Best Ski Helmets For 2023 | Buyer’s Guide

From the height of ski helmet innovation to more budget options, this buyer's guide will help any skier looking to protect their head on the slopes this season

Whatever your skill level when it comes to skiing or snowboarding, getting yourself a ski helmet is a smart decision. Even the best skiers and riders can take a tumble now and then, find themselves involved in a high-speed collision, or have a big crash off the kickers. With that in mind, spending some time thinking about how you’re going to protect one of your body’s most vital organs (your brain) in the mountains is definitely a sensible approach. Accidents can happen to anyone.



Whether you’ve got an old helmet that’s seen better days or are totally new to the sport, you’ll be glad to know that ski helmet technology has advanced greatly in recent years. Ski helmets are now lighter and safer than ever before. From cutting edge helmets to more basic, yet effective, budget options we’ve got your head covered this ski season. Once you’ve chosen your ski helmet for this season, be sure to head on over to our best ski jackets and best ski mitts round ups. It’s time to get kitted out.

The Best Ski Helmets For Winter 2023

Before we discuss the best ski helmets for this winter, we thought we’d take this opportunity to answer some frequently asked questions when it comes to buying protective headwear.

When should you change your ski helmet?

Your ski helmet serves a vitally important function so it’s crucial that you keep track of what condition it’s in, and whether it’s due for a replacement. Ski manufacturers recommend you change your helmet every five years. This might sound like a cynical ploy to make you spend more of your hard-earned cash with them, but there’s actually some sound logic behind it.

“Ski manufacturers recommend you change your helmet every five years”

Ski helmets, you see, are actually made from materials that will gradually weaken over time. This is particularly true of the EPS foam you’ll find in the inner part of your helmet. Over time, a combination of storage conditions and regular small impacts will alter the safety-enhancing properties and protective characteristics of EPS. Obviously, the more you go skiing and snowboarding the likelihood of this EPS suffering from general wear and tear will only increase.

If you’re involved in a fall or a collision that involves a shock to the head, you’ll need to change your helmet even if the outer part of it appears to be intact. When a helmet impact occurs, the EPS foam which is there to absorb some of the energy and therefore protect your head becomes compromised. Once the foam has been crushed or compromised in any way, the helmet won’t provide anywhere near the same level of protection if there’s another impact. Buying yourself a new helmet might be a hassle, not to mention a hit on the wallet, but the potentially harmful consequences of sticking with a busted helmet isn’t worth the risk.

Should you buy a second-hand helmet?

Never buy a second-hand ski helmet, even if the discounted price is incredibly tempting. The helmet in question might look fine on the outside, but it could have suffered an impact that’s imperceptible to the naked eye. This historic impact or shock may have compromised the helmet’s level of protection, and could mean its useless in a collision scenario on the slopes.

For this reason above, it’s always better – if you can afford it – to buy your own ski helmet rather than renting one. A rental helmet may have suffered a significant impact unbeknownst to the ski hire shop you’re borrowing it from, and mean you’re ultimately wearing something that might not keep you safe.

How to choose the right ski helmet

It might sound obvious but if your ski helmet doesn’t fit properly, and isn’t the right size for your head, it won’t protect you in the way it’s supposed to. Before buying your helmet, take a soft tape measure and wrap it around your head marginally above your eyebrows and ears. The tape measure should cross the middle of your forehead. If you don’t have a tape measure, use a piece of string and wrap it around your head in the same way before measuring the string to the point where it crosses on your forehead.

In an ideal world, the measurement will fit comfortably in the middle of a size bracket leaving you with an easy decision to make. If, however, you are on the line between sizes we’d recommend going up a size although you’ll likely want to try both to be sure.

“It might sound obvious but if your ski helmet doesn’t fit properly, and isn’t the right size for your head, it won’t protect you”

To check the fit is correct, place the helmet on your head so it’s aligned in the correct manner before pulling the strap down and under your chin. The helmet should feel snug, but not uncomfortable. A correctly fitting helmet should have no significant gaps between the lining of the helmet and your head.

Once the ski helmet is on, with the strap clipped, shake your head around gently. If the helmet moves around or you feel it shaking separately from the movement of your head, it’s almost certainly too big. At the other end of the sizing spectrum, if you’re feeling pressure around your head when the helmet’s on (as if it’s being squeezed) or the helmet doesn’t fit all the way on it’s too small and you need to go up a size. Your helmet needs to be comfortable enough to wear all day, otherwise you might be tempted to take it off at a time, or in a scenario, where you might need it.

Scott Blend Plus Ski Helmet

Sizes: S, M, L

Price: £225

Reasons to buy it: ISPO award winner, clever all-in-one offering, impressive airflow


Winner of the coveted 2022 ISPO Award, the Scott Blend Plus Helmet is Scott’s take on an integrated helmet and visor system. Now, we’re fully aware that integrated goggle systems such as this one here are something of an acquired taste. That being said, however, we really do love how Scott has gone about things with this product and that’s why we’re happy to argue it’s one of the best ski helmets that money can buy at this current time. 

The helmet, aside from the additional magnets and cord for the visor, looks and fits just like a regular helmet. It’s housing an in-mould design with MIPS. In other words, it’s home to some of the best in class protection. The product also features a nifty venting setup to maximise comfort on the mountain, no matter what time of year you happen to be shredding it up in. 

“Winner of the coveted 2022 ISPO Award, the Scott Blend Plus Helmet is Scott’s take on an integrated helmet and visor system”

The visor makes use of Scott’s Amplifier lens technology. Just like other clever bits of contrast-boosting lens technology, this setup essentially filters out the light you don’t need to see. In doing so, it also boosts the light you want to see (blue light, orange light and red light). These light ranges are said to be the most important in enhancing contrast and clarity in poor light conditions.

Considering it’s an integrated helmet, arguably one of the most impressive things about the Scott Blend Plus is that it doesn’t look kooky in the slightest. Scott really has nailed the design with this one. It offers some of the most impressive airflow around, and delivers a seamless connection between the helmet and visor. With some handy magnets to help stash the visor when you’re not using it, there’s a sense with this helmet, from the second you get to grips with it, that Scott has put a lot of thought in. All things considered, it’s an excellent two-birds-with-one-stone kind of package. 

Read our Scott Blend Plus Ski Helmet review.

Atomic Backland Helmet

Sizes: 51-55 cm, 55-59 cm and 59-63 cm

Price: £170

Reasons to buy it: Ski touring expertise, great protection, versatile


From the Backland skis to the fantastic Backland boot lineup, Atomic have brought over world-cup-winning designs and applied it to the ski touring market. The brand has now gone one step further by bringing their expertise and seeing what it can cook up in the world of ski touring helmets. Introducing the Backland Helmet. 

“It’s a dual-density foam that, according to Atomic, provides up to 40% higher impact protection than the industry-wide safety standards”

When discussing helmets, it’s natural to immediately question what the setup is like between your head and the hard outer shell stuff. This build is ultimately what’s responsible for keeping your brain safe, so it’s natural to question how it will hold up when, for example, it whacks into icy snow when you’re bombing it at 50 km/h. In this case, it’s Atomic’s AMID construction that makes up this all-important layer.

AMID is essentially Atomic’s impact protection (Atomic Multi-directional Impact Deflector). It’s a dual-density foam that, according to Atomic, provides up to 40% higher impact protection than the industry-wide safety standards. This level of protection is what brings multi-norm certification to the Backland’s credentials. It’s a level of performance that means it meets skiing, climbing, and cycling standards (in one package). If you’re the kind of person who enjoys a multi-sport day, or like the idea of cycling up to the snowline (we’re looking at you, skiers of Scotland), this lid has got you covered.

Read our Atomic Backland Helmet review.

Head Compact Pro Ski Helmet

Sizes: XS/S, M/L, XL/XXL

Price: £95

Reasons to buy it: Lightweight, durable, easily-optimised fit, great ventilation


The Head Compact Pro manages to be both lightweight and durable. What exactly does this mean for you, the skier? Well, in short, it means you’ve got the protection of a nuclear bunker up top without the concrete weightiness that goes with it. The helmet has a slim profile, adjustable ear pads, and a patented Sphere Fit system that means you can ensure it’s comfortably locked onto your skull no matter the shape of your head. It’s all dialled in, for an optimum fit, with the help of an always-reliable BOA dial. What this means, in reality, is that you can get the fit to a place where it feels incredibly secure without putting uncomfortable pressure on your skull. We like BOA dials a lot. 

As seasoned skiers of a certain vintage can attest, there’s arguably nothing worse in the mountains than skiing in a helmet housing a sub-standard helmet climate. OK, there’s definitely worse things but poor ventilation on a ski helmet can cause a sweaty head situation and this, in turn, can make your head cold and uncomfortable when those frosty alpine winds really start to ramp up. With that in mind, you’ll be glad to know that the Head Compact Pro has seven ventilation outlets and a generally very impressive vent channel system. Head claim their Thermal Ventilation leads warm away but doesn’t let cold air in. It’s a claim that, if our testing is anything to go by, seems to have a fair bit of merit to it. Clever stuff from a brand with clever designers, we’re fans of this helmet. 

Read our Head Compact Pro Ski Helmet review.

Dynafit TLT Helmet

Sizes: 53-58 cm (S/M) or 57-61 cm (L/XL)

Price: £120

Reasons to buy it: Multi-purpose, extremely lightweight, versatile, great ventilation and excellent protection


The Dynafit TLT Helmet is a bit like that annoyingly talented family friend who can speak four languages, bash out Beethoven’s fifth on the piano, and captain the rugby and cricket teams; all without breaking a sweat. Coming with triple certification for multi-sport use, this helmet can protect you while you’re skiing, climbing / mountaineering, and riding bikes. Mountain sport enthusiasts, who love taking on a wide range of activities in the hills, are bound to appreciate what this versatile offering brings to proceedings.

Why is multi-cert so impressive, you ask? Well, it’s because creating something that can perform across multiple disciplines is actually a pretty hard thing to achieve. Bulk up a helmet for maximum protection for downhill skiing and mountain biking, and you’ll have inevitably sacrificed much of the comfort and airflow that’s essential for ski touring and climbing lids. It comes to finding that perfect balance, something which Dynafit have impressively managed to achieve here. This helmet, it’s worth noting, has been approved by the International Ski Mountaineering Federation for certification in their races. If that doesn’t underline what a quality bit of kit this is, nothing will.

“This helmet, it’s worth noting, has been approved by the International Ski Mountaineering Federation”

As well as the extremely rad “No pain, no gain” motivational message on the underside of the helmet, on a performance front we’re loving this helmet’s all-important feature-set. The TLT Helm-Goggle system, for example, makes use of a popper in order to attach Dynafit’s own goggles to this helmet in a seamless and highly integrated way. Say goodbye to the bulk and faff of a full goggle strap (if you want to). Speaking of field of vision, we also really like the visor that’s adjustable and removable. It’s been designed to help shield your eyes from any potential glare, just like the brim of a baseball cap, and will help to keep your ski goggles in place when you’re moving across terrain. 

Finally, a word on this helmet’s incredible ventilation. Numerous holes at the top of the helmet promote a seriously refreshing airflow over your head, but it does so without notably weakening the structure of the helmet. This means you can charge about confidently in the knowledge that you’ve got good impact protection going on upstairs. If you love to earn your turns and put sweat-inducing effort in, this helmet might just be the one for you (especially if you’re into a wide array of mountain-based activities). 

Read our Dynafit TLT helmet review.

Anon Merak WaveCel Ski Helmet

Sizes: 52 cm – 55 cm (S) / 56 cm – 59 cm (M) / 60 cm – 62 cm (L) / 63 cm-64 cm (XL)

Price: £290

Reasons to buy it: WaveCel technology is brilliant, Polartec comfort, great airflow and fit


Anon was founded by Burton back in 2001. Over the last 20 years, they’ve consistently delivered on the snow gear front; bringing great innovation to the equipment needed to enjoy our favourite winter activities to the fullest. WaveCel, which features in the Anon Merak Wavecel Ski Helmet, is an excellent example of the label’s intelligent approach. 

Whereas traditional foam helmets are designed to protect against direct impacts, WaveCel has been developed to account more realistically for how head injuries occur (i.e. through angled impacts). How does WaveCel do this exactly? Well, it all comes down to the cell structure. Getting all scientific for a second, WaveCel is a collapsible cellular material that sits between your head and the helmet’s outer shell. During moments of impact, it works in three phases. Firstly, the cells flex to help reduce the initial forces. Then, just like a car bumper, the cells crumple before WaveCel glides to help redirect energy away from your head. Sounds complicated, but it’s highly effective.

“WaveCel is a collapsible cellular material that sits between your head and the helmet’s outer shell”

The clever WaveCel technology, on its own, is arguably enough to see it included in our guide to the best ski helmets. Impressively though, there’s a number of other features on this helmet that help to elevate it to one of the top head-protecting options this winter. 19 active ventilation channels means you can really push yourself physically while wearing this, and not have to suffer from a resulting build-up of uncomfortable sweat beneath the helmet. The 360° BOA Fit system offers a quick, micro-adjustable, fit with the turn of a dial. Locking in a fit has never been easier than with a BOA dial. 

Final few thoughts on this Anon helmet. We’re giving bonus points to it for its Fidlock magnetic helmet strap buckle that’s easy to use even if you’ve only got one free hand, and that hand happens to be inside a ski glove. The Polartec Power Grid fleece liner and ear pads, as well, represent the kind of premium touches that help to justify this product’s high price point. It’s not the cheapest ski helmet by any stretch but as Anon are keen to point out in their marketing materials, you only get one brain. This superb helmet, if you’re willing to fork out a little extra for it, will look after your brain and then some.


Sandbox Classic 2.0

Sizes: 52 cm – 54 cm (S) / 55 cm – 57 cm (M) / 58 cm – 61 cm (L)

Price: £179

Reasons to buy it: Brand’s signature style, protective, customisable, good ventilation


It’s not an aesthetic that will suit everyone but there’s a lot of good things to be said about the Sandbox Classic 2.0. It’s the brand’s signature style and one that manages to combine performance, comforting airflow, and great protective qualities. The snowsports edition of the helmet comes with a nice matte finish on a tough ABS shell, and features an EPS liner that’s been tested to ensure the reduction of force transmitted to the head during crashes. It’s effective stuff, and genuinely reassuring. 

There’s a patented vent system with three vents here. It’s a setup that anyone who’s tried the product out on the slopes can vouch for. We like the removable aspects of this lid. For example, the removable padded ear covers, vented comfort liner, and goggle trip clip. Nothing particularly groundbreaking but it’s aspects of the helmet that increase the sense that this a piece of protective headwear which can be customised to suit the needs and wants of the wearer. The Sandbox crash warranty is a nice touch as well.


Bolle Ryft Pure Ski Helmet

Sizes: 55 cm – 59 cm (M) / 59 cm – 62 cm (L)

Price: £150

Reasons to buy it: Versatile, good all-rounder, nice Click-To-Fit system, protective


Whether you’re all about hitting the slopes or more about taking on the backcountry, we think you’ll appreciate what the Bolle Ryft Pure Ski Helmet offers. Part of the RYFT family, this is a ski helmet that combines a classy approach to design with intelligent technology usage.

Thanks to the implementation of AVID prgressive EPS for safety, you can embrace a full day of skiing safely in the knowledge that, if the worst should happen, you’re rocking excellent shock absorption up top. Factor in the adjustable ventilation with six vents, a Click-To-Fit System that means you’re able to make the helmet feel completely at one with your head, and 3D earpads for superior comfort and hearing, and it quickly becomes clear that you’re onto something of a winner here.

Getting a piste-to-backcountry helmet at a relatively reasonable price like this isn’t easy. Offering top performance for great value, and capable of keeping pace with you wherever your adventures in the hills take you, there’s a vibe given off by the Bolle Ryft Pure that really does hit the spot. After getting hands on with plenty of Bolle helmets over the years, including this one, we’re in no doubt that this is a lid worthy of its place on our guide to the best ski helmets. 


Oakley Mod 1 Pro Ski Helmet

Sizes: S, M, L, XL

Price: £127

Reasons to buy it: Lightweight, highly protective, fully adjustable, cool skate-style


The Oakley Mod 1 Pro Ski Helmet is lightweight, highly protective, fully adjustable, designed for optimum on-the-hill comfort and has a cool skate-style aesthetic. Unsurprisingly, for a helmet with ‘Pro’ in the name, this has been made with core, can’t stop skiing, skiers very much in mind.

The Mod 1 Pro Helmet gives off the impression that it could survive a direct hit from a trident missile. It (probably) couldn’t, to be fair, but it does just inherently feel like a properly tough and dependable shell for your head whenever you put it on. And, not just because it’s got an ever-reliable Oakley logo on it.

One of the headline acts with this ski helmet is the MIPS Brain Protection System. Integrated cleverly into the helmet, this low friction layer is designed to reduce rotational motion that can be transferred to the skier’s brain during an impact. It’s clever, health-preserving, stuff and you won’t find it on the more budget lid options out there. If you’re all about charging hard and sending it big, and want an extra bit of reassurance to help you shred in confidence, getting a helmet with MIPS included is a no brainer.

“This has been made with core, can’t stop skiing, skiers very much in mind”

The brim / goggle ventilation system here is genuinely excellent. It allows hot air to flow unobstructed from your goggles through the helmet’s brim ventilation. This enhances the anti-fog performance of your goggles, and is the primary reason you should consider going for an Oakley goggles and helmet combo on the snow this winter.

Other aspects of the helmet worth mentioning here include the Fidlock Buckle and the BOA 360 Fit System. The Fidlock Buckle serves up seamless magnetic functionality, and allows you to fasten your helmet easily and quickly – even when you’ve got ski mitts on. It works brilliantly, taking the faff out of things when you just want to get the show on the road.

The BOA 360 Fit System is a fully adjustable aspect of the helmet, a feature that allows the wearer to fully optimise and lock in the fit. It’s particularly useful if you’re between sizes and want a bit of extra security regarding the way it feels on your head.

When you consider everything this helmet brings to the party, and the price of some other helmets on the market, it’s actually a bit of a bargain.

Read our Oakley Mod 1 Pro Helmet review.


Wedze D-Ski Helmet

Sizes: 56 cm – 59cm / 59 cm – 62 cm

Price: £20

Reasons to buy it: Low price point, good budget option, adjustable fit, basic level of protection


New to skiing and reluctant to spend silly money on your first forays into the noble art of sliding about on some snowy mountains? Our friends at Decathlon will almost certainly be able to cater for you. The Wedze D-Ski Helmet is very basic, with a low, low, price point to match, but it’s a ski helmet that will definitely look after you during your early days at ski school.

“It’s a ski helmet that will certainly look after you during your early days at ski school”

Before you rise through the ranks, you’ll want to negotiate those first turns of your skiing career in safety. Preferably, without bankrupting yourself in the process. That’s where this brilliant little budget option comes in. It can be easy in this industry to lose sight of those initial steps we all had to make as beginners, and that’s why we’ve decided to include this budget option product in our roundup.

It’s about as low tech as you can possibly get in ski helmet terms but it does have a handy adjustment wheel at the back for optimising the fit, foam inserts for internal comfort, six ventilation points to keep your head cool and help to wick away moisture, and compliant levels of impact protection. Skiing can be expensive so in the early days, when you’re not bombing it on the black runs and sending 540s off the kickers, don’t worry about going for something basic like this box fresh ski helmet with its RRP of £19.99.

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