Whether rock climbers want to admit it or not, there is an inherent danger in rock climbing. There are a variety of things that can happen to a climber when they’re on the side of a mountain or rock face and one of the more prevalent dangers is a head injury. A lot of things can happen to a climbers noggin out there, which is why adequate head protection is not an option but a necessity.

Climbers are susceptible to falling rocks and unintended falls – all of which can be prevented with the use of a climbing helmet. All that a climber needs to do is to find the best climbing helmet available. One that suits their particular style of climbing and their lifestyle. To help those climbers out, ten of the best models available are listed below, followed by a guide on what to look for in a helmet.

Best Climbing Helmets – Reviews

10Camp USA Rock Star Helmet

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This inexpensive and adaptable helmet can not only be used by mountain climbers but can be used by anyone who needs to protect their head, including mountaineers and caving. This EN 12492-certified helmet is made with injection-molded polypropylene and has four side vents for ventilation. It also has a comfortable to use chin strap and is compatible with most headlamps. It’s an ideal helmet for anyone who wants quality head protection but don’t want to spend an arm and a leg to get it. It’s just a reliable basic model that does what it was designed to do – protect the wearer’s head.

9Camp Armour Helmet

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Designed to fit the heads of most climbers perfectly and offer superior protection against falls or falling objects, this helmet has a number of features which makes it useful to just about any climber. It comes in seven different color options, including colors such as black, orange or green, and is manufactured using a molded ABS shell that’s durable and offers top-notch protection. The helmet has ten vents in it to keep air flowing around the climber’s skull to keep them nice and cool. This helmet also features an adjustment system that’s easy to use and keeps the unit right where it’s supposed to be.

8Edelrid Madillo Helmet

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This helmet not only looks like it has a revolutionary design but some climbers would say that it actually features a revolutionary design. That’s because it’s made with a combination of 3 different foam types – EVA, EPS, and EPP foams – that offer unprecedented head protection to climbers, all while having a design that is compact and reduces stow capacity by 50-percent. It does this by using shell sides that slide into the top of the helmet, all while the back folds into it. This makes this model ideal for anyone who wants high-quality head protection but doesn’t want to sacrifice a whole lot of pack space to get it.

7Fusion Meka Work Helmet

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This high-quality and highly durable helmet is designed to protect the climbers head from falling rocks and incidental hits but to do it without the climber feeling like his head isn’t receiving any air. It is designed with ten ventilation areas that keep air flowing and prevents the wearer’s head from overheating and this helmet is designed with an anti-microbial foam padding that prevents bacteria from building up in the helmet and also helps to manage moisture levels. This model also comes in a number of colors and has two slots for mounting hearing protectors, so it can be used for recreation or for work.

6Tontron Sports Comfy Helmet

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Designed to be an effective helmet for both climbers and cavers, this quality model is designed to offer the best head protection possible and do it without sacrificing comfort. It’s made with a high-impact ABS shell that’s durable and can really take a hit and a high-density EPS liner. These two materials combine to make a helmet that meets the certified EN 12492 safety standard for helmets. This unit also has a sideways vents hole that allows getting to the climber’s scalp but keeps small items such as gravel out of the helmet. It also features a back of the head closure system that’s completely adjustable and headlamp buckles that should fit most headlamp assemblies.

5Mammut Skywalker 2 Helmet

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This helmet is designed to be both tough and to provide adequate ventilation to the wearer’s head as well. It does this by using a hard plastic outer shell that is equipped with ten ventilation holes and a tough EPS inner layer. This allows the wearer’s head to be better protected against damage, but remain cool and ventilated at the same time. This model also features headlamp clips that are integrated right into it and a thumb wheel adjustment system that allows the climber or caver to adjust it to fit their particular head size.  It also comes with a very comfortable chin strap as well.

4Petzl Picchu Helmet

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Available in one of two colors – coral and raspberry – this helmet is designed to not only protect the wearer against the occasional rock ding or bump but is also designed to be fashionable as well. It’s made so that it conforms to several different safety certifications, too. These include EN 12492, En 1078 and the CSPC safety standard, too. All of which means that it’s suitable for climbing, and for cycling in the U.S and Europe.  There aren’t a lot of helmets out there which can be compliant with all of these safety standards, so users are assured that they are getting a high-quality helmet that will keep their head safe and sound.

3Petzel Elios Multi-Purpose Helmet

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Designed to be durable and versatile, this helmet is an effective safety solution for anyone who needs head protection. This means that it’s appropriate for not only climbers but for mountaineers, and for cavers as well. It’s manufactured with a tough ABS shell that’s designed to be impact resistant and it has a polystyrene foam line that fits a variety of head shapes and sizes. This model features a headband adjustment that can be quickly and easily adjusted, even when the helmet is being adjusted while the climber is wearing it. These helmets also come in a number of different colors which include white, blue or red, so they’re fashionable as well as durable.

2Petzl Vertex Vent 2 Helmet

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This stylish and versatile helmet comes in a number of different colors which should make it an exciting addition to any climbers gear. Some of the colors its available in include black, white, orange or yellow. However, its looks aren’t the only thing exciting about this helmet. It also has a number of features which make it durable and allow it to protect the head of the wearer. It also has a 6-point suspension system that allows it to fit the head of the wearer perfectly, thereby making it one of the more comfortable options available among helmets. It also has vent holes to increase air circulation around the climber’s head.

1Black Diamond Half Dome Helmet

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A company with the name Black Diamond would be expected to make helmets that were not only good at protecting the wearer’s head but was also durable as well, and in this regard, this helmet doesn’t disappoint at all. It is made using a hybrid design with molded EPS foam that’s available in one of two different sizes. It also has an adjustable suspension system that makes it more comfortable to wear and a ventilation system that keeps the wearer’s head ventilated and cool. And if the wearer wants to wear a headlamp with this helmet, it features two headlamp clips that make it possible.


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Selecting the Best Climbing Helmet

Since these types of helmets are often the only thing standing between climbers and a head injury or death, it’s probably a good idea to do some research about the type of helmet you need and how suitable it is for the type of climbing you’re planning on doing. After all, getting hit on the head while on the face of a rock is the last place you’ll want to find out that the helmet you’ve chosen is not very good for protecting your head. And that’s why research is a very important step.

Of course, not everyone knows exactly what to look for when selecting one of these helmets. Which is why we’ve included this guide to assist you. It will tell you everything you need to know to make an informed decision. This will give you the confidence you need to purchase a helmet that you know will protect your head and keep you from harm.

The Type of Helmet For Climbing

Most helmets that are made for climbing are made in one of two different styles. These are the Hard shell helmet and the Shelled Foam helmet styles. Hard shell helmets are the ones most people think of when they think about climbing lids. They are usually made out of ABS plastic that has a thin foam inner liner. They are often inexpensive and last a long time. Shelled foam helmets have a thin poly-carbonate shell and an impact absorbing polypropylene foam. These helmets are usually lightweight and offer a lot of ventilation.

The Type of Climbing Done

Since both Hard Shell and Shelled Foam helmets are suitable to protect your head, the type of helmet that you need is really dependent on the type of climbing that you do. For example, an ice climber wouldn’t want to wear the same helmet as single pitch sports climbers, so choose the appropriate helmet for your style of climbing. Below are some are the recommended helmets for the climbing types:

  • Shelled Foam Helmets: Good for ice climbing, sports climbing, and indoor climbing.
  • Hard Shell Helmets: Good for single-pitch climbing, cool weather climbing, and belaying.

Size of the Helmet

Another important consideration is the size of the helmet. After all, if the helmet doesn’t fit properly, then it’s not going to protect your head properly, so it’s vitally important to choose one that fits. A helmet should cover most of the wearer’s forehead and a large percentage of the person’s occipital bone at the back of the head. That’s because a good helmet should not only protect the top of the skull from falling rock but should protect the forehead of the climber if he or she accidentally slams head first into the face of the mountain.

To determine the size that’s required, use one of those flexible tape measures to measure the circumference of your skull – right above the eyebrow. Use this to determine your particular helmet size. Most of the helmets made for climbing come in one of two sizes and these are Size small which is approximately 48 to 53-cms and Size large which is approximately 54 to 61-cms – although there are some variations. Just be sure to choose a helmet which is appropriate for your head size. Also keep in mind that you wear a beanie or other head covering, then you may want to go up a size to ensure proper fit.

How the Helmet is Adjusted

How a particular helmet can be adjusted to the fit of your head is another thing to think about. Different models use different methods to all achieve basically the same result, which is to make the helmet fit your head better. A common adjustment system is the Click Wheel. This allows the helmet to be adjusted using just one hand, but it does add extra weight to the helmet, too. Other models go with Bands. These bands work with notches to allow it to be adjustable. These aren’t as heavy as click wheels but they are also harder to adjust, especially while climbing.

Additional Features

These types of helmets also can come with additional features that can make them more versatile. Some of these include clips for headlamps, chin straps, clips for ear protection and ventilation holes. While any of these features are optional, some of them may proof useful, so choose a helmet that has the extra features you need.