Types of Motorcycle Helmets and Their Pros and Cons

Along with the evolution of motorcycles, helmets have also come a long way. Through time they got different names and were categorized into different categories according to their use and functions. Today we will have a look at the 7 different type of helmets that exists in the industry today.

1. Half-Helmet or “Skullcap”

Such types of helmets are very popular with cruiser-type bikes. It is usually worn because there is a law of wearing a helmet on the road; and this type of helmet meets minimal safety standards and of course it is the cheapest one.

Also it provides minimum of protection, such helmets only cover the top of your head. But I agree – wearing a full-face helmet on the Harley will look silly, however there are other options like “three quarter” helmet, which will look okay with a cruiser and still there will be significant amount of protection.

There is no point of saving money, while risking your life too much. I think this helmet is not an option for a serious rider. Price starts from ~45-50$.

2. Open face helmet or “three quarter” helmet (3/4)

It covers not only the top of your head but also the sides and the back. It is quite good in terms of safety. However, it lacks the chin bar and a face shield (not always, sometimes face shield is installed).

That’s why you will need to buy some goggles to ensure protection for your eyes (from sand, bugs and wind). This type of helmet is quite popular – it’s used by bikers, police officers and sometimes by newbies. Price starts from ~60-75$.

3. Full-face helmet

This is the king of all helmets, it has it all! It covers your head from all sides and angles, and face shield is always there to protect you from any collisions. This is a choice of the race drivers, and it is quite understandable. Usually, these helmets have ventilation holes across them. Aside of that, such helmet is looking much better than two previous ones.

With such variety of designs you can get something really interesting for yourself. While it is quite expensive, it is also better to pay additional 20$ now, than paying 10 times more for a surgery later. Price starts from ~70-80$. (in rare cases there are some starting from 50-70$, though I doubt they are certified)

4. Modular or “Flip-up” helmet

This is a mix between full-face helmet and open helmet. And it is great. It provides almost as much safety (there are some debates, that modular helmet can’t be as sturdy as full-face due to moving parts inside) and provides riders with much more comfort – you can eat, drink or even talk without taking the whole helmet off.

You can use it as an open face helmet when it’s too hot, but be careful – in 35% of all accident cases chin area gets damaged. Usually there are a bit more expensive then full-face due to complexity. Price starts from ~80-90$

5. Motocross & dirt bike helmet

It is most awesome looking type of helmet from them all. It has longer chin area and sun-visor to protect rider from flying sand or any other particles (well it protects rider from sun too, hence the name) Also it is ventilated quite nicely, because it doesn’t have a face shield installed from factory.

You need to buy proper goggles for such type of helmet too, and then it will deliver same amount of safety as a full-face helmet. They have scratch resistant parts as well. Usually, these helmets have amazing graphics on them. Price starts from ~70-80$.

6. Hybrid/dual sport helmet

It is hybrid between full-face and motocross helmets. It has most functions of both – detachable sun-visor, increased ventilation and the face shield. Basically it’s used for off-road riding, however it can be used anywhere, due to modern looks and great protection.

It is also better choice for motocross if you wear glasses (because wearing 2 glasses at once will be quite tricky and uncomfortable). Price starts from ~75-85$.

7. Novelty helmets

Novelty helmets (NOT a protective helmet) Pretty often it is a choice of American bikers – this “helmets” have unlimited amount of designs, painting and decorations. And they do look good, but they give you almost zero protection (they aren’t tested for endurance and materials are quite cheap and unreliable).

Most simple ones are ridiculously cheap, but those with sophisticated design can be much more expensive than full-face helmet! (up to 600$) Theoretically, such thing is a hat, not a helmet – it will protect you from scratches, but not from a hit.

Last thing you want to buy. Price starts from 16-20$ (yes, you heard me right).

– Aleks