An army beret is a soft, round-topped cap with a flat visor. It is usually made of wool or cotton. The military, police, and other uniformed organizations wear the beret. In the United States, it is commonly associated with the Army. However, people also wear it for sophistication and to add uniqueness to their outfits. Beret wearing is an art that can be worn in various ways; here are some tips on wearing an army beret.

What Is A Beret?

The beret is a timeless, fashionable hat that people have worn for generations. It’s commonly known as “the floppy cap of France” or simply’ beret.’

This circular flat-brimmed beanie only came into existence due to its popularity in France and Spain, where it was first prescribed by King Philip II (from 1580-1621) before making its way onto military uniforms. It is now even part of civilian clothing – especially during romantic times like World War I. Soldiers at that time were requested not to wear any hairstyles containing metal plates so they could quickly identify friend/foe easier at night time battlefields 

The modern-day look usually includes a black wool beret. Still, there are plenty of options for colors and materials- from cotton to leather.

Options For Beret In Casual Wear

The french beret flat cap is known for casual wear.

The Slouchy Look

This is where the beret sits slightly off to one side, giving it a more casual and relaxed look. To achieve this, wear the band towards the back of your head instead of centered and push it down gently towards one ear. Wear it with casual outfits to complete the look.

The Pushed-Up Look

Push the beret toward the top center of your head for a more playful and whimsical look. This look allows some hair to peek out and adds a different dimension to your striped shirt.

The Classic Style

For a more traditional and sophisticated look, wear the band centered on your head and pull it down, so it sits flat against your forehead. Wear it with jeans and a button-down or a dress and jacket.

The Messy Bun Look

For a cute and effortless look, put your hair up in a messy bun or ponytail and then place the beret on top of it. This look is great for those with long hair who want to keep it out of their face but still add some style.

TheBackward Look

This look is achieved by wearing the beret with the band towards the back of your head and pulling it down slightly to cover your ears. This look adds a bit of edge to your outfit and can also help keep you warm in colder weather. It will suit a leather jacket or any outfit with a streetwear vibe.

The Snug Fit

For a more streamlined and sporty look, wear the beret so that it sits tightly against your head with no excess fabric. This outfit can also help keep you warm in colder weather. It will look good with athletic-inspired outfits or a more structured look. Use bobby pins for hair so that beret remains in its position without slipping.

So whether you like a retro style or a classic beret style, the only thing to know is how to wear the french beret properly.

How To Wear An Army Beret?

When wearing a beret, it’s important to abide by the following protocol:

Ensure That Beret’s Headband Is Straight

Begin by placing the beret on your head with the front facing forward. Then, use one hand to hold the beret in place and use your other hand to adjust the headband so that it lies flat and straight across the top of your head. Align with eyebrows and not too high or low.

Align Beret’s Badge With Your Left Eye

To align a beret’s badge with your left eye, start by putting on your beret, as usual, making sure that it is positioned squarely in front of you. Next, use your left hand to hold the beret while your right-hand shift its position until it is set, so the badge falls just above your left eye.

Shift Beret’s Access Material Towards the Right Ear

Any excess clothing should be moved such that it touches your top ear. Then, to the right side of the beret, gather the extra material and pull it. It will help keep the beret in place and looking sharp.

Hide The Leather Band Of the Beret

To hide the leather band of the beret and achieve a more polished look, wrap a ribbon or scarf around the base of your beret.

Inspect Your Beret Using A Mirror

To ensure that your beret fits appropriately, inspect it using a mirror, making any necessary adjustments to accommodate your head size and shape.

Shape Your Beret With Water (If Needed)

If you need to shape your beret to fit your head more snugly, you can use water to adjust its form as required. First, dampen the inside of the beret with a small amount of water and wear it for a few minutes until it begins to dry.

Style long Hair While Wearing A Beret (Female)

When wearing an army beret, you may want to style your long straight hair so that it remains tucked neatly inside the beret. For women, this can help create a streamlined and polished appearance while allowing access to your hair throughout the day.

Different Color Berets In US Army

All US Army troops wear a black beret unless the soldier is approved to wear a different distinctive beret.

Maroon Beret

If you are a member of the Airborne forces, you may be authorized to wear a maroon beret as your official headdress.

Tan Beret

If you are a member of the 75th Ranger Regiment, you may be authorized to wear a tan beret as your official headdress.

Brown Beret

A brown beret is authorized for wear by the Security Force Assistance Brigades. To wear a brown beret, follow the steps outlined above to ensure that your beret is properly fitted and aligned.

Green Beret

If you are a Special Forces member, you may be authorized to wear a green beret as your official headdress. Special forces include Army Green Berets, Navy Seals, and Marine Raiders. They can wear a wool or leather beret, but all green berets will have an embroidered Special Forces unit crest on the front.

Blue Beret

If you are part of the United Nations Peacekeeping forces, you may wear a blue beret as your official headdress.

Why does the Army Prefer To Wear Berets?

The Army has a long and proud history, dating to its founding in the 17th century. Since then, it has regularly evolved to meet the needs and demands of different eras, adopting new technologies and strategies to remain at the forefront of modern warfare. One such change in recent decades was transitioning from traditional headgear, such as hats and helmets, to berets. While much has been written about this change, many are still unsure why it occurred.

There are several reasons why the Army prefers to wear berets.

  • First, they provide a distinctive military look that is recognizable worldwide. This helps to foster a sense of unity among members of the armed forces, instilling pride and trust in their fellow soldiers.
  • Moreover, berets are not restrictive like traditional hats or helmets might be. It allows soldiers greater flexibility during combat operations while maintaining safety and security.
  • Berets help to keep heads cool in hot weather conditions by allowing for increased airflow up top.
  • Berets have qualities that make them engage in the military.
  • They are affordable.
  • Manageable to make in large numbers. 
  • Berets can be manufactured in various colors, encouraging corps 
  • Easy to carry that can be moved up and stuffed in a pocket or under an epaulet without damage
  • It can stand worn with headphones.
  • They are indicative of strength and resilience and serve as a mark of excellence for all those who choose to dedicate their lives to military service.
  • Symbolizes soldiers’ commitment and dedication both on and off the battlefield

Beret During Training

In military training, there is often a lot of emphases placed on uniformity and following protocol. For example, soldiers are generally expected to wear a beret during their training. Beret serves both as a symbol of the armed forces and as an important piece of safety equipment for soldiers.

Structurally, the beret helps to protect a soldier’s head from impact injuries during walking or marching drills and protects against inclement weather conditions like the sun or wind. For all these reasons, a soldier will generally be required to wear a beret. Yet, at the same time, they are engaged in military training activities.

Whether in basic training or more specialized courses like sniper school or special ops programs, wearing a beret is essential to be ready for action and training to serve with distinction. In short, no soldier should ever consider skipping out on wearing their berets during training. To find more information related to the activity, visit Us Army Basic.

Final Thoughts

There are various ways that you can wear a beret. You can choose to wear it casually or go for the more formal army look. Different US Army groups wear other colored Berets. The Army prefers to wear Berets because they offer protection from the sun and wind. During training, soldiers need to wear their berets at all times. If you want to learn more about army values, uniformity, and beret, check out US Army Basic.