The Best Motorcycle Helmets (And Brands) In 2018

Looking for the best motorcycle helmets and brands right now? This list has ALL of them. If you want safety, comfort and a sleek design…these are the brands you need to look at.

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Welcome to our 3-minute guide to the best motorcycle helmets and brands, for 2018 and beyond.

If you’ve read any of my other stuff (like the best motorcycle helmet for beginners), you’ll know I’ve been riding for almost two decades.

I’ve read various articles that really don’t help riders narrow it down, when it comes to buying a motorcycle helmet.

So, this is going to help.

Choosing A Motorcycle Helmet

When you’re buying a helmet, you’ve got these things in mind:

  • Safety
  • Price
  • Design
  • Fit

So, it’s not a one-size fits all approach. That’s why below I’ve listed the top motorcycle helmet brands that either I’ve used, or are regarded as the best-of-best.

This list leaves out boring things like safety ratings and certification.

Why? All the best brands ensure their helmets adhere to road/racing laws as standard.

The only helmets that don’t, are cheap copies from manufacturers that aren’t helmet specialists. And, you should avoid those like the plague.

What I’d say is this.

Pick whatever helmet you like. And sure, have a strict budget and buy a cheap helmet if you must.

But, always pick a motorcycle helmet from one of the brands mentioned below.

Your life depends on it…


AGV need no introduction in the bike world.

I first started using AGV helmets for motocross racing. Eventually, I bought the AGV K3 as my first street bike helmet.

The current list of riders using AGV helmets is huge…here’s a few:

  • Valentino Rossi
  • Andrea Iannone
  • Pol Espargaro
  • Jack Miller
  • Nico Bulega

They’re also used by bike nut Guy Martin, and were the lid of choice for motorcycle legend Barry Sheene.

With a tonne of positive online reviews, and as a helmet I personally own, I’m picking the K3 SV as the best motorcycle helmet from AGV.

AGV K3 SV Bulega Motorcycle Helmet Size Medium-Large - DOT-Approved
  • The K-3 SV is a great choice for all riders wanting a safe, quality product with sophisticated modern design
  • HIR-TH (High Resistant Thermoplastic Resin) outer shell
  • Two outer shells and four EPS sizes for the most accurate fit; shell and EPS inner shell dimensions optimized using Finite Element Method (FEM) analysis

Last update on 2018-09-22


Founded in 1926, Arai aren’t far of reaching their 100th birthday. And, for good reason.

Arai are a motorcycle helmet brand that cover, well, more than just motorcycles. Sure, they cover:

  • Motocross & Enduro
  • Dual-Sport
  • Street Bike
  • Racing

Here’s what most people don’t know about Arai.

They’re so advanced, they’re the choice of helmet for Formula 1 Drivers such as:

  • Sebastian Vettel
  • Daniel Ricciardo
  • Max Verstappen
  • Lance Stroll
  • Carlos Sainz

MotoGP riders…

  • Dani Pedrosa
  • Cal Crutchlow
  • Maverick Viñales

As well as motocross riders:

  • Pauls Jonass
  • Julien Lieber

If Arai is good enough for those guys… 🙂

We like the Arai Corsair-X.

Arai Nicky 6 Corsair-X Street Motorcycle Helmet - Red/White/Blue / X-Large
  • VAS (Variable Axis System) shield and side pods are exclusive to the Corsair X
  • Dual function lever releases both the side pod and the face shield for quick and simple face shield removal
  • VAS shield latch system captures and holds the face shield closed and provides a de-mist position to slightly crack the shield open

Last update on 2018-09-22

Bell Helmets

For a long time, Bell Helmets have been an innovator when it comes to R&D and therefore, motorcycle safety. 

And, that’s led to them managing to bag some of the best athletes in the world on their sponsor list.

They’re certainly a brand we’d recommend for all types of riding (including street bikes), but they’re sponsor list certainly leans towards the offroad scene, with riders such as:

  • James Stewart
  • Cody Webb
  • Eli Tomac
  • Aaron Plessenger
  • Robbie Madison

But, they’ve also got a tonne of road racing professionals on their sponsor list. Such as current MotoGP hot shot; Brad Binder.

We don’t endorse cheap helmet brands. But, Bell have produced a low budget and high quality lid in the form of the Bell Qualifier; just over $100.

Bell Qualifier Full-Face Motorcycle Helmet (Solid Matte Black, Small)
  • Lightweight Polycarbonate/ABS Shell Construction
  • Click Release Shield for fast, easy and tool-free shield replacement
  • NutraFog II anti-fog, anti-scratch and UV protected shield

Last update on 2018-09-22


For years, HJC were known as a budget brand. I was one of the few that recognized them has being highly underrated.

Now, they are recognised as being one of the best motorcycle helmet brands that money can buy.

Currently, they are used by:

  • MotoGP Rider Jorge Lorenzo
  • AMA Superbike Rider Aaron Yates
  • AMA Supercross Rider Kyle Chisholm
  • Freestyle Motocross Rider Nate Adams

If you’ve got a budget of a little over $100, head straight for the HJC CL-17.

Last update on 2018-09-22

It’s got hugely positive online reviews.

But, if your budget will stretch to around $200, the HJC IS-MAX II is a worthy contender for your cash.

HJC 980-614 IS-MAX II Modular Motorcycle Helmet (Matte Black, Large)
  • Advanced Polycarbonate Composite Shell with Adjustable Polycarbonate Chinbar: Lightweight, superior fit and comfort using advanced CAD technology
  • Single-Button One Handed Chin Bar/Face Shield Release
  • Optically Superior Pinlock Faceshield (HJ-17): Provides 95 percent U.V. Protection; QuickSlide Tool-less Shield Replacement System; Pinlock Insert sold separately

Last update on 2018-09-22


Lazer was one of the first motocross helmet brands I used. Their lids are ridiculously comfortable.

If you’ve not been involved with motorcycle riding for long, you’ll probably know Lazer for their line of mountain bike helmets.

Whatever type of lid you’re looking for, Lazer has you covered.

Cheap helmets? No Problem. Flip up helmets? No problem.

And, if you’ve got cash to burn, you can buy something ridiculously cool looking like the Lazer Monaco.


Nolan are a brand most well-known for their flip up helmets.

Although they’ve got plenty of science to backup their claims they’re durable and safe, I’m a sceptic. I prefer a 1-piece full face motorcycle helmet; it just feels safer.

However, they’ve still made it onto this list, as they are definitely one of the best motorcycle helmet brands producing lids for adventure riders.

Looking for a modular helmet for adventure riding? Take a peek at the Nolan N44 EVO.


Last update on 2018-09-22


Back to the a typical motorbike helmet brand. Shark.

Shark is actually a much younger brand than most people think. In fact, it’s only a few years older than me, founded in 1986.

They design, test, manufacture and sell quality helmets for:

  • Cruisers
  • Tourers
  • Street Bikes
  • Motocross
  • Dual Sport

For such a young company, they’ve done well to break into such a crowded marketplace.

And, that’s an obvious testament to the quality of what’s coming out of their factory.

Looking for a cool street bike helmet? Head straight for the Shark Helmets Skwal Instinct.

SHARK Helmets SKWAL Flynn - Black/Yellow - M
  • Blink / Steady dual LED mode. Rechargeable battery (5,000 recharge cycles, 5 hours of continuous operation, 10 hours while blinking).
  • Pinlock MaxVision visor a standard feature. Autoseal system: flattens the visor onto the helmet, offers better soundproofing and seals the helmet (against water and cold).
  • Extremely stable, with aerodynamic attributes enhanced by its spoiler.

Last update on 2018-09-22


No top list of motorcycle helmets or brands is going to be complete without mentioning Shoei.

As a few of you may know, I’m a complete MX nut. And, they’ve recently released the VFX-EVO which is possibly the coolest looking motorcycle helmet I’ve ever seen in my life.

But, Shoei is also one of the longest living helmet manufacturers. It was started back in 1959, and it’s being growing from strength to strength since.

You’ll regularly see top riders in AMA Motocross, AMA Superbike, World Superbike and MotoGP wearing their lids.

Looking for a cheap motorcycle helmet? Look away now.

One of Shoei’s best helmets is the Cog GT-Air. And, it’s heading for $700.

Shoei Cog GT-Air Street Bike Racing Motorcycle Helmet - TC-9/Large
  • Color: TC-9
  • Size: Large
  • Shoei Cog GT-Air Street Bike Racing Helmet

Last update on 2018-09-22


Spada is another young motorcycle helmet brand that’s managed to make a good name for itself. The company was only formed back in 1994.

Realistically, it doesn’t compare with any brand on this list except for Nolan.

A lot of big helmet brands like Shoei and HJC focus on helmets specifically, but mainly racing helmets. Nolan and Spada focus more on the adventure rider gear (not just helmets) and the flip up lids.

So, if you’re looking for a flip up motorcycle helmet, you’ll be tossing up between Nolan and Spada.

Looking for an alternative to Nolan?

Check out the Spada Sting Maverick.

What’s Next?

Thanks for reading our 3-minute guide to the best motorcycle helmet brands.

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