The 9 Best Fishing Neck Gaiters in 2021 – Protect the Neck!


No matter the type of fishing you most enjoy, it’s important you’re dressed appropriately.

From having the right shoes, to the right top, and the right pants, being comfortable when you’re by, in, or on the water is imperative.

And looking cool comes in a close second.

The best fishing neck gaiters can accomplish both things, while providing a lot of versatility when it comes to protecting your neck, face, and head from the elements.

Rain, snow, or shine, they can be an invaluable addition to your fishing apparel load out – so let’s take a look and see what’s out there.

Disclosure: At BonfireBob, we recommend products based on unbiased research, however, BonfireBob.com is reader-supported and as an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases if you shop through the links on this page. For more information, see disclosure here.

Fishing Neck Gaiters – What to Look For

Before diving into the reviews, here’s a few pointers on what you should be looking out for when choosing the right fishing neck gaiter for you.

Make a note of:

  • How to wear it.
  • Materials.
  • Weatherproofing and Conditions.
  • Breathability and Moisture-Wicking.
  • Anti-Microbial/Odor Technology.
  • Colors and Style.
  • Cost.

Without further ado, let’s see what’s available, but remember to bear those factors in mind while you’re shopping.

The 9 Best Fishing Neck Gaiters & Masks 2021

Simms UPF 50+ SunGaiter

As a manufacturer of fishing clothing and apparel, Simms is up there with one of the best angling companies in the world. It stands to reason, then, that they would have a top-quality fishing gaiter in their locker to kick off this review.

Offering UPF 50+ sun protection with laser-cut breathing holes, this gaiter is perfect for use when the skies are blue, helping to keep you cool without fogging up your sunglasses.

Made with moisture-wicking technology, it pulls your sweat away from your skin, and dries quickly should it ever get soaked.

Designed to cover your nose down to your shirt collar, there’s enough height at the back to put under or over a hat, and you can be sure Simms has you covered with this awesome fishing sun gaiter.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Excellent build quality.
  • Choice of smart colors and designs.
  • Non-slip.
  • Lightweight.
  • Comfortable, stretchy fabric.

Cons

  • At the more expensive end of the spectrum.

Takeaway

Simms consistently knock it out of the park when it comes to fishing apparel, and this stylish and practical neck gaiter is no exception.

I particularly like the breathing holes for no-fog use with sunglasses or spectacles, and the overall build quality is undoubtable. Probably one of the best lightweight neck gaiters on the market.

Orvis Coolnet UV+ BUFF

Orvis Coolnet UV+ BUFF

Coining the name ‘Buff’, this company was founded back in 1991, and pioneered this garment with the first neck gaiters to grace the market.

Much like Hoover for vacuum cleaners, their name became synonymous with the product. As such, you might well expect them to manufacture some of the best fishing buffs in the business.

This Coolnet tubular headwear is made from recycled plastic bottles, too, which is a huge bonus in my eyes, while still managing to provide innovative technology when it comes to odor control and moisture management.

With UPF 50+ sun protection, capable of being worn multiple ways, and available in several unique designs, this is one of the best fishing face masks out there.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Top-quality design and construction.
  • Environmentally friendly.
  • Excellent moisture-wicking technology.
  • Odor control requires less laundering.
  • Attractive designs and colors available.
  • Very highly rated.

Cons

  • A little more expensive – but well worth it in my book.

Takeaway

I’m a sucker for environmentally-friendly products, and the fact that this is made from plastic bottles, all while offering excellent odor and moisture control, carrying the famous “Buff” name, makes it a real winner for fishing neck gaiters.

Huk KC Scott Trophy Neck Gaiter

Anyone who has ever thrown a rod into the water will recognize HUK, a go-to brand when it comes to cutting-edge fishing garment technology.

Perfect for salt and freshwater, rain or shine, their clothing and apparel back-catalog offers the very best in performance fishing gear, and speaks for itself.

Designed with the help of award-winning artist and keen angler KC Scott, this Trophy neck gaiter provides unbeatable protection against UV rays, with best-in-class moisture wicking fabrics, and an antimicrobial treatment that helps keep odors and bacteria away.

Capable of covering the full face, with HUK’s smart logo on the side and back, you’ll be the envy of your fishing buddies while wearing this out on the water.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Great price point.
  • Premium-quality construction.
  • Attractive design.
  • Low-profile stitching.
  • Highly rated.

Cons

  • More colors would have been nice.

Takeaway

One of the most recognizable fishing brands out there when it comes to top-quality fishing apparel – designed to withstand whatever nature throws at you. HUK leads the way with this outstanding option, easily one of the best saltwater fishing gaiters on the market.

KastKing Sol Armis Neck Gaiter

Down at the other end of the price range now with this offering from KastKing – one of the best up and coming fishing brands currently working today.

KastKing’s Sol Armis neck gaiter offers UPF 50+ sun protection, with a unisex design, suitable for all kinds of outdoor activities.

The four-way stretch material is comfortable and quick-drying, with a poly-spandex fabric that is a pleasure to wear. Providing a snug fit to ensure the garment stays in place, it includes low-profile stitching to limit chaffing on your skin.

The Sol Armis can be worn 13 different ways, so you can enjoy maximum performance depending on your needs.

And in partnering with the cutting-edge, Prym1 camo company, KastKing have pulled off a real coup when it comes to a stylish, modern look that will turn heads.

Pros

  • Unbeatable price point.
  • Highly rated.
  • Versatile use.
  • Great choice of colors and designs.
  • Long-lasting, durable finish.
  • KastKing logo.

Cons

  • Reports of it still being a little loose/slippery for some.

Takeaway

It’s not called “sun armor” for nothing, and this neck gaiter from KastKing provides unbeatable defense against UV rays, as well as a whole host of other uses.

And for more from this awesome fishing company, checkout this review of the best fishing pliers on the market, or this selection if you’re fishing in saltwater.

Original Turtle Fur Fleece

Here we have the hugely popular Turtle Fur neck fleece, which is perfect for just about any outdoor activity when the Mercury drops.

I know, because I own the red one. It’s super warm and comfortable, with a luxuriously soft feel that gives your face a toasty hug.

It’s also able to provide UPF 50+ sun protection, which means it’s ideal for use on those chilly but bright fishing days.

Made with 100% acrylic, this double-layered fleece can be worn whenever the weather gets colder, for all kinds of outdoor activities, including fishing, skiing, snowboarding, and hiking. And the little turtle logo is a charming addition, too, giving it a polished, premium look and feel.

Pros

  • Affordable price point.
  • Nice choice of attractive colors.
  • Very highly rated.
  • Versatile use.
  • World-wide popularity.

Cons

  • Reports that it’s prone to bobbling – make sure you follow the care instructions.

Takeaway

For a super-warm and comfortable neck fleece, this is up there with the best winter fishing neck gaiters on the market.

Pair it with one of these sets of ice fishing gloves, and you’ll be as snug as a bug in a rug. But if you’re really feeling the cold, try these ice fishing suits to help get your temperature back up.

Bassdash Sun Protection Neck Gaiter

Bassdash is another young, hungry fishing company that has been making innovative and affordable gear for year-round angling.

This gaiter bears their distinctive logo, made from 90% polyester and 10% spandex, for a super-comfortable wearing experience, even for people with sensitive skin.

Capable of fitting most adults with a stretch-to-fit design, it will cover your face and neck, with UPF 50+ protection from the sun.

It’s also highly-effective against the wind and chills, with a breathable fabric that keeps the elements at bay, without stifling respiration.

The low-profile stitching also prevents skin irritation or chaffing, while the fabric wicks away moisture to keep you cool.

Pros

  • Name to trust.
  • Great price point.
  • Excellent choice of colors and designs.
  • Long-lasting dye finish that won’t fade.
  • Versatile use.

Cons

  • Again, like the KastKing, it has a tendency to slip.

Takeaway

A colorful, quality breathable neck gaiter that lends itself to outdoor sporting pursuits, and at a very affordable price.

Check out this article on the best fishing gloves on the market for more from Bassdash – and let me tell you, they have an excellent entry in that review that prompted me to purchase a pair.

Field & Stream Evershade Neck Gaiter

Field and Stream Evershade Neck Gaiter

Founded in 2013, Field & Stream are a fishing, hunting, and outdoor recreation company that are synonymous with Dick’s Sporting Goods.

There’s a strong chance, if you’ve ever enjoyed any activity outside, you’ll have come across their products. Their Evershade neck gaiter is a little more subtle than some of the “louder” previous entries in this review, available in a choice of three colors with a tidal effect design.

Capable of offering UPF 30+ sun protection, it has Smartwick technology to keep sweat and moisture away from your skin, with a lightweight, comfortable feel.

One size fits all, and it’s capable of being worn at least 13 different ways, so it’s ideal for use during a variety of sports and outdoor activities.

Pros

  • Durable build quality.
  • Affordable price point.
  • Versatile use.
  • Ultra-light design.

Cons

  • Might be a little loose for some.
  • Slightly lower sun protection rating than other gaiters in its class.

Takeaway

A simple, no-nonsense, easy-to-wear neck gaiter from Field and Stream. It’s not going to light the world up with cutting-edge design, but it does exactly what it says on the tin.

Pair it with one of these stylish and practical fishing vests, and you’ll look like a pro – even if you aren’t one.

Smartwool Merino 150 Neck Gaiter

Smartwool Merino 150 Neck Gaiter

Thinner, lighter, and softer than traditional wool, Merino wool comes from the domestic sheep of the same name.

As such, it makes for the ideal material from which to make super-comfortable neck gaiters, and this Smartwool 150 option is a prime example.

It uses a nylon core and Merino jersey fabric to create a lightweight, soft, and flexible garment that will feel amazing against the skin, while the fibers naturally wick moisture away to keep you dry and cool.

Perfect for use from late fall through to early spring, this is a stylish, practical, and well-designed neck gaiter that ticks all the boxes on comfort and protection.

Pros

  • Very comfortable against the skin.
  • Extended length.
  • Versatile, three-season use.
  • Excellent temperature regulation.
  • Unisex design.

Cons

  • Limited choice of colors.
  • A little more expensive than other gaiters.

Takeaway

Perfect for use in all but one season, this Merino-wool garment is one of the most comfortable fishing neck gaiters money can buy. Try it for yourself to experience how silky-soft it feels, and you’ll probably never wear another gaiter again.

Fishoholic Fishing Neck Gaiter

Last but not least, we finish with this stylish gaiter from Fishoholic. Designed to be worn for just about any outdoor activity, the attractive sunlit water print makes it particularly ideal for wearing while piloting one of these awesome pedal fishing kayaks.

Offering UPF 50+ sun protection, it’s also lightweight and breathable, with a super-soft, four-way stretch material for the ultimate in practical comfort.

One size fits most, and it’s fully machine washable, with a quick-dry fabric that is perfect for wearing around water, or on wet weather days.

Bearing the distinctive Fishoholic logo, you can also get a pair of gloves to match, ensuring you’re looking as sharp as you are protected on your next angling adventure.

Pros

  • Affordable price point.
  • Attractive design.
  • Choice of three colors.
  • Versatile use.
  • Stays in place on the face.
  • Highly rated.

Cons

  • None.

Takeaway

Whether you’re fishing from the boat or the bank, this eye-catching neck gaiter has you covered, comfortably protecting you come wind, rain, or shine.

And if the heavens are likely to open, you should check out this article on the best rain gear for fishing, to make sure you’re well-prepared for the deluge.

How to Choose the Best Fishing Neck Gaiters

A briefly mentioned in the introduction, there are a few features to consider before making a purchase of the best neck gaiter for fishing.

Let’s explore them in a bit more detail, below.

fisherman fly fishing in ocean from beach

What is a Neck Gaiter?

A neck gaiter is an article of clothing designed to be worn around the neck. It’s usually a tube of fabric, made from a variety of materials, that is put on over the head.

They’re also known as buffs, but that’s taken from a well-known brand name.

Neck gaiters are most commonly used when the weather is cold, but they can also provide protection from the sun in warmer climes, if made from lightweight materials, and they can also help keep a draft out.

Aside from the weather, neck gaiters are useful for keeping those nasty, biting flying things from getting in around your face, neck, and shoulders.

Neck gaiters can be pulled up over the mouth and nose to provide additional protection for the face. Or, can be used as a disguise in a daring bank robbery in the 1800s.*

*Disclaimer, Bonfire Bob does not endorse wearing neck gaiters for criminal activities.

For fishing purposes, neck gaiters can prove invaluable, no matter the weather or conditions, either by protecting the face and neck from harmful UV rays, or by keeping the chill at bay.

A highly versatile garment, a good neck gaiter can be worn during a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, climbing, cycling, kayaking, and airsoft/combat sports.

And they’re immensely popular among motorcycle enthusiasts.

To be honest, if you don’t have one already, you’re getting left behind.

How to Wear a Neck Gaiter

According to most manufacturers, there are at least 12 ways to wear a neck gaiter, which makes them one of the most versatile items of clothing you can own.

Take a look at the video below for a visual guide to how you can achieve each look. And let me know in the comments below if you can think of any more.

Materials

The best neck gaiters for fishing are made in a variety of different materials.

The most common of these are polyester, nylon, acrylic fleece, and wool – or a combination thereof.

Spandex is likely to be used in nylon and polyester garments in order to provide stretchable, one-size-fits-most comfort.

Wool and acrylic garments are more suitable for colder weather, and Merino wool offers the most comfortable neck gaiters, with it being luxuriously super-soft, thinner and lighter than normal wool.

The type you choose, will likely depend on…

Weatherproofing and Conditions

Before purchasing a fishing neck gaiter, you should understand how competent it’s going to be at keeping the elements at bay.

As such, it’s important to be aware of the weather and conditions you’re mostly commonly going to be fishing in.

Wool garments are best for fishing in colder climes, such as late fall through to early spring.

Poly and nylon neck gaiters are ideal for summer fishing. Look for options that offer high sun protection, with most being UPF 50+ as standard.

While both types should offer adequate wind protection, wool gaiters aren’t going to be of any use if they were to get wet.

If that’s likely to happen, such as in rainy conditions or if you’re kayak fishing, then choose a gaiter that’s quick-drying, and/or water resistant.

fisherman fishing in the beach sunny day

Breathability and Moisture-Wicking

As well as being able to protect your face, head, and neck from whatever the weather decides to greet you with, it’s important that a neck gaiter is comfortable against your skin.

This is where finding a balance between protection and breathability is the real trick.

Look for garments that offer ventilation, either within the material itself, or with breathing holes to allow normal, nonrestrictive respiration.

And as we’re all likely to exert ourselves when we’re out there – regardless of the season – it’s important that we choose moisture-wicking fabrics that can take sweat away from our skin and help keep us cool.

Good fishing neck gaiters will be able to handle all of the above.

Anti-Microbial/Odor Technology

While not quite as important as breathability and moisture-wicking technology, it’s still a good idea to have a garment that helps keep the need for laundry to a minimum.

This is especially true of anything we wear close to the skin, particularly around the nose and mouth. Neck gaiters are therefore right in the line of fire for picking up bacteria, dirt, and odors.

As such, you might want to look for garments that have antimicrobial and odor-eating capabilities, so you can be confident in wearing it for longer, without the need to wash.

Even the best garments will fade in the machine over time, plus with the environmental factor, it helps immensely if we’re washing our clothes as little as possible.

fisherman fishing in ocean from beach

Colors and Style

For some, this will be of primary concern. It doesn’t matter how much comfort or protection an item of clothing offers – so long as it makes them look cool.

Hey, I’m as guilty as the next person for this, but there’s no reason we can’t have awesome protection, a product that’s built to last, and a great design or color scheme to boot.

So, if this is important to you, keep it in mind when piecing together your fishing or hunting look.

Remember, you might want more muted colors if you’re trying to remain hidden, but brighter garments are more useful for spotting you in the event of an emergency.

Which reminds me – take a look at this article on the ultimate kayak safety tips if you’re fishing on the water rather than next to it.

Cost

Budget neck gaiters won’t break the bank, and even the more expensive ones won’t set you back more than $40 – max.

Consider how often you’re going to use it, and how much of a beating it’s going to take, and perhaps choose something that’s built to last if you’re seriously putting it through its paces.

boat fishing rod and reel for saltwater fishing

FAQs

Do I need a fishing neck gaiter?

No, you can fish quite comfortably without one – but you’ll be missing out.

Neck gaiters offer all sorts of advantages to the angler – as well as being highly useful for other outdoor pursuits, too.

Are neck gaiters good for fishing?

Yes, they are. Neck gaiters are perfect for fishing, as they can be worn in a variety of ways, all while protecting you from the elements.

Pair one up with one of these quality fishing hats, and you’ll be good to go.

Why do people wear neck gaiters when fishing?

As mentioned above, it’s because they’re a practical, versatile garment that will help keep faces, necks, and heads protected from wind, rain, and shine.

This is especially true of the back of the neck, which is often neglected, not covered by a hat, and a prime target area for the sky cancer ball to burn.

Aside from this, neck gaiters can also offer a decent amount of defense against flying, biting things – which can be invaluable when close to water. Nobody likes having a mozzie loose in their shirt.

Plus, they look really cool, and they certainly help make me at least appear like I know what I’m doing…

Which neck gaiters are the best?

The best garments for protecting the head, face, and neck are going to offer a UPF 50+ sun defense, with a breathable, moisture-wicking fabric, with added odor/antimicrobial control.

Of course, it depends on your personal needs, as the best for me might not be the best for you.

Which is better for fishing – a balaclava or a neck gaiter?

The advantage of a balaclava is that it covers the whole head, and doesn’t slip down – which can be the neck gaiter’s main disadvantage.

However, the sheer versatility of the neck gaiter makes it a winner for me, especially when it comes to the varying demands of fishing, and the year-round use it provides.

And some neck gaiters can even be fashioned into a balaclava, or at least offer a hybrid option.

That said, if you’re out in particularly cold temperatures – such as when you’re enjoying a spot of ice fishing – then a balaclava will often be the superior choice.

Summary

Staying comfortable and protected when you’re in the great outdoors is an important part of enjoying a safe and successful experience.

And the best fishing neck gaiters can certainly help you achieve that, whenever you’re around water and throwing a rod in.

Let me know which product you’ve gone for and why, or if you have any fishing clothing advice you’d like to share with the community.

Stay safe out there, tight lines, and happy fishing!

Bob Hoffmann

The author of this post is Bob Hoffmann. Bob has spend most of his childhood fishing with his father and now share all his knowledge with other anglers. Feel free to leave a comment below.

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