In many sports, the helmet is a mandatory accessory. This is the case of climbing, in which we must protect our head from any object that may fall on us, such as carabiners, safety devices, rocks, or ice. This can also avoid serious consequences that can result from a fall.

As with most products, not all climbing helmets are created equal. There are several things to keep in mind before you can choose one.

In this article, we will explain everything you need to know to find the model that best suits your needs, whether you are starting this sport as a beginner or that you are an established professional.

Right here we have listed out the best climbing helmet for you.

RANK NO. 1
PETZL BOREA Women's Helmet - Durable and Versatile Helmet with Enhanced Head...
  • TOP AND SIDE PROTECTION: Petzl helmets go beyond the industry standard of focusing only on impacts to the top of the head —...
  • OMEGA HEADBAND: Designed with a prominent notch in the back. Designed to fit easily while wearing a ponytail.
  • COMPLETELY LINED WITH FOAM: The interior of the BOREA is completely lined with EPP and EPS foam. These foams — working in...
  • HYBRID CONSTRUCTION: The BOREA helmet combines a thick outer shell made of ABS (for durability) with an EPS foam interior liner...
  • GOES ANYWHERE: Soft headband conforms well to the shape of the head and folds into the shell for storage and transportation....
RANK NO. 2
Petzl BOREO Men's Helmet - Durable Rock Climbing Helmet with Enhanced Head...
  • TOP AND SIDE PROTECTION: Petzl helmets go beyond the industry standard, of focusing only on impacts to the top of the head —...
  • COMPLETELY LINED WITH FOAM: The interior of the BOREO is completely lined with EPP and EPS foam. These foams help the BOREO...
  • HYBRID CONSTRUCTION: The BOREO helmet combines a durable ABS shell with an impact absorbing foam liner providing superior...
  • GOES ANYWHERE: Soft headband conforms well to the shape of the head and folds into the shell for storage and transportation....
  • ADAPTABLE: Two clips in front and a rear elastic band for securing a headlamp to the helmet
RANK NO. 3
Petzl PICCHU Children's Helmet - Kids' Climbing and Cycling Helmet with Enhanced...
  • TOP AND SIDE PROTECTION: Petzl helmets go beyond the industry standard of focusing only on impacts to the top of the head —...
  • DUAL-CERTIFIED: The PICCHU is dual-certified as a rock climbing AND biking helmet for kids.
  • DURABLE CONSTRUCTION: Stands up to repeated wear and tear. A thick outer shell comfortable foam headband can be removed and...
  • OPTIMIZED FIT FOR CHILDREN: The PICCHU is specifically sized for children 3-8 years old with a 48-54 cm headband (18.9-21.3 in)....
  • Construction: Durable construction, made for children: Hard ABS outer shell is impact and scratch-resistant, for optimal...
RANK NO. 4
Jackson Safety CH300 Climbing-Style Hard Hat - Non-Vented Construction Helmet...
  • CLIMBING-STYLE HARD HAT - Jackson Safety's CH300 "climbing inspired" Non-Vented Hard Hat includes a comfortable and convenient...
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & COMFORTABLE - Molded from high density polyethylene (HDPE), the climbing-style hard hat shape is more comfortable...
  • CUSTOM FIT - Super comfortable 6-pt suspension and Rapid-Dial ratcheting headgear for quick and easy height and fit adjustment...
  • ACCESSORIES - Comes with a replaceable extra-absorbent sweatband; Slotted adapters allow use with multiple Jackson Safety and...
  • MEETS STANDARDS - ANSI Z89.1 Type 1 Class C, G, and E, EN397 European Standards, and OSHA head protection requirements
SaleRANK NO. 5
Jackson Safety CH400V Climbing-Style Hard Hat - Vented Construction Helmet with...
  • CLIMBING-STYLE HARD HAT - Jackson Safety's CH400V "climbing inspired" Vented Hard Hat includes a comfortable and convenient...
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & COMFORTABLE - Sliding vent holes keeps your head comfortable depending on weather conditions; Molded from...
  • CUSTOM FIT - Super comfortable 6-pt suspension and Rapid-Dial ratcheting headgear for quick and easy height and fit adjustment...
  • ACCESSORIES - Comes with a replaceable extra-absorbent sweatband; Slotted adapters allow use with multiple Jackson Safety and...
  • MEETS STANDARDS - ANSI Z89.1 Type 1 Class C and OSHA head protection requirements
SaleRANK NO. 6
3M SecureFit Safety Helmet - Climbing Style Inspired Safety Helmet with 6 Point...
  • CLIMBING HELMET INSPIRED DESIGN: Provides comfort and security for workers in construction, manufacturing, telecommunications,...
  • PRESSURE DIFFUSION TECHNOLOGY: Reduces the pressure on the forehead by 20% on average compared to a conventional 3M helmet...
  • CUSTOMIZE FIT: Smooth, easy-turning, 6-point ratchet suspension sits low on the head and allows wearer to customize height and...
  • UV INDICATOR: Proprietary UV indicator lets wearer know when to replace helmet due to UV exposure.
  • REFLECTIVE: 3M Scotchlite reflective material for increased visibility under low light conditions
RANK NO. 7
PETZL, Vertex Vent Helmet, Green
  • Comfortable ventilated helmet
  • Headband: 53-63 cm
  • Weight: 490 g
  • Certification (s): CE, EN 397, EN 12492, ANSI Z89.1 Type I Class C, EAC
SaleRANK NO. 8
Petzl VERTEX VENT ANSI helmet Black
  • Six-point webbing suspension system conforms to the shape of the head for improved comfort.
  • Shock absorption achieved through deformation of the outer shell.
  • CenterFit adjustment system ensures centering and optimal stability of the helmet on the head
  • Side slots for mounting hearing protection. Inserts for accepting a VIZIR face shield. Slot for mounting PIXA headlamp.
  • Ventilation holes with sliding shutters allow the ventilation to be adjusted as needed from the outside
SaleRANK NO. 9
PETZL, Vertex Vent Hi-Viz Helmet, Yellow
  • Comfortable, ventilated high-visibility helmet
  • Headband: 53-63 cm
  • Weight: 490 g
  • Certification (s): CE, EN 397, EN 12492, ANSI Z89.1 Type I Class C, EAC
SaleRANK NO. 10
Vertex Vent-Orange Helmet
  • The Vertex helmet ensures a very comfortable ride thanks to the fabric harness with six-point attachment and the centrefit and...
RANK NO. 11
BLACK DIAMOND Half Dome Helmet, Slate, Small Medium
  • The Black Diamond Half Dome rock climbing helmet has long been a staple for climbers worldwide. The simple yet highly effective...
  • Made with a durable ABS outer shell material for impact protection and EPS impact foam for shock absorbsion, this helmets meets...
  • The easily adjustable chin strap and lower profile suspension system with a one-handed fit dial make fitting simple and secure.
  • Streamlined, lightweight headlamp clips keep your light secure while climbing or on apporach for no worry piece of mind.
  • Sizing: [S/M] 50-58 cm (19.7-23 in) [M/L] 56-63 cm (22-25 in)

Buyer Guide to Choose Climbing Helmet

The most important feature to check in a climbing helmet is its effectiveness in protecting the head. The following paragraphs will show us the various characteristics of different models, the tests to be passed to comply with the regulations, and which are the most appropriate types based on the manufacture or use we intend to give them.

What Is a Climbing Helmet?

The climbing helmet is a safety element that protects the skull from the blows that could be received due to a fall, or from rocks or ice. Therefore, this accessory must always be used when climbing, especially outdoors, where we put our physical integrity at risk.

What Are the Types of Climbing Helmets?

The materials with which climbing helmets are manufactured are mainly plastic materials. All must be equipped with a minimum of hardness and impact resistance.

Therefore they must pass the tests necessary to be approved with the legislation. Anyway, among all the materials, there are some lighter than others, and starting from this, we can distinguish three main types:

  • Hard Helmet: They are the most robust and long-lasting. Generally, they can be used for all adventure activities, so it is normal for them to be manufactured by companies that offer multi-adventure services. Usually, they are made of ABS plastic with an inner pad of hybrid materials.
  • Lightweight Helmet: The outer plastic layer is finer and, consequently, less durable, but still capable of withstanding the blows. Also, it includes an expanded polystyrene sponge, known as EPS. It can be considered a hybrid helmet, a mixture of the rigid ones that we will mention below.
    Ultralight Helmet: It is the one most appreciated by professionals or experienced adventurers, thanks to its extreme lightness. They are made with a monobloc of polypropylene or polystyrene (EPS), without any external layer. It is necessary to consider that you are more at risk, due to the reduced protection and the economic cost of the product, which is certainly less lasting compared to others.

What Certification Must a Climbing Helmet Be Equipped With?

The ce en 12492 standard explains the minimum conditions that climbing helmets must respect.

The energy absorption capacity cannot exceed 10 kg (kilonewton), after the impact of a mass of five kg, which can be vertical, lateral, frontal, or rear.

The fall distance is two meters in the vertical test and 50 centimeters for the other three shapes.

This type-approval process, which includes other tests than those commented on, is considered by some to be very demanding for certain areas. Who has the decision-making power, in this case, is the European standardization committee.

There are also multi-functional helmets approved for various disciplines such as cycling, climbing, and skiing. If you only practice one, it is not convenient to adopt this option due to its high price.

How Long Can a Climbing Helmet Last?

The durability of a helmet depends on the quality of the material with which it is manufactured. In any case, plastic materials become rather fragile over time, so it is not recommended to exceed five years of use, or a little less if they are used very frequently.

Most manufacturers specify in the instructions what is the date by which it is safe to use the same helmet.

Also, the helmet risks being damaged in some way. in this case, the best thing is to replace it, even if it seems to be in excellent condition.

Climbing helmets are made to protect your head from rock hits or rather hard objects. It is positive that a helmet breaks after a very strong impact: this implies that the energy is distributed on the surface.

Why Does the Type of Climbing Influence the Helmet Model to Choose?

The various adventure sports or outdoor activities that we can practice are distinguished by the type of surface, terrain, and climate.

Consequently, it is important to choose a helmet that has the appropriate characteristics for each situation. Below, we will see what are the most recommended performances for the helmet, depending on the type of climbing:

  • Indoor Climbing: unless the managers of the structure have imposed some particular rules, usually in this case you can use a very light helmet, with little sponge, in the end, the rock on which you will carry out your activity is not real: you will not run the risk of hitting it or receiving objects on it.
    In the mountains: normally, these are long-lasting activities and during which enough weight is transported. The ideal is to use a light helmet with rather wide openings for ventilation, and bright colors to be able to be located even at a distance.
  • Ice Climbing: obviously, we will do without ventilation to protect ourselves from the cold. The resistance of the helmet must prevail over lightness, given that it is a terrain where it is very likely to receive impacts from pieces of ice or other materials.
  • Climbing with Equipment: during this type of climbing, we are exposed to receiving many types of blows on the head, of rock, earth, or even elements of the equipment of your companions. Opt for a hard helmet and possibly with a visor, to avoid damage to the eye area.
  • Climate: for this factor, what prevails is ventilation. For high temperatures, a helmet with many openings and rather wide is needed. Sweat and heat must be combated. For the cold, however, quite the opposite: you need a closed helmet that does not allow the air to enter inside.

What Does the Climbing Helmet Protect Us From?

The debate over the effectiveness of helmets has not yet ended. Many think that the legislation is not sufficiently demanding and that it limits itself to dwell on the impacts that can be received from falling objects.

In reality, however, most of the blows come from collisions that can mainly affect the lateral, rear, or frontal areas.

Of course, some climbing helmets have also passed tests in this regard and have more certifications, but the fact remains that most of them have not solved this important problem.

In any case, eps sponge helmets are those that provide more protection in the event of a collision, which is a much more frequent situation, compared to impacts from falling objects.

Purchase Criteria

When it comes time to buy a climbing helmet, you have to keep in mind what you will use it for. once you understand the type of climbing and the climatic conditions from which you must protect yourself.

You must concentrate on the most suitable product that can perform this function well, analyzing the material, weight, and strings to be adjusted. Beyond this, as we have already said, you must make sure that it complies with the safety regulations.

  • Use
  • Material
  • Weight
  • Approval
  • Strings to Adjust
  • Kind

Use

The first thing to consider before buying a helmet is to know exactly what type of climbing or activity we will engage in.

if we meet in a situation with ice or rather cold climatic conditions, ventilation is not necessary. In essence, ​​we must focus more on a high level of resistance since the risk of hitting or falling is higher.

In less demanding soils or with higher temperatures, priority must be given to lightness and wider openings for air to flow.

Material

The legislation indicates that all climbing helmets must be made of plastic materials. The external part must be of a polycarbonate very resistant to mechanical shocks.

Also, it is the lightest option. Most models use abs material. The interior, on the other hand, is made with expanded polymer sponges (polypropylene, polyurethane, or polystyrene).

Weight

The climbing helmet must be resistant since its function is to protect us from blows on the skull. It must also be light, especially when we know that we will have to engage in a fairly long activity.

Most of the products offered on the market are manufactured with materials that bring this lightness.

Approval

When we want to buy a climbing helmet, we have to make sure that it complies with safety regulations. In other words, we need to verify that it has passed the necessary tests imposed by the European standardization committee.

If it is homologated, a label bearing ce en 12492 will appear on it. we cannot endanger our physical integrity with products that do not comply with safety standards.

Strings to Adjust

The regulation system is very important and must be effective; it must prevent any type of helmet movement. The chin strap is the strap that keeps the helmet tight under the chin.

It must be padded and give a feeling of comfort because the helmet will often be worn for several hours. The rear adjustment wheel or similar accessory will complete the locking.

Kind

From the available size of each model, you can understand if it is a helmet suitable for children, women, or men. most of the models have various sizes, so they are unisex.

Others, however, only have large sizes, and its use is limited to the male gender. For women, there are helmets with a hole in the back, which allows the hair to be gathered into a tail.

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