If you're looking for a really light road helmet that complies with a number of safety standards, then look no further, the Specialized S-Works fits the bill. The S-Works purports to be 'the lightest certified helmet in the World' and it's certainly the lightest I've come across, weighing just 215g for the size medium I tried. It complies with the rigorous safety standards SNELL B-90a, B-90c, B95 and CE En1078 - you'd be hard pushed to find many heavier helmets these days that are SNELL certified.
With 30 vents, there's an immediate assumption that this is going to be a well- ventilated helmet with plenty of airflow. It's a road specific design, aimed at channelling air over the head as you ride, to prevent your bonce from overheating no matter how hard you're working. It comes in three sizes so there should be something for most. I've a fairly average sized head and the size medium was spot-on for fit. The fit is a pared down version of the Pro Fit 360 fit system, and provides easy adjustment of the crown fit with a simple slider at the back. It claims to be adjustable on the fly, but it'd be tricky to do and I'd not advise it. The strap length adjustment is much simpler than many of the past incarnations of Specialized's helmets, with easy click open and shut adjusters. There's also a colour matched clip-on visor if you prefer one.
In use, it's stable and doesn't shift about as you change position. The air flow is definitely effective, but not as obvious as in some race helmets, with a general feeling of comfort rather than the direct brush of air across your scalp. It's not so cool that you couldn't wear it during Autumn or Winter. The foam pads inside, although minimalist, are comfortable and unobtrusive, yet do their job admirably. The overall feel is one of security without a massive weight penalty, a pleasant change from the norm.
One thing worth noting is that the "women's" version is only a more female friendly colour option of a unisex fit rather than being female specific. That said, I didn't have any problems in getting a comfortable and secure fit.
Well designed super lightweight helmet with a top safety rating too
road.cc test report
Make and model: Specialized S-Works Helmet
Size tested: Silver - Medium 54-60cm
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Aimed at road riders looking for an extremely lightweight helmet
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Complies with the following safety standards for bicycle helmets- SNELL B-90a, B-90c, B95 and CE En1078.
Patented Double Density EPS to save weight and optimize performance
Patented Kevlar-reinforced InnerMatrix enables larger, deeper channeled vents
Slimmed downProFit 360 fit system
4th Dimension Cooling System with Mega Mouthport, In-line vent configuration, Deep internal vent channeling, Rear exhaust ports
Instrap system minimizes strap length and reduces strap contact
Thin, soft and lightweight 4X DryLite webbing won't stretch with sweat or water
Lighter U-Turn 2 strap adjusters and low-profile buckle
Quadruple in-molded shells protect the foam and your head
Patented clip-on matching colour visor included
3 sizes S (51-57cm) M (54-60cm) L (57-63cm)
High quality materials. A few rough edges here and there but on the whole very well made.
Supremely light and very comfortable.
Helmets have an expiry anyway, but this one should last well until then.
Hard to find fault with the weight.
Very comfortable and vents well.
Not cheap, but you're paying for the fact that there's, erm, less of it.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Performed very well as a versatile uber lightweight road helmet.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
A capable certified helmet with good levels of protection, comfort and venting with minimal weight penalty.
About the tester
Age: 37 Height: 1.65m Weight: 67kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, general fitness riding, mtb,
Lara has been riding bikes for longer than she'd care to admit, and writing about them nearly as long. Since 2009 she has been working as part of the road.cc review team whilst championing women's cycling on the side, most notably via two years as editor of the, sadly now defunct, UK's first and only women's cycling mag, erm, Women's Cycling.
Believing fervently that cycling will save the world, she wishes that more people would just ride a bike and be pleasant to each other.
She will ride anything with two wheels, occasionally likes to go fast, definitely likes to go far and is always up for a bit of exploring somewhere new and exciting.