One of the most versatile pieces of gear I’ve tried this year are Buff Bandanas. They make excellent hats, headbands, scarves, potholders, bug masks, and so on.
A buff is a tube of polyester fabric. If you slip it over your head, it will form a hat that will keep you warm or keep the sun off of your head. You can roll it up and also make it into a head band to keep the sweat out of your eyes.
One variation I used this year was as a bug mask at night when the black flies were biting. I sprayed permethrin, a contact insecticide, on my buff that kills flying insects by short circuiting their nervous systems. When the bugs would come out in the evening, I would put my buff on so that it covered my entire face, head, and neck except for a small slit where my glasses could see out.
When I went to sleep, I’d wear my buff as a tube covering my face and head to keep the bugs off me at night when I didn’t have a head net. It was a little odd, but it worked pretty well in the absence of a bug net. Buffs are made from Coolmax polyester which is thick enough to keep the bugs from biting through, but cool enough to breath through.
Disclosure: The author owns this product and purchased it using their own funds.
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