Last Updated on November 1, 2021 by Stephen Paul Robertson
A must for motorcycle riding is a helmet that provides full protection. However, many are still unaware of facts like the benefits of wearing a motorcycle helmet, how many types of motorcycle helmets are available, what should be considered before buying a motorcycle helmet by a newbie, etc.
If your mind is brimming with curiosity regarding motorcycle helmets, you have reached the right place and we intend to educate you on that very topic; all you need to do is stick with us till the end!
Open face helmet injuries
Open face helmets are always preferred because of the sleek and stylish looks they come in; people especially admire the fact that putting them on will leave their face exposed, meaning it is easy to catch the eyes of all pedestrians while strictly maintaining the law.
However, motorcycle helmet impact statistics constantly keep on showing us how dangerous open-face helmets can be. As you can guess, it will provide no shielding to your face during frontal smashes, i.e., if it doesn’t slip out of your head in the first place. Severe injuries can be caused to the jaw and broken noses are not a rare case; besides that, if you are wearing glasses or sunglasses, they will likely smash, possibly risking blindness.
Although it is said that despite providing little security for your face, the open face helmet will diligently guard your head during accidents, a study made by Brazilian researchers brought new motorcycle helmet statistics to the picture which showed otherwise. Amongst 51 patients who suffered from injuries due to motorcycle accidents despite wearing open-face helmets, 39 suffered from traumatic brain injury or TBI. A whopping 76.5% chance of getting brain injuries clearly shows that open-face helmets are not as safe as they are meant to be.
When compared with those not wearing any helmet, it was seen that the percentages of brain injury were very similar and thus, the researchers stated in The Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery that open-face helmets provide little to no protection against head injury because of their inefficiency in absorbing shock.
However, it should be noted that the statistics also show that an open-face helmet protects against upper face injuries; something is better than nothing after all.
Half helmet vs Full helmet
Half-face helmets provide protection for the upper half of the head and the ears. It is best for anyone who wishes to enjoy the wind while riding and thus, is often used by those who intend to go on long trips on their bike. It provides maximum ventilation while cushioning the head from impacts.
Pros of a half helmet:
- It is extremely comfortable to wear and provides the rush of freedom that many look for while riding their motorcycles; riders can hear and feel the environment while riding.
- Offers outstanding ventilation that is incomparable to all other types of helmets.
- Users are granted a cool and vintage look that makes them stand out in the crowd.
- It is lightweight and as it doesn’t block out sound, you do not have to remove it during stops.
- Allows you to look at nearly everything and can be paired with sunglasses or goggles.
Cons of a half helmet:
- Half helmets expose many parts of the head and thus, aren’t the ideal choice safety-wise. Chins and jaws are at major risks.
- Face and eyes are not resistant to dust or dirt, meaning your vision is very likely to be affected during rides. This increases the risk of accidents.
- As your face and neck are completely exposed, you are much more likely to catch a cold during the winter or rainy season. The snow or rain can also have a numbing effect on your head or neck.
Full face helmets, unlike half helmets, will cover everything – your head, face, jaw, chin, ears. It is the best protection wise and the face shield will also screen out dust, dirt, wind, etc. which might cause hindrance to your eye.
Pros of a full-face helmet:
- Gives maximum protection against injuries for your entire head. The chin bars offer maximum safety for the chin and jaw in cases of a large impact.
- It covers the entire head against weather conditions and the face shield prevents dirt from getting into the user’s eyes.
- Face shield is usually resistant to scratch so you will not have a hard time with your vision.
- Noise is reduced and you can also add or replace liners to make it more comfortable to wear.
- Comes in aerodynamic styles that are stunning to look at.
Cons of a full-face helmet:
- They are often termed claustrophobic motorcycle helmets, since every nook and cranny is shielded.
- Ventilation is usually not that good, making it not so uncomfortable to wear on hot summer days.
- Not suitable for long rides as they are quite weighty.
- Blocks out important noises on the road, meaning users can mistakenly end up ignoring horns.
Why should I use a motorcycle helmet?
As the brain is one of the most important parts of our body, the head needs some extra protection during motorcycle rides to prevent any ill-fated brain injuries. Motorcycles are shock absorbing and thus, can lessen the effect caused by sudden large impacts to the head.
Motorcycle helmet statistics show that amongst all deaths caused due to motorcycle accidents, 66% of the people were not wearing a helmet. This proves that wearing a helmet could make the difference between life and death.
A motorcycle helmet that shields your face also can prevent dust particles, debris, and smoke from getting into your eyes, meaning you are less likely to face any sort of hassle during your ride. Helmets also do an amazing job against weather; the sun is less likely to be a hindrance in your vision while the rain and snow are less likely to cause a cold or numbness.
Some helmets also block out extra noise, allowing motorcyclists to focus solely on traffic signals. To conclude, a motorcycle helmet will save your life along with the lives of anyone else present on the road.
What I should consider to buy the safest motorcycle helmet
The safest motorcycle helmet is likely to be made of carbon fiber. This material has the most outstanding shock absorbing property, which makes the helmet impact-resistant and lightweight. Besides that, it needs to be full face to provide the ultimate level of protection for your entire head and possibly neck.
Before purchasing, it is ventilating, fits properly, and has the type of visors you wish for it to have (adjustable or non-adjustable) since comfort will help to increase safety; visors that prevent reflections from the sun to cause a disturbance in your line of vision are highly recommended. A helmet with a chin strap will also sit more firmly on your head and thus, will prevent the helmet from wobbling around during the ride. Comfort liners are also a praiseworthy feature.
Motorcycle Helmet Safety Standards
Each country has their laws sat that dictate whether the helmet offers safe usage. Most countries will demand it to be above a certain weight to ensure it carries out shock proofing duties properly. Many will also demand the inclusion of features like impact-absorbing liners and chin straps to allow safer usage.
Before buying a helmet, make sure to identify whether they have been certified safe according to the law, as otherwise, the police are likely to charge you for not wearing proper safety attire while riding your motorcycle.
The anatomy of the safest motorcycle helmet
For a safe motorcycle helmet, the following are likely to be a part of its anatomy:
- The outer shell is made of materials like carbon fiber, Kevlar, polycarbonate, or modeled plastic. During sudden impacts, this will prevent the motorcycle helmet from breaking upon large impacts or blows.
- An impact-absorbing liner made of EPS foam that absorbs shock should be present underneath the outer shell. The expanded polystyrene foam prevents the energy of the helmet’s collision from reaching your head, in turn protecting it.
- A visor that doesn’t hinder your vision and stops dust, buds, debris, etc. from getting into your eyes or nose.
- Padded insides are made of open-cell foam, which allows comfort and absorbs sweat, preventing them from rolling down to your eye.
- A ventilation system that allows good airflow and prevents the insides from feeling humid.
- A chin strap that firmly holds the motorcycle helmet in place during bumpy rides.
- Removable cheek pads that allow comfort and prevent hurt.
What type of motorcycle helmet is safe for ladies?
Similar to men, the full-face motorcycle helmet is the best for women. They offer protection for the entire head and shield the face from dust.
Which helmet is still good after an accident?
There will always be unnoticeable problems caused to your helmet in case of a crash (such as damaging EPS) which will result in it being less impact resistant. Hence, all helmets require to be changed after an accident.
Which motorcycle helmet is most comfortable with full safety?
A full-face motorcycle helmet that is lightweight, has a good insulation system, and has a cozy interior is the most comfortable and safe for usage.
What type of motorcycle helmet is safe for beginners?
A full-face motorcycle helmet that fits their head perfectly without sliding off is the best choice. This allows full protection while also ensuring a comfortable ride.
If you have stuck with us till the end, you are probably acquainted with motorcycle helmets pretty well by now. As you are now aware of all the benefits of wearing a motorcycle helmet, we hope you were yours all the time or decide to purchase one if you haven’t already! Enjoy a safe ride!
- How to choose a motorcycle helmet
- How much does a motorcycle helmet cost
- How Tight Should a Helmet Fit
- Full Face vs. Modular Helmet
Paul, a graduate from the University of California, has been a Safety Advisor for over 5 years in USA. Along with his other 2 partners, who are professional bikers, he has been the chief of the headsafetyguard.com to create mass awareness on an often neglected issue: HEAD SAFETY