14 of the Safest Road Bike Helmets for 2020


While any helmet is better than no helmet, you’re undoubtedly better off looking for the safest bicycle helmet that you can get your hands on. This raises the question, “what is the safest road bike helmet”?

Cyclist raising arms winning race
Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

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UPDATED: September, 2020.

When looking for the best road bike helmet, safety would have to figure prominently within the criteria of what determines what is “best“.

In the United States, Canada, Europe (including the United Kingdom), and Australia, all bicycle helmets manufactured or imported must comply with that countries Safety StandardsOpens in a new tab.. In the United States that would be CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) CFR 16 Part 1203.

That sure is a good thing, but is it enough? Surely some helmets must be safer and sturdier than others. So, how can you tell which helmets are the safest?

Since 2011, there has been independent testing of helmets conducted by Virginia TechOpens in a new tab. (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University). In 2018, they started making the test results public, which has increased awareness and competitiveness amongst helmet manufacturers. This is a good thing as now there is more focus on safety and which helmets can best protect against head injuries rather than simply complying with CPSC Standards.

Virginia Tech’s test results give each helmet a score (the lower the score, the better the protection) which in turn equates to a Star Rating, with 5 Star being the best.

In the Virginia Tech bicycle helmet tests of May 2018 only 4 helmets out of 30 achieved a 5 Star rating.

Now compare that with the most recent round of tests in September 2020, where 104 bicycle helmets were tested and 41 achieved a 5 Star rating. That’s almost 40%. It is also noteworthy that almost 83% of the 41 top-rated helmets were MIPS equipped.
This is a huge win for the safety of cyclists everywhere.

So, no matter if you are looking for the best road bike helmet or the safest bike helmet, you’re looking in the right place.

Listed below is a selection of 14 road bike helmets that scored a 5 Star rating in Virginia Tech’s September 2020 bicycle helmets ratings. Surprisingly, many of the safest bike helmets listed below are quite reasonably priced.

As prices can change from one day to the next, I won’t show the actual price, but I will give an indication of the price with the following:
Less than $101 = $
$102 to $199 = $$
More than $200 = $$$

If safety is what will determine your next helmet purchase, no need to go any further than the helmets listed below.

When you see a ‘BUY NOW ON AMAZON‘ button below, you can hover your mouse over the button to see links to Amazon US, UK, and Canada.

JUMP TO :
1. Lazer G1 MIPS Bike Helmet
2. Scott ARX Plus (MIPS) Cycling Helmet
3. Bell Z20 MIPS Road Bike Helmet
4. Bell Formula MIPS Road Bike Helmet
5. Lazer Z1 MIPS Road Bike Helmet
6. Rudy Project Racemaster MIPS Cycling Helmet
7. Lazer BLADE+ MIPS Bike Helmet
8. Bell Z20 Aero MIPS Road Bike Helmet
9. Giro Aether MIPS SP Road Bike Helmet
10. Bell Stratus MIPS Road Bike Helmet
11. Giro Synthe MIPS Road Cycling Helmet
12. Giro Syntax MIPS Road Cycling Helmet
13. Smith Route MIPS Cycling Helmet
14. Lazer Compact DLX MIPS Cycling Helmet

Accessories Advert

1. Lazer G1 MIPS Bike Helmet


Lazer G1 MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon

The Lazer G1, aka Lazer Genesis, is Lazer’s lightest helmet weighing in at only 230g for the Small size, and around 260g for the Medium. The G1 also boasts improved ventilation with 22 vents and interior channeling. The Lazer G1 also comes with two sets of pads – race pads and comfort pads. The comfort pads are for regular day to day use, while the race pads are thinner and lighter for race days.

The Advanced Rollsys fit system at the top rear of the helmet makes it ponytail friendly and provides a more even fit all over rather than just pulled around to the back. With built-in MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. and its new sleek look and you have a helmet that looks great anywhere.

Don’t forget that Lazer also has a Crash Replacement Program, however, conditions applyOpens in a new tab..

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 22 vents w/internal channeling
  • MIPS protection
  • Advanced Rollsys fit system
  • 2 types of padding (race and comfort)
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 260 grams (Medium size)
  • Price $$$

Link to our LAZER bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

Our brand new super-light helmet: the Genesis!
Courtesy of Lazer Sport on Youtube.

2. Scott ARX Plus (MIPS) Cycling Helmet

The Scott ARX Plus (MIPS) Helmet is available on Amazon.

Scott makes a very nice looking helmet, and the ARX Plus is no exception. Designed as a versatile all-rounder, the ARX Plus is as at home on the road as it is on a rural trail.

Constructed using an in-mold polycarbonate micro shell with integrated MIPSOpens in a new tab. and customizable internal padding. The MRAS 3 Fit System (Micro Rotary Adjustment System 3) provides for easy sizing adjustments, and the front visor is also easily removable.

Available in 3 sizes (S, M, L) ranging from 51 – 61 cm (20″ – 24″) and several color choices, it also has great ventilation for your added comfort.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • In-mold Polycarbonate micro shell
  • Optimized Venting
  • MIPS protection
  • MRAS 3 Fit System
  • Customizable open cell padding
  • Removable visor
  • CPSC, EN-1078 certified
  • Price $

Link to our SCOTT helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab.
.


3. Bell Z20 MIPS Road Bike Helmet


Bell Z20 MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

Bell describes the Z20 MIPS helmet as their flagship road helmet with optimized aerodynamics garnered from more than 60 years of manufacturing and testing experience. Built with an in-mold polycarbonate shell and an EPS inner layer using a progressive layering technology for better durability, it has the MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. built-in for added safety. Bell’s Z20 MIPS weighs in at 305g for the Medium size.

The Z20’s interior is lined with Bell’s sweat-wicking X-Static padding to reduce sweat and provide a layer of comfort. The comfort level is enhanced by the 18 vents and front to rear channeling. The Float Fit retention system works well to provide a personalized fit using the adjustable dial at the rear of the helmet.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 18 vents with channeling
  • MIPS protection
  • Float Fit retention system
  • X-Static padding
  • CPSC, EN-1078 certified
  • Weight 305 grams (Medium size)
  • Price $$ – $$$

Link to our BELL bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


4. Bell Formula MIPS Road Bike Helmet

Bell Formula MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

The Bell Formula MIPS helmet is proof positive that quality and MIPS safety don’t have to cost the earth. At a MSRP of less than $100, the Bell Formula MIPS helmet truly represents value for money.

The outer shell is made with the in-mold polycarbonate and EPS internal liner fused together for added strength, and MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. to create an even safer helmet. It uses the Float Fit retention system for a better fit, and the sweat guide pad design inside to draw sweat away from the eyes. Nineteen vents keep the wearer’s head cool on the hottest of days.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 19 air vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Float Fit retention system
  • Sweat Guide padding
  • CPSC, EN-1078 certified
  • Weight 346 grams
  • Price $ – $$

Link to our BELL bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


5. Lazer Z1 MIPS Road Bike Helmet

Lazer Z1 MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

Weighing in at 230g for the Small size, the Lazer Z1 MIPS must be one of the lightest helmets on the market. So light you would forget you were wearing a helmet. An in-mold construction of the outer shell and inner layer, whilst still leaving room for a whopping 31 vents. No wonder it’s so light.

An Advanced Rollsys fitting system to keep it snug and secure on your head. The top, rear adjuster makes it ponytail friendly as well. The MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. is also included to absorb energy in the event of an accident.

Don’t forget that Lazer also has a Crash Replacement Program, however, conditions applyOpens in a new tab..

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 31 vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Advanced Rollsys fitting system
  • 2 types of padding (race and comfort)
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 230 grams (Small size)
  • Price $$$

Link to our LAZER bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


6. Rudy Project Racemaster MIPS Cycling Helmet

Rudy Project Racemaster MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

This Italian helmet introduces us to Hexocrush technology. The polycarbonate shell and the EPS liner are molded with two different densities of foam creating a hex-shaped structure that provides improved shock absorption in the case of an accident. This in turn is enhanced by the built-in MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab..

The Racemaster features an adjustable RSR9 Retention System, interchangeable custom padding, and an integrated and removable visor. And, being Italian, as previously mentioned, it goes without saying that it is extremely stylish.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell with Hexocrush Technology
  • 17 Flow Through vents
  • MIPS protection
  • RSR9 Retention System
  • Removable custom padding
  • Removable Visor
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 270 grams
  • Price $$$

Link to our RUDY PROJECT bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

RUDY PROJECT RACEMASTER
Courtesy of Rudy Project PH on Youtube.

7. Lazer BLADE+ MIPS Bike Helmet

Lazer Blade+ MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

In the same style and class of the Z1 helmet, the Blade+ combines great looks with high performance. An in-mold polycarbonate shell with an inner EPS layer with an under-shell finish to give a complete all-round finished look. MIPS brain protectionOpens in a new tab. is built-in, along with Advanced Rollsys fit system for safety and comfort.

The fitting system is mounted to the top, rear making it ponytail friendly. Twenty-two air vents provide maximum cooling whilst commuting or weekend leisure riding. The Small size weighs in at 290g.

Don’t forget that Lazer also has a Crash Replacement Program, however, conditions applyOpens in a new tab..

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • In-mold Polycarbonate shell
  • 22 air vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Advanced Rollsys fit system
  • X-Static padding
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 290 grams (Small size)
  • Price $

Link to our LAZER bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

Accessories Advert

8. Bell Z20 Aero MIPS Road Bike Helmet

Bell Z20 Aero MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

The Bell Z20 Aero is built to reduce wind resistance for fast riders or windy days. Built with an in-mold polycarbonate shell and an EPS inner layer using the progressive layering technology for a stronger finish, it also has the MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. built-in for added safety.

The Float Fit retention system provides a personalized fit using the adjustable dial at the rear of the helmet. The Sweat Guide pad design draws moisture away from the rider’s face to avoid eye sting. Over-brow ventilation features ports on the brow to draw airflow in and through channels for better cooling and ventilation.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • Overbrow Ventilation System with 10 vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Float Fit retention system
  • Sweat Guide pad design
  • CPSC, EN-1078 certified
  • Weight 346 grams
  • Price $$ – $$$

Link to our BELL bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

Introducing The All New Z20 Aero | Bell Helmets
Courtesy of BellBikeHelmets on Youtube.

9. Giro Aether MIPS SP Road Bike Helmet

Giro Aether MIPS SP Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

An in-mold polycarbonate hardbody shell with a dual-density EPS liner and progressive layering technology combines with the MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. which is integrated between the EPS foam layers to provide maximum protection for your head.

The Roc Loc 5+ Air fit system features 3-way fit tuning. Internal channeling combines with 21 wind tunnel vents to provide maximum ventilation, along with the Coolfit Anti-Microbial padding.

There are two developments that make this helmet stand out above other helmets. First, is the SP. You may have noticed this helmet says ‘MIPS SP’. The SP stands for Spherical, which is what Giro has called this new system whereby the MIPS system is integrated between the EPS foam layers. Giro partnered with MIPS to develop this new approach.

Second, is what Giro is calling ARA, Aura Reinforcing Arch. This development provides enhanced strength to the helmet structure. It is a shatter-resistant and translucent AURA reinforcing arch that runs throughout the helmet.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 21 wind-tunnel vents
  • Aura Reinforcing Arch
  • MIPS SP protection
  • Roc Loc 5+ Air fit system
  • CoolFit anti-microbial padding
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 267 grams (Medium size)
  • Price $$$

Link to our GIRO bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


10. Bell Stratus MIPS Road Bike Helmet

Bell Stratus MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

Lightweight and comfortable are the words being used to describe the Bell Stratus MIPS helmet. The fusion in-mold polycarbonate shell bonds the outer shell to the EPS foam liner to make a more durable helmet. The Sweat Guide pad design draws sweat away from the brow keeping the rider’s eye clear. Over-brow ventilation features ports on the brow to draw airflow in and through channels for better cooling and ventilation.

The Float Fit retention system provides a personalized fit using the adjustable dial at the rear of the helmet. And, of course, the MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. is built-in for your protection.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • Overbrow Ventilation with 18 Air vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Float Fit retention system
  • Sweat Guide pad design
  • CPSC, EN-1078 certified
  • Weight 296 grams
  • Price $$

Link to our BELL bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


11. Giro Synthe MIPS Road Cycling Helmet

Giro Synthe MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

A good-looking helmet with a slim design suitable for the professional or just the weekend rider. A two-piece shell combines an in-mold hard-body outer shell with the standard polycarbonate shell fused to an EPS liner, with an integrated MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab.. Also molded inside the EPS liner is a reinforced roll cage to give added strength in the case of an impact.

The Roc Loc Air fit system has 2-way fit tuning to allow a custom fit for every rider. Twenty-six wind tunnel vents with internal channeling provide good airflow whilst riding. The Giro Synthe is also reasonably lightweight at just 268g for the Small size and about 312g for the Large.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell with EPS Liner
  • Thermoformed Reinforced roll cage
  • 26 wind-tunnel vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Roc Loc Air fit system
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 268 grams (Small size)
  • Price $$ – $$$

Link to our GIRO bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

Making of Synthe MIPS
Courtesy of GiroSportDesign on Youtube.

12. Giro Syntax MIPS Road Cycling Helmet

Giro Syntax MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

A tough polycarbonate outer shell fused to an inner EPS foam liner using the in-mold process all the while incorporating a staggering 25 wind tunnel air-vents creates an awesome head-hugging designed helmet.

Of course it has the Roc Loc® 5 Air fit system for added comfort, as well as the MIPS Brain Protection SystemOpens in a new tab. for added safety, not to mention the CoolFit anti-microbial padding. The only thing it’s missing is you!

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 25 wind-tunnel vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Roc Loc® 5 Air fit system
  • CoolFit anti-microbial padding
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 346 grams
  • Price $$

Link to our GIRO bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


13. Smith Route MIPS Cycling Helmet

Smith Route MIPS Bike Helmet is available on Amazon.

And now for something completely different. A bike helmet with an alternative type of inner padding called Koroyd. Koroyd is used as an alternative to EPS, however, the Smith Route uses koroyd only on the upper front sides of the helmet, with EPS cushioning the rest of the inner shell. This provides additional protection to the MIPS brain protection systemOpens in a new tab. which is also included.

The helmet fits securely with Smith’s VaporFit adjustable fit system which has a dial at the rear of the helmet. Although the helmet boasts 18 vents, it is said that the koroyd system seems to block the air-flow making it a little uncomfortable in warmer climates.

It’s a little on the heavy side at 343g for the Medium, and 378g for the Large.

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • AirEvac ventilation with 18 vents
  • Zonal ventilated protection featuring Koroyd
  • MIPS protection
  • VaporFit system
  • CPSC, EN-1078, AS/NZS:2063 certified
  • Weight 343 grams (Medium size)
  • Price $$

Link to our SMITH bike helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to our article How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..

Introducing Route & Rover
Courtesy of Smith – Pursue Your Thrill on Youtube.

14. Lazer Compact DLX MIPS Cycling Helmet

The Lazer Compact DLX MIPS Cycling Helmet is available on Amazon.

Described as a recreational cycling helmet, the Lazer Compact DLX MIPS is one of the most affordable cycling helmets with integrated MIPSOpens in a new tab.. The in-mold polycarbonate shell with an EPS foam lining complete with MIPS weighs in at a respectable 325 grams.

The Turnfit Plus retention system is unique in that it can adjust to fit around your entire head. The fit and comfort is enhanced by the adjustable head basket which can be adjusted up or down to suit. The Universal Adult size (54 – 61cm) along with the head basket and Turnfit Plus system can accommodate a variety of head shapes and sizes.

And , of course, don’t forget that Lazer also has a Crash Replacement Program, however, conditions applyOpens in a new tab..

Main features summary:

  • Virginia Tech maximum 5-star safety rating
  • Polycarbonate shell
  • 20 Cooling Vents
  • MIPS protection
  • Turnfit Plus retention system
  • Anti-insect netting
  • Built-in LED Taillight
  • CPSC certified
  • Weight 325 grams
  • Price $

Link to our LAZER helmet size chartOpens in a new tab..
Link to How to Know Your Helmet SizeOpens in a new tab..


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