Disclosures / Privacy Policy

What Do The Xs In A Cowboy Hat Mean?

The "Xs" used to describe a cowboy hat can be confusing, but here's the short version: Most cowboy hats - both felt and straw - come with a label or tag describing the quality of the hat by using the letter "X" as a rating system. Typically, the more Xs a cowboy hat has the higher quality the hat is, at least according to the hat's maker.

Below: A felt cowboy hat.

 A felt cowboy hat

Why The X System Can Be Confusing, Part 1

Even though rating the quality of a felt or straw cowboy hat by using Xs is common, there isn't an industry wide standard for its use. This means that the "X" system is a relative rating of quality a manufacturer uses for their own line of hats, and their quality rating may or may not be comparable to another hat maker's. For example, if a hat maker rates a hat they make as a 3X it may, or may not, be of the same quality as a 3X hat made by someone else.

Below: A smashed straw cowboy hat. According to the lady in the photo who is a friend of ours, the hat popped right back into shape.

A flattened straw cowboy hat

Why The X System Can Be Confusing, Part 2

Not too many years ago the X rating system for cowboy hats applied to felt cowboy hats only. At that time the Xs indicated the amount of beaver felt content in a hat: The more Xs a hat had, the more beaver felt was used in its making.

However, this old standard is no longer true. Today a great variety of cowboy hats are rated or described by using the X rating system, but they can be made of a variety of materials such as felt (regardless of whether or not it's beaver felt), straw, or others.

What Is / Are...

Horse Tips

  • Horse Tips
    Short tips to help horse owners and anyone who lives or loves a Western lifestyle do something faster, easier, or better.


Link To This Page

If you found this page useful or interesting and would like to link to it from your own website or blog, you can use the small code snippet below to make a link. Thanks!

Use ctrl+C in Windows or command+C on a Mac to copy the link.

<a href=""></a>

Below: Like and share this page on Facebook!

CowboyWay Facebook
CowboyWay Facebook

Search For Items



More Pages On and Other Websites

Disclosures / Privacy Policy

Some images and/or other content on this website are copyright © their respective owners.
All other material copyright © 1999 - 2018 by - All Rights Reserved is not responsible in any manner for the content found within the CowboyWay website. If you choose to use any of the information on CowboyWay you are doing so at your own risk. It is your responsibility to verify any information found on CowboyWay. Further, CowboyWay is not responsible for the content of any website that can be reached through a link found on CowboyWay. Period.