturdy and comfortable
MSA V-Gard Americal Eagle Hard hat
The distinct American Eagle hard hat is one of the most comfortable hard hats. It carries a painting of an eagle with an American flag bold on it. It’s has been dubbed the ” patriotic, hard hat”. The shell is made of polyethylene material to ensure sturdiness and resistance to impacts. For thorough confirmation of its strength, the hat underwent a test to affirm its resistance and protective ability during an accident.
There is sweatband to prevent the accumulation of moisture around the forehead and all-round the head. At the forehead are also well-shaped spaces to allow external accessories to attach easily, like face shield, welding helmet, visors, and other work-related attachments that may be necessary.
The hard hat is a three-level adjustment system to give a customized fit. Some straps hold the hat in place around the head to prevent it from falling off even if the user’s bends over. There is an adjustment knob that is simple to use to give the right firmness to any size of head. MSA V-gard comes in lots of colors and meets the ANSI/ISEA Z89.1-2014; CSA Z94.1-2015 standards.
- 3 Straps
- Polyethylene material
- Brand: MSA
- Model: V-Gard
- Color: Black
- Easy to use
- Excellent firmness
- Allows for external attachments
- Poor ventilation
MSA 454664 Tan Skullgard Hard Hat
The MSA 45664 skullgard is a badass hard hat that comes in a variety of colors and with good ergonomic design. MSA has over a century of experience designing industrial kits. Skullgard design combines safety and comfort. It uses the trademark 3 level design of MSA to provide a firm fit around the head. This allows the user to adjust the hat to a customized fit.
It uses a 4-point suspension system to hold it firmly on the head. Additionally, there is an excellent headband to make it stay fit. Another plus is the sweatband to wick away moisture should the user start to sweat while working. There is an MSA Staz-On Pinlock suspension to give a controlled firmness to avoid instances whereby the hat falls due to a bend or fall.
The rear dial is simple and easy to turn. Turning the dial helps a user to adjust the hat to give a firm fit and ensure it’s comfortable around the head. And there is a brim facing forward to protect the face, mostly when an accident occurs due to the drop of an object or debris.
- Brim protection
- High-quality sweatband
- Swing Ratchet
- Staz-On Pinlock
- 4-point suspension
- Brand: MSA
- Model: 454664 Tan Skullgard
- Color: Blue/ Brown/ Tan/ Yellow
- Easy to use
Full Brim Pyramex Hard Hat
The hexagonal shape patterned hard hat is among the very best hard hats on the market. It’s an impressive design that features high impact ABS plastic shell, which can withstand several pounds of an object without any injury to the head in the event of an accident. In addition to the ABS plastic is the reinforcement of carbon fiber to ensure superior quality. Despite the sturdiness of the design, the hat remains ultra-light.
There is a sweatband at the neck area as well as the forehead to provide extra comfort. The outer hexagonal design is unique such that two hats never have the same pattern, and as such, it becomes easily distinguishable should there be multiple around. It has a 6-point suspension system to ensure firmness and to give an excellent fit to each user.
The head is always of different sizes, and this may make a hard hat challenging to use. However, there is a knob at the rear of the hat that allows each user to adjust the hat to a customized fit. It meets OSHA and ANSI Z89.1-2014 standards.
- ABS plastic
- HDPE strap quality
- Brand: Pyramex
- Model: Hexagon 1CF2WH6M
- Color: Camo/ Black
- Easy control
- Lightweight shell design
TRUECREST Hydro Dipped Black Full Brim
Truecrest is another badass hard hat and, for a fact, among the best. It looks all fancy with the lovely dotted designs on the shell. Besides, the fancy design lies the tough HDPE material that gives protection to the head when used at construction or mining sites. The lightweight hard hat is a type 1 high impact equipment.
Truecrest uses a fas-trac suspension system to stay firmly on the head. The system not only allows for firmness but also makes custom-fit possible with its adjustable straps. It’s essential to have an adjustable hard hat such that it can be worn without being too tight or loose. And most importantly, it won’t come off when a user bends.
The full brim design runs adequately to the forehead and also at the back to protect the neck from raindrops and impact as well. The brim design is also slightly lifted to ensure a good flow of air and cool down the heat in case the hat is used in high temperature. It meets the ANSI Z89.1 2014 standards and types 1 hard hat requirements.
- Fast-trac suspension system
- Full brim
- Brand: TRUECREST
- Model: HNTE-FG-SPCF
- Color: Hydro Black
- Beautiful design
Klein Tools Hard Hat
Klein is a big brand in the world of equipment for various types of vocations, and so it comes as no surprise that manufacturers make hard hats. The Klein hard hat is a sophisticated design with features that makes it suitable for almost any job that requires the use of hard hats. It’s one of the best hard hats for small heads.
First is the suspension system that provides optimal fit as it is connected to an adjustment dial to either tighten the hat around the head or loosen it a bit.
The shell is designed to have vents at both sides to allow the flow of air into the head, and also, the rim is elevated for additional inflow and proper circulation of air. To provide comfort and at the same time eliminate sweat, there is a sweatband that runs around the rim to wick away moisture and give added fit. It’s also washable using a machine. The shell is lightweight and also made of strong ABS material.
The edge it has over most designs, and other competing brands is the headlight feature that makes it useable in the dark. The headlight runs on alkaline batteries and is firmly fitted on the shell. The hat meets the ANSI Z89.1-2014 standards. Its brim runs entirely around all the base to protect the neck, ears, and forehead from debris and other possible harmful objects. There are spaces for attaching accessories such as face shields, welding shields, and other attachments. It’s one of the best hard hats.
- Control dial
- Brand: Klein
- Model: 60407
- Color: White
- Comfortable and adjustable
Occunomix VCB100-06 Vulcan Cowboy Style Hard Hat
Protect yourself in style using the cowboy hard hat by Occunomix. The hard has an easy squeeze to lock the system with ratchet suspension to give a firm fit when worn. The brim is longer than most hard hats, as this allows the head and body get extra protection from UV radiation and other dangers that affect the neck and ears while working in a construction or mining site.
It comes in four colors, with a dimension of 6.4 X 17.1 X 12.9 and weight: 1.725. The inner compartment features a sweatband to prevent moisture from accumulating and causing discomfort while in use. It meets all major safety standards and requirements, and this makes it one of the best hard hats available for purchase.
As expected, it’s has a control dial to adjust it to the size of the head. The dial also allows a user to remove the hats without any trouble. It’s shell, although designed in a cowboy hat fashion, is a lot stronger than the usual cowboy hats. It’s made of strong plastic material that can withstand high impact and fully protect the head from injuries.
- Ratchet suspension
- Long brim design
- 6-point support
- Hard shell
- Brand: Occunomix
- Model: VCB200-06
- Color: White/ Black
- Extra cover
- A bit heavy
Fibre-Metal by Honeywell
The honey well hard hat uses the rachet suspension for firmness. Firmness is vital to every piece of hard hat as it allows it to stay on the head while the user gets to work. It ensures the hat doesn’t fall off. The suspension may require changing overtime. To do this, there is a 700-RS4 replacement part which extends the life of the hat.
The shell is made of fiberglass, and it’s strong with a brim of the same material. It can withstand high impact, making it suitable for commercial and industrial use. At the rear is a dial attached to the suspension to adjust the firmness of the hat around the head.
The cushioning and support of the hard hat is top-notch. Honeywell comes with a cushioning at the front to make it rest comfortably on the head without resulting in the discomfort of any sort. It meets the ANSI/ SEA Z 89.1 2009 standard.
- Forehead cushioning
- Fiberglass shell
- Adjustment dial
- Rachet suspension
- Brand: Honeywell
- Model: P1ARW71A000
- Color: Dull blue
- Easy to use
- Excellent design
- Average strength
Buying Guide Questions
Hard hats are essential and must-have equipment for every vocational worker prone to site injuries. The buying guide section clarifies possible misunderstandings and points buyers to which type of hard hat to buy depending on the purpose. Patiently read through to find answers to your questions and to learn more about some information that may prove helpful.
What’s the most comfortable hard hat?
For a hard hat to be regarded as comfortable, it must have some features. First is the ventilation system. A hard with vents on the shell can allow good circulation of air such that the user doesn’t get uncomfortable over time due to intense heat. Still, about adequate ventilation, the hat must also be well suspended such that air can sip in also.
Secondly, there should also be moisture-wicking material in the hat to ensure sweat doesn’t accumulate. And lastly, the weight must not be too much. A lightweight hard hat is comfortable on the head and doesn’t become a burden despite the length of time the user has it on. Pyramex Ridgeline Full Brim Hard hat is commonly regarded as the most comfortable due to its features. However, there are other hard hats with the features explained above that match the quality of the Pyramex Ridgeline.
Are aluminum hard hats OSHA approved?
Yes, but with some exceptions. Many prefer aluminum hard hats to the plastic types. And this is majorly because aluminum hard hats are believed to be stronger than the plastic types. Occupational safety and health standard the use of aluminum hard hats because it can also withstand impacts from falling objects without any injury to the head.
The exception, however, is that in an electrical establishment or worksite involving contact with electricity, aluminum hats are not allowed to avoid any form of electrical hazards. In most facilities that workers come in contact with electrical equipment, insulated hard hats are recommended to ensure a safe working environment.
What do hard hat colors mean?
Hard hats come in a variety of colors—white, blue, yellow, and orange. While colors are not mandated for many vocations, some have made it a habit to wear a particular color of hard hat while at work.
White hard hat is commonly seen on the head of construction workers. When at the site, they put on white-colored hats. For electricians, it’s the blue color. And it’s not just them alone; other technical personnel and carpenters use blue hard hats. The orange hard hat is synonymous with road crew workers. Orange is known to glitter in darkness, and due to this, road crews wear both the orange-colored vest and hard hat. A yellow hard hat is majorly for Laborers and general operators. And green! A green hard hat is common to recruits and apprentices.
What does a white hard hat mean?
A white-colored hard hat may seem normal to the common eyes but in reality, it denotes position and a type of job. It’s usually worn by an individual supervising a project, a manager and foreman. Architects is also known for using white hard hats, same as engineers.
What is the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 hard hats?
Type 1 and Type 2 hard hats are common, and many find it difficult to tell the difference between the two. The type 1 hard hat is designed to withstand impact from a falling object. In this way, the shell of a type 1 hat reinforced such that a worker at the site will have the head protected from accidental drops of heavy objects on the top of the hat.
A type 2 hat is always more expensive than type 1. Well, the increase in price is due to the capability of the hat. It is designed with enough reinforcement to withstand the effect of falling objects from a higher distance and also impacts from the sides. So, it’s able to withstand more massive items and also fully protect the sides of the head, which the type 1 hat can not. Additionally, the type 2 hat is well insulated and can thus be used by electricians.
What’s the lightest hard hat?
Only a few hard hats are a bit heavy. The vast majority of available hard hats are lightweight. Many brand use plastic in manufacturing hard hat shells. Be it the ABS plastic shell, HDPE shell, or the fiberglass shell; all these materials are never heavy. They only possibly heavy hard hats are the aluminum types. Although many of the hats are lightweight and choosing the lightest is not easy, two hard hats could pass as the lightest; the Dax carbon fiber hard hat and MSA 454666 skullgard hard hat.
Who wears full brim hard hats?
The use of full brim has no written rules regarding who gets to use it. Deciding to wear a full brim hard hat is a choice each worker has to make. Full brim hard hats offer additional protection from UV rays and debris while at work. The use of this hat can also be based on the requirements of each vocation and establishment. Some firms mandate that their workers should wear full brim hats due to the electrical environment of their work area.
Working under the sunlight or at a site where debris fall regularly may also require the use of full brim hats to ensure proper protection of the neck and some parts of the upper body.
Who wears a black hard hat?
A black hard hat is not common, and not many people wear it. Most vocations require the use of brightly colored hard hats like orange, yellow, and white due to the type of job they do. However, according to the color code for the use of hard hats, the color is assigned to supervisors. As earlier mentioned, the use of specific colors is not mandatory. Only a few professions are particular about the color requirement of individuals in their field. One such example is the road crew. Due to their line of work, the use of an orange hat and dress is a must.
What do you wear under a hard hat?
Some items can be worn under a hard hat. The use of a hard hat doesn’t mean other headgear can’t be used. Bandanas, head warmer, and hoods can be beneath a hard hat. For example, in a cold season, the ventilation system of a hard hat may result in too much cold air to the head. To avoid this, a head warmer can be worn beneath the hat. Nonetheless, the head must not be too thick such that it affects the suspension system that helps keep the hard hat firmly on the head.
In most cases, a bandana is a common item most people wear beneath a hard hat to create extra cushioning.
What is Class B hard hat used for?
A class B hard hat, as it is called in ANZI Z89.1-1986, is built to resist a whole lot of injury-causing impacts. The type B hat can withstand impact from all sides and, of course, the top of the hat. Also, it can resist an electrical voltage of about 20,000. And the resistance to intense heat is high.
It’s an industrial piece of equipment that also have well-structured vents such that it allows workers at construction sites to get adequate airflow. Other similar classes of the hard hat are the type G and C. The type G gives resistance to electricity of about 2200 volts, while type C offers no protection against electricity. Overall, a type B hard hat is the strongest and most recommended for proper safety.
Which class of hard hats is appropriate for most construction workers?
There are different classes of hard hat types, depending on the profession. The most appropriate type for construction workers is the class G hat. The class G hat offers all sides and top reinforcement for a hard hat. It completely safeguards the head from any sort of injury, be it from a falling object or impact occurring sideways. Apart from the tough shell, type G hats are also well insulated.
The main reasons why the type G is recommended for construction workers is because hats this type can protect all round of impact while on site. Since construction sites are usually not filled with lots of electrical equipment and connections, the 2200 volts resistance capacity is enough to protect construction workers against possible electrical incidents.
Hard hats are essential to various professions. The use of a hard hat is imperative to achieve a safe working environment. While there are various manufacturers of hard hats, this buying guide has focused on reputable ones with a good track record of producing the best types in the market. Additionally, the hard hats recommended here are also in compliance with various regulatory and safety standards.
So, look at the ten examined hard hats and choose one that fits your job the most. Remember, the experience mentioned at the outset of this buying guide. Like that 24 years old man who survived death by wearing a hard hat while at work, emulate that example and stay safe as you earn your living!