Astronauts always have a black fabric headcover worn over their hair or scalp, when they are wearing the spacesuit and helmet for takeoff or EVAs. There’s always a white panel that looks about 3 inches wide, and seems to go from the forehead to the back of the neck. Is this a different type of fabric? What are the benefits of having this white panel? Does it give extra protection?
This is called a Snoopy Cap.
It's a hood that holds the communications headset to the astronaut's head.
The white portion is elastic fabric to make the cap fit snugly; the black portions are a non-elastic fabric and hold the communications gear.