Issue: My head is on the smaller side, so all "universal adult" helmets don't fit me. I've been to a couple LBS's recently and tried on just about all their helmets, from most of the popular brands (excepting Specialized). Most Small sized helmets I tried on don't even fit very well, some of them are in fact too tight. Going into winter, I decided to go for a cheaper, warmer helmet. However, I am pretty sure next summer I will not be able to handle miles and miles in it. I have found two other helmets (with lots of venting) that I would say actually fit comfortably (my primary criterion), one in particular I really like the look too.

Question: should I pick that other helmet up now (Bell Sequence) just in case it gets discontinued? I won't be wearing it for quite a few months, so it's kinda silly when you're on a tight budget to buy something before you need it, but I sure do like the fit (and venting).

  • Can you afford to put the helmet on layby / lay-away ?
    – Criggie
    Jan 3, 2016 at 23:29

4 Answers 4


In most bike shops, if they have a helmet in stock, they will sell it even if it's last year's model, rather than ship it off to a remainder seller or some such. But, of course, if they sell the helmet, and the model changes next year, they will not get more of the old ones.

I would guess that helmet manufacturers turn over their product line about every three years, doing a little bit each year. There's no good way to know if this year's model will be around next year -- it might or it might not.

So you figure the odds.

  • Well going to Bell's site yielded their helmet lineup including three that had a note 'available xmonth 2013'. The Sequence still being in the regular (but not 'new') lineup… the odds of any information on the Internet being accurate, no matter how big a company (I've found errors on IBM's website) is still low. So thanks for the estimate, I think your bio speaks for itself. So just because some others are being introduced/updated, doesn't mean the others won't suddenly disappear. Sep 11, 2012 at 14:46
  • Heck, I probably put those errors on the IBM website. Sep 11, 2012 at 16:02

Depending on how long it takes before you change helmets, possibly not. My understanding is that even just lying around, the crash-resistant foam in helmets gradually degrades. Five years seems to be a common number, but I don't see any supporting evidence, so take that for the little it's worth.

  • I see. Yes, there are quite a few Q's regarding helmet care and lifetime. I'll have to read them more closely. Thank you for the hint. Sep 11, 2012 at 14:49

During one single winter, most probably you'll still get the same model aftwerwards. But experience suggests that these fashion-oriented goods are constantly "replaced" by "newer" (as in "better") ones, if not just for the sake of change (which, of course, makes me upset).

So it is with frames, suspension forks, derailers, tires, clipless shoes, you name it.

As a side note, I can remember a few times, regarding regular clothes, that make me think: "Oh, if I knew this thing was so good, I'd have bought more than one, for I can't find it again..."

Hope these thoughts help!

  • Yeah, when I find socks I like I always get several pair. Good socks, in particular, are hard to find, and it seems like the styles change remarkably rapidly for such a mundane item. Sep 10, 2012 at 0:53
  • Tru-dat! I have often returned to a store to buy well suited under garments like socks undershirts and various flavors of underwear only to be heartbroken that they no longer manufacture it in that style and one day I might be wearing nothing when the last pair of my 'new favorite' is naught but a single thread… then my dear one will remind me not to be attached to worldly objects… hmmm… I think I'll go get that helmet (and of course remain unattached to it). Sep 11, 2012 at 14:38
  • It's lame that we can only realize we love some material thing just after it got old from use... Saddles are an example of something that might feel good at the shop, but... Sep 11, 2012 at 18:47

I personally would not factor warmth into my decision - or if I did it would probably be the opposite of what you did with the cheaper helmet. My criteria would be "if I wear this helmet in the middle of summer will my head get too hot?"

If the answer is "yes" then I don't want the helmet, period. For all of the cooler scenarios I am happy to wear something underneath the helmet. For the most part this would probably be a cotton cap, although for the extreme winter I have a brilliant Assos balaclava which I've ridden as low as -5C.

I seem to remember the last lid I bought (a well-ventilated Giro) actually came with a skullcap in the box.

I'm just saying, there are options are regards ventilation. On the other hand, a well-fitting helmet seems absolutely crucial if you're going to spend hours at a time wearing it.

It appears I'm encouraging you to spend money.....sorry!

  • Right on. I'll have to look up Assos… yeah you are! Actually I just got a couple different styles of 'buff', that I'm hoping will do the trick. Sep 11, 2012 at 14:32
  • yeah, I wore a buff the winter before last, that's a decent bit of kit. Easily warm enough for the uk winter, the only thing that makes the balaclava better (imo) is that I get better visibility - it doesn't encroach on my peripheral vision.
    – PeteH
    Sep 11, 2012 at 15:22
  • Ahhh… I see. Thanks for the additional info. Sep 11, 2012 at 15:38
  • plus, as regards cost, my winter riding (at least the commuting part) is largely using the bike instead of using London Underground. This allows me know exactly how much I save per year by using the bike (as it happens its something like GBP1000 (USD1400?) per year, so quite a lot). I'm not as fussy with my clothing in the summer but for winter I kit out in Assos pretty much head to toe. Its good stuff and given what I'm saving I don't begrudge spending some of it on what I wear. And it lasts for years.
    – PeteH
    Sep 11, 2012 at 21:52
  • How much are they paying you? J/k. I'll def have to check it out… it's getting colder here soon... Sep 12, 2012 at 4:28

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