Bicycle helmets are equally important as car seatbelts. Few people choose to drive their cars without a seatbelt on. So should you do with bicycle helmets. Basically, bike helmets provide utmost protection from head injury in case of road accidents. Actually, by law, every bicycle road user should have his/her helmet on when riding. That said, a good helmet should bring a balance of coverage, comfort, and ventilation. This leaves bike enthusiasts with one question; what is the best bicycle helmet?
Helmets come in many types, shapes, and varying features. Since their inception, great strides have been made by designers to improve the level of comfort offered by these devices. Before looking at the best types of helmets available, it is of immense importance to understand how a helmet works.
- Our Top Bicycle Helmets
- How a Helmet Works
- Bicycle Helmet Buying Guide
- Top 6 Best Bicycle Helmets
Our Top Bicycle Helmets
How a Helmet Works
As mentioned, helmets reduce the risks of head injury during an accident. First and foremost, helmets reduce the peak energy of a relatively sharp impact. This is provided by a layer of stiff pad that foams a cushion from the blow. A majority of the best rated bicycle helmets manufacturer’s use crushable expanded polystyrene (EPS). EPS works overly well but doesn’t recover when crushed. On the other hand, Expanded Polypropylene (EPP), which is less common, does recover after an impact.
The latest helmet materials in the market are the collapsible plastic linear. They feature spongy foam pads which are comfortable and fit but don’t promise much for impact protection. Note that majority of accidents do not have one impact. This is why a helmet should stay on your head even when hit more than once. This means that a helmet should have a strong strap and a tight buckle. It should sit level on the head besides covering as much as possible.
Understanding the essence of this device is the reason why you should invest your time in finding the best rated bicycle helmets. That said, consider the following factors when searching for the best bicycle helmets.
Bicycle Helmet Buying Guide
Helmet comes in various types. Despite all working to achieve the same function, you should have a clear understanding of the various types to make a prudent choice.
- Road bicycle helmets – these helmets are primarily designed to be used in road riding. However, they can be used for all cycling disciplines. The best road bicycle helmet should be ultra-light, offer utmost protection and ventilation.
- Aero road helmets – this is a recent helmet brand being a cross between the time trial and vented road helmets. They are designed to provide utmost ease of movement, light weight, and compact size as well as delivering aerodynamic advantages. That aside, they are the best-looking bicycle helmet type.
- Time trial helmets – they are specifically designed for time sensitive racing. Such helmets offer excellent aerodynamic advantages as well as protection as you raise against the clock.
- Mountain bike helmets – these brands offer extra coverage, exceptional ventilation, and retention as well as helping you trounce the challenges of riding an off-road terrain.
- BMX helmets – this type of helmets come in two designs. They include a full-face and open face helmets. The full face offers protection to meet the demands of any BMX racing whereas open face/skate style is used commonly for flatland riding and dirt jumping.
- Leisure helmets – as the name suggests, they are available for those looking to have great looking helmets without other exceptional features such as being ultra-light, vented or race pedigree features.
- Kids and youth helmets – these helmets come in wiggle ranges that are ideal for protecting kids enthusiastic in riding bikes. They feature excellent safety standards and come in various color styles that encourage the riders to use them.
- Full face helmets – as the name describes, they are ideal for maximum protection. With these features, they are the best choice for aggressive and downhill trail riding. They offer extended protection for the chin, cheeks, and teeth.
Bike helmet construction
Bicycle helmets are constructed in various options. However, most manufacturers use the in-mold construction technique. This is a common process that results in a fused outer and inner shell without the use of glues. The resultant is a light yet a strong design that withstands strong impacts. The two common construction materials include:
- Shell – most helmets are covered with plastic shells that hold the helmet together during and after the crash. This provides a puncture resistant helmet that protects your head and neck.
- Linear – these helmets are made from expanded polystyrene foam. During an impact, the linear dissipates the force thus protecting your head.
Finding a good fit when searching for a helmet is vital. Helmets come in various sizes varying from small, medium and large or extended sizes. Therefore, ensure that you find your helmet size by measuring the largest portion of your head. Small helmets measure less than 21” whereas extra-large measure more than 24”.
Helmet comfort requirements
There are various comfort determinants of a helmet. They include coolness, fit, sweat control and ventilation. Airflow determines the coolness of the of the helmet. A larger front vent provides better air flow. Sweat controls require a brow pad or a separate sweatband. Some of the best bicycle helmet brands meet utmost comfort requirements.
Various riders prefer a sun-shielding visor attached to the helmet. This is a common attachment to any helmet. Visors add some fraction ounce to the helmet weight besides providing minimal wind resistance.
Always find a helmet that comes with a comfortable and easy to buckle strap.
This is a special feature that comes with few helmets. They have strap designs that accommodate ponytails.
Putting the factors mentioned above can come in handy when finding the best bicycle helmet. That said, mentioned below are some of the best rated bicycle helmets.
Top 6 Best Bicycle Helmets
The Kask Mojito Helmet
The Kask Mojito Helmet offers everything you expect from any high-performance helmet. Ranging from low weight, great comfort, high-level adjustability to excellent ventilation, this is a perfect helmet choice for road helmet enthusiasts. Of major concern to note from this helmet is the price. The helmet retails at $100 which is relatively cheap compared to other helmet prices of similar pro level caliber.
Features of The Kask Mojito Helmet
Ventilation – the helmet has 26 air vents which provide excellent cool air in front and facilitates elimination of hot air from the back. With this feature, unless there are sweltering weather conditions, you shouldn’t find this helmet hot.
Comfort and fit – the Kask Mojito Helmet provide excellent comfortability and fit. Both narrow-headed and wider heads fit the helmet comfortably and securely. Thanks to its greatly positioned and quite lean padding with a back-dial adjustment system that can be rotated up and down to ensure that the head is held securely.
Straps – Kask Mojito Helmet straps are made from two varying materials. The bits surrounding the ears are made from nylon which resembles other helmet types. On the other hand, straps covering the chin underneath are made from artificial leather.
Helmet Technology – the Kask Mojito Helmet features an MIT technology that guarantees great safety and complete protection. This is due to the polycarbonate layer covering the shell top, base ring, and the back.
The Kask Mojito Helmet is available in a myriad of colors. The colors range from the attractive navy to the basic white options which provide varying color choice to match your kit. So to say, there is a total of 24 different colors for this helmet type.
Pros of Kask Mojito Helmet
- Provides great ventilation
- Provides utmost comfortability
- Comes with various color options
- Plenty of adjustability options
- Has a high-visibility reflector sticker on the back of the helmet and every strap to increase visibility.
Cons of The Kask Mojito Helmet
- Decals are made from stickers instead of paint thus prone to peeling with lengthy use.
The Giro Synthe Helmet
The Giro Synthe Helmet is certainly a pinnacle of road helmet designs which is available with MIPS technology that provides maximum impact protection. This helmet has scaled its way becoming one of the best helmets for pro-teams’ due to its immense functionality.
Features of The Giro Synthe Helmet
Ventilation – ventilation from this helmet is certainly superb. It is considerably cooler with compared to other aero road helmets. Giro helmets are developed with the Wind Tunnel ventilation system. This design combines active air vents in the helmet shell with an exhaust channel inside the helmet. This provides undoubtable fresh thrust and cool air around the rider’s head as it forces heat and stale air out of the helmet. So to say, it is among the most effective cooling system available that provides a difference when riding.
Roc Lock Air retention system – this is a revolutionary fit system that adds a new dimension to the overall helmet performance. It enhances cooling of the helmet as well as its comfort and stability. The Roc Loc Air Fit system allows cool air to pass directly over the rider’s head. It also enhances the performance of air vents and internal channeling systems that exhaust the heat out of the helmet. Its fit and feel allow for easy custom tune fit tension using a single hand.
Helmet technology – all Giro helmets, including the Giro Synthe Helmet are designed to reduce impact energy as much as possible. This is in a bid to meet and exceed the safety standards. This feature is ascertained by its multi-directional impact protection system to redirect energy and provide more protection.
Other notable features of this helmet include:
- Is ponytail compatible
- Featherweight with Slimline buckle
- Aerodynamic design
- Comes with 26 wind tunnels with internal channeling
- Weighs 254 grams
Pros of Giro Synthe Helmet
- Very lightweight
- Provides utmost comfort
- Provides great venting
- Provides for excellent adjustment
Cons of Giro Synthe Helmet
- Relatively expensive
The Lumos Smart Bike Helmet
Ready for a bike-light season? Try the Lumos smart bike helmet, better known as the next generation helmet. Ascertaining your safety when riding is of immense importance. This is why you should try this helmet type, which comes with a system of integrated lights ensuring that you are seen and safe. Besides unique lighting, this helmet is packed with a plethora of features common with other high-end helmet models. These are among the features making it the best looking bicycle helmet.
Features of The Lumos Smart Bike Helmet
Lighting – safety ensured by clear visibility is paramount to any cyclist. This is perhaps why the Lumos smart bike helmet is fitted with bright LED lights to ensure that you stand out on the road. The helmet has 10 white LEDs on the front and 38 on the back, totaling at 48. To crown it, there are 11 orange LED lights for signal turns. Note that the lights are on and visible both day and night. Additionally, the back lights are fitted in a triangular shape making it easy for other road users to gauge your distance.
Design – like other regular cycling helmets, the Lumos smart bike helmet is made from plastic with soft and foam inserts inside. This provides undoubtable comfort. The pliable plastic skeleton also supports a chin strap and a size adjustment wheel placed on the back. The helmet also comes in several colors, with cobalt blue, white and black being the common colors. Concerning its weight, the Lumos smart bike helmet is heavier compared to other cycling helmets. This is perhaps due to lights and electronics attached.
All weather ride – this helmet is weatherproof. With this, you can ride your bike come rain or shine.
Smartphone app – the Lumos smart bike helmet comes with a compatible smartphone app available both on iOS and google play store. The app makes it easy to monitor your helmet battery levels and settings such as accelerometer sensitivity, options to update helmets firmware among many other features.
Rechargeable battery – the helmet comes with a convenient charging system. The helmet and remote can be charged using a USB cable and takes only. Once fully charged, the lights can last for 3 hours in solid mode and 6 hours when in flash mode.
Pros of the Lumos Smart Bike Helmet
- Is sturdy and comfortable
- Safety certified
- Comes with a smartphone app thus ease of use
- Easy control as it provides a tap to turn button for lights
- Durable and weatherproof
Cons of Lumos Smart Bike Helmet
- Quite expensive
The Bontrager Women’s Starvos Cycling Helmet
Cyclist of all levels, especially female, seeking to find and enjoy utmost protection, comfort and airflow management should consider the Bontrager Women’s Starvos Cycling Helmet. The helmet slightly surpasses the $100 price range making it relatively affordable despite its exceptional performance. Additionally, the helmet suits a wide range of head sizes making it widely usable. This is why it makes to the best bicycle helmet of all times.
Features of The Bontrager Women’s Starvos Cycling Helmet
- Ventilation – the helmet has internal and recessed channels that manage airflow through the helmet and the head. This reduces chances of overheating.
- Has an in-mold composite skeleton that allows for a greater variation in vent size and shape.
- Has a MIPS brain protection system that provides utmost safety for riders and cycling aficionados.
- Pressure points are prevented by the presence of a soft, relatively comfortable, moisture wicking and washable pads.
- Helmet strap management is eased by the presence of FlatLock dividers.
- Comes with an intuitive, one-handed headmaster fitting system that enables you to adjust not only the height but also the circumference of the helmet according to your head size.
- Manufacturers offer a crash replacement guarantee. This implies that your helmet will be replaced if you get involved in a crash within the first year of ownership.
Pros of Bontrager Women’s Starvos Cycling Helmet
- Overly comfortable
- Provides excellent comfort compared to other helmets of the same caliber
- Comes with a MIPS system for advanced safety
- Adjustable fit minimizes the occurrence of pressure points.
Cons of Bontrager Women’s Starvos Cycling Helmet
- The headmaster system needs more refinement.
The Gonex Adult Bike Helmet
Gonex helmets have proved over time their test of quality and comfort. Being among the leading producers of bicycle helmets in the market, nothing short of exceptional quality with amazing features is what to expect from this brand of helmets. That said, manufacturers present the Gonex Adult Bike Helmet, a road and cycling helmet with safety lights, adjustability, and exceptional ventilation.
Features of The Gonex Adult Bike Helmet
Ventilation – as mentioned before, the Gonex Adult Bike Helmet comes with 24 air vents that ascertain cool even in warm conditions. The vents reduce resistance as well as ensuring comfort and breathability when cycling. This is perhaps why this helmet is best suited for road and mountain cycling experiences.
Safety – this helmet is made from high-quality PC with a density of 85 EPS thus duly certified and shockproof.
Comfort and fit – the helmet comes with a rear adjustable head lock system that enables you to adjust to your head. The other feature adding to its comfort is its washable anti-bacterial pad which is both cool and comfortable. It is also lightweight, weighing only 240 grams.
Lighting – the Gonex Adult Bike Helmet comes with LED lights at the back with three modes. The modes include steady, slow flashing and fast flashing. This keeps you safe while on the road.
Pros of Gonex Adult Bike Helmet
- Well ventilated and cool
- Comes with an adjustable rear rotary internal regulator
- Lights up at night thus ensuring safety
- Has an odor free and insect proof net
Cons of Gonex Adult Bike Helmet
- Require cautious lacing fixing to prevent fall of during cycling
The Uvex Boss Race Helmet
The Uvex line of helmets suits individuals seeking to find great value for their helmets with price defying adjustability compounded by a solid and all-round performance. The Uvex Boss Race Helmet, briefly, is a lightweight helmet designed for mountain bikers and road cyclists. Overally, it offers an excellent fit, width and height adjustment that guarantees a perfect fit for all situations.
Features of The Uvex Boss Race Helmet
Ventilation – the Uvex Boss Race Helmet provides unquestionable ventilation. Though not price defying as its adjustment system, the helmet comes with 19 air vents positioned appropriately around the helmet. Front and rear vents facilitate this. An important inclusion on the front vents is the netting that prevents bugs and insects from getting caught in your head. A major drawback, however, is the lack of internal channels that ease air movement from the front to the back vents.
Comfort and fit system – comfortability is something you shouldn’t worry about. The helmet can be individually adapted to head shape and size measurements thus offering undoubtable comfort. The double in-mould system adds to the comfort of this system. Just like other in-mould systems, the Uvex Boss Race Helmet double in-mould has the EPS inner shell inseparably joined with the polycarbonate outer shell. The second polycarbonate outer shell adds to the protection at the lower part of the helmet.
Straps – the Uvex Boss Race Helmet features an infinitely adjustable strapping system. This allows for the individual user to adjust their straps in accordance to head shape and preferences. The other key feature of the Uvex Boss Race Helmet is its IAS 3D adjustment system that allows vertical and horizontal adjustment planes. It also has a dial adjustment system which is well-sized and easy to use. Additionally, it is monomatic. This ascertains an easily adjustable ratchet closure that can be done with one click.
Pros of The Uvex Boss Race Helmet
- Has a great adjustability system
- Comes with a removable padding
- Has a good, secure and comfortable fit
Cons of Uvex Boss Race Helmet
- Has minimal padding
Bicycle helmets are vital accessories for any bike owner. Regardless of the intended bicycle riding situation, getting a helmet shouldn’t be an option to ponder on. Due to their wide variety available, search prudently from the best bicycle brands available. This calls for cautious consideration of specific factors that guide the search process. Apart from the buying guide highlighted above, venture into other crucial determinants.
Just to mention, other key factors to add in your to do list include checking on the best bicycle helmets reviews and referees, brand popularity, customer feedback, reliability among other factors. Price is also an essential factor. However, it shouldn’t be a deal breaker. You can find an exceptionally well-performing helmet at low prices and poor performing helmets with steep prices as well.
Last but not least, consider helmet warranties provided by manufacturers. Besides warranty, some manufacturers provide a crash replacement scheme. This implies that the manufacturers replace your helmet if damaged within a given period after purchase.