One of the most iconic parts of the Naruto series is the headband that each character wears and the symbol emblazoned on it.
Though Naruto is technically meant to be a series all about child soldiers serving as mercenaries and black ops, you wouldn’t know it at a quick glance. Outside the handful of characters that wear vests, there’s no apparent dress code within the various ninja villages.
The one outward sign that someone is a ninja is the headband. Though it’s not necessarily worn as a headband by every character, the rectangular plate with a simplistic symbol is a surefire way to tell that someone is a threat. Each village in Naruto has its own unique headband symbol, though all have the same rectangular metal plate design.
There are basically too many ninja villages to count in Naruto at this point, but not all of them are made equal. Several Naruto movies introduce new ninja villages that make one-off appearances, and the same goes for many of the filler arcs in the anime. Others play a significant role in Naruto mythos, but aren’t as significant in the actual main story.
Here are the most important Naruto ninja villages and the headband they wear.
The home of Naruto and most of the main characters is the Hidden Leaf Village. Naturally, their headband is adorned by an abstract leaf design. This is by far the most identifiable headband in Naruto and is basically synonymous with the series itself.
The first major villain in the series is Zabuza from the Hidden Mist Village, also known as the Bloody Mist Village. Mist ninjas were said to have been subjected to brutal training culminating in a battle royale where only one surviving trainee graduates to shinobi status. This was largely retconned and glossed over as the series progressed. In Boruto, the village is shown to be a metropolis and popular tourist destination despite generations of destruction.
The Hidden Sand Village is home to Gaara and the other sand siblings. Not much is known about the village in the first part of the series, but the first major story after the Shippuden time jump sees the heroes visit the village which is located in the bottom of a canyon in the middle of a desert. The Hidden Sand Village headband in Naruto has a symbol that resembles an hourglass.
The Hidden Stone Village is the most straightforward place in Naruto. It’s a village built in a craggy environment with a bunch of rocks on the headband, and its ninjas have rock powers. The Hidden Stone Village doesn’t do very much during the main series, but its battles with the Hidden Leaf Village during the Third Ninja War and its importance in the backstories of Kakashi and Tobi make it significant in series canon.
Much like the Hidden Mist Village, the Hidden Cloud Village was initially portrayed as irredeemably villainous. Instead of brutal training practices, the Hidden Cloud Village actively sought to kidnap children from other villages. Despite that, the village has one of the nicest headband symbols in Naruto.
The Hidden Sound Village was initially positioned as one of the key players in the Naruto world. The village led by Orochimaru seemed like it would be the main antagonist of the series early on, but it took a backseat to the Akatsuki during Shippuden. It has a straightforward symbol on its headband, with a simple music note.
The Akatsuki headband is one of the most iconic in all of Naruto, though there isn’t a singular headband for the group. The Akatsuki is made up of ninjas from across the Naruto world, with each one having a headband that has a horizontal scratch across it through the village symbol.
There are many options when it comes to buying a ninja village headband but unfortunately, the pickings are slim when it comes to any official merchandise these days. The most official shop when it comes to Naruto merchandise is the Crunchyroll store, but it does not sell headbands at this time. There are loads of costume shops that offer up headbands for each village as well as ones for specific characters, but some are made of plastic or are incredibly flimsy.
Great Eastern is a good option for a metal headband with an appropriately sized and pliable plate. It sells headbands for a number of different villages and with straps that emulate the look of several main characters.