Back in my shop days, I had a few lines I’d use on the sales floor. None of them were dishonest, but they were well-practiced. For instance, when breaking down multiple helmet price points, I’d open with something like “This $70 one had to pass all the same safety tests as this $170 one. You get lighter weight and better ventilation from the $170 helmet, not necessarily more safety.” But things have changed. Now, chances are, you are getting more safety the more you spend, which is complicated. Given the potential consequences, everyone should have the safest helmet possible regardless of the costs … right?

That’s part of why Bontrager’s Blaze WaveCel caused such a stir when it was released a year ago. Sure, most of the stir was WaveCel itself, a plastic-like squigly honeycomb structure that naturally offers linear and rotational impact protection. The phrase “48 times more effective” circled the internet, Mips raised a challenge, skeptics flocked to forums, universal independent third-party testing was called for, that number “48” isn’t quite as prominent now, yada yada yada, we’re not going to solve it here.


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