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Apparel Review

Stay cool with a Personal Ozone Protection (P.O.P.) Sun Hat

Date: 5/24/03
Tackle type: Apparel
Manufacturer: POP Sun Hats
Reviewer: JIP

Total Score: 7.83

Introduction: An excess of the sun's UV rays can cause anglers some real discomfort during summer fishing trips. Protecting yourself from the harmful sunlight is crucial to your health, as anglers receive even more UV light than normal due to reflections from the water's surface. POP Sun Hats are designed to offer coverage that shields your skin from these harmful rays.


POP Sun Hats SunFender Specifications

Material 100% natural white cotton canvas
Color White
Sizes Small to XXX-large
Features Wide brim, solid brass grommets, nylon rope lacing with adjustable cordlock
MSRP $24

Impressions: Fishing in the summer heat can be very exhausting and it often calls for precautionary measures that consists of layers of  sunblock and long sleeve clothes. Having some shade to cover your head and face is also important to keeping cool and preventing direct UV light from harming your skin. While most of us will usually be satisfied with a old baseball cap there are actually hats designed to help anglers fish in more comfort under the most intense summer days.


The SunFender makes a good hat for anglers because of its design


The POP hat SunFender is designed for this purpose, to keep the sun from beating down on you. The SunFender's goal wasn't created to be the most stylish or fancy, but to provide an effective at keeping the summer heat to a minimum. The SunFender is constructed out of 100% natural white cotton canvas with large solid brass grommets for ventilation and four loops for rope lacing. The nylon rope lacing comes with an adjustable cordlock to provide a quick way to tighten or loosen the hat when needed.  The SunFender also features a extra wide brim which is great for outdoorsmen because it reduces glare as well as heat.

Real World Tests: To test the SunFender we embarked on multiple fishing days in the California weather where at times it is already reaching Summer temperatures.


In the Sun: It's important to understand that even though the sun is not out, it does not mean that UV light isn't present. When it's cloudy, the UV index is just less than when the sun is out beating down on you.  So no matter what type of condition, it's good to protect yourself at all times.


Fishing in direct sunlight can expose an angler to high levels of UV radiation.  The POP Sun Hat provides good protection for your face and neck while fishing


Throughout the tests in calm to windy conditions and sunny to cloudy, the POP Sun Hat felt comfortable and kept me cooler then any other hat I have ever worn. The soft form-fitting inner frame provides a good grip your head without any sharp pressure points to give headaches. The large grommets also provide adequate ventilation to keep your head cool and comfortable even when the temperature reaches 90F in direct sunlight. The straps used to prevent the hat from blowing off your head were effective in light windy conditions, but I still wouldn't recommend it in a moving bass boat.


The level of protection the POP Hat SunFender provides while fishing is good. The wide 3 inch brim blocks sun rays from direct contact on your skin from multiple angles. Of course it can't give 100% protection to your face and neck, but the coverage is definitely better then your standard cap. The white colored canvas might not be your favorite color, but once again it has a purpose, it's great for extremely hot weather because lighter colors do not absorb heat as quickly.


Ruggedness & Washing: The SunFender is quite durable thanks to the tough materials used in it's construction. Whether it is stepped on, dropped into the water, or crushed to be packed in your back pack, the cotton canvas material will always spring back into its original shape. If the POP hat requires washing due to exposure to the grime and slime associated with fishing, simply toss it in the washer with your whites and hang to dry.


The Angler's Amigo has two large flaps on the back and sides to provide maximum coverage from the sun and reflections


Want more protection?: If the SunFender does not provide enough UV protection, there's always the Angler's Amigo ($27) by POP Sun Hats.  The Angler's Amigo is similar to the SunFender except it has two additional flaps on the back and sides to really keep the sun off of your neck. The side capes are quite large, but you certainly wont be complaining about the sun and they will ensure you wont get sunburned.


A more stylish option for protection, the Expedition hat


Other POP Sun Hats: POP Sun Hats also offer other outdoor hats that might interest you. The more stylish Expedition Hat($29) comes in an attractive tan color that's similar to the SunFender, but this POP Sun Hat was especially designed for the use by the American Museum of Natural History. Instead of the nylon rope used in the SunFender, the Expedition hat sports a leather strap with a cordlock.


You can see more POP Sun Hats by clicking here.

POP SunFender Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Not the most high-tech material, but has a good overall construction using weaved cotton 7.5
Performance Protects your face and neck from UV rays for most of the day.  If you need more protection, the Angler's Amigo is excellent 8
Price Competitive pricing 7.5
Features Brass grommets provide good ventilation, lacing keeps the hat from flying away, and the cordlock is very handy 8
Design (Ergonomics) Designed for a firm fit that's comfortable to wear all day long 8
Application Can be used for fishing and other outdoor activities that require protection from the sun 8

Total Score


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Good protection against UV radiation L Not the most stylish
J Rugged  
J Comfortable  

Conclusion: Being anglers we probably spend a little too much time in direct sunlight than our doctors, or wives and girlfriends for that matter, would like us to. The thought of skin cancer from the harmful UV radiation constantly being beamed at us from the sun is scary and shouldn't be overlooked. Everyday anglers equip themselves with sunblock at the highest SPF and should wear long sleeves whenever possible. Now here's something else to add to your arsenal to battle those UV rays. POP Sun Hats offer the SunFender that's effective, durable, and available for a affordable price for a protective hat that can really take a beating in it's quest to deliver a more comfortable fishing experience. If the SunFender isn't stylish enough for you or does not provide enough coverage, then you can always consider the other offerings by POP, you're Personal Ozone Protection Sun Hats. But for most of us anglers will choose function over form, and any piece of apparel that can keep me fishing longer on the water is a welcome addition to my tackle.









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