PUBLISHED : Monday, 17 March, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 17 March, 2008, 12:00am

Hats seem to be an accessory that many people shy away from. Beanies, baseball caps and flat caps are easier options to experiment with but there are many more interesting choices out there. In recent days, the fedora, panama hat, bowler hat and pork-pie hat (ridiculous name but, hey, if it's good enough for Kate Moss...) all seem to be having a renaissance.

First and foremost, when it comes to selecting a hat, find one you are comfortable with. Although that may seem obvious, I've seen way too many people wearing hats they keep fidgeting with and that is inherently uncool.

Make sure you feel like yourself in it (translation: like you aren't trying too hard) and that it fits your head properly. Do a quick test - tilt your head from side to side and from back to front and if it stays put, that's a good sign.

Take note of the fabric of the hat. For cool weather, wool and felt are great options but they look ridiculous once it gets warm (and feel uncomfortable too). For warmer weather, go for straw or cotton options that can breathe and will keep you fresh for longer.

Take a cue from Niki (far right). She's wearing a cute little straw panama hat with a black ribbon and the brim turned down. Matched with a vintage tee, a waistcoat, a colourful scarf, a pair of skinny jeans and plastic framed glasses, she looks like she's having fun with her look.

For something cool in a more mysterious way, follow in the stylish footsteps of Tina (second right). Her black felt fedora has a subtle pinstripe. To make the look unique, she's added a faded gold vintage brooch that also gives a touch of femininity.

Jon (first right), on the other hand, has livened a relatively simple outfit with a wide-brimmed black hat that looks a tiny bit like it could've been part of a costume. A mix between fedora and gaucho hat, it does have something slightly eccentric about it but he makes it work with his quiet confidence.

Hong Kong can be a difficult place to find hats, especially unique and quirky ones. Check out stores in Rise Commercial Building on Granville Circuit in TST, where I saw a smattering. Or, head on over to the markets, especially Ladies' Market in Mong Kok, where there are stalls that sell more of a variety than any proper boutique I have seen in Hong Kong. If you want something with a name brand, Agnes b. (Shop 110, Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2918 9830) often has good albeit simple options.