No matter whether your travels take you off-road or along highways, there is a helmet designed to meet your needs. Selecting the appropriate one depends on a variety of factors including its intended use.

Helms are made up of four primary components: outer shell, impact-absorbing liner, cushioned comfort layer and retention system/chin strap.

Full Face

Full-face helmets provide maximum protection, covering the top, back and front of your head (except the eye port) with no gaps for injury to occur. Not only are these safer than three-quarter and half helmets but they also include an inbuilt chin bar to guard against neck injuries – something lacking from three-quarter and half models.

Full-face helmets feature not only a hard outer shell, but also cheek pads that rest against your face for enhanced rider comfort and an adjustable comfort liner made of materials which are breathable, odor resistant, hypoallergenic and bacteria and fungal resistant – as well as having adjustable cheek pads which fit to various head shapes.

The chin strap serves to secure your helmet underneath your chin and is fastened via two D-Rings connected to the chin bar. Chin straps should never be tight enough to cause pain or discomfort in the chin area and can be adjusted for maximum comfort.

Open Face

Open face helmets (also referred to as 3/4 helmets) cover only the top, back, and sides of your head – leaving all areas around your face completely exposed. Often preferred by riders who prefer an open experience while riding. These styles of helmet are generally lighter and less bulky than flip up or full face motorcycle helmets while offering great ventilation benefits for rider comfort.

These helmets typically feature an impact-absorbing liner made of expanded polystyrene (EPS), composite fiber or carbon fiber to minimize injury in case of an accident, and feature a visor or shield to shield eyes from wind, road debris or sunlight.

Comfort layers are generally made up of padded material that sits atop an outer shell to wick away sweat while riding. Most comfort layers can be detached for washing and replaced with different shapes according to rider preferences, some even come equipped with adjustable vents which enable riders to open or close them depending on weather conditions.


Modular helmets offer riders versatility. Equipped with a hinged chin bar, these helmets can transform from full face to open face by simply pressing a button – offering riders more comfort when riding in inclement weather conditions or simply leisurely rides.

These helmets are popular with touring and commuter riders who value solid protection with the convenience of an open-face helmet. Furthermore, they include built-in sun visors and Pinlock compatible shields to increase both protection and visibility.

Modular helmets present one major safety risk: the chin bar may lower unexpectedly in a crash since it isn’t integral with the shell as with full-face helmets; however, most models meet at least DOT minimum safety standards and include mechanisms to keep their chin bars from dropping during an impact; those bearing either Snell or ECE certification provide even greater assurances of their protection.

Half Helmet

Half helmets are among the least protective helmet options, covering only the top portion of your head down to your brow. Popular among cruiser and vintage bike riders as well as members of Harley-Davidson communities. Though providing limited protection and one step above wearing nothing at all, half helmets do provide a distinctive riding experience.

One major drawback of helmetless headsets is they leave your ears and chin exposed, so protective eyewear must be worn. Furthermore, without having a mouth port communication between group riders is difficult.

As half helmets offer little in the way of protection, for maximum safety it is wise to opt for full-face or modular helmets with either DOT/ECE certifications, or more stringently for those seeking maximum coverage such as SNELL certification. Furthermore, make sure your helmet fits comfortably without moving during rides – donning half helmets is better than no protection at all.

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