On a soggy day at Solitude Mountain Resort, Utah, we assembled an elite group of skiers willing to sacrifice their retinas and dignity to determine the best helmets and goggles of the year at our first annual Headspace event.
The skiers that comprised the Powder Order of Sartorial Splendor and Excellence, or POSSE, donned garbage bags over their jackets, cinched up their fanny packs tight, and endured sleeting rain, wind, and occasionally snow in order to ascertain the products that deliver safety, durability, ease of use, comfort, and performance in all conditions—including après on the patio when the sun finally popped.
What they found was an impressive array of technology, including custom-fitting helmets and improved lens-change systems, but that personal style and fit were still of utmost importance. —Sierra Shafer
PHOTOS: David Reddick
Equipped with a Boa Fit System that lets you customize comfort with the simple turn of a dial, MIPS technology to protect against all-around impacts, and an ICEdot Sticker that allows
you to share medical and geolocation information over text in case of an emergency, the Anon Nova helmet is uber dialed. The ultra-thin liner and 23 adjustable vents allow you to dump heat when you're skiing hot, then seal them off when the storm rolls in. The noticeably low profile and magnetic Fidlock buckle make the Nova one of the most sleek and functional tech helmets we've worn.
Complete with an adjustable 360-degree fit system, the Revent upper is made from ABS hard-shell for extra protection, while the lower is in-mold to keep the weight down. Manually adjustable vents allows you to dump heat, but some on the POSSE wanted a bit more ventilation. The Revent helmet also utilizes AMID technology which is a dense foam liner at the top of the helmet designed to reduce impact by 40 percent compared to helmets without. No extra bells or whistles here—just simple and safe.
The new Jackson incorporates MIPS for protection, and an airflow design Giro calls Passive Aggressive venting. The nonadjustable vents allow air to flow through the helmet above the forehead and out the back. A vent over the brim is intended to work with Giro goggles as an anti-fog measure. POSSE members noted the clean look and excellent comfort at a good price.
The Terra MIPS is a low-profile, lightweight, and customizable helmet for women. It includes MIPS and Giro's new Passive Aggressive venting system, which regulates temperature even without being adjustable. This discreet, streamlined system combines exterior vents and interior channels that manages airflow and temperature while in motion and siphons out heat while you're standing still. POSSE shredders raved about the sleek style. Even better, it comes in at an affordable price.
When POC engineered the Obex SPIN, the Swedish company found that falls and head impacts are rarely ever the same. That's why it developed the SPIN technology, which allows the helmet to 'spin' relative to the head when you're getting banged up. This design absorbs both linear and oblique impacts and reduces energy directed toward the skier. In traditional POC style, the Obex has a clean and simple look, with relatively few adjustable vents.
The Quantum is a sharp-looking helmet fully tricked out for safety, fit, and ease of use. Utilizing MIPS and Koroyd, a co-polymer consisting of thousands of cylindrical tubes, this dome piece is engineered to absorb impact and offer breathability. With 360-degree Boa fit, 22 adjustable vents, and a magnetic buckle that operates with one hand, the Quantum is a do-it-all helmet for committed skiers.
The best part of the Code helmet is that it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing anything at all. A simple and minimalist design offers a sleek, comfortable fit that locks in with an easy-to-use magnetic chin strap. Airflow moves from front to back but is not adjustable, making this helmet best suited for inbounds skiing rather than touring. The Code is also audio compatible and features the BOA 360 fit system uthat offers both forward and lateral adjustments.