UPDATE: The Pro-Viz Mars, Bell Presidio and Specialized Propero II helmets are sometimes out of stock. Make sure to check the product links for availability!
Commuting has become more and more popular as people are more aware of the advantages that come with commuting by bike. Bike commuting deserves all the profound attention it has been getting, as the benefits are endless!
Not only does cycling act as a form of exercising and make you fitter, it also removes all the road congestion issues that we are always complaining about. Moreover, commute time is predictable and there won’t be any hassle of strikes or delays that are the norm while taking public transport. Think of all the time you can save from not having to stand in a crowded train or bus station, only to learn that your next trip has been canceled!
Commuting by bike is great and we have come to an agreement that it has a lot of benefits; hence more people should take it up. But some people seem to overlook the safety aspect of this. The right commuting gear is crucial to ensure the utmost safety. Whether you are a one-time bike commuter or a professional cyclist, safety is something that should never be compromised.
While there is no general outspoken rule regarding helmets while riding in the United States, there are individual laws enforced in a handful of states and cities where it is mandatory for all, whereas for some places, it is necessary only for those who are under the age of 18.
In the United Kingdom, wearing helmets while cycling is recommended by the Highway Code, though it is not made compulsory.
One of the first countries who truly enforced the law of wearing a helmet is Australia, so it is mandatory for every cyclist to be wearing a bike helmet.
Features of a Bike Helmet
There are a number of things that a bike helmet consists of. The first thing you will notice is the outer plastic shell, which can be either a hard plastic or a softer, more flexible one. You will find a foam section on the inside constructed of several layers designed to protect your head and cushion it during impact.
To ensure that your helmet fits you perfectly, most companies add a fit system that will help you make adjustments so that the helmet is fit and snug around your head. To make sure that once the helmet is on your head it actually stays there, the helmet will feature a chin strap which is also padded for added comfort.
Another important aspect of a helmet is air vents. Air vents allow air to flow in and out in order to keep your head cool throughout the day. If you are lucky, your helmet may also come with a visor (sometimes removable) that will help shield your eyes from the sun, dust, and rain.
Some helmets may feature Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS) which is a safety feature invented in Sweden. This consists of an additional layer that is placed inside the shell and surrounds the head and is mainly designed to buffer indirect impacts. What it does is allow only the helmet to shift around the head during an impact while dispersing the forces that may result in serious injuries.
Having this specific feature may cost a bit more than usual, but it is well worth it.
Bike Helmets for Commuters
So who exactly needs a commuter bike helmet? The answer is all of us – as we should all be commuting by bike! In all seriousness though, commuter bike helmets are especially recommended if you travel to work by bicycle, frequently.
While most helmets are great to commute in, there are specifically designed helmets made for commuters. From a basic vented helmet to one that is integrated with lights and waterproof cases, there is a helmet for you, whether you are an urban rider or commuter.
9 Recommended Commuter Bike Helmets
1) The Torch T2
This was quite the anticipated product in the helmet industry, more than 2 years were spent in designing and releasing it in the market! The uniqueness of this helmet lies in the 10 LED lights embedded in the helmet, 5 on the front and 5 on the back. The lights can be easily seen from the sides, therefore the illumination and visibility of this helmet on the road are much higher than most other models. Moreover, the lights stay on for 12 hours without needing to be charged, and that is quite a big advantage if you are going somewhere far or are spending a night out.
• In-mold construction S
• olid build and great quality
• 10 Integrated led lights embedded
• Can go up to 12hrs with one single charge
• 4 different light functions including flash
• On the heavier side at 360g
• Limited sizing
A truly unique design and functionality, this helmet is a comfortable fit and something that all cyclists should consider for added safety.
2) Mars from Pro-Viz
When you are cycling on the main road, your bike is obviously much smaller than the other 4 wheeled vehicles, let alone the trucks or Lorries. Being clearly visible to them by using bright, bold colors will certainly reduce your chances of getting injured in an accident, and that is exactly what this bright helmet is GREAT for. Not only is it an insanely bright yellow in color, it also has a rear LED strapped to the adjustable headband, which will make you even more visible on the road. All in all, this helmet is definitely a bang for the buck.
• Rear LED light
• adjustable head ring
• Sizing range 54 – 59 cm
• Unisex design
• Removable visor
• Complies with EN 1078 safety standards
• Not many customization options for the perfect fit
Having a LED light built in has more advantages than you would realize. Plus the bright color of the helmet itself does wonders. All of this at a price that is too good to pass up.
3) The Presidio from Bell
Most people dislike helmets because it suffocates them or makes them feel boxed in. However, that is definitely not a problem with this Presidio helmet! Designed to be airy and comfortable, this helmet has 17 vents that let sufficient air in while keeping you safe and secured. It also has many versatile features that are similar to the more expensive helmet models, such as the ErgoDial fit system and a snap-in visor, so you will need only one hand to handle it. It’s only 273g so you can expect it to be comfortable on your head. Good value for a reasonable price.
• In-mold construction
• sturdier helmet with a solid build
• 17 Air Vents
• Ergo Dial Fit System
• Camlock strap levers for easier adjustment of straps
• Detachable visor included
• Limited adjustments for head fitting
Overall a good fit, this helmet by Bell is an excellent value for the price with its great quality and design.
4) The Cannondale Ryker
Even though this helmet is not as bright as the Mars helmet, it definitely has a more sophisticated look. With its sharp edges and sides, it specializes in providing safety. This helmet is made using single-mold technology that joins the polycarbonate shell to the EPS foam shell for a through and through one piece design. Comfort is also a priority as it has 19 vents which will allow in all the air you need, and pads that will keep the sweat away too. However, the downside to this helmet is its somewhat steep price.
• Complies with U.S. CPSC bicycle safety helmet standards
• Oversized cooling vents
• Micro-Dial fit
• Ergo-fit EVA occipital pad for customizable fit
• In mold micro shell technology
• Removable visor
• Bordering on the heavier side
• Steep price
A stylish helmet that is durable and has customized fitting.
5) The Bern Watts
As everyone knows, when it comes to helmets, Bern is a classic brand. They have been in the business longer than most contemporaries, and are doing what they do quite well. The Bern Watts is the successor model to the well-known signature model the Baker, and it has a shape and model different from the usual bicycle helmets worn these days. Its specialty does not only lie in its looks but also in its sturdiness as the tough ABS shell and EPS hard foam make it quite strong and reliable. To add to the benefits, it is available in many colors too!
• Can be adjusted to multiple sizes
• Thin Shell Technology
• Strong and reliable
• Available in a multitude of colors
• 7 air vents
• Not as lightweight as the others mentioned
A unique product from a classic brand, The Bern Watts is durable and is ranked as a best seller.
6) The Propero II by Specialized
Less than half the price of its high-end product, S-Works Prevail, Specialized has more or less the same features, making it a great worth. Weighing just 238g, it is a very lightweight helmet that is sure to prove comfortable. The rear-end features the one-handed dial, making it super easy to adjust and properly fit the helmet around your head. Similarly, it also sports thin DryLite nylon straps and splitters as the Prevail, in addition to the fantastic air ventilation which will keep your head cool. That along with an affordable price tag makes this helmet one of the best.
• One-handed dial
• Super easy to adjust
• Comfortable fit
• Nylon straps
• Fantastic air ventilation
• A bit on the pricier side
It has the same features as the Prevail, yet it is not as expensive. Therefore, despite the price tag, you get your money’s worth with this helmet by Specialized.
7) The Carrera Foldable
Now, don’t get misguided by the name of this helmet. Even though it has been designed to be similar to legacy helmets that were made from padded leather panels, it is not foldable. Instead, it’s squishy and gets compressed on impact. This helmet is best for anyone who does not have a usual head shape, as the flexibility of the helmet lets it adjust its shape to your head. It might feel weird to be worn at first, but once you get used to it, it’s immensely comfortable.
• easier to adjust to any head shape
• Compresses upon impact
• Very comfortable
• Can prove to be a bit bulky
The Carrera is innovative, stylish and lightweight. A great deal for the money!
8) Giro Savant Helmet
Giro has made use of its 20 years of experience in the making of this helmet in order to make sure it is realistically fit and easy to adjust for everyone to use. This helmet only weighs at 238g but does not compromise on the quality or the features that it is packed with. With its great ventilation, it’s a breeze riding under the hot baking sun. When you take in all of that, it is very likely you will do a double take when you realize the price is good value!
• In mold construction
• Roc Loc 5 fit system
• Premium build and quality
• Lightweight at 238g
• Great ventilation
• Awesome price
• MIPS liner
• Straps are a bit stiff
For an MIPS helmet, this price is unbeatable. The helmet itself is a great fit, comfortable and lightweight, and an excellent buy.
9) The Gen3 from Nutcase
It is not new to know that Nutcase has one of the biggest ranges in styles and colors when it comes to their helmets. Almost everyone can find a color or pattern that speaks to them, hence finding the perfect helmet to complement their personality. Gen3 comes into the market with a bang, noting that it is lighter and has more options when it comes to sizing. It comes with better ventilation and unlike Gen2, Gen3 has better reflectivity. It also sports a removable visor and an adjustable spin dial for a more snug fit. The magnetic buckle helps make for easy snap-ins and outs while avoiding any pinching along with a padded chin strap. The helmet comes along with additional set of foam pads to further help with adjustments.
• CPSC and ASTM certified
• 360-degree reflectivity
• ABS shell and protective EPS foam liner
• Adjustable and removable spin dial
• Magnetic buckle
• 11 vents in addition to interior air station
• Weighs 540g
One of the more popular brands and the most loved by cyclists, Gen3 has way more advantages working on its favor. It is comfortable to wear and fits snugly around the head. The Gen3 is a must buy.
Since it is extremely difficult to choose the best product due to the fact that every person is different when it comes to physical attire and personal taste, we’d let you make the decision. To aid your selection process, with each product, pros and cons have been highlighted along with individual verdicts. Now being sporty can also mean safety!