Why in the world would a cycling blog be reviewing snow helmet in April? The answer is that this is a great helmet for winter cycling and now just about every ski shop in America has this puppy on clearance for half price!
I wore the Smith Optics Variant Brim Snow Helmet all winter as I was biking through the snow and ice and I just love it. A normal cycling helmet with large air vents just won’t do when the wind chill is 20 degrees below zero. I used to nearly freeze to death every winter because I just couldn’t keep my head warm. I kept asking bike shops to help me find a suitable winter biking helmet and everyone told me they just don’t make them. Well, cycling manufacturers don’t, but companies who specialize in snow skiing equipment do!
The Smith Optics Variant Brim Snow Helmet has a dual regulator climate control which means you can close the vents when you get cold. I kept mine closed when the temperature is below -5 Fahrenheit. The removable ear flaps allow you to hear traffic, but still keep your ears warm at the same time. Also, because this is a snow helmet, you can wear snow goggles and when you don’t need them they will rest comfortably on the top of the helmet without falling off (there is even a small clip at the back to keep the goggles from moving around).
Curvature of the helmet is designed to match the curvature of most snow goggles and it also provides flow-through ventilation which means no fogging even on the worst days. This helmet is very lightweight and has a very comfortable fit. The Smith Optics Variant Brim Snow Helmet has safety certifications that I think would stack up well against most cycling helmets (Certification: ASTM F 2040, CE EN 1077 CLASS B).
I purchased this helmet at a sporting goods store in Wisconsin at the beginning of winter, which means I paid full price for it ($160.00). I noticed this week that many places have this model (and similar ones) on closeout for half-price.