Thankfully for all of us, ski helmets have become the norm when skiing or snowboarding.
When you’re buying a ski or snowboard helmet for your child, it’s no question that safety comes first and foremost. Regardless of which helmet they ultimately choose, the most important thing is that they just wear a helmet. The good news is helmets are now commonplace and even required in most ski schools — according to the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), the percentage of skiers wearing helmets has increased from 22% to 83% in the last 15 years. That figure is for adults, it is undoubtedly near 100% for children.
Ski and snowboard accidents can happen in a split second, and protecting the head is important. In fact, about 20% of all skiing injuries are head injuries, and about 20% of those cause the skier or snowboarder to lose consciousness. We have a feeling, though your child will certainly prioritize cool colors! But with so many stunningly designed and tech-enabled helmets taking over the market, it’s getting harder to figure out which helmets are truly the best fit for your child—safety-wise and accessory-wise. Thus, we’ve combed the internet for the best children’s helmets out there, and we’re excited to bring our findings to you below.
The Best Kids Ski Helmets
A balanced combination of good value, the flashy accessories that kids covet, and of course, adherence to all safety certifications, you really can’t go wrong with any of the helmets on our list. Some of these helmets may be even cheaper than the price listed in the article due to discounts or sales—try to follow our links for potential discounted deals. Also, look here instead if you want a higher-end ski helmet with audio and bluetooth. Happy skiing—and shopping!
Giro Youth Tilt Snow Helmet— (here)
The Tilt from Giro, one of our favorite-all-around helmet makers —is perfectly on trend and delivers the safety that your child needs when they hit the slopes. Its patented In Form technology ensures an excellent fit—because we all know that a helmet that doesn’t fit can ruin your time on the mountain. The helmet’s Super Cool vents (8 of them, total) will bring fresh air into the helmet and push stale air out all day, making sure that your child is as comfortable as can be. Its soft EPS foam liner only adds to the helmet’s coziness. Furthermore, its hardshell construction will keep your young skier safe in case of impact. They can be stylish when they sport the helmet too—it comes in hues of black or pink.
The Giro Tilt tops our list as the most comfortable because it tends to provide a great, adjustable fit to all who wear it. Giro has done a great job of making the Tilt’s adjustability both functional and comfortable. All of the Giro’s tend to work very well with the ski goggles as well, with a nice channel to guide the strap and a latch in back to lock the goggle into place. For the money, it’s an excellent deal. (Of course, it’s compliant with all safety regulations as well—specifically the ASTM F2040 and CE EN1077 certifications). It comes in two sizes—extra small / small and medium / large. Find here.
Anon Youth Rime Snow Helmet (here on Amazon)
Anon makes the Youth Rime, an ultra-durable and sleek, which is why it’s one of our picks. Available in shades of blue, wildlife purple, and black, its matte finish is very of-the-moment. Adhering to ASTM 2040 and CE 1077B certifications, the helmet’s hard, durable outer shell ensures that your pint-sized skier is safe this winter. In addition, its Passive Ventilation system pulls fresh air into the helmet while pushing all moisture out.
Of all the helmets we looked at, the Anon Rime probably had the most intuitive chin strap tightening system — important when the person wearing it is a young child, or an adult is attempting to make the helmet comfortable for a kid.
The helmet is very versatile—one of the many reasons why we love it—as its ear pads and liner can be easily removed to allow your child to slip a beanie under their helmet. The ear pads and liner are made of fleece, ensuring ultimate comfort all day long, and making the Rime a good choice for those who will likely be skiing in colder conditions. A removable goggle clip lets kids attach googles to their helmet—or remove the piece altogether if they prefer not to wear them. Perhaps the Best All-Around Helmet on the list, but the Giro Tilt would be a very, very close second. Find it here.
Bolle Quiz Youth Snow Helmet (here)
Bolle’s Quiz is undeniably eye-catching with its many colors —plus, you can instantly match with your child! (Whether they actually want to match is a different story entirely!) The helmet features a matte black hardshell exterior and an ultra-colorful checker pattern—shades of green, white, red, and neon blue ensure they’ll be easy to spot on the mountain. The helmet was specially constructed to support your child’s growth and development, so there’s no need to purchase them a series of new helmets every new ski season.
The Bolle Quiz has a line of helmets that are setup to accommodate a visor, which can be nice for very young children who either wear glasses or struggle with kids ski goggles. Just be sure you get the one you want — the word “visor” will be in the product name if it calls for the visor. Otherwise, it is meant to be used with goggles.
It is also audio kit compatible, so your child can pop in earbuds and rock out while they’re navigating the slopes. As the liner is detachable from the helmet, it makes for easy cleaning—and its plush interior guarantees a comfortable ride. Plus, it’s ultra-light—ensuring that you’ll never be bogged down by weight on the mountain. Often priced at or under $50, it is a helmet that won’t be a budget-buster assuming you can get some good use out of it. It is available in one relatively tight size band (52 – 55 centimeters). Find here.
Giro Youth Launch Jr. Snow Helmet (here on Amazon)
The Giro Youth Launch combo is perfect for any child seeking to express themselves on the mountain in bold colors! Available in a wide array of whimsical-sounding hues—matte purple clouds, pink notebook, berry butterflies, blue ice, matte black multi, black ski ball, matte magenta, matte black, matte blue, matte bright red, matte lime shark party, and pink swirl—there’s truly a color for everyone. The helmet features comfortable in-mold construction and an in-form fit system, making sure that they’ll be riding comfortably on the mountains and trails all day long. It is in adherence with all safety standards. Plus, Giro’s patented vent system maximizes airflow through the helmet and keeps goggles fog-free. Priced at around $60, its wide variation of color options and super comfy fit make it one of our favorite picks on the list. It comes in three sizes—extra small, small, and medium. Find here.
Giro Youth Crue MIPS Snow Helmet (here on Amazon)
Another helmet from Giro, the Crue is another example of Giro’s top-notch quality and focus on safety coming together in another kids’ helmet. Available in four distinct colors—berry / magenta, matte lime, matte black, and matte white—it’s a great way for kids to add a fun pop of color to their typically one-color ski uniform. The helmet’s gray mesh liner is a nice stylistic contrast to the matte helmet color, something we appreciate. This helmet was specially designed with MIPS technology—which stands for Multi-directional Impact Protection System—meaning that its hard shell protects skiers at all angles using the latest developments in impact technology. Giro’s Super Cool vents also make an appearance here, ensuring that your child will stay dry all day long. If your child also needs goggles, consider purchasing Giro’s Rev or Chico goggle models, as they are seamlessly compatible with this helmet. You will typically find it for around $75 in three sizes. Find here.
All of the helmets above are going to do a good job for your child and meet the snow safety standards set for by ASTM international. If you are looking for more kids ski gear, check out our piece on childrens’ skis, or our definite checklist of what to bring on a ski trip.
Kids Ski Helmet FAQs
What to Look for in a Kids Ski Helmet
We did an entire piece on what to look for in a kids helmet, so for an in-depth review on key things to keep in mind, check it out. In short, always think safety first. You want the helmet to meet all of the standards set for by the industry. A very close second is fit. If the helmet doesn’t fit securely, it will not do its job very well. A quality helmet that fits well is 90% of the drill. After that, consider the overall comfort. Just like with the ski pants or the kids ski jacket, a comfortable kid is a happier kid. Finally, only last, consider the style and look. These are nice-to-haves, but we know that a helmet that a child is excited to wear will typically stay on his or her head more often!
At What Age Should a Child Use a Ski Helmet
We think helmets should be used from age 0 to age 100+. You really can’t ever go wrong with a helmet on your head, and that goes for children too. Toddlers who are just learning to ski should wear a helmet, as they could take a spill but just as importantly it creates a habit. The proof is clear, that using a helmet makes a potentially-dangerous sport just a little less dangerous. There is really no age when a helmet is not recommended.
Which Brand is the Best for a Kids Ski Helmet?
It depends. As long as the helmet is built using one of the latest safety standards (CE, ASTM etc.), then you can base the decision on fit, compatibility with gear, look, and pricing. If our list above is any indication, Giro is a premier brand of good kids ski helmets.
How Important is a safety certification for kids ski helmets?
We would never buy a ski helmet for our child without knowing it had at least one of the certifications. A certification means it has gone through, and passed, some level of testing with a third party. It also means the helmet was built with some commonly-accepted safety standards. Many helmets do not have all the certifications, but rather just one or two. The most common ones you will find are an international ASTM stamp, or a CE stamp which related more to standards created by the European Union (but we like to see their approval even on helmets we buy in the US). You may also see some helmets bragging MIPS technology, which is actually not a safety standard but rather a manufacturing design that is shown to be of benefit as well.
How Long Should I Keep my Kid’s Ski Helmet?
Quality ski helmets — like the ones we profile here — are meant to last a long time. There are two times you should consider swapping the helmet, though:
- If the fit is no longer good. A helmet has to fit well, otherwise it doesn’t protect the head as designed. Don’t settle for a helmet that doesn’t fit your child well.
- If the helmet is involved in a hard collision, you should consider buying a new one. Helmets can weaken when they do their job and take a hard hit, causing them to be less effective if it should occur a second time. Be thankful, the helmet took the blow instead of a human.
Otherwise, you should be able to reuse the helmet for a while.
Disclaimer: Family Skier relied on user experience for our reviews and rankings. We did not put these helmets through any type of lab tests. We felt that was important to point out given the importance of a helmet on your child’s safety.
Paul Miller is the Founder of Family Skier. He is an advanced skier and has extensive experience with family travel and ski schools. An accomplished skier, he has skied in 15 states and provinces and 6 countries. In addition to FamilySkier, his writing can be found on many ski-related websites, and as curriculum for many ski clubs in North America.