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The accessory that GOATs can't do without.
Intense physical activity requires the right gear: shorts, shirts, and shoes being what most think of first and foremost. Everything else is pretty secondary. But for professionals—or those who exercise vigorously and regularly—a sports headband is crucial.
Just ask several GOATs: Lebron James, Roger Federer, and Ronaldinho. Anyone of these athletes will tell you the importance of wearing a headband during a game: the way the accessory sits an inch or two above the brow, collecting sweat like none other; the way it prevents hair from covering your vision; and, yes, the way it can add some personality to a fit.
The best sports headbands hit all these targets. They should be made of materials that are sweat-wicking, quick-drying, and comfortable. Bonus points if styles are odor-resistant and offer up ventilation. They should also make you look like a winner. And we have all these options and more below. The pros wear ’em, and (if you’re prone to sweating profusely) so should you.
Walk into any gym, and you’ll probably see a slew of men wearing Under Armour. The brand specializes in pieces that feel like a second skin, particularly its line of compression shorts and tees. The same could be said of its headband, made of polyester with some added stretch, that is noted for being incredibly secure and quick-drying.
Michael Jordan dripping in sweat, his head and brow completely soaked, was standard after all his games. He could have definitely benefited from this sweatband that bears his silhouette, one made of Nike’s proprietary Dri-FIT technology. Not only does it dry quickly and absorb moisture like no other, it is also stylish. Just ask Drake, who has been photographed wearing this headband in white.
Plan on running a marathon? Or trekking up mountain summits in the heat? Check out this headband by New Balance, a style—made of a polyester that’s equal parts durable and breathable—that’ll keep sweat off your brow all day long.
If you’re looking for a headband with the utmost breathability and elasticity, Adidas’s Alphaskin 2.0 is it. The style is made out of two layers of polyester mesh with a good amount of spandex. It also features a silicone grip in the interior, which means that you don’t have to worry about it falling off.
Of all the brands on this list, Nike, of course, offers the most headband options—from tie-backs in white to ones made of wide knits in blasts of color. But the best of 'em, the one built for those who are drenched after every workout, is this Dri-FIT style that’ll fit comfortably and securely on heads of all sizes.
When it comes to athletic brands with style, one with cuts that always flatter, Lululemon is at the top of the mantle. Not only that, but the materials the brand uses are enhanced with sweat- and -odor-resistant technology, and provide a good amount of ventilation. This headband is a great example of this sentiment.
Some people like to run outside in every kind of temperature. And if you’re one of those peeps (more power to ya), Icebreaker has the headband for you. It is made of a blend of Merino wool and organic cotton, which means it is both temperature-regulating and breathable. And if that isn’t enough, the style is also odor-resistant.
You don’t have to be a Jaguars fan to get behind its cool logo. But if you really feel some way, New Era also has a number of headbands with motifs from other football teams, all of them utilizing Coolera technology, which wicks away moisture, helping you stay cool and dry.
Rick Owens and Champion may seem like an unlikely pairing, but the collections between the avant-garde brand and the sportswear giant have resulted in great pieces that blend their aesthetics seamlessly. This terry-cloth headband, for instance, has a look and texture that’s tough to beat, and is surprisingly decent for breaking sweat. Though, at this price, it’s really all about the vibe.
Speaking of high prices, this one from Burberry is eyebrow-raising. But like the style above, it is meant to make a sporty fashion statement. It'll fare OK if you're plan on going on a light jog, but it's best to leave anything jacquard for a party.