Tips of The Hat

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Tips of The Hat

Until the 1950s, it was quite unusual for a gentleman to leave the house without a hat. Since that time, the practice has seen a decline.

But as fashion comes full-circle and recent trends show hats are back, this renaissance is creating a quandary for a generation of men and boys who grew up without learning hat-wearing etiquette.

Here are a few tips to explain the basics: When talking hat language, to don a hat means to put it on. To doff a hat means to take it off. To tip a hat means touching the brim with index finger and thumb to slightly lift the hat.



At athletic events

On public transportation

In public buildings such as post offices, airports, and hotel or office lobbies

On elevators


In someone’s home

At mealtimes, at the table

While being introduced (indoors or out)

In a house of worship

Indoors at work (unless required for the job)

In public buildings such as a school, library, courthouse or town hall

At a movie or any indoor performance

When the national anthem is played

At funerals and as funeral processions pass by

When the United States flag passes by, as in a parade

When coming into the presence of a dignitary of either gender


To “say” to anyone, male or female: Thank you, Excuse me, Hello, Goodbye, You’re welcome or How do you do?

It may seem as though there is a lot to take in; however, if in doubt, you can always err on the side of caution and remove your hat. Even in today’s casual culture, that remains a sign of respect.