What to Consider When Buying a Tilley Hat – T3, LTM5, TMH55


I want to talk about the three main areas when considering a Tilley Hat. I’ll be using three styles of hats from my collection to demonstrate Build Quality, Sizing & Maintenance along with a few tips how to clean and wear your Tilley hat.

Yeah Tilley hats are expensive but they are quality made, look at my T3 Snap up hat that is almost 12 years old! I’ve worn that hat around 200 days per year for a decade! Other than one stitch and some discoloration around the band, this hat looks as new as the first day I got it – and I’m not even the original owner!

Don’t try to size these like a baseball cap, it won’t work. Tilley hats are meant to be worn low & loose. Best bet is to consult their sizing chart on their website and pull out the measuring tape from the sewing kit in the house and measure your brow (just like you were to wear a bandana) and refer to the chart. If your size is half way or 3/4 of the way into a size, just go to the next size up.

TILLEY SIZING CHART: http://www.tilley.com/canada_en/how-to-fit/

LTM5 is a good example of a hat that is just a tad too small for the original owner who gave it to me. I like the Airflow mesh on this hat as it does a much better job at ventilation than the T3.

If you wear your Tilley hat, you will need to wash it. Sweat is the enemy. Consider washing your Tilley hat 3-4 times a year. You can put it in the washing machine but just put in the kitchen sink with a few pinches of Oxy Clean and give it a good swish. After a few cold water rinces, hang it dry by putting a cylinder underneath it like a Pringles can.

TMH55 – How I wear my Tilley hat is simple. I take the wind cord and size the back one so that it matches the radius of the hat and tuck in the front straps into the pocket. I never had to wear the front straps. If it gets windy, simply shorten the back strap so that it locks down your head like a baseball cap.


Rowland Spear says:

Thanks, Jim. I’ve had the T3 for at least 10 years, probably more, and I bought the LTM5 this year, looking for more ventilation while backpacking. The T3 is now relegated to kayaking. I was a little disappointed that the LTM5 didn’t provide as much ventilation as I expected, but it is still a great hat. After reading the comments by you and Mark Young, I’ll definitely look into some of Tilley’s other models.

David Griffith says:

I have a T3 and an LTM6, both in size 7 1/4. They fit totally different! While I like them both and am able to wear both the T3 fits the way the website says it should. The LTM6 fits quite snug, so perhaps some sizing discrepancies from Tilley?

The Whatsit says:

Great video. Were you not able to stretch the second hat you showed that was given to you?

Larry Koziol says:

Not sure if anyone mentioned it but Tilley’s mentions specifically not to use oxy clean, bleach or any other whiteners.

Adventure Outdoors says:

I never knew there was so much to learn about a Tilley. I have to say you are a Tilley Guru.

Wingman115 says:

Great video Jim. Thanks for sharing.

Kurt B says:

Great video. Just bought my second Tilley. I hope it ends here! lol

TFlorida1 says:

I own a Tilley Hat, model LTM6, and use it outside in Florida for work. I’ve had the hat 6 years and have no complaints. I’ve owned other hats and have ripped them while going through brush/trees. Before I purchased a Tilley hat I was typically buying a new hat every year, so paying for one Tilley hat is worth the money. I clean mine in the sink when it gets sweaty/dirty and then hang it up to dry so the shape stays the same. It’s a great hat and worth the money!

Tristan Garonera says:

Thnx for the great info, super useful. Since I have the same hair style as you, I was looking for a good hat but never found one. Would it be useful to wax the hat for waterproofing or do you think this is not necessarry ?

Maja Dunn says:

Great video, many thanks for your sizing advice – realised then that I had bought the wrong size, hat too large, i.e.  swishing around when shaking my head left to right and not using straps, so immediately went back to the shop and got a better fit –  1/4 size smaller – model LT5B

Mark Young says:

The video I have been waiting for. Thank you. I have a bit of an embarrassing Tilley collection. I started with an original T3 (all white) but ended up exchanging that for the newer T3 (green under-brim) after it started to wear through on the brim. I added an original T5 (two grommet vents). I then added the original black wool Tilley winter hat. Then added a Tilley newsboy cap and a Tilley Ivy cap (both are wool). In recent years (10 years ago) I added the TH5 hemp.. my best summer hat. It has faded considerably but it has the best airflow of all my Tilleys, Most recently I added the waxed cotton TCO6… I think I am finished… well maybe not… the mash-up does look good

Wild Willy says:

Only wear one
T3 wanderer

mustang774 says:

Very interesting video about the Tilley hats. I don’t have one yet but have been considering one…..Take care, Mike.

Koh Ah Tee says:


My Opinion says:

Nice review. Very helpful as I’m looking to purchase a Tilley.

Edward Aruda says:

I have several Tilleys and I am awaiting delivery of my TH4 hemp hat. The tip you gave on drying a Tilley by placing it on a Pringles can is the best tip I’ve ever gotten on how to dry a Tilley without getting wrinkles on the side of the hat. It was one of those ideas that is so simple I wonder why I didn’t think of it. Thank you!

rsaathoff says:

I do recommend as well if your in the upper end of a size to go one size up. I wear the largest size Tilley makes and when I wash it, it’s snug but it stretches out. I am looking at the LTM2 for maximum sun protection.

I use mine (LTM6) daily at work and I need to wash mine once a week. It just gets too nasty with sweat in the SW US. Might be less in the cooler weather but I’ve only had mine since mid summer.

Ralin says:

Hey Jim, great video! I’ve got the medium brim Tilley hemp, the TH5. Absolutely love it! I don’t know how big of a problem it is for some people, but it is one of the models with a little more flimsy brim. I personally like it, the stiff brim doesn’t shape enough for my liking.

Thanks for talking about caring for the hat! They say to wash it frequently, so i do about once a month. Looks like yours have held up pretty well with 3-4 times a year, though in not sure i want to try that with the hemp.

Martina Dejaquiz says:

VG-THX-hit liked.

Out West with Chris says:

I need to look into getting one of these hats. The older I get the more I think about my ears and neck and the possibility of skin cancer. Thanks for sharing, very helpful.

danhold1 Holdcroftski says:

great review

Larry Koziol says:

Also for those that find the T3 too warm remove the foam, it makes a significant difference in my experience.

Niq Scott says:

Great video, thanks mate. Just about to order a Wanderer. Off to Peru, Chile and Easter Island for a month next April, and figured I’d need something a bit better than my baseball caps.

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