We Always Giggled at My Grandmother's Big Facesaver Hat, But Now I'm a Convert

A Southern granny always gets the last laugh.

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Amazon Facesaver Visor
Courtesy Amazon

Growing up, we watch our grandmothers do all sorts of activities, mannerisms, and other everyday habits that leave a strong enough mark to influence how we do the same things as adults, whether it's wearing an embarrassingly puffy shower cap like she did or sneaking Durkees into the deviled eggs when someone isn't looking like she never, ever did. *wink, wink*

However, wearing a big, flying saucer-shaped facesaver hat is not one of those things we grew up to idolize and imitate. Whether she was working in the garden, strolling on a late-afternoon walk, lounging at the beach under the umbrella (you can never have enough sun protection), or sitting on the porch with a iced-down tea (again, never enough shade), she was wearing that straw facesaver sun hat with a wide navy trim on the band like it was the only thing left in her closet. Like any Southern woman, it wasn't—but none of those wimpy little headbands and caps could hide the fact that she didn't feel like touching up her makeup quite as well as the imposing front brim of her trusty facesaver.

A facesaver hat looks a lot like an exaggerated cross between a tennis visor and a bonnet, with a brimless back and an oversized face-covering front brim that makes sure you get maximum sun protection—and can stave off the prying paparazzi, we'd joke—without obstructing your movements. Usually modeled in a neutral straw fabric with a dark-colored ribbon on the band, it undoubtedly matches any Southern grandmother's "play clothes," as well as afternoon tea attire, if that's her thing.

Never did I think there would come a day when I would see facesaver hats coming back into high fashion, but I also didn't think I'd ever switch from drinking deliciously sugar-packed Coke to cans of hum-drum sparkling water, either. Yay, health! And so here we are.

At the start of this year's summer, facesaver sun hats started popping up on my radar, from Pinterest to clothing websites, too often to be a coincidence; and I'm not going to lie, I'm coming around to the idea. A fashionable defense mechanism to stave off wrinkles, protect from sunburn, and successfully avoid talking to anyone at the grocery store? I'm in.

If you're also looking for facesaver inspiration of your own, we've rounded up a couple of options below. So go forth and save that face. It might have taken years and years, but I should have known a Southern grandmother always gets the last laugh.

Scala Paper Braid Dimensional Brim Women's Hat

Scala Sun Hat

BUY IT: $32.75; amazon.com

You can't go wrong with this classic paper braid style.

FURTALK Wide Brim Straw Packable Beach Hat

Furtalk Sun Hat

BUY IT: $19.99; amazon.com

This packable topless option is great for those who love an old-school beach hat.

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