Sweet Protection has dominated the Scandinavian brain-bucket market since the company was founded in 2000. Since then, more often than not, the brand’s singular style indicated that the person wearing one of the helmets was from a land formerly inhabited by long-haired Vikings.
Looking to move beyond Viking bloodlines, Sweet Protection is taking a more aggressive marketing stance in North America, and will probably soon invade a ski shop near you. That's good news for your head, as the Scandinavians are known for incorporating the latest and greatest safety technology into recognizably different helmet designs.
While testing the Sweet Protection Trooper MIPS helmet on the steeps at Silverton Mountain in Colorado, it became apparent that this Scandinavian invasion opens a whole new front for skiers and riders. The two-piece shell construction incorporates Thermoplastic Laminated Carbon Fiber, which adds strength to the helmet while reducing weight. I have to admit, the carbon fiber detailing on the top of the helmet looks pretty sweet too.
The Trooper also incorporates MIPS technology, which reduces the risk of traumatic brain and neck injury when subjected to high-force angular impacts. In non-emergency-room speak, this means MIPs prevents you from breaking your neck if you get your salad tossed with a side of whiplash. It’s technology you want on top of your head.
Despite the addition of the gorgeous carbon fiber, the helmet is still relatively heavy, making it more suitable for riding lifts than hiking with it in your helmet hammock. The plush interior lining is soft and smooth, but the fit warrants a “try-on-before-you-buy” recommendation. The price isn't cheap, but the helmet's advanced safety features justify the MSRP, plus it’s built to last (just as long as you don’t crash all the time).
Not to mention, everything looks way more radical with carbon fiber detailing, and the Trooper MIPS is no exception.
MSRP $319.95 SweetProtection.com
Looking for more top-tier gear? Check out the other products in the Used & Abused Gallery for more upgrades to your kit.