More protective visorless helmets?

Since I started cycling back in 2020 have went from using a very old Propero (I had as a teen) to a Prevail II MIPS in black, have been using the Prevail as my only helmet for XC, road, CX, gravel and commuting. Have been looking to get an Evade for road racing (in white) and something more protective and visible for XC, gravel, CX and commuting. Was looking at something like a white POC Octal X or the Fox Crossframe Pro (if its ever finally launched in North America). Any other thoughts or suggestions of helmets to consider? Can you pull the visor off something like a Sweet Protection Bushwacker or Ambush 2 without it looking too weird? I did manage to find a pic of the Ambush 2 with the visor off but not while someone was wearing it.

The Prevail has kept me from drinking from a straw once and likely saved my life another time. I can’t recommend it enough for protection–I’d say you’re good to go!

“I’m supposed to field destroy this…but you already did that…”

I believe this is considered the gold standard of helmet ratings. Should be able to find what you need in here:

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Have been following their rating for a while, in terms of protective, which the Octal X has over other visorless options to my knowledge is more side and rear coverage. Looks like the Scott Centric Plus might have a little of that as well as well as the Giant Rev Pro. But if you look at all the visored helmets, by comparison to visorless helmets they give more coverage along the sides and rear of the helmet. I want a good VT rating but also more area of coverage for when I eat it on my XC or gravel bike.

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Ive always found it odd that the VT ratings dont consider how much protection a helmet offers. there is just no way these minimalist road helmets are safer than the mtb versions with much more coverage on the back and sides of the head.


Most people don’t wear MTB helmets while riding gravel because you’re still going fairly straight and at higher speeds, so it’s unlikely that you’ll hit the back of your head. Unless you ride lots of seasonal / unmaintained roads. That said, there’s no reason you can’t use a MTB helmet if you want, but it will be less aerodynamic.

Why do you want it to be visorless? In mountain biking you are likely to have to deal with coming in and out of foliage so there can be sudden shifts in the sun hitting your eyes or not. A visor helps to some degree with that, depending on angle of the sun. It’s like the bill of a baseball hat. A visor also helps protect your nose if you crash.

Another thing I deal with is the ends of small branches overhanging the trail at head level. The visor let’s me tilt my head down and let the branch deflect off the top of the helmet and the visor helps ensure none of the twigs on the branch manage to hit my face. Obviously you don’t do that with a fallen tree branch, but there’s plenty of little face slapper overgrowth that happens in the woods during the season.

If you don’t want a visor, then you do you. I just think many people don’t know the benefits. Admittedly if you ride in the desert there maybe not much benefit.