A quality helmet is an essential piece of bike equipment, one that you shouldn’t try to skimp on. In the long run, it’s an excellent investment as it will not only protect you from injuries but also make you feel safer and more comfortable on the road. If you have a chance, you should always try on a bike helmet before you buy it just to see how it feels.
You are about to read detailed reviews of five excellent models, and we hope that they’ll help you to understand what you need and choose the best road bike helmet for you.
5 Best Road Bike Helmets
Giro Aether Spherical Adult Road Bike Helmet
What we have here is a combination of quality that’s made Giro a trusted name in bike accessories. The Aether combines an airy and open layout with maximum protection and other useful features.
Its unique 6-shell and in-mold construction was engineered in Giro’s helmet lab, and it’s one of the most lightweight models the company has ever produced. It’s perfect for those who want to get the most out of their rides and look trendy at the same time.
The helmet is unisex and comes in 12 attractive colors, from neutral black or gray to fantastic combinations of white and citron. It comes in four sizes, including the XL (63-65 cm) for those who want to feel extra comfortable while riding.
Some people may find it too open, but Giro has a solution for that as well. The inside of the helmet is covered with a dual-density EPS foam liner that provides warmth and comfort in the winter and cooling in the summer. Moreover, it also has a layer of antimicrobial padding so you don’t have to worry about the odor.
Finally, the company builds a unique ventilation system into the helmet based on deep internal channeling and massive vents. It makes this California-made helmet suitable even for the highest summer temperatures.
- Excellent airflow and ventilation
- Meets Giro’s stringent safety standards
- Dual EPS foam liner
- Suitable for all seasons
- A bit pricey
Bell Z20 MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet
The Bell Z20 MIPS is the result of years of testing, improving, and trying to create a helmet with advanced impact protection and without making it too heavy. The progressive layering construction allows the helmet to efficiently transfer the energies produced during an impact.
It comes in three standard sizes, all of which are very adjustable. In fact, you can adjust it on three levels thanks to the easy to operate strap system: height, pad width, and tension. The model is unisex but thanks to this feature, the same size can fit both the heads of men and women.
Another feature that sets this model apart is its excellent ventilation system, consisting of 18 vents. Everything’s built according to the principles of aerodynamics, which means that this helmet actually allows you to ride faster and more effortlessly.
The inner layer is made of quick-drying materials woven with silver fibers that inhibit the growth of odor-causing bacteria. There’s also a sweat guide pad that keeps sweat away from your brows and protects your eyewear from moisture.
This modern helmet comes in 15 attractive colors, and there are a lot of combinations that ladies will love. Apart from the standard black models, you can also find exciting color combos like pink and light blue. However, the price may vary according to size and color.
- Advanced impact protection
- Very adjustable
- Progressive layering
- Potential minor issues with the Velcro
Kask Valegro Helmet
If you’re looking for something compact and lightweight, the Kask Valegro may be the best road bike helmet for you. The Italian company won an IF Design Award for this helmet in 2018 for its fit and ultralight design.
This model comes in three sizes where the smallest weighs only 180g, which is a pretty impressive weight for a bike helmet. That’s why it’s suitable even for the petite, especially women who can’t seem to find a helmet that won’t cover up their faces. It’s also ideal for teenagers and kids who have just graduate from kids-size helmets.
The helmet can be worn all day long, even on hot summer days thanks to its excellent temperature management. The 37 ventilation holes provide superior cooling and allow your skin to breathe. Don’t worry as it also has tri-dimensional padding that will keep you fresh in the summer and warm in the winter.
The padding is made of fast-wicking and heat-regulating material that has excellent antibacterial properties. Moreover, the chin strap is made of a sort of eco-leather that is soft, comfortable, and very durable.
- Excellent ventilation
- Heat-regulating padding
- The L size may be too small for some
Kask Mojito X
If modern helmets look too open to convince you of their safety, make sure to check out this one. This simple, compact helmet offers excellent impact protection and temperature regulation.
It comes in 20 monochromatic styles so there’s something for everyone. It’s also available in three sizes, but bear in mind that Kask helmets are made more conforming to the head (tighter) than those by other companies. It may be more suitable for women and teenagers than tall men, as there isn’t an extra-large size.
The company has worked on reducing the weight and the MIT technology enhances the helmet’s shock absorption. There’s also a nonslip internal liner that makes sure the helmet stays where it’s supposed to, all the while sparing you that irritating slippery sensation. Moreover, that liner can be a lifesaver as it keeps the helmet on your head no matter what happens.
The Kask Mojito X is very breathable courtesy of the 26 strategically positioned air vents, and it feels great on your head. The chinstrap is made of washable faux-leather for comfort and easy maintenance.
- Impact protection
- Fits snugly
- Not available in XL
Bell Stratus MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet
First and foremost, this road bike helmet is built to help you perform better! It’s inspired by competitive racing road bike helmets and offers similar quality save for the lower price point. As you can see, the shape is a bit unusual but that’s only to help you ride faster according to aerodynamic principles.
The MIPS in the model number refers to the company’s proprietary technology in impact protection. The multi-directional impact protection system protects your head on all sides, including the rotational forces that result at the point of impact.
The helmet is very adjustable thanks to its quick straps that are operable even with one hand. It’s also great at staying on your head rather than moving or slipping.
Another feature that makes the Bell Stratus MIPS stand out is the Overbrow ventilation system that pulls cool air in through the front and allows it to flow through the air channels. A nifty overheating protection feature that allows your skin to breathe.
It is available in 11 colors, of which the yellow phosphorescent model probably deserves your attention. It’s not only fashionable but can help you stand out on the road in highly visible to other road users. In that light, the Bell Stratus MIPS may be the best road bike helmet for night rides.
- Aerodynamic design
- Enhances performance
- Overbrow ventilation system
- Interesting color choices
- No replacement pads
Getting the right road bike helmet depends on a number of factors, including how long do you plan to wear it, how sensitive your head is, etc.
Types of Bike Helmets
There are several types of bike helmets and here are the three most common that you should know how to distinguish.
Commuting Bike Helmets
Commuters’ helmets are made for people who bike to work or school daily without regard to top-level performance. They are made to be comfortable all-year-round, providing cooling in hot weather and warmth when it’s cold out.
The most significant difference between commuters and racing road bike helmets is the weight. Commuting helmets are slightly heavier but that’s only because advanced materials are not necessary. As a result, they’re far more economical and a decent helmet of this sort starts at $60 or maybe even less.
Performance Bike Helmets
Performance helmets are lightweight but they can also be costly. They’re made to help competitive cyclists enhance their performance in races, especially on mountainous terrains. In challenging conditions, even the slightest difference in weight can make a difference.
That’s why helmet manufacturers are competing in coming up with the most compact and lightweight helmet (without affecting safety, of course). Performance helmets are nice to have and they definitely feel great on your head, but you don’t have to reach for you if you don’t want to.
Aero Bike Helmets
This is among the latest designs in the world of high-end bike helmets. The idea is to help cyclists perform better by way of aerodynamic. The manufacturers are still trying to figure out the shape that would work best, so there are multiple highly distinctive shapes on the market.
The only downside to aero helmets is that they’re often not ventilated and devoid of any thermoregulation system, which is the reason why some people avoid them. They can be an excellent choice for when it’s nice out, but not so much when the weather is overly hot.
Fit and Comfort
The most important thing with respect to choosing a road bike helmet is to make sure that it fits properly. It means that it should be comfortable and not too tight or too loose. Although you can just measure your head at home and find your size online, it’s recommended to try out several models before you make a final decision.
For extra comfort, look for models fitted with soft padding inside. Make sure that the padding is removable and washable, or else you could run into problems in the summer days when you sweat profusely.
The ventilation is another essential factor, especially for those who go on long rides. You should look for a helmet that has multiple holes in the shell for air circulation. However, keep in mind that less-ventilated helmets can be warmer and more suitable in cooler climates.
Alternatively, you may want to go with a ventilated helmet that’s equipped with warm internal padding. It could very well be a winning combination for all seasons.
The driving force of the industry these days is to produce increasingly lighter helmets that can also deliver safety and comfort in spades. People prefer lighter helmets for one reason: the lower pressure on your head and neck allows for a wider range of motion.
Professional bikers would tell you that even a 50g difference in weight has an outsized contribution to the performance. The only downside is that the lightest helmets also tend to cost a bundle.
Aerodynamics is a big deal with competitive racers, which applies to everything that they wear including clothes and helmet. By reducing the drag, aerodynamic helmets can only enhance your speed, allowing you to ride faster and smoother. Investing in a quality aerodynamic helmet could improve your results significantly.
However, there are two downsides. First, this is a relatively new feature that’s usually reserved for competitive cyclists. You can count on these helmets to be pricey on account of the R&D that goes into them. Second, which may not be a big deal to many people, aerodynamic helmets often come with funky shaped lids.
You can’t go wrong with any of these five helmets. What’s more, you now know how to determine whether a helmet offers the appropriate protection or not, so you’re able to make your own decision.
Just for the sake of naming one, the overall best road bike helmet currently available on the market is the Giro Aether Spherical Adult Road Bike Helmet. This model not only offers supreme protection, but it’s also designed with excellent ventilation and temperature regulation so that you can wear it all-year-round.