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Have you had trouble finding a balance between maximum protection and convenience when riding? Well, it isn't easy until you count on the best flip-up motorcycle helmets available on the market!
Flip-up helmets offer the best of both worlds through their complex design by serving as full-face helmets in the closed position and as open face helmets when the chin bar is in the upwards position.
If you have been looking for a way to enjoy both protection and convenience during your motorcycle rides, then you have come to the right place. Let's explore the sweet spot of both worlds with our carefully considered review of the best flip-up motorcycle helmets.
At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets
- OUR TOP PICK: ILM Modular Helmet ILM-902
- RUNNER-UP: AHR Run-M COMINU053238
- BEST BUDGET OPTION: 1Storm HB-B89
Comparison of the Best Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets
Our Top Pick
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Best Budget Option
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Why Did These Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets Make Our List?
Buying the best flip-up motorcycle helmet calls for knowing what to look for in such a helmet to ensure you pick one that suits your riding needs most of the time.
We checked the market and came up with crucial characteristics that a flip-up helmet should have. Such characteristics include visibility and weather protection, style and design, convenience and practicality, and certification.
Let's discuss each one of these characteristics below.
Visibility Enhancement and Weather Protection
All the flip-up motorcycle helmets in our review have visibility enhancements like a visor, clear outer shield, and an inner smoked lens. Visibility becomes a problem if you are riding without a helmet on.
These helmets ensure that your face is well covered and protected from interruptions that may ruin your vision. When riding, the wind may sting your eyes and face, thus reducing your ability to see clearly.
The helmets also protect your face and eyes from flying objects like dust, insects, and tiny rocks.
The helmets also enhance external visibility in that the reflective parts make it easy for other road users to see you, so they stay clear of your path to avoid accidents.
Some weather elements like rain and wind can impair your vision. With a helmet, you don't have to worry about such distractions as water and wind will be kept out of your eyes so you can always see clearly.
Design and Style
We have done due diligence to ensure that we choose flip-up helmets with the best designs and style in conformity with the shape of the human head.
The human head has a streamlined shape. As such, we have chosen helmets with a streamlined design for better aerodynamics.
The sleek aerodynamic design allows for less drag and reduced wind noise so that your ride is quiet to allow you to concentrate on the visual without noise distraction.
The design also allows for the use of comfortable interiors that even feature removable and washable linings so you don't keep your head in a stinking shell.
The interior material and lining are also excellent at ensuring maximum safety for your head during the impacts of accidents.
To best fit your style and fashion needs, the flip-up helmets in this review come in multiple colors so you can choose your favorite. At least one color will best define your style, from black to white to red to yellow to various colors in one helmet.
Convenience and Practicality
All the products in our review will offer you a high degree of convenience and practicality.
Unlike the case with full-face helmets, a flip-up helmet doesn’t require you to remove the whole unit to talk, sip a drink, or catch some air. Catching some air comes in handy, especially for claustrophobic people.
Certification and Safety Assurance
We have gone the extra mile to bring you flip-up helmets that meet America's DOT (Department of Transportation) and ECE (Economic Commission for Europe) minimum requirements for helmets.
Although the ECE certification is better than the DOT, both are important in safety and protection matters. You want to buy a helmet that has passed these two and any other applicable safety tests since the certifications assure you that you are more likely to suffer fewer injuries.
The DOT helmet test comprises the following checks:
- Dropping a pointed striker on the helmet
- Applying weight to the helmet's retention system for 120 seconds to ensure the helmet van stay in place on your head securely during an accident
- Dropping the helmet from a height of 1.83m onto a spherical anvil
- Dropping the helmet from the same height of 1.83m onto a flat anvil
The DOT test checks helmets for the field of vision, retention system integrity, labeling, and penetration resistance. It’s, however, quite unreliable on its own since it uses the honor system, which manufacturers may dishonor by declaring conformation even when the helmet doesn't conform.
The ECE test is more reliable, hence its popularity in over 50 countries. It tests for both pre-accident and in-accident factors. Such factors include the optical quality of the face shield and shell rigidity.
Some of the aspects of the ECE test include the following:
It’s essential to check your flip-up helmet for the rating or certifications. Ensure that you get a helmet that meets DOT requirements in the country and is the right size for your head because one that is too large won't protect you well if you get into an accident.
Review of the Best Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets
When you are on the lookout for the best flip-up motorcycle helmets, you may be overwhelmed by the many options on the market. The helmets come in different shapes, sizes, colors, and features, and the presence of multiple models even from the same brand may confuse you.
You don't have to worry anymore. Read on as we explore the best flip-up motorcycle helmets that will best serve your safety and convenience needs.
ILM Modular Helmet ILM-902
Weight: 4.5 pounds
Size: Small to X-Large
Color: Choice of 11 colors
The ILM-902 helmet will amaze you with its wide vision range through the clear shield. The chin strap has a clip closing system that makes it sturdier and hard to snap off.
If you have had helmets before where the cheek buffers pull up onto your eyes, you need not worry anymore. The ILM-902 flip-up helmet has its cheek buffers placed low down so they don't shift up to your eyes, thus ensuring your broad view is unobstructed.
Finding a dual visor flip-up helmet with an expansive vision range is now easy with the ILM-902 on the market. Although it has its share of shortcomings, like the frequent problem of screws falling off and leaving the visor hanging or flipped up, you get real value for your money.
You have the freedom to choose from the 11 color models available to match up your love for aesthetics or match up with the color of your motorcycle.
AHR Run-M COMINU053238
Weight: 3.5 pounds
Size: Medium to X-Large
Color: Black, Blue, Red, White
Approved by the US Department of Transportation for riding safety, this AHR helmet will ensure your rides are as safe and as comfortable as flip-up helmets can guarantee. It features a comprehensive ventilation system with six air vents and a fully vented EPS liner for enhanced aeration.
If you would like your new flip-up motorcycle helmet to ship in new with extra items, then this AHR helmet is the right for you. In addition to the well-built helmet, you will receive a handy user manual and one helmet storage bag.
The helmet has six air vents so you can enjoy the cool air and a clean internal environment all the time when riding.
Best for the Money:
Weight: 4 pounds
Size: Small to X-Large
Color: Choice of 12 colors
The 1Storm HB-B89 flip-up helmet comes with a dual visor sun shield for protection from intense sun rays and enhanced visibility with the clear outer lens. The helmet is DOT-approved for riding safety.
Because of its thermoplastic shell material, the helmet is lightweight and thus gentle on your head and neck as it doesn't cause the undue pressure and stress that come with large weights.
The glossy UV protective finish of this 1Storm helmet will ensure that it lasts you a long time. The protection keeps the helmet from destruction by strong sun rays that may cause cracking and unnecessary expansion.
Best Bluetooth Flip Up Motorcycle Helmet:
ILM Bluetooth 953-MB-L
Weight: 4.4 pounds
Size: Medium to X-Large
Color: Black, Red, White
One major strong point for this ILM flip-up helmet is that it has superior connectivity and communications solutions. With its Bluetooth system, FM radio, music, and speakers, you can listen to music and talk on calls.
The intercom allows for communication between riders in a group within a distance of up to 1000 feet for easy collaboration.
Despite its complex and delicate connectivity features, the helmet remains easy to maintain. The microfiber liner is washable, and the adjustable vents ensure a free flow of fresh air into the helmet for a relaxed interior environment. The airflow helps keep foul odors at bay.
If you are looking for a flip-up helmet that will solve your communications and connectivity problems when riding, then the ILM 953 model comes in handy.
The GPS navigation audio system will help you find your way through even unfamiliar places where directions may be a problem.
YEMA Helmet YEMA-926MBS
Weight: 3.74 pounds
Size: Small to XX-Large
Brand: YEMA Helmet
Color: White, Black
The YEMA YM-926 flip-up helmet is suitable for different headforms from small to XX-Large. It comes in handy for communications because it has Bluetooth space. Its streamlined design improves its aerodynamic features as it helps reduce air drag and wind noise.
The helmet comes with a chin curtain for extra protection to your chin to reduce instances of scratches on your skin that the liner would otherwise cause.
Although you have a choice of only two colors, between white and black, this YEMA YM-926 helmet is for you if you like to keep things cool without the flashy interference of showy color.
The dual-lens design ensures you have a choice between the clear outer shield for better visibility and the inner smoked lens for a bit of shading to help weaken strong sunlight.
Top Brands in the Flip Up Motorcycle Helmet Space
Like any other business space, the motorcycle helmet world has various players. Most manufacturers make high-quality helmets. The best even come with unique features such as communication capabilities. The following are some of the top brands in the motorcycle helmet space.
Founded in 2013, ILM has grown into a common name in the motorcycle scene in the country. True to its desire to let riders ride faster, longer, and safer, the company insists on extensive research, innovation, design, and product testing to ensure its products perform optimally.
The company offers free shipping worldwide. Customers have the liberty to cancel orders at any suitable time before shipment if they happen to change their minds.
Other than flip-up helmets, the company also makes open-face helmets. Its helmets are DOT-approved.
Some of the unique characteristics of the company's helmets include carbon fiber builds for strong, light helmets and communications or entertainment solutions such as Bluetooth, music, and FM radio, and intercom for communication between connected riders up to 1000 feet apart.
Established in 1991, YEMA has become a household name in the industry as a motorcycle accessories producer with over ten patented products. The company makes open-face, flip-up, and full-face helmets.
YEMA is unique as it makes helmets fit for both adults and children. Their helmets are also recommended for use by women riders. The helmets are ECE-R 22.05 and DOT-approved for safety and protection.
YEMA names its helmets using the unique YM- system that helps differentiate them from other popular brands. The helmets are made in China but sold in different parts of the world since the company's output is about 2.5 million pieces annually.
For over 20 years, Yescom has been making high-quality, DOT-approved AHR helmets for the US market. Other than flip-up helmets, the company also makes half, open-face, and full-face helmets. It offers a 30-day return allowance after the day of purchase.
Some AHR helmets have communications features like Bluetooth. They are suitable for street bikes, scooters, adventure biking, and snowmobiles.
Advantages of Investing in a Quality Flip Up Motorcycle Helmet
You may never enjoy the actual benefits of a flip-up motorcycle helmet if you never invest in one. The following are some of the advantages you will enjoy when you buy a high-quality flip-up motorcycle helmet.
Comfort, Convenience, and Practicality
If you are a practical rider consumer who likes using practical products, you will enjoy modular or flip-up helmets. It’s easy to talk to others or stop to take a bite into your favorite cookie because the chin bar can be lifted upwards to expose the mouth.
Unlike full-face helmets, the allowance to flip up the chin bar lets you enjoy a bite, sip, or communication with others without necessarily having to take off the helmet. It’s pretty inconvenient to remove the whole helmet each time you have to eat or talk, but modular ones save you.
Safety and Protection
The main goal of using a helmet of any kind is to ensure your safety and protection when riding. Since you will be cruising at high speeds, your safety becomes essential. You have to protect the head and the eyes from physical damage if you happen to be caught up in an accident.
Carbon fiber or composite fiber flip-up helmets are strong and light and suitable for protection against impact and the baggage of excess weight on your neck. Plastic or polycarbonate helmets are heavier, but they still offer excellent protection.
Flip-up helmets also protect you from adverse weather conditions like rain, draught, and hot sun that usually reduce your concentration on the road.
Using a flip-up or flip-front motorcycle helmet helps ensure that your visibility remains strong or is enhanced even further. The helmet keeps your hair intact so that it doesn't fall over your eyes, which could easily blind you and ruin your vision.
Flip-up helmets also have a shield and a visor for keeping out the wind and flying objects like insects and dust that could get into your eyes and blur your vision.
Price Points of Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets
Although you have a budget to stick to as a buyer, it's crucial to consider the price point of the flip-up helmet you are buying. Prices vary from the lower end for users on a tight budget to the high end for the premium models with more superior or extra features.
As a rule, every buyer should know that cheap doesn't always equate to poor quality. Similarly, expensive doesn't always equate to high quality. The idea here is to strike a balance in the price so that you get real value out of the helmet at that price point.
Here's what the price points for flip-up motorcycle helmets look like:
$50 - $100
You will find many flip-up helmets within this price range, but they still have the right essential parts and meet the standard requirements. Some of the key features of helmets in this range include dual visor sun shields and removable and washable padding.
The helmet shells could be made of thermoplastic alloy or carbon fiber. You will find helmets from brands like ILM, AGV, 1Storm, and AHR in this category.
$100 - $300
The majority of advanced flip-up helmets will fall into this price category. The special or extra features here include Bluetooth connectivity, MP3 music player, and intercom for communication between riders up to 1000 feet apart.
Most of the helmets in this range are made of carbon fiber that is strong, light, and highly shock-absorbent.
You'll find brands like ILM, HJC, AGV, YEMA, Shark, and Scorpio EXO.
The flip-up helmets you'll have in this range are a bit more advanced in their communication and connectivity solutions. The intercom systems here can support up to six riders in a group up to 1000m apart.
They also have FM radio, GPS, and high-fidelity music speakers.
The helmets could be made of carbon fiber or plastic, which is heavier. They are mostly unisex and are thus suitable for use by both men and women bikers.
Some of the flip-up helmets in this range are waterproof to protect the internal communication and connectivity devices from water damage. They may also have integrated ventilation systems that comprise multiple front vents and rear extractors.
Flip Up vs Full Face Helmets - Comparison Overview
As we noticed earlier, flip-up helmets are a lot like full-face helmets. As such, they share some similarities worth mentioning. There are also some differences between them, as we explore in this section.
Flip Up vs Full Face Helmets Similarities
If we are to overlook the complex design of flip-up helmets for a moment, you will notice that they are very similar in shape to full-face helmets. When in the closed chin bar position, a flip-up helmet resembles a full-face helmet.
Flip-up and full-face helmets share common features like visors, ventilation systems, chin bars, and shields. Like flip-up helmets, some modern full-face helmets have hinged face shields that open up and allow you to enjoy a fresh dash of air on a hot day.
Flip Up vs Full Face Helmets Differences
Although the shape of the flip-up helmet resembles that of the full-face helmet when the chin bar is closed, the two differ mainly in their design and overall shape. Flip-up helmets have hinging and locking systems for movable parts like the chin bar that are missing in early full-face helmets.
The closed-up design of full-face helmets makes them suitable for maximum protection to the head.
The open design of flip-up helmets makes them more ideal for comfort, practicality, and convenience. However, the hinging and locking mechanism of flip-up helmets introduces weak points.
Modern flip-up helmets have advanced communications and connectivity features like Bluetooth and intercom, which aren't anything the average full-face helmets can boast.
Who Should Not Buy a Flip Up Motorcycle Helmet?
If you are a claustrophobic person, you might want to keep away from flip-up motorcycle helmets. A claustrophobic person often has the excessive fear of being in confined places, and the closed-in nature of flip-up helmets doesn't help the situation.
Since the law requires you to ride with the flip-up helmet in the closed chin bar position, you might feel the choke of having your head all covered up. Instead, you should go for an open face or 3/4 helmet as this type allows you to fully enjoy a free flow of fresh air all the time.
Flip-up helmets are also not a good fit for you if you are allergic. Although most of them have removable and washable interior parts, it's easy for bacterial and fungal material to build up or for the dust to collect inside. Such foreign particles and organisms can lead to allergic reactions.
As a solution to the allergy problem, you should consider using either an open face or half helmet because these two types allow for the regular flow of fresh air all the time. However, you will have to forego some safety and protection in case of accidents if you opt for these models.
With a flip-up helmet, you enjoy both the maximum protection of the full-face helmet and the practicality and convenience of an open-face helmet. When the chin bar is in the closed position, your head is fully protected during the ride. When it is in an open position, you can eat or talk freely.
To find the best flip-up motorcycle helmet, be sure to check on the benefits and the features to look out for, as we have discussed in this article. Each of the helmets in our review has been carefully considered and will deliver real value for your money. You just have to pick your most favorite.
People Also Ask
If you are buying a flip-up helmet for the first time, you may have many questions on their safety, durability, usage, and general handling. This section explores some of these frequent concerns so it's easier for you to make an informed decision.
Are Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets Safe?
While they may not be as highly safe as their full-face counterparts, flip-up helmets offer excellent protection from scratches, neck problems, adverse weather, shocks to the head, and other typical injuries that may result from a motorcycle accident.
The high safety of flip-up helmets is due to their resemblance to full-face helmets when the chin bar is closed. However, there are some safety concerns since the hinging and locking mechanisms on the helmets are weak points that may lead to injuries during accidents.
On the whole, you don't have to worry about the weak points because now most modern flip-up helmets have strong metal hinges to ensure the helmet remains intact during and after impact.
How Long Do Flip Up Motorcycle Helmets Last?
A flip-up helmet can last you between three and five years on average. The duration depends on several factors such as usage patterns, maintenance practices, and the quality of the helmet. Poor quality helmets made from weak materials will crack up easily and finally wither down.
If you regularly use your helmet, it’s more likely to last a shorter time because you also have to clean it periodically, which usually weakens the internal components. Excessive washing will ruin the parts, especially for the advanced ones with communication devices.
You should ensure you don't drop your helmet on hard surfaces as this may cause it to crack. Proper maintenance like sealing cracks and repairing broken moving parts is also essential.
Can You Ride With a Flip-Up Helmet Open?
In most states within the country, you are required to ride with the flip-up helmet in its closed state as a safety measure to ensure your chin and face are protected from injuries if an accident occurs.
However, if you are only riding for a short while over a short distance, you might ride with the helmet open. If you would like to catch a dash of fresh air during a long ride, you must first stop and open your helmet for this purpose.
Can You Replace the Visor on a Flip Up Helmet?
It's possible to replace the visor on a flip-up helmet. The market is full of replacement visors from various brands. Some of the reasons you might have to replace the visor include:
- Necessary repairs after a crash in which the visor is damaged
- Too many tiny cracks on the visor may be causing blurred or obstructed vision
- Desire to renew your motorcycle helmet
- Desire to shift from a transparent to a color-plated lens that weakens the intense sunlight and provides a better shading effect
- Desire to add pomp to your helmet since a unique color will make you stand out from other riders.