If you are wondering whether or not to wear a cycling cap it may be good to know that you’d be wearing an iconic item on your head with a bit of history attached to it.

The cycling cap, known as casquette in French, has been around for quite a while. It is simply part of the culture as are vintage bikes and waxed legs. The wearer of the cap automatically starts exuding quirky racer vibes.

The cycling cap came into existence when cycle racing became popular in the 1800s. The headgear options then - tweed hats and caps - were just not suitable for the sport.

By the 1950s, cycling caps had become the mark of a professional cyclist. One saw them on the finish line and podiums showing off the cyclists’ sponsors and brand affiliations. Cycling enthusiasts, who could not afford a cycle of that brand, would be happy to at least own the brand’s cap.

Cycling caps started seeing a decline when the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) began to make helmets compulsory in the 90s. However, the cap is making a comeback now and it is a good time to discover why this item is suddenly a must-have in your cycling wardrobe.

What is a Cycling Cap?

The cycling cap is different from a regular cap in many ways. It is made of thin, sweat-wicking material and does not have a broad visor like other caps which may obstruct the vision of the cyclist.

It is also not bulky and can fit under a cycling helmet. It’s flexible and well-gripped with elastic at the back so it doesn’t fly off one’s head and fits a head of any size or shape.

Here are the benefits of the cycling cap, making it more than just a style statement.

Sweat Wicking

If you are a serious biker, pushing hard to reach the finish line, you can have streams of sweat pouring into your eyes. The cycling cap stops this from happening by absorbing the sweat and wicking it away.

These caps are made from lightweight, quick-drying and breathable fabric. By absorbing sweat and oil, these washable caps also allow the helmet to remain clean and non-smelly. In cold conditions, the cap keeps one’s head warm.


The brim of the cap protects the eyes from the glare of the sun while being short enough to keep a wide field of vision for the cyclist.

Hair Management

Another irritating thing is when the ends of one’s hair keep dancing on one’s forehead. Unnoticeable at first it can become the only thing one notices on a ride before being driven to insanity. The cycling cap keeps the hair in check, and also keeps it from being entangled in the Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPs) liner that many helmets have.

How to Wear a Cycling Cap

Cycling caps fit comfortably under the cycling helmet. Should one wear the cap off one’s bike as well?

Certainly, at cycling events when all the cycling-mad people meet and the mood in the air is: ‘You a cyclist? Me a cyclist too. Yay!’

The other question is whether to wear your cap ‘peak up’ or ‘peak down’. Peak down seems to be the way to go, but if you have the personality to pull it off then try peak up.

Can you wear the cap without your cycling kit?

This is a big no-no. The cap is like the final touch to a very professional look. It’s like wearing a tie without a tux. You just don’t wear the cap without the kit.

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