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10 best kids' bike helmets to keep young riders safe

A first bike is a milestone in every child’s life. But during the excitement of their first bike, don’t forget about the importance of a child’s cycling helmet. Here's our pick of the best.

By Hannah Wilson | Last updated May 26, 2022

best kids bike helmets

Children love whizzing about on their bikes, once they learn how to ride that is. Encouraging them to play outside on their bike or to go on a family bike ride is very important for their health and development.

As well as getting some all-important exercise, cycling can promote independence, build their muscles and bone strength, increase their coordination and balance, encourage family bonding, and be a great stress-reliever for all involved.

But a quality cycle helmet is an absolute must in order to keep your child safe whether riding on the road, through the woods or in the skate park. The good news is that every child’s bike helmet has passed rigorous safety tests and adheres to safety standards, so you can always be sure that your little one is as safe as can be.

The bad news is that there’s a lot of kid's bike helmets to choose from, and if you’re a little out of your depth then deciding between a £15 one compared to a £100+ helmet, then it might seem like an easy choice - the cheaper one. But the only thing you need to use to help you decide which is the right cycling helmet for your child is the fit and comfortability of it.

“A poor fit will impact the protection a helmet can provide,” explains Angela K. Lumba-Brown, a paediatric emergency medicine physician, “It can also make a helmet uncomfortable and therefore less likely to be used.”

With that in mind, we trawled through expert review sites and the Mumsnet forums to find out which kids’ bike helmets our users recommend and reveal our top picks below.

Here are the best kids’ bike helmets to buy in 2022.

How we chose our recommendations

Recommendations from real people on Mumsnet

The first place we always start our search is on our Mumsnet forums. That’s because we believe in finding honest, impartial advice from the people who have been there and done that. 

We scoured the forums to find real recommendations, relying on both positive and negative feedback and advice on which kids’ helmets are loved most by parents and guardians. With these recommendations, we were then able to compile a list of children’s cycling helmets and delve deeper into researching and analysing the best ones.

Expert Guidance

We investigated expert advice and safety tips on children’s bike helmets, by consulting with numerous trustworthy sources, including Consumer Reports, the British Medical Journal and Headway. By relying on these expert organisations, we were able to choose the best kids’ bike helmets based on the most relevant and up-to-date advice.

Consumer reviews

After assessing the above information, we then cross-referenced our bike helmet picks with online customer reviews, such as reviews left by real people on Amazon. Using this feedback and taking into account the pros and cons of every bike helmet on our list of recommendations, we then whittled our best picks down to these top 10. 

What are the best kids’ bike helmets?

1. Best overall kids’ bike helmet: Kask Mojito 3 Helmet

Kask Mojito 3 Helmet

Price: £129 | Buy now from Evans Cycles 

“I've got a few helmets and my personal favourite is a Kask Mojito which is a unisex helmet. I find Kask helmets fit me really nicely but that won't be the case for everyone of course.” MrsAvocet

Our all-round favourite helmet is the Kask Mojito 3, although it’s more expensive than our other picks, it comes with a wide range of features which offer unlimited comfort and safety for your child. 

With size ranging from small to large, you can find a helmet that fits children over the age of 5, right up until adulthood. The small helmet has a head size of 50-56cm, the medium one has a head size of 52-58cm and the large one has a head size of 59-62cm. And the fit should be perfect, regardless of your child’s head shape, thanks to the micro dial adjuster and the skeletal brackets which offer support as well as the optimum fit.

The interior padding and well-ventilated nature of the helmet help to keep your kid cool and increase airflow as they ride. Even the chinstrap on this helmet has been carefully designed, to prevent skin irritation, as the synthetic leather strap is hypoallergenic and washable.

What’s more is that this helmet has a Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS) and an in-moulded shell, which offer better absorption and will keep your child safe, no matter what. Another safety feature that we love about this helmet are the high visibility stickers, so even in poor visibility conditions or at night, your little one will be spotted and safe.

But the cost of the helmet might put some parents off, especially if your child only occasionally goes on their bike. And children who wear glasses may struggle to find a comfortable fit, as one reviewer found it difficult to find a compatible pair of glasses to go with this helmet.

Pros

  • Excellent comfort
  • Comes in a variety of sizes
  • Impressive safety features 
  • Well ventilated and cooling interior padding

Cons

  • Expensive
  • May be difficult to wear comfortably with glasses

Key specs

  • Age range: 5+ years
  • Size: 50-62cm

2. Best budget kids’ bike helmet: meteor Helmet

meteor dinosaur helmet

Price: From £13 | Buy now from Amazon

“We were torn between meteor and XJD. Went for meteor in the end due to price, reviews and the fact that I wasn’t sure XJD would be quite small enough.” Ricekrispie22

These cheerful and colourful helmets are designed for very young children (one to five year olds) who may be taking their first wobbly steps on a balance bike or just getting to grips with a scooter or bike with stabilisers.

This helmet is slightly larger at the back to protect children’s head, while still managing to remain lightweight. An integrated visor adds extra protection and also shields the eyes from the sun, without compromising vision. We also like that the helmet comes with several holes to allow air flow, so your little one can keep cool as they whizz around.

You can choose from 22 brightly-coloured helmets in a wide range of designs, from unicorns to sharks, so there’s something to suit all tastes. And if your little one is slightly older, then they could even choose their own favourite design.

What’s also great about this helmet is that it has a soft lining that prevents bacteria growth and reduces the odour of unpleasant smells (such as sweat). And the lining is also removable so it makes it easy to clean.

The Meteor Helmet has a fit size headlock at the back, so you can adjust the size you need. However, some reviewers found that the fit size headlock was difficult to adjust when it was on their child’s head.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Great, colourful and kid-friendly designs
  • Removable padding for easy cleaning

Cons

  • Can be tricky to adjust chin strap
  • May be tricky to adjust the fit size headlock

Key specs

  • Age range: Up to 5 years
  • Size: 44-48cm (extra small) and 48-52cm (small)

3. Best kids’ bike helmet for toddlers: Specialized Mio Mips Toddler Helmet

Specialized Mio Mips Toddler Helmet

Price: £45 | Buy now from Cyclestore 

Available in a range of bold colours and prints, the Specialized Mio Mips Toddler Helmet will be a sure-fire hit with your cycling toddler and be a comfortable fit to show them that bike helmets are safe and enjoyable to wear.

Designed with both safety and comfort in mind, there’s a visor to keep out the sun and mesh to keep out any bugs, while reflective webbing will make sure your little one stays visible as the nights draw in. A magnetic buckle prevents any accidental pinching under the chin, which is an added bonus.

With a helmet size of 46-51cm, it’s ideal for children under the age of three (or those with smaller heads). The Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS) of this helmet is a great safety feature, as the thin layer of material adds an extra point of absorption should your little one fall off their bike.

The in-moulded shell improves strength, whilst still being lightweight - so your child will be comfortable while wearing it. And to ensure more comfort, the helmet also has several air vents to help reduce your child getting too hot.

What might put some parents off this toddler bike helmet is the price, because you’re little one will probably grow out of it by the age of three. It’s also worth noting that one reviewer found the ear loops were too small and caused some rubbing on the lower ears.

Pros

  • Colourful
  • Includes MIPS
  • Shape means it can be used in a bike trailer comfortably
  • Simple to get an accurate fit

Cons

  • Pricey for a toddler helmet
  • Ear loops may be too small

Key specs

  • Age range: Up to 3 years
  • Size: 46-51cm

4. Best Budget Toddler Bike Helmet: Stars Toddler Bike Helmet

Stars Toddler Bike Helmet

Price: £13 | Buy now from Halfords

“Yeah I would just try some. Measure his head and go from there, when I last looked on Amazon even they had measurements. Don’t go for ones by age. He might not get a super kiddy with eg Mickey Mouse ears and the like but there’s loads out there for older children and adults. Ds is 7 now, has always had a very big head and has an adult helmet now. It’s adjustable and fits perfectly. Got it from Halfords.” jenniuol

While the Specialized Mio Mips Toddler Helmet is great for toddlers, if you’re looking for a more affordable option (or if you think your little one won’t get much use from the helmet) then the Stars Toddler Bike Helmet from Halfords might be a better choice. 

The dial-fit system makes it easy to fit and adjust the size of the helmet and the under-chin fastening is great for securing it in place, so you can be sure that whether your little one is learning how to ride a bike, on the back of your bike, or scootering around, that they are safe.

We like that the helmet comes with removable pads and six ventilation holes, to help ensure your child is comfortable and cool. And the cute starry, unisex design is great for both boys and girls (so providing it’s still in good state, the helmet can be passed down for multiple children). 

However, if you’re wanting a wide choice when it comes to design and colours then this helmet isn’t the one for you. Another comment we noticed a few reviewers leaving was how the helmet size was quite small. This helmet is designed for children between one and four years old, but it might be worth going in store and trying it on before you buy.

Pros

  • Affordable toddler helmet
  • Easy to adjust
  • Removable pads for extra comfort

Cons 

  • Limited designs
  • Sizes may be quite small

Key specs

  • Age: 1-4 years
  • Size: 44-50cm

5. Best easy-fit kids’ bike helmet: Petzl Picchu Kinderhelm

Petzl Picchu Kinderhelm

Price £34 | Buy now from Amazon

“My kids had a petzl climbing helmet at that age for biking (and climbing) google it.” Annoy 

This multi-purpose children’s helmet is perfect for active kids, as it can be used for climbing and cycling. We like this pretty pink Petzl Picchu Kinderhelm helmet (also available in orange) because it’s been specifically designed to easily fit children between the ages of three and eight. 

No oversight of safety was taken when this helmet was designed, as the hard ABS outer-shell is impact- and scratch-resistant - so you can rest assured that your little one will be safe. Despite the high durability of this helmet, it’s still a fairly lightweight option.

The helmet comes with several ventilation holes, to help keep your child cool. Inside the helmet you can find comfortable foam padding, which is also removable and washable. And of course, the headband and chin straps are completely adjustable, so you and your child can get the right fit.

And what your child will love about this helmet is that it comes with a sheet of stickers, so they can personalise it however they choose!

The only potential downfall of this helmet is that it can be tricky to adjust the size, so parents may need to assist their child with tightening the headband and straps.

Pros

  • Multi-purpose helmet
  • Durable and lightweight
  • Removable and washable comfortable foam padding

Cons

  • Only available in pink and orange
  • Headband and straps may be difficult to tighten

Key specs

  • Age: 3-8 years
  • Size: 48-54 cm

6. Best novelty kids’ bike helmet: Crazy Safety Dragon Bicycle Helmet

Crazy Safety Dragon Bicycle Helmet

Price: £40 | Buy now from Currys 

If your child wants a helmet as unique as they are, then the Crazy Safety Dragon Bicycle Helmet is the ultimate choice - just look at this novelty and adorable helmet available from Currys. There are also other designs to choose from, if your little one prefers other animals, including a shark, giraffe and zebra.

The rear built-in LED light will not only excite your child, but will also mean that you know that your little one is visible at all times. And it comes with three different blinking settings too.

Other safety features of this helmet include a polycarbonate outer shell to protect your child, should they fall off, and an easy-to-adjust strap to ensure the helmet fits them as they grow. 

In terms of comfort, this helmet comes with soft EPS foam, removable padding and six ventilation holes. And with a head size of 49-55 cm, this helmet is ideal for children aged between three and 11. 

Although the eye-catching and striking design will please your child, it should be noted that any protrusions on a helmet (such as the eyebrow and teeth on this one) can increase the risk of it getting caught on an object. However, the design follows safety standards, so any protrusions should snap off upon impact.

Pros

  • Gorgeous novelty child-friendly designs
  • Safety built-in rear LED light
  • Durable and comfortable
  • Easy to adjust

Cons

  • Protrusions on the helmet can increase the risk of it getting caught on an object
  • Chin cup straps helps to keep helmet in place but can be tricky to adjust

Key specs

  • Age: 3-11 years
  • Size: 49-55 cm

7. Best character kids’ bike helmet: Peppa Pig Safety Helmet

Peppa Pig Safety Helmet

Price: £16 | Buy now from Amazon

Everybody’s favourite pig (for kids, at least) is the star of the show on this pretty pink kids’ bike helmet. So, if your little one is a Peppa Pig fanatic, then this character's kids' bike helmet might just hit the spot.

Lightweight yet tough, the Peppa Pig helmet comes with extra foam padding to ensure your child is comfortable while wearing it.  We also like that this helmet has a quick-release buckle, as it makes it easy to put on and take off, whenever your child wants to remove it. 

The adjustable size dial, at the back of the helmet,  helps you find the right fit for your child through the years, as the size is 48-54cm (meaning it should fit children between two and 10 years). It’s ideal cycling and scooting, and perhaps even jumping up and down in muddy puddles too.

With an inner lining of expanded polystyrene (EPS) and a ventilated shell, this helmet will give your child the protection they need, while being comfortable. However, the helmet only has four ventilation holes, so if your child is going to wear it for long periods of time then they might get a little hot and sweaty.

Pros

  • Attractive, fun character design
  • Easy to adjust
  • Can fit children between two and 10 years old

Cons

  • Only suitable for Peppa Pig fans
  • Four ventilation holes

Key specs

  • Age: 2-10 years 
  • Size: 48-54cm

8. Best kids’ bike helmet for off-road cycling: BELL Kids' Sidetrack Youth Cycling Helmet

BELL Kids' Sidetrack Youth Cycling Helmet

Price: £28 | Buy now from Amazon

If your child is serious about their cycling, then the BELL Kids’ Sidetrack is a great choice.

Designed with mainly mountain biking in mind, this ergonomic helmet has low coverage on the back of the head, a snap-in visor that can be removed if needed, a pinch-guard buckle to avoid hurting delicate skin and an Ergo Fit dial to adjust the fit, with just one hand. 

The helmet uses EPS material on the inside and has 15 vent holes, which offers your child extra comfort and will help to keep them cool. Making this helmet a great choice if your child is a fan of skate parks, trails or long bike rides.

However, some reviewers found that the chin strap was too long and that it was difficult to adjust the straps around the ears and have the correct length for the chin buckle. 

Pros

  • Extra protection for the back of the head
  • Sleek design
  • Easy to get a comfortable fit

Cons

  • May be difficult to adjust chin straps
  • Limited colour options

Key specs

  • Age: From 5 to 11+
  • Size: 50-57cm

9. Best kids’ bike helmet for riding in low light: Hornit Mini Lids Kids’ Bike Helmet

Hornit Mini Lids Kids’ Bike Helmet

Price: From £35 | Buy now from Amazon

Whether your child loves spiders, ice creams, llamas or space, there’s a Hornit Mini Lids helmet to suit all tastes - and you can choose between 15 gorgeous designs. You can also get this helmet in a small (48-53cm) or a medium (54-58cm) size, so it’s suitable for children between two and 11+. 

As well as getting children noticed in the day, the helmet is ideal for riding in low light as it’s fitted with an integrated LED light which can hold battery power for up to 20 hours. There are three different light modes to choose from - constant, flashing and fast flashing - so that your child can be safely seen at all times.

Not only will your little one find this helmet cool (due to the design and light feature), but they’ll also be able to keep cool (temperature wise) because it has 11 air vents. 

And you won’t need to worry about them, as the Hornit Helmet has excellent protection features, with an inner EPS lining of foam, an Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) outer shell and three removable foam padding inside of it. 

Unfortunately, some reviewers found that the helmet wasn’t the right fit for their children, even after they had adjusted it. One reviewer said “[that the helmet is more] designed for a very round head shape, rather than oval [shaped head]”.

Pros

  • Great range of fun designs
  • LED light safety feature
  • Good ventilation

Cons

  • Best suited for round head shapes
  • Older children may not enjoy the patterned design
  • Bulky helmet

Key specs

  • Age: 2-11+ years
  • Size: 48-53cm (small) and 54-58cm (medium)

10. Best kids’ bike helmet for older children: Giro Kids' Hale Cycling Helmet

Giro Kids' Hale Cycling Helmet

Price: From £32 | Buy now from Amazon

“Look at the bigger respected brands like Giro.” noodlmcdoodl

The Giro Hale is a high-quality bike helmet for any youngster who is serious about their cycling. With the sizes ranging from 50-57cm, this helmet is great for children between three and 11+ years.

We like that this helmet uses a combination of strong and durable polycarbonate for the outer shell and an EPS liner, which helps to keep it lightweight. While the reflectivity of this helmet ensures that your child stays safe, even when it starts to get dark.

Kids who want to protect their eyes from the sun, can do so with the visor, but for those who find it restricting, then you can remove it.  Another feature that offers excellent flexibility is the easy-to-adjust Roc Loc Sport fitting system which ensures the helmet grows with your child and, with a bit of care, could last for many years. Perfect for any aspiring Froomes or Geraints.

And with 22 ventilation holes and quick dry padding (inside the helmet), your child will be able to keep cool and comfortable, no matter how long they wear the helmet for.

The only drawback of this helmet is that younger children might not find it as appealing as other helmets, because you can only choose from four colours and younger children might prefer more exciting designs.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Lightweight but tough
  • Keeps kids cool with 22 vents and quick dry padding

Cons

  • Only four colours to choose from
  • Younger kids may prefer more exciting designs

Key specs

  • Age: 3-11+
  • Size: 50-57cm

What type of helmet is safest for kids?

A study conducted by the British Medical Journal estimated that helmets can decrease the risk of head injury by 85% and brain injury by 88%. Naturally, you’d be left assuming that any helmet, any type or kind of helmet is safe, but that’s not true. The kind of bike helmet that is the safest for your child is one that fits perfectly.

To ensure your child’s helmet is the right fit for them, you need to first measure their head. You can do this by using a soft tape measure, to get a circumference of their head. We recommend you put the tape measure an inch above their eyebrow (or around the thickest part of their head).

When fitting the helmet, you need to make sure it sits level across the middle of your child’s forehead and so it’s above their ears. It’s also important to ensure the helmet sits about the width of two fingers above their eyebrows. If the helmet can be tipped backwards or forwards, then you need to try and adjust the fit or try a different helmet, as it won’t give your child the protection they need.

You can adjust the fit of a helmet by tightening or loosening the retention system (at the back of the helmet).

A useful test to see how well the helmet fits is to ask your child to bend forward - if the helmet falls off then you need to try and tighten it. A properly fitted helmet shouldn’t be too tight that it digs in, but it should be tight enough not to fall off your child’s head when the straps aren’t connected.

If the helmet fits well and doesn’t fall off your little one's head, then you can connect the chin straps so they are secure. And finally check that the Y-shaped junction sits underneath the ear and loops over each side. 

How do you choose a bike helmet for a child?

We all know that helmets can help prevent injuries and traumas. In fact, IHR Research Professor and Consultant Neurologist, Professor David J Sharp, from the National Institute for Health Research says, “The reality is that even a minor injury can have a major impact. Therefore, anything that can limit damage to the brain by lessening the risk of skull fracture or reducing the amount of energy absorbed by the brain upon impact can have a significant effect on a patient’s outcome. Cycle helmets achieve both of these objectives.” 

But before choosing the right child’s bicycle helmet, there are a number of things you should consider.

Size and fit: It’s crucial that you buy a helmet that’s the right size and a good fit for your child. If the bike helmet doesn’t fit properly, then this means your child won’t be fully protected. You can use a tape measure to measure around your child’s head to help you order the correct size if shopping online. If you’re unsure, go to Halfords or your local bike shop for help and advice.

Safety features: Do you want a helmet which boasts extra safety features, such as an LED light if riding at night? Or a bluetooth helmet which can send a safety alert to emergency contacts?

Design and pattern: Does your child like vibrant colours or something a bit more muted? Spider-man? Dinosaurs? Frozen? Make sure you pick a helmet that your child will like and will put on and wear with minimal fuss.

Price: Always set a budget! The cost of kids’ cycling helmets vary wildly. Think about how often your child goes out on their bike and consider whether it is worth paying out for a top-of-the-range branded helmet.

What size helmet should my child wear?

When buying a kids’ bike helmet, you need to know your child’s head circumference. 

Measure around your child’s forehead, just above the eyebrows, using a tape measure and compare this measurement to the helmet manufacturer’s sizing table and pick an appropriately sized helmet for your child.

As a general guide: 46cm fits a 12-month-old, 48cm fits a two-year-old, 51cm is suitable for three- to five-year-olds, 53cm for six to 10 years, and 56cm for 11+ years.

Don’t be tempted to size up and pick a helmet for your child to grow into. A bike helmet needs to fit correctly in order to provide adequate protection.

The helmet should fit snugly and shouldn’t move from side to side. A well-fitting helmet sits low on the forehead, sitting just one or two finger-widths above the eyebrows. The side straps should form a Y shape and meet below the ear.  When you fasten the chin strap, you should not be able to fit any more than one finger under the strap.

What is the best brand of kids’ bike helmet?

The best and most respected brands for kids’ bike helmets are Kask, Giro, Specialized and many more. 

All bike helmets are tried and tested to ensure they comply with safety standards, so it’s not always about the brand. But remember that the main thing to focus on is the features and level of safety you want from the helmet - and then choose one based on this criteria.

Which kids’ bike helmet is best?

Kask Mojito 3 Helmet
I've got a few helmets and my personal favourite is a Kask Mojito which is a unisex helmet.

MrsAvocet

Kask Mojito 3 Helmet

Kask
Evans Cycles

Buy now

Mumsnet users and other parents highly rate the Kask Mojito 3 Helmet, and it’s easy to see why, as this helmet comes with all the necessary safety features, including MIPS and high visibility stickers, is comfortable to wear, and super easy to fit and adjust. It might be the most expensive helmet in our list, but we truly believe that the cost is worth it for the amount of safety this helmet provides for your little one.

Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.

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