I personally thoroughly dislike western mechanical hackamores and will never use one on a horse. If I choose to go bitless, I generally stick with a "soft" hackamore (rope halter with reins) or a bosal hackamore. I have just recently begun to really educate myself on the proper way to ride with a BH as it is not just a simple 'slap it on and go' type headstall. If the horse is responsive enough, IMHO, just a simple rope halter or even a nylon halter with reins is the best way to go for just pleasure riding.
Here is a really good site to begin
the bosal hackamore education. The Hackamore