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10 Best Bike Helmets for Babies & Toddlers: 2020

Getting in the habit of always putting a helmet on your baby or toddler could literally save your child’s life. And with plenty of comfortable, cute, and affordable options to choose from, there’s really no reason not to wear a helmet! Based on performance, quality of construction, and factoring in price, here are our top 10 helmets for general bike riding for toddlers, and for use in bike trailers or bike seats for babies and toddlers.

12-month-old and 3-year-old wearing the Giro Scamp

If you have a child with a large head, check out our Top 10 Bike Helmets for Kids.

10 Best Baby and Toddler Bike Helmets

Helmet

Why We Love It

MSRP

Giro Scamp (MIPS)

Best All-Around (Baby or Toddler)

$35($55)

Joovy Noodle

Best Bang for Your Buck

$30

Schwinn Infant

Best for Tiny Heads

$17

Schwinn Toddler

Best Super Budget (Toddler)

$17
Kali Chakra Child

Crash Replacement Guarantee

$30
Lazer Lil' Gekko

Easiest to Get a Great Fit

$45
Uvex HeroBest Buckle$39

Nutcase Baby/Little Nutty

Best Skater-Style (Baby/Toddler)

$60/$70

Specialized Mio

Magnetic Buckle and MIPS!

$55
Bell Sidetrack 2 Child

Honorable Mention (Toddler)

$50

Giro Scamp

Best All-Around – Baby/Toddler


MSRP: $35 (without MIPS), $55 (with MIPS)

SIZE: XS (45 – 49 cm), S (49 – 53 cm)

FEATURES: Flat back for trailer or bike seat use, durable in-mold construction, dial-adjust fit, built-in visor, sealed sweat pads, and optional MIPS technology.

FULL REVIEWGiro Scamp

Built with lightweight, in-mold construction, a dial-adjust system, and optional MIPS technology (to help minimize impacts at sharp angles) the Scamp has an impressive resume. MIPS helmets can be expensive, but the $55 price tag of the Scamp is one of the most reasonable available.  

Through the years, all of our testers have loved wearing the Scamp because it’s so lightweight, comfortable, and less bulky than every other helmet. And with a flatter profile in the back, the Scamp is also well-suited for trailer or bike seat use, in addition to bikes.


Joovy Noodle

Best Bang for Your Buck


blue joovy noodle toddler helmet

MSRP: $30

ONE SIZE: 47 – 52 cm

FEATURES: Dial-adjust fit, more stable fit on small heads, easier to get on and off, available in fun, bright colors.

FULL REVIEW: Joovy Noodle

The Joovy Noodle was designed specifically with the youngest kids in mind. Its light weight makes it is easy for a toddler to wear and still be able to control their neck and head movements. With the chin straps threaded through the back dial-adjust, the Noodle is more stable on smaller heads, and the separated straps also make the helmet much easier to get on. The dual color chin buckle (black on the left, red on the right) makes the buckle easier to spot and get on and off a moving toddler. While it MSRPs for $40, it can regularly be found on Amazon for $30, which is definitely a bang for your buck!


Schwinn Infant

Best for Tiny Heads


jungle theme print of the schwinn infant helmet

MSRP: $17

SIZE: One Size (44 – 49 cm)

FEATURES: Flat back, CSPC 1+ certified, dial-adjust system

The Schwinn Infant is the smallest helmet we’ve found. While our highly-recommended Giro Scamp fits heads as small as 45 cm, the Schwinn Infant is smaller, more narrow, and fits heads about 44 cm! While the quality isn’t the best and its pads aren’t as soft as the Scamp, for about $17, it’s a fine little helmet for your baby. It also features a dial-adjust system which is fantastic for that price point.


Schwinn Toddler

Best Super Budget – Toddler


MSRP: $17

ONE SIZE: 45 – 50 cm

FEATURES: Dial-adjust system

Similar to the Schwinn Infant, but for bigger kids, the Schwinn Toddler comes in several super fun designs. While the quality is basic compared to others on this list, it’s better than a helmet you’ll just pick up at Walmart. We especially love that there’s a dial-adjust tightening system, which is very hard to find at this price point.

We also found that this helmet is deeper than many other helmets, which is great for kids with taller heads. However, if your child has a short forehead, the helmet may sit too low on the head and interfere with their full range of vision.


Lazer Lil’ Gekko & Gekko

Easiest to Adjust


Lazer Lil Gecko toddler helmet with dinosaur design

MSRP: $45 (non-MIPS) / $55 (MIPS)

SIZES: Lil’ Gekko (46 – 50 cm), Gekko (50 – 56 cm)

FEATURES:  Autofit internal cage system, easy-to-use side buckle system, in-mold construction, great ventilation, optional MIPS

FULL REVIEW: Lazer Lil’ Gekko/Gekko Review

There are two features of that set this helmet apart from the competition. First, Lazer’s unique AutoFit adjust-system eliminates the need for adjusting your child’s helmet every time they go for a ride. The internal cage automatically adjusts to every child’s head via an enclosed tension wire inside the helmet. It’s genius!

Our second favorite feature of the Lil’ Gekko and Gekko is the uniquely placed buckle. Instead of connecting beneath the chin where it’s hard to see and avoid loose neck skin, the buckle connects at the side of the face. This allows parents to easily see the buckle when buckling to help prevent pinching.


Kali Chakra Child

Crash Replacement Guarantee


Kali Chakra child helmet in turquoise and purple

MSRP: $30

SIZE: Child (48 – 54 cm)

FEATURES: Light-weight, in-mold construction, dial-adjust fit, well ventilated, crash replacement guarantee

FULL REVIEW: Kali Chakra

With a compact, lightweight design, easy dial-adjust system, excellent ventilation, and a built-in visor, the Kali Chakra helmet is a kid and parent favorite. Ventilation on the child’s Chakra is superb – twenty-one large vents allow for excellent air flow. At 208 grams, it’s also one of the lightest-weight helmets we’ve tested!  To top it off, all Kali helmets come with a crash replacement guarantee.  If a Kali helmet is damaged during a crash, Kali will swap out your damaged helmet for a new, free one.


Uvex Hero

Best Buckle


MSRP: $39

ONE SIZE: 49 – 54 cm

FEATURES: Unique ratcheting, non-pinch buckle, durable in-mold construction, dial-adjust fit, fun designs

FULL REVIEWUvex Hero

From top to bottom, the Uvex Hero is exceptionally built for durability and performance, but its unique buckle system really makes it shine.  Designed using a simple ratcheting system, the Uvex buckle slowly clicks together to prevent skin from accidentally getting caught.  With traditional buckles, the snapping of the buckle is very fast and can unexpectedly catch a child’s skin, which can be painful and upsetting for little ones.

Built for small heads, the Uvex offers a great fit for most kids, but is too shallow for kids with longer heads (taller foreheads).  For those who need a little extra depth, the Uvex Quatro Junior, the Hero’s big brother, is a great option that also features Uvex’s unique buckle.


Nutcase Baby Nutty

Best Skater-Style – Baby


spaced themed nutcase baby nutty kids bike helmet

MSRP: $60

SIZE: Baby Nutty (47 – 50 cm)

FEATURES: Flat back for use in trailers or bike seats, elastic adjust, magnetic buckle, some of the funnest, funkiest designs around, CPSC 1+ certified (Baby Nutty), dual-certified for skateboard use (Little Nutty)

FULL REVIEW: Little Nutty and Baby Nutty

If you want the hippest little baby on the block, a skater-style helmet with fresh and funky designs is probably for you! Weighing in at 280 g, the Baby Nutty is significantly lighter than other skater helmets, partially because it’s not actually certified for skate use. But let’s be honest, your baby shouldn’t be on a skateboard anyways! With extended coverage in the back, an elastic adjustment system that’s quick, easy and efficient,  a pinch-free magnetic buckle, and a soft chin pad for added comfort, the Baby Nutty is a fun, quality, and comfy option.

NOTE: If you live in a hot climate, Nutcase helmets don’t have as many vents as other helmets and can get hotter and sweatier.


Specialized Mio

Magnetic Buckle and MIPS!


Specialized Mio toddler helmet. Turquoise with blue flowers

MSRP: $55

SIZES: Toddler (46 – 51 cm)

FEATURES:  Dial-adjust fit, MIPS comes standard, magnetic buckle, in-mold construction, long built-in visor

FULL REVIEW: Specialized Mio MIPS Toddler Helmet Review

Coming standard with MIPS safety technology, the Specialized Mio is on the more expensive side for toddler helmets, but it’s one of the safest and one of the easiest to use.

Its dial adjust knob sits lower beneath the back of the helmet, making it easy to grab and adjust on a squirming toddler. The buckle is magnetic which can be such a parent bonus when your little one won’t stop moving as you’re trying to get that buckle secured! 

The built-in visor, which provides important facial protection in the event of a face plant, is a bit longer than other helmets. To top it off, the Mio has fixed plastic pieces connecting the ear and chin straps, so those often pesky strap sliders can never slide out of place!

It is, however, a little bit bulkier than the Giro Scamp. Additionally, it’s more shallow that other helmets, which can be problematic when your child is on the higher end of the head circumference range. But if you’re looking for a high-quality helmet that’s easy to adjust and features MIPS technology, the Mio is a solid option.


Bell Sidetrack 2 Child

Honorable Mention


Bell Sidetrack 2 kid's helmet in red

MSRP: $50

SIZE: Child (47 – 54 cm)

FEATURES: Ergo Fit dial-adjust system, in-mold construction, durable snap-in visor (removable), internal air channels and 15 vents.

FULL REVIEW: Bell Sidetrack 2

Styled like an adult mountain bike helmet, the Sidetrack is a sweet-looking safety accessory that’s packed with features for a very decent price. From extended coverage in the back for better protection to a dial-adjust system with a full cage for a more precise fit, the Sidetrack is safe, comfortable, durable, and just plain cool for your toddler. (While we recommend the Child size, we do not recommend the smaller Toddler size. Please see our review for more details.)

Baby & Toddler Helmets Comparison Chart

Bike

MSRP

Fits HeadsWeightAdjustment SystemVentsOptional MIPSVisorConstruction

Schwinn Infant

$17

44 - 49 cmDial6NoYesHardshell

Giro Scamp

$35($55)45 – 49 cm, 49 - 53 cm251 gDial8YesYesIn-mold

Schwinn Toddler

$17

45 - 50 cmDial6NoYesHardshell
Lazer Lil' Gekko$4546 - 50 cm300 gAutoFit12YesYesIn-mold
Specialized Mio$5546 - 51 cm290 gDial Adjust12StandardYesIn-mold

Lazer BOB

$55

46 - 52 cm277 gSlider6NoNoHardshell

Joovy Noodle

$30

47 - 52 cm226 gDial14NoYesHardshell

Bell Sidetrack 2 Child

$50

47 - 54 cm276 gDial14YesYesIn-mold

Nutcase Baby/Little Nutty

$50/$60

47 - 52 cm280 gDial11NoNoHardshell

Kali Chakra Child

$30

48 - 54 cm208 gDial21NoYesIn-mold

Micro Helmet

$40

48 - 53 cmDial10NoNoHardshell

Catlike Kitten

$45

48 - 52 cm215 gDial23NoNoIn-mold
Troy Lee A1 Classic Youth$10948 - 53 cmDial16YesYesIn-mold
Uvex Hero$3949 - 54 cm265 gDial13NoYesIn-mold

How to Choose the Best Helmet for Your Baby or Toddler

For a more detailed discussion about how to choose and fit the perfect bike helmet for your baby or toddler, check out our post: Kids’ Bike Helmets: How to Choose. If you’re looking for something quick, here’s a short summary of the most important things to look for to find the best helmet for babies and toddlers.

Size

Your cargo is precious, and if that helmet doesn’t fit, it can’t protect your baby! Baby helmets can especially be hard because there aren’t a ton of helmets that are small enough to fit small baby heads. The Giro Scamp and Schwinn Infant are two of the smallest helmets on the market.

You can measure your own child’s head with a soft tape measure, or we prefer to use the measurements provided by the pediatrician at our regular check-ups. Find a helmet with a size range (for example 45 – 50 cm) that your child’s head measurement falls into.

Whichever helmet you choose, just make sure that it’s a snug fit on your baby or toddler’s head. No biking activity you want to do is worth risking your child’s safety!

Weight

The lighter the helmet the better. Babies and young toddlers have weaker neck muscles and it can be difficult for them to support the additional weight of a helmet if it’s too heavy.

Flat Back

You’re most likely looking for a baby or toddler helmet so you can take them along for a bike ride in a trailer or child bike seat. Look for a helmet with a flat back so their head doesn’t get pushed forward as they lean back against the trailer or child bike seat.

Lazer BOB, Schwinn Infant, and Giro Scamp side by side, showing the Schwinn and Scamp have flatter backs than the BOB.

 

Adjustability

Adjusting a helmet for the right fit can be a serious pain for a baby or toddler. The best helmets have a dial-adjust on the back that allows you to tighten the inner portion of the helmet for a snug fit. But even the best dial-adjust systems can be a pain because they can be hard to turn while your toddler is wearing the helmet.

Our hands-down favorite adjustment systems are the Lazer Lil Gekko’s (smallest head 46 cm) which is an auto-adjust system that automatically sizes to your child’s head.

Buckle

Most helmets come with standard buckles that can pinch a child’s neck when buckling or un-buckling. Have you ever seen a baby or toddler get their neck skin pinched?? You don’t want to! Higher-end helmets now feature magnetic “pinch-free” buckles that prevent the possibility of getting neck skin stuck in the buckle. Of course this isn’t a must-have, but it’s a really nice nice-to-have!

MIPS

MIPS is a newer technology that adds an additional layer of safety to a helmet. Unfortunately, there are not many baby and toddler helmets that offer MIPS technology. While MIPS can be pretty expensive, the Giro Scamp is a very affordable option that does offer MIPS.

MIPS plastic shell inside the Bell Sidetrack Youth helmet, and upclose shot of MIPS anchor.

In a nutshell, MIPS is an inner plastic cage secured by small plastic anchors. If an impact occurs, this cage rotates with your child’s head to provide better multi-directional impact protection.


 Related Articles


Kids  Bike Helmet Sizes Guide: 6 Easy Steps to help you find and adjust a bike helmet

10 Best Kids’ Helmets: Need a bigger size? Try our list for Kids.

Kids’ Helmets Comparison Charts: To view and sort through all kids’ helmets, and read reviews.

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