Lazer Helium MIPS Helmet Review
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Yes, there are a lot of great helmets out there, and yes they will all provide protection if you have the misfortune of laying down your bike. What sets the Lazer Helium MIPS helmet apart from other brain buckets out there is that it has a Multi-Directional Impact Protection System (MIPS) liner. A feature that may make all the difference in the world as you tackle the roads, trails, mountain passes, or urban jungle that caters to the all-mighty automobile. This is a technically advanced, aerodynamic, and good looking bicycling accessory.
First Thoughts of The Lazer Helium MIPS Helmet
We, as cyclists, spend a lot of time researching the latest and greatest components, carbon layering, aero advantages, and weight saving specifications when buying a new bike. The helmet sort of gets the shaft if you ask me. That really is a shame as chosing the right helmet can protect that very delicate noggin of yours, so we can ride again tomorrow.
Lazer is a company founded and based in Belgium. There’s numerous things the Belgians are known for: Diamonds, Chocolates, French Fries, Beer, and they definitely know a thing or two about riding a bike. Being safe on said bike is also a good thing, and the fine folks at Lazer Sport have figured out how to do that with this quality helmet.
Lazer Helium and the MIPS story
First of all, let’s talk about MIPS. There are many cool and great features on this helmet, but MIPS is definitely the peak performer amongst that bunch.
Lazer provides an abundance of very useful information on their website, but I’ll try to sum it up. In this case, MIPS has been outfitted in the standard Helium helmet with a low friction layer to reduce the transfer of energy to the brain. It basically allows the helmet to move independently from the MIPS low friction layer. These inner and outer layer are connected by an elastic system, but act independently. This is how it absorbs the blows that the rotational force can inflict on the head.
Key Features of the Lazer Helium MIPS
Oblique impact – rotation. That is the one piece that makes this a very unique and advanced helmet.
Low friction layer. Reduces rotational energy that would otherwise be absorbed by the brain. Sliding layer separated from eps liner and mimics the brain which itself sits inside the skull in a fluid. This reduces the Angle and/or oblique impacts. Tested for every type of impact and angle. This reduces the impact by 33% which can make a huge difference.
Sizing. Follow the directions on the their website. I have had a real dilemma with helmets the past few years. I fall right on the cusp of medium and large. My noggin measures in at 58 cm, which is at the far end of Medium, and the beginning of Large. I went with the large, and it was a good thing. I have the ability to make adjustments, but this size fit great.
Rollsys – fully integrated mechanism which surrounds the head completely. Basically, with the Thumb Wheel on the top of the helmet it will tighten your helmet and fit smoothly and accurately on your head as it adjust based on your unique head features.
Adjustable Head Basket – A custom fit no matter what crazy bumps or shapes your head may be.
Aqua Pad – a reduction of pressure concentration (pressure points) on the head, which is beneficial for blood circulation. Additionally, the Aquapad allows a reduction of skin temperature due to its high heat conducting properties. The reduced skin temperature is desirable as it reduces sweat production. Finally, the Aquapad is shaped such that it prevents sweat droplets, containing salt, from dripping
Double Density EPS – decrease the total weight of the helmet by using less dense EPS in areas that are less critical in impact scenarios
Vent Tunnel Tested – That’s always a good thing as Lazer is able to make adjustmets of the vents to align them perfectly for optimal air flow.
Colored Straps – Straps to coincide with the helmet color. My helmet is orange and black, and my straps are black. I suppose black is a color, but it does match nicely. My helmets bright color is plenty for me to be noticed.
Taillight – The website advertises an LED inside the Rollsys thumbwheel, but aside from a clear plastic cap I unfortunately do not have that feature. From what I can gather is that it is an optional item, but that would be pretty cool.
Fluo Color – Lazer added fluo colors to this helmet. This is a high visibility paint that’s a combination of regular paint and a little Lazer magic to make sure the color doesn’t fade over time (see photo below, shot at night).
RBS – Rigidity Brace System – is a reinforcement for a superior helmet resistance against multi impacts. This system is comparable with a roll cage in a racecar. In case of a crash this will keep the cracked EPS pieces together so the helmet still offers some form of protection.
Winter Padding – there is a winter liner that fits inside the helmet (replacing the standard padding). This Insulated padding wraps around the head and covers the ears for a beanie-like feeling.
Optional Aeroshell – The Shell is a plastic cover, designed to fit perfectly over specific models of Lazer helmets. The Aero Shell snaps into place and protects the riders head from wind and rain while still allowing for some air movement under the front of the helmet and out the rear vents. The Aero Shell is unique in that it is easily removed from the helmet when riding conditions are such that additional ventilation is desired.
Optional Insect Net – padding replaces the original helmet padding and covers the ventilation holes so insects cannot reach your head. Thus keeping insects out of the helmet for a stress free ride.
Performance and Fit of the Lazer Helium MIPS Helmet
First of all, you want to take some time to make the proper adjustments with the straps. Once that’s completed, you also need to cut the excess straps so it won’t flap around and hit you in the face when riding. Yes, that was me on my first ride! I had the straps dialed in pretty good, but did have to make one slight strap adjustment while riding. No issues after that whatsoever.
The Rollsys system is really pretty cool. You tighten the dial on the top of the helmet, and you can feel it cinching uniformly around your head. This will tighten snugly and comfortably around your head which is something I have never had in a helmet. The one thing you will need to get used to is the fact that when you have the helmet on and tightened, you can actually shift the helmet. The first time I had it on, and repositioned it with my hands the helmet moved quite a bit. I thought that I hadn’t fastened it enough, so I went to dial it down even more. Turns out that the Rollsys system is securely fastened and it’s the outershell or helmet that is moving. That is the unique part of the whole MIPS rotational energy absorption feature.
Now, I have had a chance to ‘Test’ this helmet. I did not set out or by accident intend to fully ‘Crash Test’ this helmet. Rubber side down is the motto, and I really did not want to take a tumble or dive to fully experience the Lazer Helium MIPS helmet. I will leave that to the professionals with fancy lab gadgets.
It’s January and it’s in the upper 50’s with a beautiful blue bird sunny sky. Seriously, time for a bike ride, right? I worked up a decent sweat, and I am not going to pretend that it’s mid-August, but the 19 vents kept me from overheating. Heat being released and airflow moving through to keep me cool is a good thing.
Several 50-60 mile outings have also produced a very enjoyable riding experience. During these rides with friends I have never had any issues with discomfort, heat, or cold. It’s been all about the workout, and the beautiful backdrop of the Rocky Mountains.
The color options are Flash Orange, Flash Yellow, Black White, and Mat Black Gray. I have the very visible and bright orange, and I like it that way. I was born in raised in a very passionate cycling nation (the Netherlands), and we like our orange. So, I wear my Lazer Helium orange helmet with pride and style. In addition, I can use the extra visibility as a few of my group rides leave well before the break of dawn. I definitely got comments on my choice of color. There are times when one of our group riders acts as somewhat of a team photographer. He cruises around on his motorcycle and surges ahead to take photos of the peleton and the beautiful scenery. At least now I will be able to find myself as he showcases his shots.
Fit System: Rollsys® retention system
Construction: In-Mold (7 pieces)
Ventilation: 19 Vents
Weight: 260 g (M)
Certification: CE – CPSC – AS
Sizes: S / M / L / XL
Final Thoughts on the Lazer Helium MIPS Helmet
This is one piece of equipment that you really don’t want to be without. The Lazer Helium MIPS is one very sleek, aero, and comfortable helmet, but more importantly, this can save your noggin’ from serious injuries. You spend a pretty penny on health, life, and car insurance, and the hope is that you never need it. The same theory applies here. Can you really put a price tag on keeping you and your brain safe to make it safely back home? That would be a big ‘NO’. Don’t take the chance, and get yourself one of these.
For more information and purchase for the Helium MIPS and other fine helmets please visit: www.lazersport.com