Bicycle helmets are a crucial accessory for cyclists, as they prevent head injuries in case of falls or collisions. These helmets are frequently used by professional athletes, extreme cycling enthusiasts, and tourists. Often, parents also buy bicycle helmets for their children to prevent serious injuries.
Now, I'll share some not-so-cheerful statistics. According to research, in Canada, about 900 people die annually from injuries caused by bicycle accidents, and 200,000 are treated in emergency departments. There, bicycles are very popular, here, they are mostly used by people aged 25 to 44, primarily for leisure activities (according to 2021 data). In Canada, the lack of proper bike lanes is one of the reasons for the 5% increase in bicycle-related fatalities in the first six months of 2022 (116 people died, and 1,842 were injured).
However, the same Canadian researchers claim that bicycle helmets reduce the risk of traumatic brain injuries by 50-60% and facial injuries by 20-25%. This is due to the helmet's design:
Made of polystyrene with a plastic coating. This coating determines the helmet's appearance (color, shape, number of ventilation holes) and helps distribute the impact force;
Made of polyurethane or polystyrene. These are elastic materials that compress upon impact, protecting the head from injuries. According to the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute, the base is disposable; if you hit the ground with the helmet, it should not be used again;
Provides a comfortable fit on the head and absorbs sweat, easily detachable for washing;
Secure the helmet on the head. Helmets are also made from carbon and fiberglass, providing reliable protection even during very strong impacts.
Manufacturers offer several types of helmets for different purposes:
Protects the top of the head, intended for city walks. It is lightweight (100-150 g) and has good ventilation;
Used by athletes, with more ventilation holes (at least five), improved aerodynamic properties, and lightweight (150-200 g);
Designed for tricks, so it has enhanced protection and completely covers the head. This model lacks ventilation;
Covers the head and lower part of the face. Made for extreme off-road riding and motocross;
Suitable for athletes participating in track races. Its design lacks ventilation holes, and the shape is streamlined;
Also created for ring speed races on the track. It has a teardrop shape and a heavy weight (from 300 g);
The main difference in this model is a robust fixation system and a reinforced outer layer (with the addition of carbon or nylon fibers). Men's and women's helmets can differ in design and color, but most often, manufacturers offer unisex helmets; only the size needs to be chosen. Helmets for children are usually universal and feature bright designs.
Top-3 adult bicycle helmets ranking
ALPINA Delft Mips
Description: This model is designed for cycle touring and incorporates MIPS technology, providing additional protection to the head in case of a side impact. The helmet is suitable for adults of any gender with a head circumference of 51-56 centimeters. It is equipped with 20 ventilation holes, enhancing comfort during movement, even in hot weather, and has a removable visor to protect against splashes, dirt, and sunlight.
Construction: The outer shell is made of polycarbonate, containing ultraviolet stabilizers and antistatic properties. The inner shell absorbs the impact force and provides protective cushioning of the helmet's walls, complemented by an antibacterial lining that prevents the development of bacteria and odors.
Safety Features: A scratch-resistant layer at the bottom of the shell significantly increases safety in case of a side impact. At the back, there is a curved retaining bracket with a mechanism for adjusting the width. The helmet is fastened with a buckle on the securing strap, featuring a red button and an automatic locking clasp.
Size: 51-56 cm
Number of Ventilation Holes: 20
Safety Feature: MIPS technology
Weight: 300 g
Pros and Cons: Features MIPS technology, an outer layer made of polycarbonate, and a buckle with a red button and an automatic locking clasp. Mainly suitable for cycle touring.
Description: A classic road model manufactured using in-mold technology, which involves surface covering of plastic products with a special film. Ventilation is provided by 24 holes. The helmet is suitable for women with a head circumference of 57-62 centimeters.
Features: Inside the shell, there's an antibacterial, washable lining. Size adjustment is made through the Limar Ultralight and Competition+ systems, ensuring not only the adjustment of size but also the position of the fixation system, guaranteeing an excellent fit.
Safety and Comfort: A LED light (steady or flashing) at the back of the helmet provides maximum visibility of the cyclist both day and night. According to user reviews, the helmet is very lightweight (200 g), but it's not possible to remove the protective net, more padding would be desirable, and the fixing system could be improved.
Size: 57-62 cm
Number of Ventilation Holes: 24
Safety Feature: LED light on the back of the helmet
Weight: 200 g
Pros and Cons: 24 ventilation holes, lightweight (200 grams), LED light on the back. The protective net is non-removable, lacks sufficient padding, and the fixing system could be better.
Specialized Align II HYPRVIZ
Description: A bicycle helmet that provides protection against impacts from different directions. This model is made using MIPS technology and is equipped with a Tri-Fix splitter and SX dial fit system for a comfortable fit. Optimal ventilation is achieved with the 4th Dimension Cooling System.
Intended for: Both men and women, with head circumferences of 54-56 cm and 56-58 cm, corresponding to sizes S and M. The helmet features reflective elements on the body, ensuring the cyclist's safety in the dark. User reviews note that the helmet is good, but it might feel heavy compared to other models without the MIPS system.
Material: Expanded Polystyrene (EPS)
Size: 54-56 cm, 56-58 cm
Safety: Reflective elements, MIPS system
Weight: 350 g
Pros and Cons: Features MIPS technology that protects against impacts from different directions, includes reflective elements. Some may find it heavy compared to regular helmets (without MIPS).
Top-3 Best Affordable Bicycle Helmets
Description: A helmet suitable for cycling, rollerblading, scootering, and skateboarding. Fits men and women with a head circumference of 58-63 centimeters. The outer layer is made of monolithic polycarbonate using pressure molding, and the inner layer is made of expanded polystyrene. These materials help distribute the impact load in case of an accident.
Design: The helmet has a pot-like shape and is equipped with SWAC technology, which captures incoming air through special channels and circulates it throughout the interior of the helmet. User reviews indicate that the helmet is good but is narrow around the temples, causing pressure.
Material: Polycarbonate, Expanded Polystyrene
Size: 58-63 cm
Ventilation: SWAC technology
Weight: 330 g
Pros and Cons: Protects the entire head and is equipped with technology that circulates air across the inner surface of the helmet, lightweight. Narrow around the temples, causing pressure, thin soft inserts.
Description: A cycling helmet designed for use while biking, rollerblading, scootering, and skateboarding. This accessory has a universal size and is suitable for children aged seven and older as well as adults. The inside of the helmet is lined with foam to prevent concussions in case of collisions.
User Reviews: Users report that the helmet is excellent with no complaints. However, the manufacturer does not specify the material of the outer layer and the number of ventilation holes, so additional information should be sought from the manager.
Weight (with packaging): 300 g
Description: A men's cycling helmet with a head circumference of 50-65 centimeters. The body of the helmet is aerodynamic; the outer layer is made of durable plastic, and the inner layer is made of soft foamed material. There are 12 front and eight rear ventilation holes (the latter are covered with mosquito netting) for maximum thermoregulation.
Design: The back of the helmet includes a mechanism for adjusting the size. The sun visor is easily removable and can be attached as needed. There are no negative reviews of this model online.
Material: Plastic, Expanded Polystyrene
Size: 50-54 cm, 55-59 cm, 60-65 cm
Ventilation Holes: 12 front, 8 back
Pros and Cons: 20 ventilation holes, reflective elements. Designed only for men.
Quality helmets are like bicycle brakes - they're a matter of life and death. It's essential to purchase the highest quality helmet and have full confidence in its reliability. E-bikes can accelerate up to 40 mph, which is quite a serious speed where one needs to be cautious and protected. This was just the first part of our helmet selection. I hope you liked it. Stay tuned for more. And if you already have questions, come visit us at 654 College Street, Toronto. We'll show you the difference in helmet quality and help you choose the best one for your goals and needs.