Behold the mighty, the famous, the one and only ushanka! Interestingly, the hat that epitomizes the harsh realities of Russian life, the hat that is as uniquely Russian, yet loved the world over, as the more stereotypical wooden nesting dolls, and the hat that seems and feels to have been used by Russians for countless centuries, is really a fairly recent phenomenon, one that has deep roots in such necessary apparel inventions as trapper hats and bomber hats. In roughly one hundred years, this hat has become ubiquitous throughout the former Soviet Union, with the exception of its warmest places in the very south, where it never gets cold enough to warrant the use of a trapper hat, such as in the city of Sochi, the site of the 2014 Olympic Games… a city in Russia's very south, and Winter Olympic Games… don't ask…
So what makes a bomber hat so incredibly useful in protecting its wearer from the cold? It is the hat's Russian name that sums all of the pertinent answers up in just one word: "ushanka," or "ear-hat." Just fold the flaps on both sides of the hat down, tying them together under the chin, and nothing can get to your ears. Or, at least, low temperatures and high winds can't. And things like bullets definitely can… But that is plenty enough protection, as the army of the great Admiral Kolchak found out first hand, during its heroic struggle against the Bolsheviks in Siberia. The struggle, they eventually lost, but we're pretty sure that this was not caused by the lack of help from the fur trapper hats that the Admiral's soldiers wore.
Now, almost one hundred years later, you can find a fur bomber hat, or a leather bomber hat, or even a baby bomber hat (not to be confused with a Baby Boomer Hat, mind you, because who would ever consider wearing a fedora, or a pillbox hat, or any other such nonsense, nowadays, right?), everywhere, provided you're doing the "looking" when it's actually cold outside. Of course, the colder it is, the more natural fur hats can be seen on the streets, the most popular being rabbit fur bomber hats, though a variety of other natural furs are used to make these hats, both men's, and women's.
So what are we really trying to say here about our favorite hats in the whole wide world? It's simple, really. Just like the popular Russian invention of a nesting doll is great for your décor, and the even more popular Russian invention of vodka does wonders for your soul, bomber hats, trapper hats, hipster hats, all coming under one unifying term of "ushankas," are amazing at keeping your head warm, thereby standing guard over your precious health, while the savage cold keeps trying to overpower you.