Field Tested: Lazer Helium MIPS helmet

Darkness and crummy weather have descended upon all cyclists, but don’t let that stop you from riding. In addition to proper lights and bright or reflective clothing, consider wearing a high-visibility helmet like the Lazer Helium.

Back in June I reviewed the Lazer Genesis road helmet with SMART Bluetooth technology built in to the headband to gauge heart rate. The $229 helmet has been one of my main lids since. I recently received a Lazer Helium MIPS model in bright orange.

What is MIPS? It’s Swedish technology that stands for Multi-directional Impact Protection System, which adds a low-friction layer between the head and outer foam that allows the helmet to slide relative to the head in a glancing impact. Several helmet manufacturers, including Giro, Bell, Scott and Lazer, offer models with MIPS. The $229 Lazer Helium MIPS model has 19 vents for airflow, and according to our scales the Large size weighs 370 grams.

I typically ride in all kinds of weather, and December in Northern California this means fog and rain, so the high-viz Flash Orange stands out in traffic. For an extra $35 one can add the snap-on rain cover in clear or Lion of Flanders livery.

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Having worn every brand of helmet on the market since 1988, I get a little particular about how straps lay near my ears and on my cheeks. The Lazer straps are thin, narrow and unobtrusive, and the clasp snaps into place easily and securely every time.

Adjusting the fit

The Lazer Rollsys system is a fully integrated mechanism which surrounds the head completely. By turning a smooth thumb wheel (situated on top of the helmet rather than the back of the helmet) the Rollsys system permits an accurate and progressive peripheral sizing adjustment. The fit of the helmet will symmetrically be tightened without any pressure points on the head.

The Rollsys system offers one-hand use and is easy to handle even during riding. By taking away the retention system at the back the Rollsys system is also the perfect solution for riders with a ponytail. Also, the adjustable head basket allows the back part of the Rollsys system (that grips the back of the head) to move up and down, depending on the riders preference.

Thoughts?

I have a large head, with fleshy Belgian cheeks, Roman nose and shovel chin, so I’ll never win a beauty contest wearing a bicycle helmet. I do, however, prefer to keep my noggin intact and protected, and don’t want to suffer a weight penalty by wearing a cheap or inferior lid. During cold weather I just add a Rapha Team Pro Winter hat and I’m set! The Lazer Helium MIPS has been nearly forgetful during rides, which is just the way I like it: piece of mind, like insurance.

 

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