Choosing a road bike can be daunting, but choosing the best road bike helmet under $100 is even harder. Not only because of the price that may not match the quality but also features that don’t seem to fit you. Buying the wrong helmet is a waste of money.
That’s why I write this post. I know you are confused, just like I was.
If you are having less than a hundred bucks to spend for a helmet, check out my list right here.
Here are the best road bike helmets under $100 (Jan 2021 Update):
- Best Overall: Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet
- Best For Mountain Trails: OUWOR Mountain Bike MTB Helmet
- Best For Eyeglass Wearers: VICTGOAL Bike Helmet for Men Women
- Best For Swooping Singletrack Trails: Giro Fixture Mips Adult Dirt
- Best For Hot Days: BELL Stratus MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet
- Comfortable: TeamObsidian Airflow Bike Helmet
|Top 6 Best Road Bike Helmets Under $100|
|Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet||Read Our Review|
Best For Mountain Trails
|OUWOR Mountain Bike MTB Helmet||Read Our Review|
Best For Eyeglass Wearers
|VICTGOAL Bike Helmet for Men Women||Read Our Review|
Best For Swooping Singletrack Trails
|Giro Fixture Mips Adult Dirt||Read Our Review|
Best For Hot Days
|BELL Stratus MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet||Read Our Review|
|TeamObsidian Airflow Bike Helmet||Read Our Review|
Best Overall: Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet
- Super lightweight
- Durable construction
- Lots of vents
- Comfortable fit
- Some plastic parts will wear
- The plastic dial is not durable
I really liked the look of this helmet. The shape is made to match bikers of any age and gender. It’s light and well-ventilated on my head. The construction is of three layers of micro-shell that is super durable without bulking your head.
Wearing this helmet is quite comfortable. You can use the dial on the back to adjust to your head size. Kids from 14 can use this helmet with a system of 360° adjustability.
This unit has more vents than I thought a helmet should have. In summer rides, you can get as much as air flowing through, drying sweat most of the time.
The visor helps the sun from hitting your eyes. If you don’t like the visor on, just remove it, and the helmet will just stay as fashionable as it should be.
|Schwinn Thrasher Bike Helmet Specifications|
15.1” x 10.1” x 4.8”
Made to be not bulky
21 vents cool your head better
360° adjustable fit system
If you just need a basic helmet for the run, this Thrasher offers sufficient protection, adjustability, and comfort.
Best For Mountain Trails: OUWOR Mountain Bike MTB Helmet
- Versatile for multiple biking styles
- Light in weight
- Camouflage design
- Snugly fit
- A bit unstable due to the gap on the sides
- Not comfortable for narrow heads
This OUWOR MTB helmet can be used as a road bike helmet just fine. It features an ergonomic design made of strong PC shell and high-quality EPS foam. That provides protection better than a normal helmet.
Because it is an MTB helmet, it’s obviously suitable for mountain trails and enduro style. You can remove the visor to when you do road biking. It’s easy to detach with hands.
There is nice inside padding providing a comfortable fit. The dial at the back is also easy to adjust. Yet, it is lightweight. I didn’t feel much mass on my head when wearing it. The air vents are placed strategically for effective airflow. You won’t feel too hot riding a rough trail.
This helmet comes with a carry bag for you to store the unit properly. If your kids want to wear it, make sure they are older than 14. It fits head size from 22 to 24 inches.
|OUWOR Mountain Bike MTB Helmet Specifications|
Strong and durable
Camouflage design suitable for trail biking. Lightweight material
The helmet is convertible from a road bike helmet to the one for trail cycling.
Best For Eyeglass Wearers: VICTGOAL Bike Helmet for Men Women
- Easy-to-install goggles and visor
- High-density imported PC case
- Ultra-bright tail light
- Cutout on goggles may touch the noses
- Excessive strap length
This helmet has an interesting design in general. It looks unique with the LED taillight and the snap-on magnetic shade in the front.
And because it comes with the installable goggles, people who wear eyeglasses don’t need sunglasses when they ride under the sun. That is especially helpful for myopia riders. Aside from that, the LED light in the back has three flashing modes to make you visible at night.
More than that, what surprised me was the aerodynamic design with 21 vents for breathability. Though it comes with a number of features, the helmet weighs only 68 ounces. The soft pad inside will isolate your head from impact, while the outer shell is durable and pretty hard.
Those who don’t wear eyeglasses can also use the goggles to avoid wind and sand. It can also block the strong UV ray to protect your eyes. When you commute, just remove the visor and goggles. Simple, right?
|VICTGOAL Bike Helmet for Men Women Specifications|
Detachable goggles and visor give shade and provide protection to the eyes
It’s an interesting and versatile helmet to try if you ride on dusty roads and sunny streets every day.
Best For Swooping Singletrack Trails: Giro Fixture Mips Adult Dirt
- Integrated MIPS technology
- Lots of large air vents
- In-mold construction
- Universal fit
- The strap is a bit short
If you like to mix up your riding between marathon and swooping singletrack trails, you need a helmet that functions at those 2 disciplines. This Giro Fixture is the bang for the buck.
The helmet integrates MIPS, which is an inner liner that rotates upon impact to disperse some of the force from the head. It’s a universal fit. That means one size fits all using the adjustable dial on the back. You simply turn the dial to achieve the desired comfort.
And of course, it’s well-ventilated. There are 18 large vents well-placed to allow airflow when you are climbing or descending. That won’t make a heat bucket inside your head.
If you don’t need the visor, you can remove it easily. It just pops out in one snap, and you can pop it back in.
|Giro Fixture Mips Adult Dirt Specifications|
14” x 11” x 8”
MIPS reduces rotation of forces
One size fits all
Buying this Giro Fixture was a smart decision because it didn’t break my bank account. And it has MIPS for raiding singletrack trails.
Best For Hot Days: BELL Stratus MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet
- Bigs vents and airflow channels
- Float fit
- Super light
- MIPS equipped
- Loose chin strap
- The front padding doesn’t get dried fast
This Bell Stratus has the same shape as the Zephyr, if you know it. The main difference is the foam construction side. This one got a density of the foam padding inside.
I was riding with this headgear in really hot days. Temperatures were up around 28 to 31 degrees, and really humid. But that was a chance for me to test how this unit cools me off.
The vents are quite big, so there’s a lot of space for air to get in and out. What’s more important than having such large holes is how they channel that air through.
One thing Bell did on this helmet is the little air vents at the edge where the shell contacts the inside padding. These vents basically scoop air above your brow and shoot it through rooms underneath parts of bracing of the helmet. That’s where airbrushes over your head to cool things off.
|BELL Stratus MIPS Adult Road Bike Helmet Specifications|
15” x 10” x 8”
Incorporate large vents and air tunnels for effective cooling
Many heavy sweaters find this helmet a savior for their soaking head. I believe you’ll like it too.
Comfortable: TeamObsidian Airflow Bike Helmet
- Lots of cushion in the skull and chin
- Several air vents
- Smart protective design
- Clean strap system
- Feather light
- May not fit people with thick hair
Anyone who seeks comfort should have a look at this helmet. With 22 vents, it exceeds my expectation for ventilation. Another advantage is it doesn’t feel like the helmet is perching on your head.
This helmet is made from PC plus EPS which elevates much of the mass of the unit. It weighs only 0.63 pounds in the M/L size. The visor is removable on this helmet. When you’re off the mountain trail, you can convert it into a road bike by taking the visor off.
When it comes to comfortability in a helmet, it’s essential to have a nice pad that not only insulates your skull but also absorbs moisture. It leaves a cool and dry space inside, allowing your head to breath well.
At the chin strap, there is a piece of velcro that you can use to cushion your chin. That’s a pretty cool feature.
|TeamObsidian Airflow Bike Helmet Specifications|
Massive air vents and nice cushion inside
Pad in the chin for better insulation
There are lots of padding besides protection in this helmet, making it comfortable for any wearer.
How To Choose The Best Road Bike Helmets Under $100?
Wearing a helmet is easy. But purchasing one, there’re actually loads of options. So, walk through a few considerations so that you can choose the best helmet for your own.
Comfort And Fit
- Before reading any specs of the helmet, get a tape measure and wrap your head to read your size. That way, you’ll know what size fits you and eliminate options that are too tight or too loose.
- A retention system is a recent addition to modern road helmets. It helps you get a nice and snug fit. Most helmet have some sort of dial or ratchet retention system. It basically wraps around your head and engages your head with the helmet.
- A lot of manufacturers, along with the tightening aspect, will also offer height adjustability. That’s great if you have a protruding lump at the back of your head.
- At the core of all helmets is the foam liner, although there are some new materials on the horizon. What foam does is it crushes under an impact, and that allows the forces to be reduced. So, we want that foam to deform and have kind of the single-use effects.
- Most helmets these days are single-use. That means if you have a big crash and you hit your helmet hard, it’s time for you to buy a new helmet. Even if you can’t see the impact, you can often cause damage to the helmet.
- The next piece in construction is the shell. It can be made out of polycarbonate or carbon fiber. Those materials all provide a surface that is hard to penetrate and a little bit of sliding effect when you impact. The reason is you don’t want things like tree branches or rocks being able to push through the foam.
- The sliding effect is also crucial. If you are impacting in motion, it allows your helmet to move along without pulling your head in weird directions.
- The straps secure the helmet to your head under the chin and around the ears. It is the locking system that matters. Most models come with a one-click fastening system and adjustability in the straps for a snug fit. Some are with clipping in locking.
- It will be a plus if the manufacture includes a chin cushion on the strap. It helps you stay more comfortable when wearing the helmet for long hours.
Your Type Of Rider
- Ask yourself what type of rider are you and what condition you bike in. Roadies have to ride in cold and wet conditions occasionally. If that’s the case for you most of the year-round, you should get something that is not going to let cold and the rain in.
- Conversely, if you live in a hot region, a helmet that lets plenty of air in will keep your head cool.
- Commuters? If you ride on busy roads or at night, it makes sense to get a helmet that is highly visible.
- And do you like to ride fast? Pay attention to aerodynamics helmets. The kind of helmet can reduce drag to allow speeding and minimize the angle of pitch.
Which Brands Make The Best Road Bike Helmets Under $100?
- Schwinn is a noble name brand producing bicycles and cycling accessories with a long history. Started up by an amateur machinist, Ignaz Schwinn, the brand focuses on “World Bicycles,” which were manufactured for professional cyclists and champions. From then, Schwinn is trusted for knowing the best in cycling, thus making their helmet reliable.
- Born obsessed over your passion, Giro only aims at one thing – making the best sports gear. With more than 30 years in the industry, Giro gets the idea that only thriving further, faster, and better will get them to the goal. Helmets from Giro are soaked in that spirit with every unit sold with quality to details.
How often should bike helmets be replaced?
Bike helmets wear fast if you don’t maintain it right. Wearing a bike helmet frequently, you can notice that the sun and heat damage it from the outside. Inside, it is your sweat. So regularly, a helmet should be replaced every three years to guarantee safety for your own sake.
Do bike helmets expire?
Yes. Everything has its expiration date, so do bike helmets. One good helmet should last about 5 years. Expensive helmets may stay up to 10 years. However, for regular cyclists, they all considering replacing their helmets after 3 years.
Why do helmets expire?
Helmets lose their efficiency because the materials wear through time. Helmets made from EPS foam will degrade over time. On the inside, the absorbent pad will corrode from sweat and salt.
Does dropping a helmet ruin it?
Yes and No. Helmets nowadays are quite durable, especially ones are that certified. It can’t get ruined on one drop, but frequent falling and spiking will kill your helmet soon before it expires.
It’s always a must to wear a helmet whenever you hop on your bicycle. It is your life to protect. I know my list can’t cover everything, but I have knowledge to let you know what is the best road bike helmet under $100 you should buy. If you can’t find the one you need here, please drop a comment asking me, I’ll be right here.