An Expert Guide to K2 Helmets

Published on 02/23/2024 · 11 min readStay safe and stylish on the slopes with our expert guide to K2 helmets, showcasing their comfort, durability, and cutting-edge safety features!
Jason R, Snowboarding Expert
By Snowboarding Expert Jason R

Photo by Colton Jacobs, courtesy of K2

TL;DR: Our Curated Experts have got your back when it comes to protecting your head. K2 offers a variety of durable, lightweight helmets to help give you a safer experience in the mountains.

When buying a K2 helmet, it's worth considering your personal needs, your head size, the amount of money you're willing to spend, and any special functions or safety features you may want. This article will overview Curated's offerings of K2 helmets and explain some of the different helmet models and key features.

As a member of Gen Y, I feel like we could have labeled it Gen Why Not? Because while growing up, there wasn't much my friends and I weren't willing to try. I remember jumping forty feet off the top of my childhood home's chimney into a few feet of snow for little more than a few high-fives from friends. Luckily, I survived those formidable years with little more than a few bumps, bruises, and a broken pinky finger.

Over the years, I've developed an unrivaled approach to risk assessment. It has allowed me to push my physical and mental limits while snowboarding relatively unharmed. However, no matter how good you are, things do happen, and wearing a helmet is a good way to stack the odds in your favor while out stacking clips.

Why K2?

Photo by Christian Raguse, courtesy of K2

K2 has a rich heritage in mountain sports and began making skis in 1962. They ventured into snowboarding in 1988 and have been making snow helmets for well over a decade now. The professional athletes that endorse K2 play a key role in the research, development, and product testing, ensuring the highest quality of any item brought to market.

What to Consider When Buying a K2 Helmet

1. What's the helmet for?

Simply think about what your individual needs are. K2 offers a range of helmets specifically for snowsports. Given the diverse features and designs available, it's advisable to make a thoughtful choice when selecting a helmet to ensure an optimal experience, prioritizing safety, comfort, and performance.

2. What's your head size and shape?

It's vital to have a properly fitting helmet to ensure both safety and comfort. You can measure your head circumference to determine accurate sizing. K2 helmets are available in various sizes, and an accurate measurement can help ensure a perfect fit.

3. What features are important to you?

Think about the features you want in a helmet. Are you set on the added climate control of adjustable ventilation, or are fixed vents more ideal for you? K2 offers systems to elevate your helmet fit. K2 has helmets that come standard audio compatible and helmets with extra protection from impacts. Read this article geared specifically toward helping you choose a ski or snowboard helmet.

4. How much should a K2 helmet cost?

The cost varies a bit depending on which specific model and what features it offers. Entry-level K2 helmets start around $80, offering basic safety and comfort. Mid-range options with features like adjustable ventilation or customizable fit systems can range from $100 to $200. It's recommended to explore the available options within your budget, but you can expect to pay between $80 and $200 for a K2 helmet.

Different Types of K2 Helmets

Go fast, wear helmets! Photo Courtesy of K2

Below, you will find some of the most recommended K2 helmets that we offer here at Curated, as well as what some of our Winter Sports Experts have to say about them.

K2 Verdict: Best for Saving Your Brain and Budget

This helmet is simple; it has a low-profile skate helmet look; you just put it on your head, buckle the chin strap, and drop it. It is comfortable, provides ample protection, and won't cost you your head.

Benefits:

  • Hardshell Construction: Super durable and built to last. Banging around in the back of the truck won't damage it or take away from the clean look and design.
  • Passive Channel Venting: A fixed ventilation system that is not over complicated. The faster you go, the more airflow you get; it's that simple.
  • Full Wrap Liner: Comfortable, washable, and breathable helmet liner that wicks away moisture.
  • The K2Dialed™ Fit System: This feature gives you a custom-fitting helmet wherever your head is. The three-point adjustable interface gives you a snug, custom fit, allowing you to make adjustments on the fly for ultimate convenience.

Keep in Mind: Lacks adjustable ventilation and the added protection of MIPS (multi-directional impact protection) technology.

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K2 Thrive: Best for Adjustable, Versatile and Affordable Protection

This dual sport helmet features a subtle visor brim and is certified as both a snow sports and bicycle helmet. Ready to keep you safe on the mountain whether riding powder snow or that glorious brown pow.

Benefits:

  • Hardshell Construction: Super durable and built to last. Banging around in the back of the truck won't damage it or take away from the clean look and design.
  • Passive Channel Venting: A fixed ventilation system that's not overly complicated. The faster you go, the more airflow you get; it's that simple.
  • Full Wrap Liner: Comfortable, washable, and breathable helmet liner that wicks away moisture.
  • The K2Dialed™ Fit System: This feature gives you a custom-fitting helmet wherever your head is. The three-point adjustable interface gives you a snug, custom fit, allowing you to make adjustments on the fly for ultimate convenience.

Keep in Mind: Helmets may save your life, but they still won’t make you indestructible.

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K2 Phase MIPS: Best for Added Protection and Climate Control

Features a clean design and is available with MIPS for added protection during impacts. The helmet offers K2’s signature Active Matrix venting for those looking for the ability to adjust the amount of air allowed to flow into the helmet.

Benefits:

  • Hard Shell Construction: Very durable and built to last for years of protection.
  • Active Matrix Venting: It's sort of like the climate control feature in your car but for your head and can help keep you from overheating.
  • MIPS: A brain protection system that offers added protection when your head is subject to rotational forces upon impact with snow or a foreign object.
  • Full Wrap Liner: A comfortable, washable, and breathable full-coverage helmet liner that is known for its ability to wick away moisture.
  • The K2Dialed™ Fit: Keeps your head super snug inside the helmet with the turn of a dial.

Keep in Mind: Unlike the Phase Pro, this helmet is not audio-compatible.

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K2 Diversion MIPS - Best for High-Performance Comfort

The Diversion with MIPS offers ultimate protection in a low-profile winter sports helmet. The 360 K2Dialed fit system gives you a more comfortable and secure fit, while the Dual Active Matrix venting system keeps you cool and comfortable all day long.

Benefits:

  • Hybrid Construction: A combination of both In-Mold and Hardshell Constructions keeps it incredibly lightweight without having to sacrifice too much durability.
  • Dual Active Matrix Venting: User-regulated Active Matrix venting combined with integrated Passive Channel venting keeps you feeling and looking cool.
  • Tech Form Full Wrap: This is a compression-formed, precision-fit liner with removable ear pads and neck padding, offering a versatile, customizable fit.
  • 360 K2Dialed™ Fit: This is the next step up from the K2Dialed™ Fit, giving you added comfort and a superior fit, all with the turn of a dial.

Keep in Mind: This helmet has the highest price tag on this list.

K2 Women’s Meridian: Best for Woman Who Shred

Manufactured with In-Mold construction, this women’s helmet is super lightweight and designed for more of a classic look. It has ample ventilation and K2Dialed™ Fit to keep ladies cool and comfortable.

Benefits:

  • In-Mold Construction: Premium construction offers ultra-lightweight performance and features an EPS liner molded directly to a polycarbonate shell.
  • Passive Channel Venting: Channels direct airflow between your head and the helmet, removing moisture and excess heat for all-day comfort.
  • Convertible Full-Wrap Liner: Same coverage as the standard Full-Wrap liner, yet can be removed to allow for increased ventilation or the ability to wear a thin beanie underneath.
  • 360 K2Dialed™ Fit: This is the next step up from the K2Dialed™ Fit, giving you added comfort and a superior fit, all with the turn of a dial.

Keep in Mind: It doesn't offer the added protection of MIPS.

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K2 Meridian Helmet · Women's

$89.97$149.95
40% off
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Features to Look for When Buying a K2 Helmet

K2 offers several different tech or features in their helmet line. Some are unique to just K2's helmets, while some are commonly found industry-wide.

  1. 360 K2Dialed™ Fit: An intricate ergonomically inspired three-point web design that brings you 360 degrees of equal pressure distribution, providing an elevated level of security and snugness, all customizable with the simple twist of a dial.
  2. MIPS® System: MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System) is an additional layer within the helmet designed to reduce rotational forces that can result from certain impacts. It's a valuable feature if you're frequently in situations with a risk of angled impacts.
  3. Active Matrix Ventilation: Climate control with an easy flip of a switch. Active Matrix venting lets you easily regulate the helmets. This is a user-regulated ventilation system that is combined with integrated passive channel venting and is available in both dual or singular options.
  4. Baseline Audio System: Helmets with this feature come equipped with this pre-installed audio kit. The low-profile speaker is built into the ear pads and connects with your mobile device for demand tunes and talk capabilities at your fingertips.
  5. Magna-snap Goggle Clip: This is K2's take on the goggle clip that utilizes magnetic retention to easily flip up over your goggle strap for a secure hold and fumble-free use.

The ideal helmet choice for you is going to be uniquely yours. Whether you prioritize advanced safety elements, comfort, ventilation, or audio integration, there's going to be a K2 helmet that is well-suited for your personal needs.

How to Choose the Right K2 Helmet for You

Choosing the right helmet from you may overwhelm you. Now that we've covered some different helmet models to get your head covered, it's ultimately up to you what you demand from a helmet. Below, I've described three riders that represent three different "rider personas" when it comes to snow helmet shopping. I've detailed what they may look for based on their individual riding styles and needs.

Jim:

Jim is an intermediate skier and a simple man. He wants a helmet that’ll protect his head without all the fancy stuff.

Features Jim should look for:

  • Fixed Ventilation
  • Removable Ear Pads

Helmet Example: K2 Verdict: The Verdict is the most straightforward helmet that K2 offers, and with this one, the best way to control your temperature is to adjust your speed or your layering.

Kim:

Kim is an advanced lady ripper who doesn't crash often, but when she does, oh boy, it's yard sale season. Kim likes her helmet the way she likes her car: safe, comfortable, and climate-controlled.

Features Kim should look for:

  • MIPS
  • Active Matrix Ventilation
  • 360 K2Dialed™ Fit

Helmet Example: K2 Virtue MIPS Helmet: The Virtue is a Women's specific helmet that provides a better fit for the ladies and offers premium protection with MIPS.

Slim:

Slim is a beginner snowboarder but a pro when it comes to his music. He doesn’t want a helmet unless it’ll play “God's Plan” by Drake. Similar to his beats, Slim runs hotter than most.

Features Slim should look for:

  • Baseline Audio System
  • Active Matrix Ventilation

Helmet Examples: ](https://k2snow.com/en-us/p/diversion-mens-helmet-2023)[K2 Diversion: One of K2’s top of the line offerings, featuring a pre-installed audio kit (Not to be confused with the K2 Diversion MIPS model. As you have to choose the version featuring MIPS or the version featuring the Baseline Audio System.); K2 Phase Pro: The price is relatively low yet the volume turns up high (The Phase Pro does not feature MIPS and the Phase MIPS does not feature the Baseline Audio System).

Find the Best K2 Helmet for You

Protect ya neck - and head. Photo by Jack Dawe, Courtesy of K2

Snow helmets have come a long way since the wild days of my youth, when helmets were just "too bulky and uncomfortable" to want to wear. They now offer supreme comfort with lower-profile designs, all while bringing you a high level of protection.

K2 makes some of the most cozy helmets on the market today, helping you stay safe while hardly noticing you've got a brain bucket up there. I strongly advocate helmet use and you are welcome to contact me directly for my personal insights or any of our Curated Experts for any guidance you may be after on the subject.

Curated experts can help

Have a question about the article you just read or want personal recommendations? Connect with a Curated expert and get free recommendations for whatever you’re looking for!

Shop Helmets on Curated

K2 Verdict Helmet
$89.95
K2 Thrive Helmet
$99.95
K2 Phase MIPS Helmet
$149.95

Browse more Helmets

K2 Diversion MIPS Helmet
$199.95
K2 Meridian Helmet · Women's
$89.97$149.95
K2 Virtue MIPS Helmet · Women's
$119.97$199.95
Smith Scout MIPS Helmet
$105.00
Smith Holt Helmet
$56.00$80.00
Smith Vantage MIPS Helmet
$275.00
POC Fornix MIPS Helmet
$200.00

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