Hiking in hot weather can be very irritating because you sweat a lot and you are exposed to the heat and the burning sun. However, the hiking experience can be improved if you put on the right clothes. And today, we will show you how to choose the best hiking shirt for hot weather.
Here are the best hiking shirts for hot weather (May 2023 Update):
- Men’s Merino T-Shirt: Icebreaker Men’s Tech Lite Short Sleeve Crewe
- Men’s Merino T-Shirt: Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt
- Men’s Synthetic T-Shirt: Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew
- Men’s Synthetic T-Shirt: Hanes Men's S/s Cooldri Tee
- Men’s Button-Up Long Sleeve Shirt: Columbia Men’s PFG Tamiami Ii Long Sleeve Shirt
- Men’s Button-Up Long Sleeve Shirt: Mountain Hardwear Men's Canyon Solid Long Sleeve Shirt
- Women’s Merino T-Shirt: Merino.tech 100% NZ Short Sleeve T-Shirt
- Women’s Merino T-Shirt: Smartwool Women's Merino 150 Baselayer Pattern Short Sleeve
- Women’s Synthetic T-Shirt: ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeves
- Women’s Synthetic T-Shirt: Nike Legend Women's Short Sleeve Shirt
- Women’s Button-Up Long Sleeve Shirt: Jessie Kidden Women's UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Safari Shirt
- Women’s Button-Up Long Sleeve Shirt: Little Donkey Andy Women's Stretch Long Sleeve Shirt
|12 Best Hiking Shirts For Hot Weather|
|Icebreaker Men’s Tech Lite Short Sleeve Crewe|
|Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt|
|Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew|
|Hanes Men's S/s Cooldri Tee|
|Columbia Men’s PFG Tamiami Ii Long Sleeve Shirt|
|Mountain Hardwear Men's Canyon Solid Long Sleeve Shirt|
|Merino.tech 100% NZ Short Sleeve T-Shirt|
|Smartwool Women's Merino 150 Baselayer Pattern Short Sleeve|
|ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeves|
|Nike Legend Women's Short Sleeve Shirt|
|Jessie Kidden Women's UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Safari Shirt|
|Little Donkey Andy Women's Stretch Long Sleeve Shirt|
Best Men's Hiking Shirt For Hot Weather
Icebreaker Men’s Tech Lite Short Sleeve Crewe
- Give top-notch wrinkle-resistant properties – blending 13% nylon and 87% wool
- Reduce chafing effectively - offset shoulder seams
- Fit a bit snug
One of the features making this short-sleeve hiking shirt outstanding from the rest is its top-notch wrinkle-resistant properties.
In fact, it is not flat out made of merino wool but blends with 13% nylon.
While you’ve just learned that merino wool is good at retaining its shape over time, blending nylon and wool enhances this benefit of wool with no itchy feeling. It allows the garment to move and stretch without losing its shape.
Moreover, this mixture results in superior durability, keeping your shirt last longer.
|Icebreaker Men’s Tech Lite Short Sleeve Crewe Specifications|
87% Wool/13% Nylon
blending 13% nylon and 87% wool; offset shoulder seams
We highly recommend the Icebreaker Men’s Tech Lite Short Sleeve Crewe for those male hikers who hate their shirts becoming wrinkled as hell during movements or packing.
Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt
- Boost your comfort to the extreme – ensure the 100% merino wool layer next to your skin
- Not irritating feeling in the shoulders - raglan sleeves and flatlock seam construction
- The UV protection rating is a bit low
- The tailoring could be better
Although made of merino wool + nylon blend, the Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt is a bit different from the previous option.
It ensures that there’s a 100% merino wool next to your skin for ultimate comfort and insulation, regardless of the weather conditions you plan to wear it.
Regardless, it limits the need for irritating shoulder seams by featuring raglan sleeves and flatlock seam construction, which is a big bonus. But we’d like to notify our readers that its UV protection rating is just 20+, so it would be nice to layer this t-shirt with a jacket or long-sleeve shirt.
|Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt Specifications|
Nylon & Merino wool
UV Protection Rating
keeping 100% merino wool layer next to your skin; raglan sleeves and flatlock seam construction
Some hikers prefer layering for extra UV- and sun-protection or just for styling. For them, the Smartwool Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt is a great choice.
Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew
- Top-notch moisture-wicking properties - Omni-wick & 67% polyester
- More comfortable to the skin than the pure polyester – 33% cotton
- Great shape retention & low maintenance - Machine Wash
- Wish it was a bit thinner
For strenuous hikes, you hardly beat the Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew.
It is very inexpensive that you can buy a few units at a time, and during the hiking trip, it wicks sweat instead of absorbing them like pure cotton, leaving very dry feeling on the skin. We like it!
And also, it holds up well against machine washing, which is a big plus at this price point!
|Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew Specifications|
67% Polyester, 33% Cotton
UV Protection Rating
Omni-wick; 67% Polyester & 33% cotton; Machine Wash
Columbia Men's Thistletown Park Crew is the best bet for anyone in need of extra-durable synthetic short-sleeve t-shirts for strenuous hikes.
Hanes Men's S/s Cooldri Tee
- Dry super-fast – made of 100% polyester
- Durable - double-needle stitch on the bottom and sleeve hems
- Great sun protection - 50+ UPF rating
- A bit unpleasant smell right out of the box
- The dimensions aren’t suitable for tall hikers
If rapid-dry performance is the top priority to you, this is the best bet.
It is completely made of polyester so all the strengths of this fabric are shown clearly on this t-shirt, such as fast drying-out, low-maintenance, nice stretch, and shape retention. For souped-up durability, there’s double-needle stitch on the bottom and sleeve hems.
A notable thing is its 50+ UPF rating, which is relatively high in this realm, meaning for higher sun protection to your skin.
|Hanes Men's S/s Cooldri Tee Specifications|
UV Protection Rating
made of 100% polyester; double-needle stitch on the bottom and sleeve hems; 50+ UPF rating
We greatly suggest the Hanes Men's S/s Cooldri Tee if all you need is a rapid-dry hiking t-shirt for hot weather.
Columbia Men’s PFG Tamiami Ii Long Sleeve Shirt
- Maximum UV-protection – Omni-Shade technology
- Handy – two chest pockets
- Breathable - mesh lining
- Sleeves are a bit too long
Aside from short-sleeved tees, Columbia makes some of the handiest hiking long-sleeve shirts and its price ranges are widely covered.
This is one of their bestsellers at the current, known for advanced technology in moisture-wicking and UV protection. According to the manufacturer, its fabric is maximized to keep your skin against UVA and UVB rays.
The two added pockets on the chest are another big plus and the back is well-vented using mesh lining.
|Columbia Men’s PFG Tamiami Ii Long Sleeve Shirt Specifications|
100% Other Fibers
UV Protection Rating
34” to 37”
Omni-Shade technology; two chest pockets; mesh lining
Should you find the best button-up long-sleeve shirts for multiple-day hiking trips, this does the trick.
Mountain Hardwear Men's Canyon Solid Long Sleeve Shirt
- Superbly ventilated – made of 100% polyester & vents on the back, core, and side
- Good sun protection – 50+ UV protection rating & a flip-sun collar
- Various storage spaces - two zippered chest pockets and two buttoned ones
- A bit tight in the chest
- Not quite true to color
- Not the most comfortable
Made of a perfect combination of polyester fabric and mesh, with vents on the back, core, and side, this is top-notch in breathability and lightness to hike on warm days.
The material’s UV protection is rated 50+, and the shirt also has a flip-sun collar for extra coverage, keeping your skin from getting burnt.
Making it outstanding from the rest is its secure storage space, including two zippered chest pockets and two buttoned ones.
|Mountain Hardwear Men's Canyon Solid Long Sleeve Shirt Specifications|
UV Protection Rating
made of 100% polyester & vents on the back, core and side; 50+ UV protection rating & a flip-sun collar; two zippered chest pockets and two buttoned ones
Are you seeking the most lightweight and breathable long-sleeve shirts for hiking in warm weather? Look no further!
Best Women's Hiking Shirt For Hot Weather
Merino.tech 100% NZ Short Sleeve T-Shirt
- Low-maintenance – machine-washable and low tumble dry
- No bunching, overheating, or rubbing of cotton - Lightweight - 17.5 micron - 165 g/m
- High values – include a t-shirt & a pair of hiking socks
- Various color options to choose from
- Seem to collect lint
- Some people might not like its V-neck design
For female hikers, this is one of the most popular options.
It is lightweight, low-maintenance, and especially, wicking moisture naturally to save you from unpleasant odors as well as itchiness. What scores us the most is its values for the price.
At under $45, it not just gives you a comfortable, stylish t-shirt but also a pair of hiking socks. What else to ask?
|Merino.tech 100% NZ Short Sleeve T-Shirt Specifications|
100% MERINO WOOL
UV Protection Rating
machine-washable and low tumble dry; Lightweight - 17.5 micron - 165 g/m; include a t-shirt & a pair of hiking socks
Made of 100% high-grade merino wool, it’s no strange when the Merino.tech 100% NZ Short Sleeve T-Shirt is unrivaled in terms of moisture-wicking properties.
Smartwool Women's Merino 150 Baselayer Pattern Short Sleeve
- Good wrinkle resistance, moisture-wicking, and more - a blend of 13% nylon and 87% merino wool
- Look stylish and easy for layering - slim-fit design
- A bit pricier
- Only a few color choices
Similar to the Icebreaker men’s t-shirt above, this one is crafted from a blend of 13% nylon and 87% merino wool, giving the same benefits as its counterpart.
The slim-fit design which hugs snugly to your body curves and the self-crew neck is a nice blend to make it as a base layer if you want to style with a loose-fit jacket or button-up long-sleeve shirt on the outside.
If there was one wish we’d like to make on this t-shirt, it would be more color options and the size chart was expanded a bit more. But as those are minor flaws, we still love this pick.
|Smartwool Women's Merino 150 Baselayer Pattern Short Sleeve Specifications|
87% merino wool, 13% nylon
UV Protection Rating
a blend of 13% nylon and 87% merino wool; slim-fit design
If you’re looking for the best summer short-sleeve hiking shirt for base layering, this fits the bill.
ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeves
- Ideal for large-framed female hikers – expanded size chart
- Show your body curves elegantly - curved waist and V-neck design
- Sweat penetrating surface prevention - a 1/2-double-layer fabric of the front sheet
- Can be a little long
- The neckline front flaps are a bit flimsy
According to its dimensions and size chart, we find the ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeves to be a shining candidate for large-framed women.
Most of our female testers also admit that they pretty like the curved waist and elegant V-neck design of this t-shirt as it shows their body line beautifully.
Besides, there are lots of color options to choose from.
A super-big bonus of the tee is its sweat penetrating surface prevention, all thanks to the 1/2-double-layer fabric of the front sheet, which prevents you from embarrassing moments while hiking under hot weather.
|ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeves Specifications|
85% polyester 15% spandex
UV Protection Rating
expanded size chart; curved waist and V-neck design; the 1/2-double-layer fabric of the front sheet
Have a large torso, and find it’s hard when looking for a nice-fitting hiking tee? Don’t worry, the ANIVIVO Tennis Shirts for Women Short Sleeve solves it all.
Nike Legend Women's Short Sleeve Shirt
- Durable - Machine Washable
- Decent comfort and breathability - made of 100% Dri-FIT polyester
- Not for women with pretty broad and chesty body shape
This tee is a signature design for very slim and petite women with tighter sleeves part of the shoulders.
It is made of 100% Dri-FIT polyester for decent comfort and breathability without being see-through. It has a looser fit so if you want it to hug more to your body, run at least one size smaller.
We’re also glad that it holds up well after a few washes.
|Nike Legend Women's Short Sleeve Shirt Specifications|
UV Protection Rating
Machine Washable; made of 100% Dri-FIT polyester
For those who have narrow shoulders and want to get a snug-fitting tee for summer hikes, try this.
Jessie Kidden Women's UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Safari Shirt
- Enhanced UVA and UVB protection - Omni-Shade UPF 50 fabric
- Convenient - a sunglasses hanger loop
- A bit too long
At around $11 to $35, you won’t regret buying a single one of this long-sleeve shirt line.
It is made of 100% polyester, known for decent low maintenance, rapid-dry, and stretch. But out of such popular strengths, the fabric stands out for its superb sun protection, thanks to the Omni-Shade UPF 50 rating addition.
It keeps you from UVA and UVB rays ultimately.
While giving you two chest pockets like most others would do, it highlights a sunglasses hanger loop, which is an interesting plus.
|Jessie Kidden Women's UPF 50+ UV Sun Protection Safari Shirt Specifications|
UV Protection Rating
24.8” to 26.8”
Omni-Shade UPF 50 fabric; a sunglasses hanger loop
If you’re on a tight budget but want a long-sleeve hiking shirt with maximum sun protection, this Jessie Kidden line is one of your best options.
Little Donkey Andy Women's Stretch Long Sleeve Shirt
- 4-way stretch, extra lightness, soft feeling, and better fit - 5% spandex and 95% polyester
- Great sunproof capability - UPF 50+ rating
- A bit cumbersome to tuck the shirt in
Same as other long-sleeve shirts here, this one features 50+ UPF rating and two chest pockets. What sets it apart from the rest is the material blend between 5% spandex and 95% polyester for a 4-way stretch, extra lightness, soft feeling, and better fit.
Besides, it wicks moisture pretty fast to keep you cool and itch-free.
Take note that its size is a bit on the small size.
|Little Donkey Andy Women's Stretch Long Sleeve Shirt Specifications|
95% Polyester /5% Spandex
UV Protection Rating
22¼'' - 25¾''
5% spandex and 95% polyester; UPF 50+ rating
If you have a small torso, this would be the best selection for warm-weather hiking trips.
Hiking Shirt Product Types
Wearing short-sleeved shirts when hiking in a mostly shaded area in warm weather is obviously cooler and more comfortable than a long-sleeved.
Some hikers even choose to be shirtless or wear sleeveless shirts, however, we aren’t really a fan of such options, especially if you wear a hiking pack behind your back featuring ultra-wide shoulder straps.
The reason is these straps will rub continuously against your skin, causing a blister and uncomfortable feel during the hike.
Not to say that it causes annoying irritation and itchiness.
So, short-sleeved hiking shorts are our go-to option for a-day or multiple-day hiking trips in mostly shaded areas.
To keep you cool and dry during this kind of weather, merino fabric is one of the best options for some good reasons:
- Good shape retention
- Not cause crease, smell, or itch much
- Have anti-static properties
- Transport moisture & sweat phenomenally well
It’s perfect for heavy-sweat hikers or hiking trips on scorching hot weather. But take note that this material is quite expensive so make sure your budget is loose enough to afford it.
If your budget is a bit tight, synthetic hiking shirts are a good alternative because this fabric is a lot cheaper. Regardless, it is robust, soft, and dries fast.
But the main reason for making us didn’t choose cotton (a natural, also cheap fabric) for hiking apparel in hot weather is their different way to deal with sweat. Instead of absorbing moisture, synthetic wicks it away from your body so it doesn’t become saturated quickly, then dry out slowly.
However, it won’t be as good odor resistance as merino wool and last as that long either.
So if you’re a beginner hiker in a tight budget and don’t mind more times of clothes changing on long tours, this is a nice choice.
Button-Up Long Sleeve Shirts
Though this style of hiking shirts might sacrifice the cool-feeling advantages, it strikes back with many other pros.
For example, it gives more UV- and sun-protection; you’ve got the choices of roll/unroll the sleeves up according to how hot you feel, and saves your skin from getting scratched because of bushes.
You can wear it alone or layer with a short-sleeve inside so that when taking a short break, just take it off if wanted.
Button-up long-sleeved shirts are a flawless option if you’re going to hike in those areas with little to no shade in hot weather conditions.
How To Choose The Best Hiking Shirt for Hot Weather?
The principle for this is simple: dark colors absorb sun rays, light color reflects them. Therefore, you should always choose a hiking shirt in a light color to keep you cool, a white shirt for example.
When hiking in the hot weather, the material you wear must be breathable and lightweight. It should also offer enough flexibility to allows for free movement. With this in mind, the best material for your hiking shirt is the high-tech polyester.
You may also consider choosing wool, which provides good temperature control.
A high-quality hiking shirt made from this material will provide warmth in the cold weather and coolness in the hot weather.
UV Protection, Antimicrobial Properties, & Cooling Features
The rating of UPF, or Ultraviolet Protection Factor, indicates the ratio of UV radiation blocked from your skin.
The higher the rating, the better.
For instance, a 15-24 UPF rating translates into 93.3-95.9 percent of UV rays blocked. The rating can go up to UPF 50+, which means 98+ percent of UV rays blocked. So, you should look for a hiking shirt with at least UPF 30 rating or higher.
The antimicrobial properties are a bonus as it kills or prevents microorganisms from growing, which helps you avoid generating odors.
Cooling features are equivalent to breathability, which could be powered by Cooling-compound technology. It’s important that your hiking shirt has this capability to keep you cool in the hot weather.
Provided that hour hiking shirt is breathable enough, always opt for long sleeves. A long-sleeve shirt protects you from scratches and provides an extra layer to keep your skin away from direct sunlight, especially when you’re in a desert-like area.
Which Brands Make The Best Hiking Shirt for Hot Weather?
Founded in 1995, this brand is known for making products using natural elements. If you are looking for a hiking shirt that balances between nature and human activity, this is a must-try.
Since 1994, this brand has specialized in making smart wool products. It works to provide comfort and confidence for your outdoor activities.
Despite being a young, Merino.tech has claimed itself to be a trusted brand for outdoor clothing. Its products are focused on high-quality merino wool that helps you avoid overheating during outdoor activities.
The best thing about this brand is its leading technology in the industry. With 80 years of experience, this brand will surely offer you the best hiking shirts you can find on the market.
With the aim of expanding human potentials, this brand concentrates on innovating products for your activities. Here, you will find a wide selection with high quality and creativity.
Founded in 1993, Mountain Hardwear had nearly three decades to build its reputation. The reason why you should try this brand is that it offers products that are well-designed, functional, of high quality, and advanced in terms of technology.
Little Donkey Andy
Specialized in outdoor clothing, this brand has a dedicated Research and Development department to create the best products to offer you an amazing experience.
What should I wear for hot weather hiking?
When hiking, here’s what you should and should not wear:
Avoid cotton and denim jeans
Wear nylon, polyester, or merino wool clothing
A weatherproof jacket (minus if it’s too hot)
A brimmed hat
How hot is too hot for hiking?
The answer to this questions depends on five factors: your experience and health, the purpose of the hike, terrain, weather, and access to water. You should consider all of these to determine whether it’s too hot to hike or not.
However, we recommend you not test yourself when the temperature exceeds 102-104 degrees F.
How do you stay cool while hiking?
Follow these tips to keep yourself cool when hiking:
Hike in the early morning
Choose a shaded trail
Freeze the water bottle
Bring a backup shirt
Dip your bandana
Rest in the shade
Take frequent breaks
Wear a wide-brimmed hat
Can you wear jeans on a hike?
You shouldn’t wear jeans on a hike, especially in the cold weather because it holds water and can freeze. Also, when jeans are wet, they get very heavy and affect your movement.
Is polyester good for hot weather?
This depends, polyester is good for travel and hiking in the hot weather. But in other cases, it resists moisture and not really good to wear in the summer.
That’s all for this article!
We hope it has helped you find out the best hiking shirt for hot weather to not just protect your skin from outdoor impacts but also feel the most comfortable. Thanks for reading!