Find out which helmet brands you can trust. The ones that will give you the best protection in an accident are the ones that we looked at.
There are only a few helmet testing labs in the UK that can give us comparative scores, so we have to look at the data from the first. Plus, SHARP chooses which helmets to test on their own, whereas Snell is hired by helmet makers to test and certify their helmets. When possible, we’ve also added Snell data to the mix when we could!
But, keep in mind that SHARP buys helmets from the UK, which may not be the same as helmets sold in the United States. You can read more about the methodology at the bottom of this page. It’s not perfect, but it’s the best we can give you.
So, here are the results of our most recent survey, which used data from 2016 to 22 and shows which crash helmet brands are the safest. To get a new helmet, you might want to look at these brands.
Shoei’s helmets – In 2022, there’s not much to choose between Shoei and AGV. AGV is better than Shoei when it comes to the SHARP ratings of their ECE helmets, but because eight of Shoei’s helmets are Snell certified.
We’ve given them a slight edge. If you want a good-quality helmet at the top of the market, you’ll want to buy a helmet from Shoei.
All of which is shown in their high rankings. All 14 Shoei helmets that have been tested by the ECE have scored an average of 4.14/5. The X-Fourteen and RF-SR, two of their most recently tested helmets, both got the highest possible score of 5 stars.
They also have a few helmets that are Snell certified, such as the X-Fourteen and RF-1400. This means that both their ECE and DOT helmets are proven to be safe. A huge well done to Shoei! Check out our reviews of the Shoei helmet here.
AGV Helmets: AGV has been making helmets in Italy since 1947, and even though they’re now part of the Dainese Group, their protective qualities still shine through.
Three of the six helmets that have been tested since 2016 have been given five stars, and the other four have been given four stars. This shows that you can really trust an AGV. Wow, what a great job AGV did. It’s here where we write about the AGV helmets we have.
Arai helmet – Arai’s average score has risen to 4/5 over the last few years. They’ll be in 3rd place in 2022. Since 2016, six helmets have been tested. The Signet-X and Corsair-X both got the maximum 5 stars for safety, while all the other helmets got 4 stars.
If you want a Snell-approved helmet, no one gets more of their helmets approved by Snell than Arai, so they are the best (most recently including the Classic V and XD4). All of this means that now more than ever, you can trust Arai’s new helmets to work. Here, you can read about the most recent Arai reviews that people have written.
Shark Helmets, a high-quality French company, is at No. 4 for 2022. Tested by Sharp: They’ve had 10 helmets tested by Sharp in the last few years, with an average score of 4/5 stars out of 5. SHARP has been testing helmets since 2016, and every single one of them has been rated 4 stars.
This is a great result, and the chin bars on both modulars (including the Evo-One 2) scored 100%, which is very rare for chin bars. They did a great job. You can click this link to see all of our Shark helmet reviews.
Nolan’s dad is in fifth place. Every single one of the thirteen Nolan helmets that have been tested has been given 4/5 stars in the SHARP safety test.
I’m shocked. It’s also important to note that each of the flip-up helmets they tested scored 100% when it came to keeping their chin bar fully locked, which isn’t easy to do. That’s a real sign of how good their design, manufacturing, and quality control are. There is a link to all of our Nolan helmet articles on this page.
HJC helmets – Three years in a row, HJC has been in our top 10. In 2022, they’ll be sixth. HJC is known for making cheap helmets, so you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get great protection.
They made it to this spot in part because of old favourites like the five-star rated HJC FG-ST and also because their newer C70 polycarbonate lid also got a 5-star review. SHARP has tested their 10 most recent helmets, and they have given them a score of 3.8/5 out of 5.
A lot of people don’t think about this, but HJC has a lot of helmets that have been approved by Snell in the old M2015 certification days before they changed to 2020. If you want to protect your Snell helmets, then helmets like the i10 and CL-17 are both great. HJC did a good job. Click to see all of our HJC helmet reviews.
Bell helmets – With their three-star DLX MIPS Bell Qualifier DLX, the party hasn’t been all that great. Bell, on the other hand, has scored a huge 4.27/5 across all 15 ECE helmets that have been tested over the years.
This is one of the best overall scores for any helmet brand. And, of course, Bell gets a lot of their DOT helmets to be certified by Snell, like the Stars, Moto-9, and SRTs. All of these helmets are top-rated for safety. In the same way, you can read all our reviews of Bell helmets on this page.
Nexx helmets – For the first time in 2021, a Portuguese company that makes composite helmets made it into our top 10. They’ve been there ever since. They don’t get their helmets certified by Snell, but they’ve had a few of their ECE helmets tested by SHARP, and their most recent XG 100R got a very good 4/5 from them, which isn’t bad. It’s the same for their other helmets. They get 3/5. Find all of our reviews of the Nexx helmets on this page, or click here.
Scorpion helmet – This year, Scorpion Exo helmets make it into our top 10 of the best. Twenty helmets have been tested by Sharp over the years, with their most recent 9 helmets getting 3.2 out of 5 stars.
There are a few of their helmets that have been approved by Snell, like the R2000 and R420. This is always a good sign.
Keep in mind that many big-name helmet companies didn’t do as well as they should have in 2022. They might be ninth on our list. If you’re interested in a Scorpion helmet, check out our Scorpion Exo helmet reviews to see what people think.
Schuberth helmets – If you thought Schuberth was known for its quality and price, you might be surprised that they only made our list in tenth place.
There have been seven helmets that have been tested so far, and they have an average of 3 out of 5 stars. A few good 4-star helmets have been offset by two that got just 2 stars. Schuberth helmets that have recently been tested by the ECE have all scored 3 out of 5 stars.
If you want to know which helmets are the best, you might want to check out our Schuberth helmet reviews. We have all of them there.
It’s not perfect, but this chart should give you a good idea of how safe some of the most popular helmet brands will be in an accident, compared to each other.
This table only uses data from SHARP crash helmet testing from 2016 to early 2022, so it’s not going to be complete and won’t be able to show many of the brands sold in the US.
Even if a brand has been tested by SHARP, we haven’t put every helmet brand on the list. This is because there are a lot of reasons why this would be true. To be fair, it could be that they haven’t been tested enough to give a good amount of data, or they haven’t been tested at all. Or maybe they don’t have a lot of sales, so we didn’t include them. If you want to buy a helmet, you’ll want to know about and be able to find the main brands.
For some brands, we only tested a small number of helmets. This means that some of the figures will be skewed. SHARP choose and buy their own helmets, so that’s bound to happen. This means that if we have not chosen a brand to test their helmets for us, they will not show up on our table.
As we said above, to keep the sample size from being skewed, we’ve excluded some brands where a brand hasn’t had enough people test it. Why? Suppose one brand has 10 helmets tested and they all get 3 stars on average.
They might be below a brand with just one helmet that got 4 stars, but that’s not very likely. When there are only a few helmets to score, we usually remove the brand from the survey.
If you buy an ECE helmet in the UK, SHARP only tests them. This may be different from helmets found in the DOT or other places.
There aren’t many DOT helmets that get tested by Snell. When a brand has a few helmets that have been certified, we write about it. Arai, Shoei, and Bell are three of the brands that often appear in SHARP testing.
They also send the most helmets to Snell for testing, which usually means that the brands that are most committed to getting their helmets certified by Snell are in our top 10.
There are some people who don’t like the SHARP test because they think it isn’t really enough. Which could be true or not. However, we think it’s about as good as it gets. You can read about the test here and see how SHARP data was analyzed here and decide for yourself.
There is one thing that is good about the SHARP testing process. It’s done in a lab under controlled conditions, which means that each helmet should be tested the same way. This means that you can compare the results of each test on each helmet.
It might not be as bad as hitting oil while hanging off your Z1000 and slamming your helmet on a curbstone at a 15-degree angle, but it does show which individual helmets – if they were all the same – would be the best choice. So, we think it’s about as good as the information that’s out there, and that’s what we’re based this analysis on.
This is easy. It got five stars, so we gave it five points. Where it got 1 star, we’ve given it 1 point. In the next step, we add up all the points and divide them by the number of helmets that have been tested over the last few years to get the average score (mean).
We then put the highest-scoring items at the top of the list. In the event that two brands score the same, but one has a lot of Snell-certified helmets, we’ll probably give them more points than the other one. So, if there was a tie-break, we also checked helmet scores since the tests started and took them into account.