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Discussion Starter #1
I've been having MAJOR issues with my helmet itching the last two summers. After about 30 minutes of riding, it'll get so bad that I have to pull over or risk wrecking. My favorite thing to do is take long rides late at night to relax, so this throws a huge wrench in the works. Last summer it was rough until the weather cooled off, so I originally thought it was just humidity (especially since during the day it wasn't bad. Day time = a little less humid.). But this year cooler weather isn't helping at all. I did talk to my doctor about it and he said my scalp looked fine, but suggested I try out some Selsun Blue for a few weeks. No luck. I've tried washing the pads with both shampoo and by just throwing them in the washer with my other clothes, but still no luck. I can wear a hat without too much trouble, but my helmet just kills.

Have any of you found a way to kill this? I've had the helmet for a little over 5 years now and have put about 15,000 miles on it, used it to commute, wore it to and from construction jobs and school and everything else, in humidity, extreme heat, severe cold, rain, even a little snow once when I got caught out late (it was 50 degrees earlier, I swear!). I even wore it in a drift car once. So it's been through a bit. Should I just look into a new helmet? Maybe one with more ventilation or something? Currently I have an HJC IS-Max and am looking for new pads, but I can only find cheek pads so far. Cheeks are fine, but the top of my head is a nightmare.

What do you guys think?
 

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If the helmet is more than five years old, you should be looking to get a NEW helmet.
I would not waste any time or money on the old helmet.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Out of curiosity, what would cause the helmet to need replacing after so long if it hasn't been involved in a wreck? I'd imagine maybe the foam and such would begin to break down, but just so I know for future.

Oz, I've thought about that. May need to try to find one, see if it'll give me at least a temporary solution.
 

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Cut your hair off, works for me.

My brother uses a fake bandana, buy at walmart for a couple bucks. Its supposed to look like you tied a bandana on your head, but easier and probably better for that purpose.
 

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It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye
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My only experience with scalp crawl was from buffeting of a full face. I don't know what kind of bike you ride or what type of helmet, but I've never had it with a half helmet and if I experience too much buffeting I adjust my wind deflectors. Also, I have a really cool HJC full face that is a bit too big and can tell you if your helmet doesn't fit snug, it will happen earlier in the ride.
 

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Out of curiosity, what would cause the helmet to need replacing after so long if it hasn't been involved in a wreck? I'd imagine maybe the foam and such would begin to break down, but just so I know for future.
Snell:

Why should you replace your helmet every five years?

The five-year replacement recommendation is based on a consensus by both helmet manufacturers and the Snell Foundation. Glues, resins and other materials used in helmet production can affect liner materials. Hair oils, body fluids and cosmetics, as well as normal "wear and tear" all contribute to helmet degradation. Petroleum based products present in cleaners, paints, fuels and other commonly encountered materials may also degrade materials used in many helmets possibly degrading performance. Additionally, experience indicates there will be a noticeable improvement in the protective characteristic of helmets over a five-year period due to advances in materials, designs, production methods and the standards. Thus, the recommendation for five-year helmet replacement is a judgment call stemming from a prudent safety philosophy.



Webbikeworld:

When to Replace a Helmet?
Here are two questions from webBikeWorld visitors:

"As you review tons of helmets and I respect your thoughts/findings on these helmets, I have a general question after owning a number of helmets (variety of expense levels) that the foam liner or portions of the liner becomes loose and move a bit in the external shell.

This has happened with chin sections on full face, ear sections on open face, and most recently on a Nolan open face that has never been crashed or dropped, but the whole foam liner shifts fore and aft. The helmet is beyond the warranty period.

Are these helmets "done" or is there anything that can be done to the liner and keep it from shifting?"

and

"You offer a lot of information on the purchase of the right helmet for the individual, but I am looking for some sort of guide or suggestion for inspecting a helmet a person already has. How do you go about a helmet inspection to determine if it is time to replace the one you already own? What signs (or problems) should a person look for that would suggest they need to start shopping for a new helmet?"

It's difficult to know exactly when a helmet should be replaced and there are varying opinions on this topic. Some helmet manufacturers (e.g., Shoei) provide a free inspection service where you can send the helmet to their representatives for a free inspection.

Rule of thumb is generally around a 5 year max life expectancy, but this can depend on usage, wear or helmet quality. Also, helmet technology, styling and comfort features change fairly regularly over time, so 5 years would be about max for me anyway and at that point, I'd consider buying a new helmet.

For example, my Arai Quantum II was my regular "go to" helmet but after 4 years it started to look a bit seedy and the liner felt like it was becoming compressed, so I replaced it even though it had never been dropped or damaged.

If the helmet has been dropped or if it is damaged from chips, cracks, etc. on the outside, then it may need replacement. But the most important part is the liner and especially the EPS. The EPS balls deflate on impact, essentially giving up their life to dissipate energy. If the EPS is at all damaged, compressed or feels loose, it is definitely time for a new helmet.

Want more? We asked Shoei about the "5-year helmet life" rule and here's what they told us: "The service life on our helmets is five years from purchase date or seven years from manufacture date, whichever comes first. The warranty covers the helmet for the same period.

Glues, resins and other materials used in helmet production can affect liner materials. Hair oils, body fluids and cosmetics, as well as normal "wear and tear" all contribute to helmet degradation.

Petroleum-based products present in cleaners, paints, fuels and other commonly encountered materials may also degrade materials used in many helmets possibly degrading performance.

Additionally, experience indicates there will be a noticeable improvement in the protective characteristic of helmets over a five-year period due to advances in materials, designs, production methods and the standards.

Thus, the recommendation (for 5 year) helmet replacement is a judgment call stemming from a prudent safety philosophy.
 

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^^^Plus, if you replace it every 5 years they get to sell more helmets. :)

Like ODE, the only time I've had a problem with scalp itching like that was when I had a helmet that didn't fit right and the wind would buffet it around. It's like it "vibrates" on your head, so to speak. A do-rag or bandanna can help too if the liner is just old or a little dirty.
 

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I've had long hair and short hair and get helmet itch either way. I've tried a bandanna and that helped a lot but the best thing I have found is wearing a ball cap under my helmet. It fits under my 1/2 helmet and my 3/4 helmet. I can even pull the face shield down with it on. I can't pull the inner sun shield down though.
 

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Cut your hair short, have a clean bath.
Have a total clean of inside of helmet.
Then try it in a cool Saturday morning.

If the problem still exists, try a new helmet. If a new helmet does not help, then you need to see a dermatologist again.
 

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I don't think another dermatologist visit is needed. Some of us are just more prone to have that itch. I've bought several new helmets and still have it. It mainly bothers me when it's sunny and warm/hot but I've also had it when it was 40* and dark.

It seems to be caused more by the helmet moving around a little. I have 1 helmet that fits pretty tight and I don't have it as bad. But, I also get a headache after wearing that one for an hour or so.
 

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I have no hair and never have a problem....

To me the lack of hair would be THE problem. :biggrin:

I don't think another dermatologist visit is needed. Some of us are just more prone to have that itch. I've bought several new helmets and still have it. It mainly bothers me when it's sunny and warm/hot but I've also had it when it was 40* and dark.

It seems to be caused more by the helmet moving around a little. I have 1 helmet that fits pretty tight and I don't have it as bad. But, I also get a headache after wearing that one for an hour or so.

You could just shave the old cranium like Murph. ;)
 

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Hair is the issue for me too. If I grow it long it will itch in warmer weather. The cooler it is the less irritated I feel. I go with a buzz-cut most of the time and it's fine.
 
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Shaved heads are for guys that don't grow hair. Buz cuts are for men that grow hair.
 

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The hair covers the scar over the titanium plate in my noggin. When I used to have a high-n-tight I got tired of people staring and wore a hat a lot, but I really don't like wearing hats.
 

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It may possibly be an allergic reaction to the material in the helmet. Try to put another piece of material that you know doesn't bother you into the helmet and if it helps with the itch, glue it on over the material. Or maybe try some Benydral or other allergy meds before riding, granted they don't affect you, you don't want to be riding buzzed...Give me morphine for my migraines, I bounce off the walls, give me non drowsy benydrall and I'm out like a light.......
 
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