The best ski helmets to round up your ski trip

Isobel Becker
  Nov 27, 2022 1:15 AM

Every skier's equipment must include a helmet, whether they are skiing down a bunny slope or in the backcountry. Today, almost everyone wears a helmet when skiing or snowboarding, and for good reason. Helmets for snowboarding and skiing are lighter, safer, and more comfortable than before.

The helmet on your head is always the best ski helmet one. However, not all ski helmets are created equal, so taking the time to locate the right one for you is worthwhile. Here are our top five picks!
 

Our Top Picks 

1. Wildhorn Outfitters Highline Ski Helmet  - $99.99

To begin with, Wildhorn is a recognized vendor of the US Ski Team. The Drift, the brand's original helmet, has long been a favorite among regular skiers and riders.

We were excited to check out the brand's second design, the new 2022 Highline, which has a number of noteworthy advancements, given its stellar track record.

The Highline has a beautiful matte and gloss finish in addition to MIPS (the Drift does not have a rotating impact system) to increase safety. The ventilation can be adjusted, which is one of its best features.

There are a total of 14 vents, including four in the back, eight on top, and two close to the forehead. A hand-operated slider is used to open and close the eight vents on top.

While alpine skiing and riding at the resort on chilly days (0–10 degrees F), especially when there was wind, we quickly appreciated the warmth and safety of the closed vents.

Using the brand's Fine Tune Adjust system, which is an easy-to-grasp dial at the back of the helmet that fine-tunes the sizing cage inside the helmet, we also particularly like the size adaptability.

 

 

2. Giro Ratio MIPS Ski Helmet - $99.95 - $119.95

The Giro Ratio MIPS helmet ($120), which is among the more affordable options on this list, features a lot of the same top-notch technology. The Ratio strikes a fantastic balance between cost and features thanks to its many vents, MIPS, and a simple dial adjustment system.

An injection-molded helmet called the Ratio suits a wide range of head shapes. Users claim few hot spots and all-day comfort.

The soft earpads are generally trouble-free, although when moving at greater speeds, they do have a tendency to let some chilly breeze through. The In Form System by Giro is flexible and simple to use even while wearing gloves or mittens.

The Ratio helmet has a great synthetic lining that feels toasty in most conditions, even though it isn't the warmest on the market, especially when the vents are closed. The big vents easily maintain a nice airflow on warm days and prevent overheating.

The Ratio is the ideal name for this helmet because it has one of the best features-to-price ratios of any ski helmet available today. This is a good helmet at a reasonable price, despite not being the lightest, flashiest, or most brilliantly designed item.

3. Pret Helmets Cirque X MIPS Helmet -  $250

In almost any circumstance, the Cirque X is kept warm and cozy via a programmable ventilation system. The Cirque opens up to comfortably fit a balaclava or thin beanie when it's extremely chilly and you need a little extra protection. You may easily take off the earflaps on warm days and put them in your jacket pocket or bag.

While the Cirque X is a generally attractive piece of protection, we particularly like its adaptability with practically any set of goggles in terms of both function and appearance. Goggles are cleanly and pleasantly framed by cutaways above the ear flaps and a shallow brim across the front. Uncomfortable gaps and goggle slippage are successfully reduced by the Cirque X's design.

4. Scott Plus D MIPS Snow Sports Helmet - $240

A really top-of-the-line helmet, Scott believes the Symbol 2 Plus D to be one of its most exciting creations to date.

The Symbol 2 Plus D is characterized by three essential safety technological features: MIPS, D3O shock-absorbing material, and Scott's 360-degree Pure Sound earpieces. Compared to other helmets on the market, each of these features provides a particular increase in safety.

MIPS offers defense against torsional hits, which are frequently linked to brain damage in skiers. D3O is a porous substance that offers particular defense against low-energy impacts.

Last but not least, the Pure Sound inserts are made to enhance hearing, which may help the wearer avoid crashes, listen for snow crumbling, and other problems. These clever design elements work together to provide superior head protection.

5. POC Obex Spin Communication Snow Helmet - $129

The challenge of reliably playing music and making phone calls while skiing raises the question of whether it is even worthwhile to try. A Bluetooth-integrated helmet might be the best option if you want to avoid digging your phone out of your jacket in the bitter cold. 

Although POC's communication technology isn't the ideal answer to this issue, it's the most effective one so far. Although some people have issues with the actual audio quality, the Communication series of inserts and the accompanying Obex Spin helmet offer trustworthy two-way audio in a market where trustworthy alternatives are hard to find.

The Obex Spin is a sturdy helmet that offers hands-free music and phone calls. It offers all the attributes of a premium helmet, including a hybrid shell, adjustable vents, and an excellent fitting system. 

Additionally, it includes POC's Spin technology, which is essentially their own unique interpretation of MIPS or other angled impact prevention systems. The silicone pads that hold the liner in place tear off upon contact, allowing the helmet to move a little.

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Last update on 2022-11-27 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

Buying Guide

Consider these factors before purchasing a ski helmet:

1. Fit

The fit of a helmet is its most crucial component. To prevent damage to your brain, it must fit comfortably and correctly.

To see if a helmet fits you, measure your head size by using a cloth tape measure (or a string if one is not available) to obtain the measurement immediately above the brow line. Centimeters are the measurement system used by all helmet producers.

The proper technique to try on your helmet after receiving it is to spread the ear pieces or flaps apart. Next, place the forehead of the helmet on your head before setting the remainder of the helmet back. No gaps should exist in a helmet that is fitted properly, and the padding should all sit flush against the head.

Give the helmet a couple of gentle pushes from front to back after it's on your head. The helmet should continue to fit snugly enough that when you press on it, the skin around your eyebrows and forehead moves as well. Additionally, gently move the helmet from side to side while moving your head as well. The helmet is too big if it flips around or moves independently of your head. The helmet is too small if it does not rest flat against your head. If you only have one or the other, you won't be protected.


 

2. Style

Helmets come in a variety of designs. Each aesthetic has a distinct function.

  • Half Shell: Half Shell helmets are hard shell helmets with soft ear pads. The soft ear pads are often washable and detachable, as are the liners. For skiers of all skill levels, these helmets are the most widely used type.

  • Full Shell: Full Shell helmets cover the entire head, including the ears, with rigid sides. They contain screw holes for the mouthguards that many racing leagues mandate and are commonly utilized for racing. The Wildhorn and Giro Ratio are prime examples.

  • Full Face: A chin guard and a visor are features of full-face helmets. They are generally worn by contestants in huge mountain races or skiercross competitions and provide the highest level of protection.


 

3. Ventilation 

One of the nicest and most crucial features to take into account when choosing a helmet is the ventilation system. In order to keep air moving over the face foam of your goggles and prevent fogging, many helmets incorporate venting directly on the forehead or brow area.

Adjustable Vents are equipped with a switch or toggle that you may use to open and close the vents to control your body temperature. On the helmet, there are fixed vents that are always left open to let air flow through the helmet.

The Giro Ratio, Cirque X and Plus D have wonderful ventilation systems. 

4. Audio 

You may pump up your music while you enjoy the mountains with some helmets that have headphones built into the ear pads with volume and power toggles.

Drop-in kits are available separately from different firms and can be added to Audio Compatible helmets in a variety of ways. The ear pads of helmets that are audio-compatible feature pockets with zippers or Velcro.

The Obex Spin is the best in this category. 

5. Safety certifications

  • CE: The CE logo designates the European standard that all helmets must adhere to in order to be marketed there.

  • ASTM: The safety requirement that all helmets must achieve or surpass in order to be sold in the American market. The ASTM standards will be met by all helmets sold in the US. Some helmets will also bear the CE marking, indicating that they satisfy both ASTM and CE criteria.

FAQs

1. What is MIPS?

Multi-Directional Impact Protection System is referred to as MIPS. When a heavy impact occurs, a thin layer of plastic on the interior of a ski helmet allows the helmet to rotate, reducing rotational stresses on the brain. Many companies have created comparable patented technologies that offer the same protection, like SHRED and POC.

2. How often should you replace your ski helmet?

Two to three years after regular wear and tear or after a single harsh impact. After either of these incidents, wearing a helmet may provide less protection.

3. Do I need a ski helmet?

For skiers of all abilities, a correctly fitting helmet is a necessary piece of gear every day. Every skier should take precautions to prevent concussions, and the safety advantages of donning a helmet far outweigh any drawbacks like bulk or discomfort. Check out our buyer's guide to learn more about helmets and how to choose the right one for your individual requirements.

4. How do I store my ski helmet?

Like a good wine, it should be stored in the dark at a constant temperature.

Your helmet may become damaged by extreme temperatures or UV rays. Due to this, you should never leave your helmet in a vehicle that is parked in direct sunlight or at temperatures higher than 60 °C. Avoid placing the helmet close to a heat source, like an oven. In storage, the helmet should also be kept dry.

5. My helmet is damaged after I tumbled. Do I need to replace it?

Absolutely yes! Never wear a helmet that has been in a collision or has damage. A fall can significantly reduce the helmet's protective efficacy, even if no exterior damage is evident.a

Final Thoughts

The Wildhorn Highline is the best ski helmet we've tested. It’s durable, fashionable, and affordable. That’s probably why the Highline was sold out within the first three weeks of its debut. So don't hesitate and head over to Amazon to grab yours now!

 

To find out more about other winter sports gears, use the links provided under each one.