What To Wear To A Rodeo

If you’ve arranged to go to your first rodeo, you might be nervous about what to wear.

We’ve all seen these lively events on TV, with the seat packed full of spectators dressed in cowboy boots, hats and scarves.

What To Wear To A Rodeo

But nobody wants to look like a newbie when they are going to their first rodeo.

Because this is not just a sporting event, for a lot of people this is a way of life, and they won’t want to spot someone in their midst who is not taking it seriously.

So, what is the best thing for you to wear to a rodeo? Do you need the whole outfit or can you get by with one or two accessories?

Well, we’ll give you a helping hand with what to wear for your next bucking bronco show.

Why Dress Appropriately For A Rodeo?

This type of event harkens back to a bygone era of America, where cowboys used to ride across the prairies during the frontier expansion to the west.

This type of love is very much loved by those that are steeped in it. It is not just a hobby, but something that certain people in the US live by.

This is why it is important not to be flippant at these events. But this does not mean that you should be limited in the way that you dress.

You can accent the traditional outfit of cowboy boots, hat and shirt with a whole host of accessories. There are also shirts, boots and hats that are available in any shape, color and design that you care to imagine.

So, let’s get started, looking at where you should begin with your rodeo outfit: the boots.

Picking Out The Right Rodeo Boots

Now, there is a big difference between those boots that you wear when you are on the ranch, down with the horses in the dirt and the pigs, with the ones that you might wear at a rodeo.

There are some people that keep their rodeo shoes in the cupboard and only wheel them out for rodeos. This is because they want to keep their shoes pristine and in the best condition.

A lot of these boots are made from leather and are extremely durable (Also check out Is Faux Leather Waterproof?).

However, you don’t have to go for the drab brown color. There are rodeo boots that come in a wide variety of shapes and designs, with some being multicolored or even glittery.

You can even customize your rodeo boots with badges and other insignias. A lot of people decide to put the badges and the pins of their favorite football teams.

What About Denim?

What To Wear To A Rodeo

When it comes to denim, especially jeans, you’ll want to leave your old, every day, saggy jeans in the wardrobe.

Just because this might be something you wear on the ranch, doesn’t mean you should drag those to your next rodeo.

Again, this is all about appearing presentable and a lot of people wear only their very best jeans to a rodeo.
You can also customize your jeans, studding them with rhinestones or other badges.

We would suggest that you start with dark stonewash bootcut jeans that is tight on the upper leg and widen out as it gets toward the foot.

You won’t want too much loose cloth billowing around you as you walk.

You should also think about how much your jeans contrast with your shirt. If you are wearing a lighter shirt, then a darker shade of jeans will make this stand out an awful lot more.

However, you can also go for double denim, wearing matching jeans with a matching shade of denim shirt. This type of uniformity is more than acceptable at a rodeo.

What To Do About Your Hat

A rodeo is one of the few events where the most ostentatious hat will gain you a lot of kudos. This is the place where the wider the brim, the better.

You can get hats made from all sorts of materials, but we would recommend that you choose felt or wool.

These are very durable materials, as they will absorb any rain if the weather suddenly turns. They are also very stylish, and they can be dyed in all sorts of different colors.

The amazing thing about a cowboy hat is that you can squash it to within an inch of its life and it will always resume its original shape.

You can see why the cowboys of old decided to don these when they were herding up their sheep and horses.

You can also get straw cowboy hats, which are very lightweight and you can wear them on your head for most of the day.

These hats are a lot less expensive than wool or felt ones, so if you are only dipping your toe in the world of rodeos, then a straw hat might be the best place to start.

Other Types Of Hats

But you don’t have to be limited to the traditional cowboy hat. It is perfectly acceptable to wear baseball caps or truckers’ caps.

Anything that makes you look like you are working a full-time job as a mechanic, or you are used to smearing sweat across your brow.

This might also be another very cheaper option if you are going to your first rodeo. You can get a really decent baseball cap for just a few hundred dollars.

What Types Of Rodeo Shirts Can You Wear?

If the weather is quite chilly, then you can wear a long-sleeve button-down type, which can not only be very stylish, but will help keep you warm.

If you are a woman going to a rodeo, then plaid or paisley is a great material (see more about paisley here). It will also allow you to customize your shirt with pins and badges.


We hope that our shirt guide to your first rodeo has helped you to narrow down how you are going to look when you hit the hay.

Remember that you can always accent these traditional clothes with your own personal accessories.

Willa Price
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