Best Mountain Bike Helmet [Review] in 2021
written by Cycle expert Alex Bristol
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The bike helmet is the most important safety wear when mounting biking. Are you unsure which helmet to choose for mountain biking?
Finding the right mountain bike helmet doesn’t have to be hard. I’ve studied 63 different helmets to make sure I am providing a full breakdown of the best ones for the trials.
You’re probably getting lost in the variety of bike helmets you can buy and I know what you’re thinking. They all look the same.
I’m here to break down the confusing features such as comfort, ventilation, weight, and protection.
The helmets I’ve found today can provide you with all these so you can have a more enjoyable, safer experience even on the most treacherous of trails.
But more on this later, let’s jump into my list.
We’ve spent the time so you don’t have to:
Best Rated Mountain Bike Helmet
IXS Trail E.V.O. Helmet
Best trail helmet
If you’re looking for a quality helmet that provides unrivaled protection giving you confidence riding on any trail, I.X.S is at the top of our list.
This stylish, highly breathable design made with EPS material to absorb any sweat and moisture circulating the head, will ensure to boost your performance.
But that’s not all.
This helmet can be adjusted not only by the tension wheel but also by the height of the rear cradle, ruling out any discomfort especially on long journeys.
Whilst providing you with safety and ventilation this mountain bike helmet will ensure you look good and feel good when riding.
When it comes down to an all-round helmet this is my number one pick- go check it out.
22 ventilation ports
Latest deal: IXS Trail E.V.O. Helmet
Endura Mt500 Helmet (Koroyd)
Now this one is the most popular mountain bike helmet you can find. The advanced protection system compared to other mountain bike helmets is unmatched.
This helmet keeps your head safe in event of a collision and provides head cooling during the ride. The sweat-wicking airflow constantly provides an aerodynamic experience for all riders.
What does this mean for you?
After using many helmets over the years I can ensure you this is perfect for full protection on the hills without having a restricted and hot full-face helmet.
Check to see whether this stylish helmet is still available, I seriously feel that this helmet is a must-have for keeping you cool, especially in the scorching summer heat.
Fully engineered core
Latest deal: Endura Mt500 Helmet (Koroyd)
Catlike Leaf Helmet
The Catlike Leaf helmet is another top-quality mountain bike helmet providing unique protection and comfort as compared to others we’ve looked into.
Where do I begin? Well, its innovative M.P.S retention system provides comfort thanks to its 4 point adjustment systems.
Dedicated to mountain bikers, this helmet uses LNP technology to focus on the lower rear structure, harmonized to fully protect the fragile occipital area.
The Catlike Leaf looks and performs like a professional mountain bike helmet but at a fraction of the price- you can see the amazing reviews by checking out the price.
Customize comfort with M.P.S.
Low Nape Protection
Straps might rub ears
Latest deal: Catlike Leaf Helmet
MET Parachute Full Face Helmet
So we’ve looked at the best mountain bike helmets but what about the full face helmets?
Introducing the M.E.T Parachute, the top of our list for the best full-face helmet.
Let me tell you why.
This light-weight, high ventilation provides comfort and security on every ride Unlike other bike helmets, this full-face one provides that extra protection needed.
Best of all, the innovative design of the chin-guard creates a solid, compact, and highly-ventilated helmet meaning that you can feel protected without feeling that your breathing is being restricted.
But that’s not all. This helmet is goggle compatible by including a clip system on the back to keep goggles in place.
This makes it comfortable to wear on climbs and safe on descents, ensuring full protection.
Full face protection
Latest deal: MET Parachute Full Face Helmet
Giro Switchblade Mips Helmet
best downhill mountain bike helmet
Now for our second full-face helmet, the GIRO Switchblade MIPS helmet offers full protection on the mountain trails, but this one has the option to remove the chin-bar.
This feature makes this helmet for makes this helmet good for both cold and warm conditions, perfect for mountainous terrains. this makes this the best downhill mountain bike helmet for your buck.
The wind tunnel cheek ventilation when the chin bar is removed provides extra cooling power from strategically placed air channels.
As if that’s not enough.
This helmet has additional hydrophilic padding to absorb up to ten times its weight in water, so you don’t have to worry about sweat during your ride.
Additionally, the MIPS protects and absorbs the shock preventing any trauma or injuries to the brain, making it the best downhill mountain bike helmet, built for a brutal environment.
Antimicrobial, X-Static lining
Latest deal: Giro Switchblade Mips Helmet
Troy Lee Designs A2 Mips Mtb Cycle Helmet
Looking for a helmet that wicks away any sweat and bad smells after a fun day on the trails? Troy Lee Design’s odor-resistant helmet may be the one for you.
This helmet gives optimum protection without compromising style, ventilation, and comfort. Feels snug and doesn’t wobble when going along bumpy surfaces at fast and slow speeds.
Well is this the one for you?
Not only does it kick out any bad smells, but it is also reviewed as so comfortable and lightweight you will forget you even have a helmet on.
A perfect option for those extra-long and fun days on the trail.
No compromise on ventilation
Latest deal: Troy Lee Designs A2 Mips Mtb Cycle Helmet
Mavic - Crossmax Pro Helmet
Best trail helmet
Are you searching for the best trail helmet for cross-country and keeping those pesky bugs away?
The Mavic Cross Max Pro Helmet ensures safety in the unpredictable wilderness you are exploring. Fitted with bug nets to ensure a disruption-free ride.
Additionally, it consists of flexible XRD foam that absorbs vibrations, cushioning impacts in case of a collision.
What does this mean for you?
It keeps you looking and feeling fresh even after those long journeys while also keeping you safe. It even provides a special fit for goggles to prevent fogging.
Ergo Hold SL Retention System
Optimal fit and comfort
Too small a size for some people
Latest deal: Mavic – Crossmax Pro Helmet
POC Tectal M.T.B. Helmet
The P.O.C Tectal M.TB was made for mountain biking. It’s technical protection and lightweight features are enough to provide comfort all day on the trails.
This is a personal favorite of mine especially as it keeps your head cool, even in the scorching Californian weather.
Not only it provides a high level of protection but also includes an integrated RECCO reflector so you can be quickly located and helped in case of emergency. This has been used by rescue services all over the world.
Finally, because of the reinforced EPS liner and an aramid bridge, it improves the strength and protection of the helmet while keeping it lightweight.
Latest deal: POC Tectal M.T.B. Helmet
Troy Lee Designs Stage MIPS Full Face Mountain Bike Helmet
The MIPS Stealth Helmet offers is designed to absorb and tackle impacts with complete confidence. Avoiding rotational motion associated with brain damage, keeping your head still.
So is this the best mountain bike helmet for you?
With both E.P.P and EPS construction elements protecting you from high and low-speed collisions, absorbing all impact. I can assure you that this helmet will provide protection while covering your whole face.
Polyline Shell construction
11 High Flow air intakes
A few people reported comfort issues
Latest deal: Troy Lee Designs Stage MIPS Stealth Helmet
7IDP M5 All Round M.T.B. Mountain Bike Cycle Helmets 2019
If you’re searching for a full-coverage, especially at the fragile back of the head then we may have the one for you. This helmet focuses on the most fragile part of the brain, supplying this area with the most protection.
So is this the best helmet for mountain riders? It is certainly one of the top on our list.
The 14 vents and custom 7IDP visor provides a generous amount of airflow, making it good for keeping you cool on the long rides.
Despite being focused on mountain biking, this could be also perfect for all-purpose riding, keeping you safe in all conditions.
Subtle tactical graphic
Latest deal: 7IDP M5 All Round M.T.B. Mountain Bike Cycle Helmets 2019
Bell Super 3r Mips Adult M.T.B. Bike Helmet
Now if you’re looking for a full-face odor-resistant mountain bike helmet this may be ideal for you.
The built-in quick-drying materials with real silver fibers that inhibit the growth of odor make this helmet best for long, sweaty journeys.
This MIPS equipped provides wraparound protection, keeping the fragile parts of your brain protected.
But what’s good about this helmet it provides complete ventilation, so your helmet stays cool and smelling good even after all day down the trails.
This one is definitely perfect if you want a full-face helmet but looking for one that keeps you cool, not hot and sweaty.
No twist tri glides
Goggle adjustable visor system
Not reusable for large repeated impacts
Latest deal: Bell Super 3r Mips Adult M.T.B. Bike Helmet
Giro Chronicle Mips Adult Dirt Cycling Helmets
If you’re looking for a helmet that has market-leading protection then look no further than Giro’s Chronicle MIP Cycling Helmet.
Its MIPS elements absorb any shocks or impacts faced while riding on mountain trails, redirecting the energy so it doesn’t injure your head.
Not only it protects you, but it could also save your life from a major crash.
This helmet rewards both comfort and ventilation, providing internal channeling, making it the best bike helmet for mountainous terrains.
A minimal amount of padding
Latest deal: Giro Chronicle Mips Adult Dirt Cycling Helmets
Giro Fixture MIPS Adult Dirt Cycling Helmet
best mountain bike helmet under $100
Looking for a slightly cheaper option but still wanting protection like the other helmets we’ve reviewed? Look no further than Giro’s Fixture MIPS Cycling Helmet.
Not only this helmet has MIPS but it is also under $100, providing affordable protection for newer riders.
It is an alternative option if you’re interested in mountain biking but not wanting to spend hundreds on the right helmet.
You do not need to spend a fortune to be protected from the quickly changing environment of the trails.
A minimal amount of padding
Latest deal: Giro Fixture MIPS Adult Dirt Cycling Helmet
Giro Cartelle MIPS Womens Mountain Cycling Helmet
best women’s mountain bike helmet
Do you love cycling but looking for a bike helmet that keeps you in touch with your feminine side? Introducing Giro’s Cartelle MIPS Women’s Mountain Cycling Helmet.
This market-leading protection utilizes the MIPS redirecting energy in the events of a crash.
This is perfect for women that have slightly smaller heads and cannot fit into your standard bike shop helmet, allowing you to stretch further out of your comfort zone with the reassurance that your head is protected.
That’s not all.
It provides complete ventilation with internal channeling, making it cooler and more comfortable, especially for those with long thick hair.
This is a perfect alternative for you if you love cycling but can never seem to find the right fit.
Suitable for smaller heads
Chin straps aren't as easy to adjust
Latest deal: Giro Cartelle MIPS Women’s Mountain Cycling Helmet
Bells Super 3R MIPS Cycling Helmet
Best full-face mountain bike helmet
The Bell Super 3R MIPS Helmet is specially designed for off-road riders who revel in the challenges of ever-changing mountainous terrain. Their easily removable chin bar allows you to stay cool during the treacherous climbs then protect you during the descents.
Providing the best of both worlds really. It also allows easy access in need of a drink, just take off the chin bar then you’re sorted.
It has 29 vents and layered with X-static padding, which wicks away sweat making your journey enjoyable, breathable, and cool.
The integrated MIPS offers an impact protection system and added rotational impact protection and easy adjustability fitting any head shape.
If that’s not enough.
It is fitted with a camera mount, allowing you to capture the best parts of your adventures.
This helmet is everything you’re looking for, despite all the protection elements it is an extremely light and breathable helmet.
Latest deal: Bells Super 3R MIPS Cycling Helmet
Bell 4Forty MIPS Adult Mountain Bike Helmet
Now, this helmet is best known for its fashion in-mold polycarbonate shell. Pioneered by Bell bonds the helmet’s outer shell to the EPS foam liner, creating a sturdier helmet.
This is perfect for the rockier hills, equipped for any mountainous adventure.
This helmet is MIPS equipped, designed to reduce rotational force as a result of angled impacts.
I personally really like the fit of this helmet.
Unlike other bicycle helmets, this one addresses the rider’s head shape. I have found that most of them are designed for a round head shape and an intermediate oval shape at best.
However, this one is designed to mold to your head shape, making a perfect fit.
The large vents allow impressive air ventilation which is important to reduce heat buildup, especially on those long climbs.
The lightweight feel is suitable for those long rides, you even forget that it’s there.
Steardier and comfy fit
May not fit larger heads
Latest deal: Bell 4Forty MIPS Adult Mountain Bike Helmet
Oakley DRT5 MIPS Men's MTB Cycling Helmet
Best mtb helmet
Similar to the last one we talked about, the Oakley’s MTB Helmet is also well known for its lightweight polycarbonate shell.
Perfect for keeping you protected down the treacherous descents and boosting ventilation for those tough long climbs.
Not only that, but it also has an integrated eyewear dock so you can securely stow your shades while still keeping them handy for quick and easy access.
This helmet is also fitted with a BOA FS1-1 System so you can have that perfect fit every time. This along with MIPS gives you unrivaled control of the fit of the helmet and ensuring there’s no movement when you’re crushing trail obstacles at speed.
That’s not all.
Their silicone sweat-wicking brow pad will fight bacteria keeping your face clear from the eye-stinging sweat, even after a full day on the trails.
Oakley’s DRT5 Helmet will give you the confidence to explore your mountain biking skills and be safe in the assurance you’ll be protected if your confidence exceeds your skill levels.
Adjustable to any fit
Lightweight and comfy
Latest deal: Oakley DRT5 MIPS Men’s MTB Cycling Helmet
Troy Lee Designs Adult Limited Edition Trail Mountain Bike A2 MIPS Mirage Helmet
best trail helmet
The final one on our list is Troy Lee Designs Adult Limited Edition A2 trail helmet. 25% more ventilated than A1. Making this helmet comfortable and breathable.
The airflow is exceptional, even at critical 100ºF in the scorching summer months.
It is perfect for those people that are between sizes, The retention system has several slots to adjust the tension in addition to the dial so you can really get it to fit perfectly.
That’s not all.
The MIPS is built to absorb any trauma from high-impact to low-impact collisions. Keeping you protected all around.
A minimal amount of padding
Latest deal: Troy Lee Designs Trail Cycling Bike Helmet
Best Mountain Bike Helmet Buyers Guide
When catching an awesome trail full of fun obstacles you need to pick the right helmet so you can jump into the wilderness without consequences.
A mountain bike helmet is a helmet designed to add more protection than your average cycling helmet. Additionally, it is very important that these helmets are comfortable, light-weight, and well ventilated as they are often worn for longer periods of time.
While buying any kind of product, there are different things you should look at:
Price of the product: whether it lies in your budget range or not.
The quality of the product: decide if it is good for you or not.
Rating: customers tell us about the product they’ve bought. You should compare different products to have an idea about different products so that you can choose the best one for you.
The product should match your requirements otherwise, it’ll be difficult for you onwards.
If you’re a mountain rider, you should go for the helmets that provide you with good ventilation and a great fit; otherwise, you’ll face the circumstance.
The following are the recurring best features that all the products mentioned above have in them:
Ventilation – There is a need for good ventilation for nearly all forms of mountain biking as the rider gets a lot of sweat while pedaling through the mountain trails. Many things make ventilation good such as the number of vents, a quality design, moving air from the front to back, and much more. The helmet for mountain biking should have ventilation, which means there should be a retention system and padding inside the helmet. All the products mentioned above have good ventilation, and you can compare them all to get the right one for you. So, it is an important feature to have in any mountain bike helmet.
Helmet Fit – While buying a helmet, another important factor that plays an important role is the helmet fit. You would not want the helmet to get loose while riding through the mountain trails as it will be uncomfortable for you. It can give you a headache at the end of the day if the helmet is constrictive as you have to go through the jumps in the mountain trails. Many helmets provide your best fit. Most of the helmets mentioned in this article provide you with the best fit.
Protection– While buying a helmet you should look into features like MIPS (brain protection system) which absorbs the shock and impact caused by collisions, making the impact of injury much lower. They work by reducing rotational forces, caused by angled impacts to the head. EPS also cushion the impact caused by trauma, preventing injury.
Comfort- This is one of the key factors to consider when buying a mountain bike helmet. A good-fitting helmet should feel tight but comfortable. It is so important to find the right often mountain bike helmets are used for longer, more prolonged periods of time so it is key to find one that will be comfortable for that amount of time. Finding the right size for you can sometimes be a matter of trial and error until you find the one you like best.
Weight- While weight may seem like a minor factor in comparison to the others on this list it is extremely important to find a helmet that is light-weight as it will make your journey and lot more pleasant. It adds to the comfort if your helmet is lightweight as well as comfortable, allowing you to explore further and cycle for longer.
Visor- Now the visor is an important element on the mountain bike helmet, ensuring safety for the rider. In case of a collision, the visor protects the face and more importantly eyes from the impact caused by the fall preventing injury. It is crucial that your bike helmet has a visor on it, especially for mountain biking, the uneven, unpredictable environment makes it more likely to cause accidents.
Accessory mounts- The accessory mount is an important factor to consider when buying a bike helmet, so you can add e.g. a 360º camera, for fun or just as an extra safety feature in case of a collision. If not many people enjoy filming their adventures, if so you’ll need to check which helmet to buy.
Convertibility- More commonly now full-face helmets come with a feature that allows you to remove the chin-guard. This provides riders with the best of both worlds. Allowing you to stay cool, making it easier to breathe on the long climbs. But also adding that extra layer of protection for the steep descents.
Compatibility- If you enjoy wearing googles or require glasses for your bike then you should consider whether the bike helmets come with adapters for glasses.
Frequently Asked Questions
The following are the questions people often ask relevant to mountain bike helmets:
Should I wear a full-face helmet for mountain biking?
A helmet that fits your type of riding and level of comfort is great for you. Most mountain bikers wear an open face helmet that is half shell as it provides more comfort, but it’s not more protective. The full face M.T.B. helmet offers more protection than an open one. It is up to the rider to wear what suits the most, but a full-face helmet is more protective.
Can you use a road biking helmet for mountain biking?
Many cyclists use a road bike helmet on their mountain bike, which is common and perfectly fine. But one should try to buy a different helmet specifically for mountain riding if you go to the difficult and long trails.
How do I know if my bike helmet is too small?
If you start feeling pressure on your head, then your helmet is too small, and you should go for the larger one; otherwise, it’ll give you a headache within minutes.
Is a cheap helmet as good as an expensive one?
A cheaper helmet is often built with cheaper materials than the more expensive ones. However, both will protect your head. Sometimes the more expensive helmets will include extra protective features but they aren’t always necessary.
The mountain rider should have a helmet for safety as the rider can get through an accident anytime during mountain riding. If you are a mountain bike rider, then you should find the best M.T.B. helmet for you.
It might not be easy, so you should search for different products and see different features of each. It’ll make things easy for you and will help you to find the right one.
If you ride long distances and difficult trails, you should go for a helmet that can provide you with good ventilation and fit.
The helmets for mountain riders mentioned in this article provide the best features. These all are made of high-quality material and provide comfort, fit, and proper ventilation.
They all are best for you so you can choose the one based on the features, pros, and cons of each product.
For further information, one can go to the provided link to remove any query about the product. Happy, safe mountain bike riding!
Content Manager at Pedallers
Alex is a cycling expert at and focuses on reviewing bikes, accessories, and general cycling. He searches for the most up to date products that match the needs of cyclists across the world. Whether it's recent news or the best bike set-ups, Alex is a trusted source for anything around cycling.