Alongside bike lights, a good bike helmet is essential, whether cycling around the park, commuting to work or the gym, or tackling a long enduring ride. A good helmet will keep your head protected at all times and aim to minimise damage and injury if you crash or fall off your bike.
There are several features to look out for when choosing a bike helmet, and each model will vary. From style and size adjustability to breathability and comfort, there are options for every type of cyclist, available at all price points.
The Recommended has done the research for you and rounded up some of our top favourite bike helmets on the market. We’ve also included some frequently asked questions in our buyers' guide at the bottom of this page, including what the different types of bike helmets are and what to look for when choosing one to help you make an informed decision when it comes to making your purchase.
The best bike helmets at-a-glance:
- Best safety bike helmet: Smiths MIPS Signal Bike Helmet
- Best ventilated bike helmet: RaMokey Cycle Helmet
- Best adjustable bike helmet: Exclusky Mountain Bike Helmet
- Best unisex bike helmet: Giro Unisex Fixture MIPS Cycling Helmet
- Best versatile bike helmet: Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet
- Best helmet for visibility: Victgoal Bike Helmet
- Best helmet for personal fit: POC Octal MIPS Bike Helmet
- Best universal bike helmet: HardnutZ Street Bike Helmet
- Best comfortable bike helmet: DesignSter Lightweight Bike Helmet
- Best bike helmet for adventure: Lazer Chiru MIPS Mountain Bike Helmet
The best bike helmets
Best safety bike helmet: Smiths MIPS Signal Bike Helmet
For multipurpose use
Helmet type: Road/Commuter | MIPS helmet: Yes
Designed for universal use, wear this bike helmet on your ride to work or for a cycle around the park and keep your head in safe hands at all times. It's durable and built to last.
This helmet is designed with a MIPS system for secure protection, working to lessen the impact on the head in the event of a crash. It features VaporFit adjustment for a tailored fit, with 21 fixed openings for breathable ventilation and comfort. It is lightweight with removable foam padding for easy cleaning.
Best ventilated bike helmet: RaMokey Cycle Helmet
Suitable for all head circumferences
Helmet type: Road/Mountain | MIPS helmet: No
Keep cool and sweat-free while cycling with this ultra-breathable bike helmet, featuring 18 air vents for non-stop ventilation. It features a quick-release buckle for easy wear.
This bike helmet is made from a tough and hard-wearing polycarbonate material and lined with EPS foam for the ultimate protection, taking full impact if you happen to fall. It is lightweight and comfortable, with a detachable sun visor for all weather conditions. A portable backpack is included with it.
Best adjustable bike helmet: Exclusky Mountain Bike Helmet
Available in multiple colours
Helmet type: Mountain | MIPS helmet: No
Keep safe while on the move with this protective bike helmet, featuring a single-hand adjustment system to securely fit onto your head using the rear dial and adjustable chin strap in seconds.
This bike helmet is designed with numerous air vents to provide a beneficial cooling system and features a removable soft lining for extra comfort and convenience. It has a detachable visor to steer clear from obstructions such as sun, mud and leaves and instead concentrate on the path ahead.
More like this
Best unisex bike helmet: Giro Unisex Fixture MIPS Cycling Helmet
For a breezy ride
Helmet type: Mountain | MIPS helmet: Yes
Protect your head with this hard-shelled polycarbonate bike helmet, fit with MIPS technology and finished with a supportive soft EPS liner for the ultimate safeguarding on your rides.
Designed with Giro’s speciality Roc Loc Sport fit system, this helmet will fit all head sizes comfortably and keep securely in place no matter your speed or terrain. It features quick-drying padding for a sweat-friendly, breathable experience and comes with an optional visor, detachable for all conditions.
Best versatile bike helmet: Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet
Secure, whatever the weather
Helmet type: Road | MIPS helmet: No
Whether cycling through rain or sunny conditions, this bike helmet has you covered with its removable snap-on visor protecting you from all elements.
This bike helmet can be easily tailored to you using the simple dial rotation at the back and the adjustable chin straps. It is fitted with multiple gaps for flow-through ventilation, enhancing breathability during your ride, and is designed with two micro-shell layers for a durable and comfortable fit.
Best helmet for visibility: Victgoal Bike Helmet
Easy to adjust
Helmet type: Road/Mountain | MIPS helmet: No
Keep seen and safe while wearing this bike helmet, featuring an LED light and reflective straps to keep you lit up. The rechargeable light features three different modes and can last up to 10 hours.
Designed with a high-density polycarbonate shell, this bike helmet is durable and has EPS foam for a soft interior which also provides extra cushioning, taking the pressure off your head if you crash. It has a detachable visor and magnetic goggles to protect you from sunlight and wind.
Best helmet for personal fit: POC Octal MIPS Bike Helmet
Slick and secure
Helmet type: Road/Commuter | MIPS helmet: Yes
Designed for the road, this bike helmet is lightweight and airy, with fewer but larger air vents to support cooling and aerodynamic efficiency. It has built-in MIPS brain protection to enhance safety.
This bike helmet is quick and easy to put on, using the 360° adjustment system for a personalised fit and only requiring a one-handed dial operation. It features a soft EPS liner for added protection and comfort and is available in multiple colours.
Best universal bike helmet: HardnutZ Street Bike Helmet
Smart and multifunctional
Helmet type: Road/Commuter | MIPS helmet: No
Available in more than 10 colours and ranging from sizes small to large, brighten up your cycle ride with this universal bike helmet and keep safety at the top of your priorities.
This bike helmet is designed with a tough outer shell made from ABS and an impact-absorbing inner liner. It features an adjustable chin strap to easily tailor to you and 12 air vents to keep you cool throughout your ride. This helmet is also suitable for skateboarding, scootering and rollerskating.
Best comfortable bike helmet: DesignSter Lightweight Bike Helmet
Quick and easy
Helmet type: Road | MIPS helmet: No
Accompany your cycle trip with this bike helmet, fit with a soft chin pad and padded lining for the ultimate comfort. It also includes an insect-proof net to keep you extra protected on the move.
This bike helmet is lightweight with air vents for a breathable experience and has a detachable visor for all outdoor scenarios. It is easy to use with its quick-release buckle, adjustable to all head sizes and has reflective features to keep you seen and safe.
Best bike helmet for adventure: Lazer Chiru MIPS Mountain Bike Helmet
Stay safe while having fun
Helmet type: Mountain | MIPS helmet: Yes
Easy to fit and with built-in MIPS technology, this bike helmet is ideal for your next mountain biking adventure, keeping your safety a top priority.
It also has extended coverage at the rear of the helmet for added protection and is complete with an integrated visor to keep the sun and mud out of your eyes, ready for all conditions. This helmet features a unique Turnfit Plus retention system for a fully adjustable fit, both vertically and horizontally, providing the ultimate comfort and security throughout your ride.
Bike helmet buyer’s guide
Welcome to our comprehensive bike helmet buyers guide! Whether you're a seasoned cyclist or just starting out, choosing the right helmet can be a confusing process. With so many options on the market, it can be difficult to know where to begin. That's why we've put together this guide to help you make an informed decision.
So, whether you're in the market for a new helmet or just want to learn more, read on, and we'll guide you through the process, from the different types, what to look for when choosing a bike helmet, and how to ensure a proper fit.
What are the Different Types of Bike Helmets?
Bike helmets are designed to protect your head in case of a crash, but not all helmets are created equal. Different types of bike helmets are designed to meet the specific needs of different types of riding. In this section, we’ll take a look at the four main types of cycling helmets and what sets them apart.
Road Bike Helmets
Road bike helmets are lightweight and aerodynamic, making them the ideal choice for road riders who want to go fast and efficiently. They typically have a sleek, streamlined design and a large number of vents to keep your head cool on long rides.
Mountain Biking Helmets
Mountain biking helmets are built to handle the rougher terrain and tougher riding conditions of off-road riding. They are usually heavier and more substantial than road bike helmets, with more coverage at the back of the head and a visor to protect your face from the sun and branches.
Commuter helmets are designed for the needs of city riders, who often need to carry their helmet with them when they reach their destination. They are lightweight, with a compact design, making them easy to carry and store. They also often have a more stylish look, so you can arrive at your destination looking good.
Triathlon helmets are designed for speed and efficiency, with a focus on reducing drag during the swim, bike, and run legs of a triathlon. They are aerodynamic, with a sleek design and few vents to reduce wind resistance. They are also typically lightweight to reduce fatigue during a long race.
Can I use a road bike helmet for mountain biking?
The short answer is no, road cycling helmets and mountain biking helmets are not interchangeable. While both types of helmets are designed to protect your head in the event of a crash, they have some key differences that make them better suited to their respective sports.
Mountain biking helmets are designed to provide more coverage and protection for the back and sides of the head, as well as have more ventilation for increased airflow. This is because mountain biking often involves more challenging terrain, greater speeds, and the possibility of more severe impacts.
On the other hand, road biking helmets are designed to be lighter and more aerodynamic, with less ventilation to reduce drag.
It's important to choose the right type of helmet for your sport, as wearing the wrong type of helmet could leave you vulnerable in the event of a crash. So, if you're planning on hitting the trails, make sure you have a proper mountain biking helmet to keep you safe and protected.
What is a MIPS Helmet?
If you're shopping for a new bike helmet, you may have come across the term MIPS. But what exactly is a MIPS helmet, and what makes it different from other helmets? Here's what you need to know.
MIPS stands for Multi-Directional Impact Protection System. It's a technology that was developed to reduce the risk of brain injury in the event of a crash. A MIPS helmet has a low-friction layer between the helmet and the head, which helps to reduce rotational forces on the brain in the event of an impact.
How MIPS Works
In a crash, the low-friction layer allows the helmet to rotate slightly around the head, which can help to reduce the rotational forces on the brain. This can result in a reduction of the risk of injury in certain types of impacts.
Benefits of MIPS
The benefits of MIPS technology are two-fold. First, it can help to reduce the risk of injury in the event of a crash. Second, it can provide added peace of mind, knowing that you're wearing a helmet with advanced technology designed to protect your head.
MIPS Helmets and Safety Standards
It's important to note that MIPS helmets must still meet the same safety standards as all other helmets. The addition of MIPS technology simply provides an additional layer of protection in the event of a crash.
What Should I Look for When Choosing a Bike Helmet?
Choosing the right bike helmet is important for your safety, comfort, and overall enjoyment of your ride. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Here are some key factors to consider when selecting your next helmet.
The most important thing to consider when choosing a helmet is fit. A helmet that fits properly will stay securely in place in the event of a crash, providing maximum protection. Look for a helmet with a snug, comfortable fit and an adjustable retention system that allows you to adjust the tightness of the helmet.
Cycling can be a strenuous activity, and proper ventilation is important to keep you cool and comfortable on hot days. Look for a helmet with a good balance of ventilation, enough to keep you cool but not so much that it sacrifices protection.
The weight of a helmet can be a significant factor in your comfort on a long ride. A lightweight helmet will be easier to wear for extended periods and help to reduce fatigue.
While style may not be the most important factor when choosing a helmet, it’s still important to select one that you like the look of. With so many styles, colours, and designs to choose from, you’re sure to find one that meets your needs and your personal style.
When choosing a helmet, it’s important to look for one that meets safety certification standards. Look for a helmet that has been certified by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the Snell Memorial Foundation, or the European Committee for Standardization (CEN).
How do I Know if My Helmet Fits Properly?
A properly fitting helmet is essential for maximum protection and comfort while cycling. Here are some tips to help you determine if your helmet fits properly.
Measure Your Head
Before you start trying on helmets, it’s a good idea to measure your head. You can use a tape measure or a string, wrap it around your head, and measure the length. Most helmet manufacturers list the head circumference that their helmets are designed to fit.
Try on Several Helmets
It’s important to try on several helmets to find one that fits properly. Different brands and models will fit differently, even if they are the same size. The best way to find the right fit is to try on several helmets and find one that feels comfortable and secure.
Check for a Snug Fit
A properly fitting helmet should be snug but not too tight. It should sit level on your head, with the front of the helmet low on your forehead, about two finger-widths above your eyebrows. The retention system should be tightened so that you can fit only one or two fingers between the strap and your chin.
Check the Side Straps
The side straps should form a "V" shape under your ears, with the point of the V meeting just below your earlobe. The straps should be snug but not so tight that they dig into your skin.
Check the Rear Strap
The rear strap should be adjusted so that it sits comfortably just below your occipital bone (the bump at the back of your head). The rear strap helps to keep the helmet in place in the event of a crash.
Are More Expensive Helmets Always Better?
When it comes to purchasing a cycling helmet, it's natural to wonder if a more expensive helmet is always better. The truth is the cost of a helmet is not always an indicator of its quality or protection. Here's what you need to know about the relationship between cost and quality in cycling helmets.
One of the most important factors in choosing a helmet is to ensure that it meets safety standards. No matter the price, all helmets must meet the same safety certifications, such as those from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the Snell Memorial Foundation, or the European Committee for Standardization (CEN).
Features and Technology
Higher-priced helmets often have additional features and advanced technologies that make them more comfortable and/or improve their aerodynamics. For example, a more expensive helmet may have more ventilation to keep you cool or an aerodynamic design to reduce drag.
The build quality of a helmet can also affect its price. More expensive helmets are often made with higher quality materials and have a more durable construction. This can make them a better choice for those who cycle regularly or for longer distances.
Value for Money
When it comes down to it, the most important thing is to find a helmet that provides good value for your money. This means finding a helmet that offers the right balance of protection, comfort, and features to meet your specific needs and budget.
This article was created with the help of the AI tool ChatGPT. The Recommended’s team of human writers and editors fact-check and edit all content to ensure accuracy.
If you would like to read more expert-recommended fitness round-ups, check out our Fitness page for a full list of recommendations, including the best swimming goggles, the best running headphones, and the best steppers.
Cordelia Aspinall is a Digital Writer for Immediate Media, working across brands including The Recommended, RadioTimes.com, MadeForMums and BBC Gardeners’ World. She has previously worked and written for digital publications including Condé Nast Traveller, The Evening Standard, Cosmopolitan, and several other lifestyle brands.