Helmet color: Does it really matter?

Helmet color: Does it really matter?

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  1. In the next few months, I think I’m going to be in the market for a new helmet as I have been pretty hard on my beloved CL-SP and I want to upgrade a little bit. The HJC FS-15 is my current favorite since I liked my CL-SP and the price is still good. Anyways…

    I’m pretty sure I’ll get one in either black or white. I think black probably looks better, and it will match with just about any conceivable jacket. However, I’ve heard white is more visible, and I also wonder if it would be any cooler in the sun.


    Am I overthinking things here?

  2. You aren’t trolling eh? I guess not with over 4400 posts. Helmet color: Does it really matter?

    There was a “heated” thread a while back on both visibilty and temperature regarding helmets. Anyone remember?

    Not the one I was thinking of but related: MX Helmet Color & Heat Issues – https://tonupboys.com/forums/showthread.php?t=33811

    Related: Helmet Color?? – www.tonupboys.com/forums/showthread.php?t=469911

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  3. The white shows up better than any other color.

  4. They are so well insulated I doubt the color makes much difference.

  5. The first thing a cager probably thinks when he sees the white helmet is, COP! But at least you got noticed….

  6. I asked a buddy this last year. He sent me a pic of a tight pack of moto GP riders. The few wearing white helmets stood out like you couldn’t believe.

    I bought a matte black helmet…..I’m a slave to fashion. I do wear a hi-viz green AST jacket though.

  7. I got a new KBC VR-1X yesterday – and went tribal.I got the black with white – the design starts white at the front into the black.So although the helmet is black,it’s mostly white to the front.A good compromise for visability I thought.

  8. fixer KLR-riding cheap bastard

    solid white is very visible, especialy in low light conditions.

    solid orange or yellow, or hi-viz colors like Scoprion’s neon yellow Exo 700 are also good IMHO, but harder to find in various models.

    scrambled egg graphics don’t help. it tends to camouflage whatever it’s on.

  9. I think I read a report ( some other country than US ) that said white is most visable…that was before the Scorpian Hi Vis came out…(not sure if the Hi Vis is better????…it just wasn’t out at the time). I’m wearing the Scorpian Hi Vis and people rubber neck me…lol.

    Helmet color: Does it really matter?

  10. FWIW, green isn’t a common helmet color, mainly due to the fact that it is quickly camoflagued where trees are. Red (medium red) is the first color to be lost to its surroundings as environments are darkened. I’ve watched some silver/gray helmets disappear into the surroundings when the road pavement ahead of them gets close to matching. Black with large, white spots is pretty effective.

    I’ve put a few small strips of retro-reflective tape on my helmet for night riding. Geeky, but I think it helps — especially in the city.

  11. Likewise the first thing a cop thinks when he sees your white helmet is “Now there’s a sensible motorcyclist…” – and hopefully he won’t bother you, even if you are cranked over and 15mph above the limit… ahem.

    Win win!


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  12. Of course, this depends on if the cop has any clue about rider awareness. A friend of mine was hasseled for 8 over. He has a hi-viz Aerostich, white helmet, the works (BMW as if it had to be said, Helmet color: Does it really matter?). Cop was intent on a ticket, but as he had a clean record and almost able to get an AARP card, stepped down.

    Cops don’t care when revenue is on the line. Helmet color: Does it really matter? Sorry if this hijacks.

    8 over, dude.

  13. Fair point there (although I reckon it was because he was riding a BMW x)


  14. Why not compromise a little and go with the silver color?

  15. Silver is one of the worst choices for visibility. It literally fades into whatever background is there.

  16. Guero, get what you can afford and what you like. Colour isn’t going to make that big of a difference in visibility or heat.

    You’ve got two inches of foam, Styrofoam, and shell on your noggin. It’s gonna be hot in there no matter what you wear. The temp differential on the inside of a black v. white helmet with that much insulation inside is going to be negligible to the point of I doubt seriously anyone could actually feel the difference.

  17. I think I may end up going with the white (newenough has a killer price on those helmets, but it is winter and I’m broke so it will have to wait Helmet color: Does it really matter?). I’ve got 2 jackets right now – 1 Hi-vis Teknic jacket and red Cortech mesh. I feel like both of those are pretty visible for the most part, and the helmet color probably doesn’t matter.

    But… I want to get a leather jacket too, and if it is dark black I won’t be very visible on the Magna at night (no reflectors or even blinkers right now). I think white is going to be the best choice. I suppose it matches everything about as well as the black does anyways Helmet color: Does it really matter?

  18. My impression is that there’s a real big difference in the visibility of my hi-viz EXO-700 compared to a black one.

  19. A mobile phone-yakking, SUV-driving, unwed soccer mom who drives her truck like her previous vehicle was a Honda Accord can’t see that tennis ball on your head nor the black helmet on mine… Because she isn’t even looking. I don’t put much faith in anything more than situational awareness and defensive riding.

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