Panama straw, and others to a certain extent, will become brittle and prone to breaking if it is not kept with a level of moisture. Once it has got to this stage there is little to be done. These Panamas have been stored incorrectly in a hot, dry environment before I got them. I couldn’t bring myself to throw them away, so they are here for a bargain price. Soaking them in water overnight will help and lead to a workable straw hat, but they will not be flexible like a new Panama. I have blocked and stiffened a few of these and they work. I blocked them when they were still soaking wet. I suggest trying them for yourself and making your own mind up. There are no returns on these straws for breakages.