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Giro Aether MIPS review

Integrated safety features with excellent aesthetics, fit and ventilation make Giro's newest helmet a front runner in helmet innovation

Giro’s Aether is no ordinary cycling helmet. With sharp aesthetics, a good fit and safety features that are fully integrated it sets a high standard. The MIPS is no longer inserted as an almost afterthought in the helmet’s liner instead sitting between two layers of the helmet.

The Aether has a sleek design. At first, you may think it looks like a pretty ordinary helmet with lots of ventilation, a rotational dial to adjust the fit and straps to keep everything in place. But the helmet’s trick is that it looks and works like any ordinary helmet but it’s main safety feature, MIPS Spherical technology, is fully integrated into the helmet.

The Aether features 10 to 15 mm of movement designed to reduce rotational forces in the case of an impact. MIPS Spherical technology sits between two layers of the helmet’s foam. The helmet is made from six individual pieces of multi-density EPS foam with rubber straps allowing for the MIPS to work it’s magic when taking an impact. To reinforce the helmet, Giro use what they call an Aura Arch which is made from clear plastic and further improves the helmets strength.

Instead of the previous generation of MIPS which was linear that could be uncomfortable, reduced ventilation and just seemed like a bit of an afterthought, you won’t even notice the MIPS in the Aether unless you shift around the top.

The helmet has classic Giro styling which are quite understated. The Aether’s low profile makes it as good looking as cycling helmets come. It’s a bit heavier than Giro’s previous generation Synthe but the added safety features are otherwise not noticeable which is a big benefit.

The small we tested was rated to fit heads 51 to 55 cm, though it felt a bit smaller than some other helmets with the same sizing so as always you’ll want to try one on before purchasing.

The helmet’s cooling channels did their job with air flowingly pleasingly through the helmet on rides. The two part construction never impacted the helmets solid ventilation which will keep the head well ventilated in warm weather.

The fit system did the trick. While for such a high-end helmet it would have been nice to see slightly higher quality straps, the buckles and dial worked as they should providing uniform and precise adjustability.

The Giro Aether is a remarkable helmet because it manages to integrate an advanced safety feature into it’s design without impacting the helmets aesthetics, fit and ventilation. While other helmet companies boast about aero gains and weight savings, the Aether changes the way a helmet can protect your head without impacting it’s performance.

The Aether’s MSRP is $420 making it a big investment but a justifiable one if you are looking for a high-end helmet that offers the latest in protection in a very solid overall package.