8 Best Motorcycle Helmets (Review) in 2021

best motorcycle helmets

Riding a motorcycle is more than just the miles or the destination. It’s also about the experience and with that comes safety. Not all helmets are created equal.

Each helmet has its own specific purpose and merits as well as its own drawbacks. By evaluating the helmet’s design, safety, comfort, and even price, we came up with 8 of the best motorcycle helmets in the market today. Let’s take a look at the best full face, modular, adventure, or custom helmets you can ride with today.

Shoei Neotec II Flip-Up Motorcycle Helmet Matte Black Large (Additional Size and Colors)
Bell Qualifier DLX Full-Face Helmet (Blackout Matte Black - Large)
HJC Unisex-Adult Modular is-MAX II SF Helmet (Semi Flat Anthracite, 4X-Large)
Shoei Neotec II Flip-Up Motorcycle Helmet
Bell Qualifier DLX Full-Face Helmet
HJC Unisex-Adult Modular is-MAX II SF Helmet
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Shoei Neotec II Flip-Up Motorcycle Helmet Matte Black Large (Additional Size and Colors)
Shoei Neotec II Flip-Up Motorcycle Helmet
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Bell Qualifier DLX Full-Face Helmet (Blackout Matte Black - Large)
Bell Qualifier DLX Full-Face Helmet
HJC Unisex-Adult Modular is-MAX II SF Helmet (Semi Flat Anthracite, 4X-Large)
HJC Unisex-Adult Modular is-MAX II SF Helmet

1. Shoei Solid Neotec 2 Modular Motorcycle Helmet

There’s no helmet like the Shoei Solid Neotec 2 Modular Helmet. It’s the best modular motorcycle helmet in the market out there perfect for various settings. Whether you’re coasting an open road or engaging in an off-road adventure, this helmet will definitely keep you comfortable and protected at all times.

Shoei’s Neotec line consists of top-of-the-line helmets that surpass your usual standards. It’s the company’s flagship line after all. Given that, you should also know that this is not a moderately priced helmet. Expensive as it is, it provides a truly sleek design that matches just about any course and destination.

Known for their constant upgrades on comfort, safety, and technologies, there’s no doubt about this helmet’s overall quality.  In fact, the Neotec line is an improved version of the brand’s already impressive Multitec line.

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Compared to its predecessor, the Neotec 2 features a far wider and taller field of vision. It also features improved shell aerodynamics as well as an internal sun shield. The wind noise reduction of this helmet makes the most of its Sena SRL Motorcycle Bluetooth Communication System. 

Long drives wouldn’t be a problem with this one as it headlines a lightweight design and excellent ventilation system. Therefore, high temperatures wouldn’t be a problem but not to worry as cool weather doesn’t stand a chance with the helmet as well. The anti-fog system of this modular helmet makes visibility one of its top priorities. Not to mention, it also has a removable and washable liner!

2. Bell Qualifier DLX

While it’s easier to include an expensive Bell helmet on this list, we prefer to provide a variety of choices including those modestly priced. One of the first that comes to mind is the Bell Qualifier DLX. If you’re looking for the best motorcycle racing helmet that’s budget-friendly, this one’s for you. At less than $250, it includes many great features from comfort to visibility.

Among its many features include the ‘Transitions Photochromic’ face shield. A common among Qualifier DLX helmets, this face shield turns dim in the presence of UV light.

Despite the overcast, it will remain dark so you’ll surely get optimal protection and high viability even under the blazing sun. To up its game, this helmet’s “Click Release” technology makes setting the shield way easier as well.

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As for the helmet’s intercom system, not to worry because it features a removable panel that can be used for a Cardo Q1 or Q3, the original Sena SMH10, or a Cardo Qz intercom. However, don’t expect it to have the quietest system for communication. Especially without an intercom system installed, you’ll most likely have a hard time dealing with noise.

3. HJC IS-MAX 2 Modular Helmet

It only takes a few words to describe the HJC IS-MAX 2 Modular Helmet: the best motorcycle helmet under $200. For less, you’ll get the best protection and comfort you can ever ask for.

From a brand that has been providing top-of-the-line helmets for almost 50 years, this helmet prioritizes comfort and accessibility. With a polycarbonate composite shell, it gives adequate protection for everyday use. It also features moisture and bacteria repellent interior padding and an excellent ventilation system. With that, it perfectly airs out humidity and heat. Not to mention, its three-stage sun shield comes with a single-button release.

If you’re wearing prescription glasses, this could be the right helmet for you. The helmet accommodates glasses just as well. It’s stylish, comfortable, inclusive, and most importantly, budget-friendly!

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4. Arai XD4

The Arai XD4 could be the best full-face motorcycle helmet on our list. Albeit on the more expensive side of the scale, it’s still not as pricey as the Shoei Neotec 2. However, with great price comes astonishing features.

This dual-sport motorcycle helmet comes with a wide vertical and horizontal clearance. Make the most out of your adventure tour with this helmet’s complete unobstructed view. Coming from Arai, one can only expect great quality and comfort with this helmet. The brand’s Dry Cool system airs out moisture and heat easily. As opposed to other helmet’s anti-fog chemical treatments, this helmet relies mostly on its excellent ventilation system.

The brand’s special fiber laminate also makes it more lightweight versus other high-end helmets although not as light as a carbon fiber lid. Moreover, with a matte black peak visor, the glare on this helmet comes reduced.

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5. Bilt Techno 2.0 Sena Bluetooth Modular Helmet

If communication is at the top of your priority, then the Bilt Techno 2.0 Evolution Sena Bluetooth Modular Helmet comes with great features you’ll definitely love. Bilt, by far, ceases to amaze despite it being on the more affordable scale. With a value for money, it’s a stylish choice for all purposes. We dare say that it’s the Sena Bluetooth system is one of the best motorcycle helmet speakers yet.

Building upon the Bilt Techno 1.0, the safety features of this helmet goes above and beyond. With its built-in Bluetooth technology, phone calls or music wouldn’t be a problem. The Sena communication system can go up to 8 hours of talk time within a single charge. It also provides an astonishing 7-day standby time. Plus, it comes with a Universal Intercom protocol to allow the rider to communicate with other riders or passengers!

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6. ​O’Neal Sierra II Helmet

The ​O’Neal Sierra II Helmet surely packs a punch for a budget helmet. With the great selection of budget adventure helmets, this may be the best yet. Aside from style and budget, this helmet also goes above and beyond with its overall design and quality.

Every single edge on this helmet deliberately gives off a dashing appeal. One of its neat features is the folding visor on the inside.

To provide optimal protection from the sun during a day ride, it easily retracts and comes almost unnoticed. With this, the field of view wouldn’t be a problem for this adventure touring helmet. It also keeps debris, insect, dirt, or even distracting winds. Overall, it’s safe to say that this helmet is one of the coolest motorcycle helmets ever made.

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7. Klim TK1200 Illumino Hi-Viz Helmet

From the company that manufactured the world’s first Grand Touring helmet, Klim remains a leader in the industry. In fact, through the years, it only provides consumers with improved tech that comes with its helmets. The Klim TK1200 helmet upholds the brand’s heritage as well as its commitment to innovation.

With its full carbon fiber shell, this helmet makes space for luxury features without putting on the weight. It’s lightweight with the intent to keep your head in the ride rather than the helmet itself!

As for the ventilation, it’s safe to say that Klim doesn’t sacrifice on that as well. It easily wicks away heat and moisture given its smart ventilation system. Long rides will ultimately be easy and breezy.

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If you’re getting into an adventure, you’ll most likely experience shifting weather conditions. It may be the harsh sunrays or nighttime fog. The bottom line is that this helmet can weather them all. With its transition face shield and Pinlock lens, one can only have unobstructed vision sun up or down. However, it’s probably one of the most expensive on our list but you’ll surely get your money’s worth with this one.

8. Fly Racing Dirt Formula

Going for an off-road adventure? Consider having the Fly Racing Dirt Formula accompany you on your trip. At around $650, it’s a lot to unpack but it’s safe to say that no one does dirt bike helmets better than Fly Racing.

Right off the bat, you’ll notice the full 12k carbon fiber outer shell of the helmet. That makes it lightweight at only 2 pounds, 13 ounces. All this while exciting the DOT and ECE standards for helmets.

Furthermore, the impact energy cells of the helmet, powered by the brand’s proprietary RHEON technology, absorbs forces better. This is in the case of low-speed linear and rotational impacts. Plus, the helmet also displays a progressive response to high-speed impacts.

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The ventilation on this helmet also proves to be top-notch. It certainly is perfect for any dirt bike adventure you’re up to. While most Fly Racing helmets come with a more affordable price tag, the Dirt Formula is on the other end of the range. You can find more affordable choices in Fly Racing’s catalog but the Dirt Formula is a force to be reckoned with.

Best Motorcycle Helmet Guide & FAQs

What Makes A Good Motorcycle Helmet

When looking for a motorcycle helmet, a beginner can be swayed by promises of comfort yet sacrifices safety and design. It doesn’t have to be that way. In order for you to find the best motorcycle helmet for your next ride, there are a few things to consider.

Safety

This is the very reason people wear helmets. It minimizes the damage caused by a crash. If, for any unfortunate reason, you’re not wearing a helmet then encounters a crash, you’re most likely to reach the end of the line due to a brain injury. The first thing you must always question about the helmet is safety. Don’t put your money on poorly designed helmets. Always put your safety first.

Comfort

With this comes head size and fit. Wearing a helmet can take a toll not only on your overall experience but also on your safety. Since they’re worn for an extensive period of time, an ergonomic design is a must. It must always fit the shape of your head, including prescription glasses if possible. A helmet can’t be too loose or too tight; it must be the right snug fit. If you’re uncomfortable with your helmet, it’s best to have it replaced. Once you find the perfect size for you, you’re sure to enjoy your ride.

With comfort also comes ventilation. Proper ventilation doesn’t only ensure high visibility but also an easy ride. The right helmet won’t be as hot and will also minimize or even generally eliminate sweating.

Visibility

A helmet must never get in the way of your vision. Say you have a safety helmet on but its poor visibility causes you to crash, it overall defeats its purpose. Always go for a helmet that provides a clear view of the road ahead. Check if they have features such as visors and shields. If you can shell out a few more dollars for these features, do so. You’ll thank yourself later when you encounter low-visibility situations such as fog, extreme sunlight, or even a swarm of insects.

Design

Every motorcycle rider wants to look cool wearing a helmet. That’s why design and aesthetic is such an important factor when picking a helmet. From color to the very angles on its exterior. While it’s not exactly the first thing you should be checking, it surely is the first people will see. Besides, it will make you feel more confident during your rides. If customization is on your mind, make sure to do your research on what should and shouldn’t be done to your helmet.

Price

Price is almost always that makes or breaks a helmet purchase. Many people would resort to cheaper helmets just for the sake of having one. However, a lot of cheap helmets don’t have the safety capacity luxury helmets have. It’s understandable if you’re working on a budget but as this list proves, there are some affordable helmets that provide enough protection to the wearer. Research is always the key to these problems. Make sure you’re getting your money’s worth with all its features and nitpicks.

With that, if you can afford a helmet that comes with a warranty, do get one. In the long run, this can be great not only for you but for your pocket. It also adds to the value of your helmet. You’ll thank yourself if ever you encounter any problems with your helmet along the way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long do motorcycle helmets last?

An easy answer for this is that, obviously, you must replace your helmet after every crash. A helmet can only take some much impact before it gets damaged. Every helmet has a foam lining inside that slows down or reduce the impact of a crash’s force. This foam, however, classifies as a one-off material. It means that it will no longer be as effective once you encounter subsequent collisions. 

However, if you go on for a while without a crash, then make sure to replace it every 5 to 7 years. With this regular replacement comes tech updates you can only get from purchasing new helmets. It should also be known that body fluid such as sweat and natural oils from the body can speed up the deterioration process of your helmet.

Always make it a habit to check the quality of your helmet and be mindful whenever you wear it to know whether or not it’s time to change it yet. When all else fails, consider checking and recording any date suggested by the manufacturer.

Q: Does dropping a helmet ruin it?

No, it doesn’t. In fact, it’s out of the question. You will, at some point, drop your helmet. Short distance drops won’t have any effect on your helmet but with a little force, it could damage its exterior paint. Helmets are designed to take more impact than just occasional drops.

Q: Which is better: regular helmets or track helmets?

There’s no black or white answer for this. It always depends on the helmet’s purpose or the intent of your ride. There are suitable helmets for every ride such as off-road, racing, or simply street cruising. Track helmets have an aerodynamic design perfect for racing or off-road adventures. For street cruising, regular helmets would work best. They come with good ventilation for long rides, day in and out.

Q: Half-Face or Full-Face Helmets?

While half-face helmets are stylish, full-face helmets still provide optimum protection. The only up-side of having a half-face helmet rests on its aesthetic and ventilation system. Keep in mind, however, that they’re not as effective in giving protection as full-face helmets. So, if you want to have the wind against your face on your rides, a half-face helmet may suit you. However, if you’re off to long trips and will most likely encounter weather changes, you’ll thank yourself for wearing full-face helmets.

Final Thoughts

Finding the perfect helmet can be tedious with all the things you must consider. If possible, having multiple helmets will only work to your advantage. Having at least one luxury helmet at your disposal wouldn’t hurt as well. Depending on your budget, you’re sure that the items on this list provide optimum protection according to specific needs. Make sure that whatever adventure you’re off to, put safety before anything else.