Whether you are a daily rider, or just a weekend rider, you know how important wearing a helmet is. Not only is it a law in most states, but it can save your life. With so many different motorcycle helmets on the market today, choosing the right helmet can be tricky. And finding one that fits, can be even more difficult. I always recommend buying a helmet in person rather than online, so you can try it on to make sure it fits your head size and shape.
Obviously the main goal of your new motorcycle helmet is safety, but comfort is also a very important factor.
The first things to look for when buying a new helmet is, the D.O.T. (Department of Transportation) certification and the Snell certification for Motorcycling. The D.O.T. certification will ensure that your helmet meets the standard safety requirements as provided by the Department of Transportation. The Snell certification guidelines, are actually much stricter as far as standards go. So as a general rule of thumb, make sure they have both.
Next, look for a helmet that is comfortable and fits correctly. You will know your helmets fits correctly, when you feel it tightly fitted against the top and side of your head, cheeks, and chin. And obviously, when you turn your head side to side, the helmets should not move at all. After wearing your helmet over time, you will notice that the padding will soften up a bit, and may fit a bit looser on your head. This is why it is so important to chose one that fits tightly to begin with. Choosing a good quality helmet, with quality padding will also make a big difference.
After years of riding motorcycles and dirt bikes, I have definitely noticed the difference between a decent helmet and a great helmet. And believe me when I say, choosing a great helmet is a much better investment in the long run. Not only for your safety, but it will last much longer than one of lesser quality. So here are my picks of the Top 5 Motorcycle Helmets on the market. And yes the are all D.O.T. certified and Snell certified.
Arai Vector Wraithen Full Face Helmet
This helmet is one of Arai’s best sellers, and I am not surprised. From the comfort to the quality, and the awesome design, this helmet is the total package. The shell is specially made to be strong and flexible, yet very lightweight. It also has 8 different vents, with three air control settings, for extra comfort and defogging. The cheek pads are super comfortable and can easily be removed for washing. You can also replace the cheek pads with pads of a different thickness for maximum fit, if needed. You can get this helmet in many different colors and designs, but this one by far the most stylish. $469.95
Arai Sz/m Open Face Helmet
Another great helmet by Arai, the Sz/m is a great helmet for those not wanting a full face helmet. This helmet is built like a open face helmet, but it has a detachable, flip-up face shield. It is perfect for people who don’t like the closed in feeling of a full face. As with any Arai helmet, it is definitely not lacking in the comfort or safety departments either. With their superior shell construction, and their exclusive brow ventilation system in the face shield, this helmet is definitely one-of-a-kind. Available in 4 colors. $399.95
HJC FS-15 Carbon Fiber Full Face Helmet
This helmet is super lightweight, so it’s incredibly comfortable and its great for long rides. It features an anti-fog, anti-scratch, face shield with 95% UV Protection, and it has fantastic air flow. It also has a removable interior that is made of anti-bacterial fabric. This helmet is available in Carbon for $449.99 or in Colored Carbon (Red, Blue, & Copper) for $459.
HJC IS-33 Open Face Helmet
This lightweight helmet, features a one-touch, tinted sun shield in addition to a face shield. It almost like having sunglasses on your helmet. The face shield has an anti-fog and anti-scratch coating, that is 95% UV Protected. This helmet is incredibly comfortable and has superior airflow. Available in a variety of colors, ranging in price from $139.99-144.99.
Bell Vortex Full Face Helmet
This helmet was definitely designed, with comfort in mind. From the contoured cheek pads, to the removable plush comfort liner, this helmet is so comfortable. The liner and pads are removable for washing and are made from anti-bacterial fabric. It has a fantastic ventilation system too. The Vortex, also features a noise-reducing wind collar, and integrated speaker pockets. Available in 13 different colors and designs. $179.95.