More Choices! 5 Rad Urban Bike Helmets

Heading out the door without head protection? Not so fast there. The “I can’t find a bike helmet to fit my style” excuse is over. While skate-style buckets used to be the default “urban” option, helmet makers continue to fine-tune their offerings for growing numbers of everyday cyclists. Head gear is less bulky, lighter weight, better ventilated and increasingly endowed with special features for safety, comfort and convenience in city bike lanes. New color and pattern choices also abound. Thus the five urban bike helmets here give riders like us more options than ever:

Pared-Down for Women (Top Photo)Bern Unlimited’s new women-specific Melrose isn’t just a shrunken-down version of the men’s model. Rather, the shell is smaller, the lines have been pared down and the back is cut higher to accommodate a ponytail. Bern’s proprietary liquid-injected polyurethane plus a PVC microshell are engineered to be thin, yet strong. The Melrose is also among the first Bern Helmets to use a Boa Closure System, a patented performance device that lets users dial in proper fit. The helmet comes with a flippable brim to protect your face from sun and rain and 16 vents help keep your head cool. It comes in sizes XS/S and M/L and five colors. $89.99

Giro Sutton Bike Helmet MIPS

MIPS  ProtectionGiro’s popular Sutton urban helmet now comes with MIPS (muliti-directional impact protection system) technology.  MIPS, which has been widely incorporated into road cycling helmets, is designed to protect the brain from rotational forces in the event of angled impact. It adds a low-friction layer between the outer shell and the helmet liner, offering the possibility of reducing concussion. (Read more about MIPS.)

This low-profile helmet also has a removable brim and an integrated clip for attaching a light to improve visibility after dark. One of the eight vents is reinforced so that you can run a U-lock through it to secure your helmet to your bike frame. The Sutton MIPS comes in three colors and sizes S, M and L. $100

Nutcase Metro Bike Helmet

For the Metro Set – The urban commuter is the focus of the new Metroride collection from Nutcase. The helmets are lightweight, with generous venting and a snap-on visor. A spin dial helps adjust the fit of the crown and a no-pinch magnetic snap (with reflective striping) makes it easier to operates the strap closure with one hand. Metroride helmets come in one size and you can adjust the fit as needed with sets of pads that are included. Choose from 10 colors and patterns. $79.99

Lazer Genesis Lifebeam Helmet

Helmet with Heart (Beat) – Although this helmet falls into the road cycling category, it incorporates a feature you should know about if you track your heart rate on your daily commute. You can toss your chest-strap now that Lazer Sport has added a heart rate monitor to its popular Genesis helmet. The Genesis Lifebeam incorporates a sensor into the head band that reads heart rate and sends it to a processor at the back. From there, it’s transmitted via Bluetooth or Ant + to a compatible sport watch, cycling computer or smartphone. The rechargeable lithium battery gives you 17 hours of monitoring. The helmet comes in sizes M and L.  $250

Belle Cycling Helmet Emoji

Say It With Emoji – For sheer creativity, you can’t beat artist Danielle Baskin’s wonderful custom-painted line of Inkwell helmets. And if Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop can conduct a political interview with Buzzfeed entirely in Emoji, then think of the possibilities for expressing yourself in the bike lanes. Inkwell’s Emoji model let’s you choose up to six symbols which are vinyl-printed onto a hand-painted, matte-finish background in white (you can request other colors as well) and coated with a protective varnish. Inkwell offers a 10 percent discount to bike share members. $95

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