Giro Zone MIPS Helmet Review

The Giro Zone MIPS helmet is a higher-end option that provides plenty of safety and comfort for skiers of all ability levels. It has the added protection of all MIPS (Multi-Directional Impact Protection System) helmets, and that adds extra peace of mind that’s worth the added price. It’s pretty comfortable overall, though you don’t get any precise fit adjustments.

Quick Summary

  • Where to buy: Amazon, EVO, REI
  • Best for: Skiers who want excellent protection and safety features alongside a comfortable fit. Those who want a low profile model will like this too.
  • Pros: MIPS safety technology enhances the helmet’s general protection. It also has some solid good ventilation features and is easy to adjust.
  • Cons: Pretty expensive, which might make it hard to justify for some skiers.
  • Alternatives: Smith Level MIPS Helmet, Giro Ledge MIPS, Smith Vantage MIPS

Why Trust Me

I have skied all over the world and have decades of experience skiing on, testing, and reviewing different skis and skiing equipment. I spent plenty of time researching the Giro Zone MIPS helmet, and have used similar MIPS models in the past. Below you will find my detailed review.

Detailed Review

The Giro Zone MIPS is a high-quality helmet built to withstand the rigors you’ll face out on the mountain. It has a fairly expensive price tag, but is more reasonably priced than the highest-end options without losing any performance or comfort. The low profile design looks great and the helmet comes in plenty of colors. This is a great choice for those who want a more reasonably priced MIPS helmet.

Construction and Safety

When it comes to ski helmets, the most important characteristics (safety and performance) come from the construction. The GIRO Zone MIPS features a hybrid construction that utilizes two different layers to increase protection and safety. The upper layer is a strong and durable hard shell build to withstand big impacts. Underneath that, you get a lightweight EPS foam liner that absorbs impacts without adding too much weight.

Another important feature here is the MIPS construction. This is becoming the industry standard for high-end ski helmets, and the technology really does go a long way towards increasing safety. There are three elements of this MIPS construction in the Giro Zone helmet: the interior foam liner, a smaller low friction liner, and an attachment point between the two. They all work together to reduce rational forces upon impact and keep you safe.

That sounds like a lot of technology built into a pretty standard piece of equipment, but it does a long way. You don’t necessarily need a MIPS helmet to remain safe, but if you want that extra peace of mind, it’s definitely recommended.

Comfort and Fit

This is a pretty dang comfortable helmet. You can easily wear it all day long without any issues, and it’s fully capable of providing lasting comfort that any skier can enjoy. Once you get the proper size, it’s pretty much comfortable straight away. However, you can make further adjustments to get the perfect fit dialed in. The liner fits snugly around your head, and the helmet fits a bit better without a beanie on.

The earpieces also have a nice feel to them. That adds to the overall comfort as well. For anyone who likes a snug fit around the ears, this is a good choice. The pads can be a little too tight and slightly uncomfortable if you have larger ears, however. That’s mainly due to the padded ring on the pad’s outer edge of the pad.

Another nice feature is the click wheel system in the back that allows you to get a customized fit. That works well for adjusting things on the fly or changing the size of the helmet ever so slightly if you want to wear a beaning or get a haircut. It’s also backed by an easy-to-secure, adjustable chinstrap.

Ventilation

The Zone MIPS helmet comes with adequate ventilation, which is a great feature for any skier that likes to go hard. That said, there are 13 total vents. That’s quite a lot. None of them are too large, however, so you won’t get a tremendous amount of cold wind blowing in. The ventilation system works well to let hot air out without letting too much frosty air back in.

The helmet also comes with Thermostat Control adjustable venting. That allows you to adjust the amount of airflow into the helmet through sliders on some of the vents. This sounds cool on paper, but it really doesn’t make that much of a difference in my opinion.

One ventilation that isn’t overhyped is the stacked vent system that’s built to help direct hot air away from your goggles. This is a great feature that actually works. It’s especially useful for any skier who’s struggled with foggy goggles in the past.

Additional Features

The Giro Zone MIPS has some additional features that are also worth mentioning. First is the magnetic buckle closer that allows you to easily get buckled in and ready for action with one gloved hand. If you’ve ever struggled in the snow with cinching down a helmet, this system is extremely effective and pretty cool.

The helmet also has a POV camera mount for all of those skiers out there who love to bring a GoPro or other recording device out to the slopes as a way to document their adventures. The mount blends in with the rest of the design, so it doesn’t seem too out of place if you choose not to use a camera.

Price and Value

This helmet is fairly expensive, but it actually sits on the lower end of the high-end options in terms of price. It offers excellent protection and comfort but the higher price tag still might keep it out of the budget range for the average skier. With all of that in mind, I give this helmet a good value rating. You’re going to get what you pay for in terms of comfort and safety, and it’s definitely cheaper than some similar options with MIPS tech and high end comfort.

What I Like

There’s plenty to like about the Giro Zone MIPS helmet. I didn’t always use a MIPS helmet, but I started after a bad fall in the halfpipe left me with destroyed gear and concussion. I could have avoided the injury with MIPS technology. Now, I’ll always pay a little bit extra for better safety.

I also like this helmet’s fit and feel. It fits properly right out of the box. You can slap it on your head and be ready to go. You can then adjust with the click dial, but that’s largely not needed due to the incredible fit. I don’t want to spend a lot of time thinking about the way a helmet fits and feels, I want to strap it on and go. The Zone allows you to do that.

This helmet also looks pretty cool. Safety isn’t a fashion show, but when you can have your cake and eat it too, that’s always a bonus. This helmet has a low profile that fits my preferences and comes in a variety of colors. I like the Matte Titanium colorway quite a bit, but there are also plenty of bright and neutral colors.

What I Don’t Like

My biggest complaints with the Zone MIPS are the price and the fact that the slider vents don’t do much. High end helmets are expensive, but that doesn’t mean I have to enjoy paying more. I would rather spend my money on another piece of important gear, if I’m being honest. I know you need to ski with a helmet, but I’m never happy paying several hundred dollars for one. Especially because you’re going to need another after a bad fall.

The other thing I don’t like about his helmet is the slider vents. They seem like something out of a minivan and they aren’t that effective at increasing or decreasing airflow. I get the idea, but it just seems like a gimmick to me that doesn’t add any real value to the overall design.

The Alternatives

There are plenty of ski helmets in today’s market. If you want a good alternative to the Zone MIPS, check out these options:

  • Smith Level MIPS Helmet – This is another model that’s in a similar category to the Giro Zone. It comes with high end features and performance, but sits a little bit lower in price than the highest-end helmets out there. It’s built with Koryd, which is a durable honeycomb plastic foam that helps prevent injuries, and offers another level of protection. It also has great ventilation and a solid fit.
  • Giro Ledge MIPS – The Ledge offers a MIPS style helmet at a more budget-friendly price. This is a great option for any skier looking to get plenty of safety without breaking the bank. It’s not quite as comfortable as the higher-end options listed here, but that’s a small sacrifice to pay for saving some serious cash. Other than that, it’s a quality helmet that delivers across the board.
  • Smith Vantage MIPS – If you want a high-end option, the Smith Vantage MIPS is for you. This is a great helmet that offers serious protection against falls, and is built to stay on your head securely and comfortably all season long. The hybrid shell works to provide superior safety, and the Boa FS360 fit system allows for a precise, customized fit.

FAQs

What sizes does this helmet come in?
The Giro Zone MIPS helmet comes in a variety of sizes ranging from small to extra large. Be sure to check with whatever seller you choose to buy from that they have your desired size in stock.

I took a fall and my helmet has a crack or dent in it, is it still safe to use?
Unfortunately, most helmets that take a serious impact will no longer provide you with the safety and performance that they had before impact. If you have a big crack or dent in the helmet, you should get a new one.

Is the Giro Zone MIPS Helmet warm?
It’s a pretty warm helmet. I run hot, so might not be the best judge, but I don’t think you’ll need to wear a beanie with this on.

Final Verdict

The Giro Zone MIPS is a quality helmet that provides superior safety and comfort. It’s somewhat expensive, but you get the benefit of a customizable fit and MIPS technology to ensure your head will stay safe and intact if you take a nasty fall. It’s also a good looking helmet with some neat, and a few unnecessary, additional features. All things considered, this is a recommended option for skiers who can afford it.

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