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HMRC internal manual

VAT Clothing

HM Revenue & Customs
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How to decide if the article is clothing: Headgear

Items of headgear are considered to be clothing if they cover the whole head in the same way as a traditional hat or cap. Articles which cover only part of the head are not considered to be clothing. Thus, first communion veil and head-dress sets are clothing because, looked upon as a set, they provide covering for the whole head; bridesmaids’ head-dresses, yarmulkes (Jewish skull caps), sunvisors and ear muffs, which cover only part of the head, are not.

The support for this approach comes from the Tribunal case of Balou (MAN/90/884). This confirmed that elasticated headbands were not hats or headgear, as they did not cover or give protection to the head. You may use this Tribunal in the context of headgear.