Wearing a bike helmet is the difference in protecting your head or choosing not to, Some will think you look better without one and with a simple cap.  Well best of luck if you ever do have a fall.  Here at Cycle With Del we fully support riders who protect there head, so I’ve found a few of the best out there.

When choosing a new helmet there are a few things you need to look for, Safety, Fit, Adjustment, Comfort, Venting and Weight.

Safety; This is always the main reason to own a helmet so what are you looking for, well any decent helmet must display the European CE EN 1078 sticker.  This shows that the helmet has passed the required tests to protect your head.

Fit; Making sure the helmet you’re about to spend good money on fits is as important as safety. There are certain companies that offer a head fitting to ensure you get the right helmet for your head, this may sound odd but we all have a different shaped head.  Make sure it fits nicely and that the straps don’t rub causing any discomfort.

Adjustment; Most if not all newer helmets have an adjustment or retention system on them, this means once you have the helmet on in place you have a further adjustment to make sure it’s tight on you’re head.  This is just a slight adjustment but makes all the difference when you use it correctly.

Comfort; Trying on a new helmet is great, but don’t get caught up in the moment and think that the most expensive is the most comfortable.  Take a good look inside at the padding and see how well it’s fixed to the helmet, some are removable for washing but not all are.  This is a great little feature and also allows you to replace any worn pads that may be supplied with a new helmet.

Venting; These are the holes on the outer shell, they are there to reduce weight and also allow the air to pass both through and into the helmet.  Some may have a winter helmet and a summer helmet with varying vents to allow more air to cool the head whilst out on a hot or tough day.

Weight; This is what some pro’s are looking at more than the others.  However what you sacrifice in weight you pay for in cost, there’s no such thing as a cheap strong, comfortable or safe helmet.  Like most things weight can be saved but somethings going to be sacrificed, due to the tech these days you may find a helmet that packs all the requirements but be prepared to pay for it.

There’s a saying I think of when I buy a new helmet and after having a few head injuries I’d like to think the helmet has served me well. The saying is ” What’s the price you put on you’re head”, do you buy a cheap one and hope you’re heads protected should you fall, or do you get on that costs more but you know its going to protect you.  I’m not saying the cheaper ones wont do the job but this is you’re head not mine.

Here’s a few of the top selling helmets out there to date.

The technology used in the helmet was originally developed by LifeBEAM to monitor the vital signs of pilots and astronauts. A sensor integrated into the headband at the front of the helmet detects your heart rate and the unit at the rear transmits data to a compatible cycling computer using ANT+ or Bluetooth.

The LifeBEAM is charged using a USB connector and I found the claimed 15 hours of battery life to be accurate. Set up and connecting the LifeBEAM to my cycling computer was straightforward and, importantly, it consistently gave recordings close to that of my chest strap. However, on occasion it briefly lost signal and the sensor doesn’t work if you wear a hat- which might be an issue on colder rides.

As with the Lazer Genesis, at its foundations the LifeBEAM is a good quality comfortable helmet. With 19 air vents the helmet kept me fairly cool (although I’d want better ventilation on the hottest days) and Lazer’s RollSys fit system worked really well allowing me to adjust the fit of the helmet on the move.

Compared to the standard Genesis the LifeBEAM weighs 60g more and costs a significant additional £80.

Kask Mojito

 Kask has a reputation for superb fit, and the cheaper Mojito isn’t going to do it any harm. Every base is covered – there’s just enough padding in the right places and the superb shape suits a wide range of heads.

The almost-total coverage from the moulded-in external shell leaves almost nothing susceptible to transit or riding damage, and Kask’s excellent cantilevered rear cradle design with slimmer rubber pads works for every head shape.

The lightweight woven straps don’t have leather lining like those of the more-expensive Vertigo, but they do have an adjustable three-way clasp, and there is a white leather chin strap remains.

It’s a compact helmet, appealing to the larger of head (and a certain Chris Froome) but it sits low across the temple and brow and has good rear coverage.

A host of small vents give a consistently even breeze throughout, with large vertical rear vents drawing cooling air through effectively, making the Mojito feel lighter than it is – which is a bonus on lengthy rides.

The BBB Icarus helmet has been around since 2012, With this in mind they have created a great helmet.  With generous air flo and good ventilation the scoops do what there designed to do.

With a comfortable fit and good weight this has been designed to make sure it competes with the others in the price range.  However the under ear clips felt a little delicate and with limited adjustment this could have been resolved a little better.

Priced at a £110 it’s not one of the cheapest and with the slight concerns there are others worth looking at before you spend that hard earned cash.

giro synthe

The Giro Synthe is one of the more expensive helmets out there, at £200 you get a whole new design thats been quoted to be better than the Giro Air Attack.

With its clipped tail thats becoming a favourite with other brands it’s not yet been confirmed that its any more aero dynamic than the others.  With the sleek shape and mesh panel side scoops reducing drag, this is where the aero benefits come to play.

Even though it’s stated to be comfortable on long rides there’s a sparse amount of padding provided.  From the statements related to the Synthe reports are more about the aero build and wind flow, it does have a sleek design and is one of the lightest on the market at 209g.  This may be what your looking for but the shape won’t appeal to everyone.

The helmet comes in matt black with white and coloured accents. There’s some roughness around the edges where the shell and polystyrene meet and the matt white panels are a bit prone to scuffing, but overall the helmet has a quality, robust feel and of course meets all bicycle helmet safety standards.

Although the level of padding is less than some other manufacturers’ higher-end helmets, it is comfortable and I did not find that there were any pressure points against the shell. The forehead padding, in particular, is comfortable and well positioned to avoid sweat running into the eyes.

The BH700 is a light in-mould constructed helmet at a very low price point. In-mould construction means that the polystyrene protection is bonded to the shell during manufacture. This results in a lighter weight and more rigid structure than bonding the two together later, allowing a more vented design. The B’Twin has 17 vents, including a large central vent at the front, below which is a removable pad across the forehead. There is more padding at the temples and in the top of the helmet.

With the degree of venting on offer, the helmet is not hot and remains comfortable even in warmer conditions. In usual UK Spring weather, cooling is just not an issue. I found the BH700 perfectly comfortable to wear for rides of different durations, ranging up to five hours plus when completing the Wiggle Ups and Downs Sportive.

Fit is adjusted at the rear via two sliding grips. Although more expensive helmets have moved to using a dial, this mechanism works fine and it is not difficult to tighten or loosen when moving. The wide nylon straps ensure that it is easy to get a firm, comfortable fit. They are adjustable to meet just below the ear and have a sturdy plastic connector.

Specialized S-Works Prevail helmet

The Prevail seems to have been around forever – it’s a familiar sight in races at all levels and has evolved, over time, into its current design. Its purposeful looks won’t appeal to everyone, but they clearly float the boat of many cyclists.

It manages to look both chunky and supremely vented at the same time, with muscular shaping and aggressive vents. The rear extends low down for great head coverage, and the external shell protects the lower EPS core at the sides, but not front and rear, so a few parts that could be prone to damage in transit.

It has a satisfyingly cradling fit, which inspires confidence for long rides.

Specialized’s rear Mindset adjusting cradle offers five height positions, well placed pads and a rotary dial. Older Specialized helmets used to be quite narrow, but now accommodate rounder heads very well with no squeezing or pinching.

The straps are fixed by clasps at each side, but are ideally positioned to let the pliable chinstrap do its job. They exit from the middle of the shell, keeping them clear of the skin until the jawbone.

Deep internal channels align with the large frontal vents to rush cooling air across your cranium, and the horizontal brow vents do a fine job of managing sweat and drying the front pad. It’s very good for glasses storage when not wearing them too.

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