When it comes to helmets, it’s hard to go more straightforward than the Anon Raider. This streamlined protective device is sturdy and fits well, even if it lacks the extra features noted in much more extravagant models.
- Where to Buy: Amazon, Burton, EVO
- Best for: Skiers who want a cheap, reliable helmet without too many extra bells or whistles.
- Pros: This helmet has a clean design on top of sturdy construction. It’s quite affordable and works well with goggles. Many extreme sports fans will also appreciate that this can be used in both the winter and the summer.
- Cons: This is an incredibly plain helmet. There’s not a lot here beyond the shell and the straps. It could also have better ventilation and a tighter fit.
- Alternatives: OutdoorMaster Kelvin, ILM Ski Helmet, Lucky Bums
Why Trust Me
I’ve been hitting the slopes since I was a kid. I enjoy getting out in the snow and have hands-on experience with a wide range of different skiing items. I have spent ample time researching and analyzing this helmet to see how it holds up in various environments and weather conditions.
The Raider is a simple helmet in every single sense of the word. There’s no adjustment system, no way to close the vents, minimal padding, and a basic strap. Even so, it still does a good job of protecting your head and can stand up to hard impacts. Along with the goggle clip, that makes it a practical option for skiers who want to stay safe without paying too much for their gear.
Design and Durability
The first aspect I looked at when reviewing the Raider is its cut down design. That’s because it’s going to both attract and alienate some people. There’s not a lot to this helmet. You get a tough shell, a strap, some vents, extra padding, and that’s pretty much it. Whether that’s enough for you, comes down to what you want.
If you’re searching for a more expensive or more involved model, the Raider won’t be for you. On the flip side, if you like less intrusive gear or value function much more than extra traits, this could be right up your alley. Some people will also love the skater design and the fact that it can be easily switched over to a summer helmet. If you like to skateboard when it gets hot, this has that functionality.
It’s also important to note that this helmet does do exactly what it promises. That is to say, it’s quite durable. The outside shell is incredibly strong and will be able to protect your head thanks to the Endura-Shell. This should always be your number one priority when evaluating helmets, and the Raider succeeds here.
Warmth and Comfort
One area where the Raider doesn’t quite hold up is its warmth. Though it’s shape should sit snugly on certain heads, it often leaves too much room and lets in air. That can cause people who run cold to get even more uncomfortable during frigid days. There just isn’t a tight seal. Though, that can be fixed by wearing a thin beanie underneath the helmet for some extra insulation.
Besides the fit, which will differ from person to person, this helmet does have adequate padding. It’s cushioned nicely and won’t cause too much discomfort if you’re out on the slopes for long periods. That padding gets even better if you have a hat underneath. The earpads are also soft and do a good job of keeping out the wind.
Ventilation and Goggles
There is a good amount of ventilation here, but it’s not adjustable. As such, the way they sit lets in snow and can cause your head to become chilly if you’re skiing in rough weather. Even so, the slots work well enough at letting out air and manage to keep your head cool. I just wish they came with more versatility or gave you extra options. There are definitely better systems out there.
In terms of eyewear, the Raider seems to work with most goggles. Almost all brands fit with the helmet and did not leave any gaps. Anon also gives you a removable goggle clip. While the idea behind this is nice, it didn’t quite hold up in practice. It’s a bit tricky to use, and even when it does work, it’s prone to falling off. That makes it quite easy to lose out in the snow.
Price and Value
While it lacks in some areas, the Anon Raider gets high marks for its value. That’s because it’s a functional and viable budget helmet. You get solid protection and a few minor features at an affordable price. That durability ups the value for me as it means you’ll be able to get multiple seasons out of the helmet, even in the event of crashes and accidents.
What I Like
If there’s one thing to appreciate about the Anon Raider, it’s the protection. There aren’t a lot of features here, but at the end of the day you’re getting a good Endura-Shell at an extremely affordable price. The helmet is durable and easily strong enough to protect you in the event of a crash or accident. It should hold up for quite a while too.
There’s also something to be said about the sleek, skate-inspired design. I think it looks great. As a bonus, goggles seem to work quite well through the handy goggle clip. While the helmet itself doesn’t have the warmth I wanted, the removable ear pads do a good job of keeping out the wind.
This model is also cheap and functional. That makes it a fine choice for newer skiers or those who don’t need to get a lot from their equipment. Overall, I give it high marks in terms of value.
What I Dislike
I always enjoy the minimalist approach when it comes to ski gear, and even I found this model to be lacking. There’s nothing wrong with going a bit slimmer, but I would have liked a few extra features to help balance out some of the fit and warmth issues. The extra space doesn’t entirely give you the protection you’d expect.
The other big issue here is the ventilation. Though the system does let in cool air, it’s also not adjustable (something I really like) and the openings tend to let in snow. That won’t be a big issue if you’re skiing in calm conditions, but if you plan to bring this out onto a rough or tumultuous day, it’s going to matter.
The Anon Raider is certainly a great helmet in terms of reliability and value. However, it’s far from the only affordable model with a streamlined design. If you want some good ones, take a look at these models:
- OutdoorMaster Kelvin – Equipped with a similar design to the Raider, the Kelvin is another budget-friendly helmet with good durability. It also has adjustable ear pads but comes with a size adjustment dial as well. The color options are nice to have as well.
- ILM Ski Helmet – This model is a solid choice for skiers who want the same simple appearance as the Raider but with a few extra features. The 17 vents provide tons of airflow and the size adjustment dial provides you with more versatility in terms of fit. The goggle bracket and anti-slip pad are both great too.
- Lucky Bums – This helmet is one of the most affordable around. Combine that with the eye-catching look, high-quality construction, and adjustable vents and you get an extremely safe helmet that offers a lot of value for the price. Skiers who spend a lot of time on the slopes will also like the comfortable lining and fit.
How is the Anon Raider’s size?
It has a general fit, but does run a bit small. It would be better to get something a tiny bit larger than what you’re used to.
Do these work with audio accessories?
Yes. The ear pads have special Velcro that you can use to slip in earbuds.
Are the ear pads removable?
Yes. As with all Anon helmets, the Raider’s earpads are easy to both remove and put in as you need.
Does this come with adjustable size or ventilation?
No. The ventilation is fixed and there is no adjustable size dial.
The Anon Raider, in a word, is simple. This helmet isn’t going to give you a lot on the characteristics front, but it’s still a more than serviceable option for users who need reliability at an affordable price. There’s also something to be said about the simple design. It won’t be for everyone, but minimalists might enjoy the fact that you can throw this on and go.
There’s no doubt that this helmet is lacking in certain areas. It’s a bit cold and doesn’t have the best ventilation system. Even so, the goggle compatibility is nice and the value is through the roof. You might not get the latest and greatest, but skiers who just need a durable helmet that will keep them safe, this does the job just fine.
Joseph Scalise is an avid writer, editor, and snow sports enthusiast who loves to spend his time outdoors. He began his love of writing early on in life and continued to pursue it as he grew older. While his time behind the computer doesn’t get him into the wild unknown as much as he would like, he never misses a chance to head up (or down) a mountain, across a river, or through a lush forest. When he’s not planning new trips, you can always find him typing away on his next project.