Full-Face Helmet Vs Modular Helmet: Which Is Better?

sports motorcycle helmet black

Your helmet is an important piece of protective equipment as it protects your head in case of an impact. That is why it is important to select the correct type of helmet for you.

A full-face helmet is better in terms of safety, debris protection, and weather protection. A modular helmet is better for noise insulation, comfort, and convenience. The best choice for you depends on your needs as a rider.

Full-face helmets are recommended for professional racing while modular helmets work well for casual riding.

Modular Vs Full-Face Helmets

At first glance, modular and full-face helmets look identical. These are the most popular helmet types for motorcycle riders.

A modular helmet is a hybrid of full-face and open motorcycle helmets. It comes with a hatch that you can flip upwards to transform into an open helmet. It is primarily designed for comfort and convenience.

A full-face helmet is designed to completely cover every inch of the head. The only opening is the visor. Otherwise, you need to take it off entirely so you can access your face.


A full-face helmet is safer because of its solid and uniform construction. It covers your entire head so there is no exposed area in case of an impact. The singular opening with the helmet strap makes this very unlikely to get removed from your head. This is why full-face helmets are preferred for high-speed and professional motorcycle racing.

modular helmets motorcycle

Conversely, the hatch in modular helmets can be a weak spot because it can get detached from the rest of the helmet upon impact. The presence of hinges means that the helmet isn’t as structurally sound as a full-face one. This is also more likely to get removed from your head upon impact as the helmet can crack open.

About nineteen percent of motorcycle crashes affect the chin area. A full-face helmet can give better protection in the said area compared to modular helmets.

Win: Full-face helmets

Debris Protection

Motorcycle riders encounter different types of debris while riding, such as dust, dirt, and bugs. These are very dangerous once they enter your eyes, nose, or mouth. They can impede your vision or even become choking hazards.

Both full-face and modular helmets have visors. They ensure that your line of vision will remain clear and that your eyes will always be protected against debris so that you can drive safely.

However, full-face helmets are better at overall debris protection because they provide full coverage to your head. Modular helmets have cracks that can serve as entry points for debris. You may also make the mistake of driving with the hatch open, hence exposing your nose and mouth to outdoor particles.

Win: Full-face helmets

Weather Protection

Both full-face and modular helmets come with visors that you can custom-tint to provide better sun protection. The tint will shield your eyes from the sun so that you can drive safely without getting the glaring rays into your eyes.

full helmet raining motorcycle

Both helmet types are also great for protecting against sunburn and windburn. There is a slight advantage to full-face helmets because of better coverage. Modular helmet users can experience uneven tan lines because the sun rays penetrate the cracks in the moveable hatch. However, the tiny openings are advantageous for keeping yourself cool on summer days because it stimulates better air ventilation.

Full-face helmets are also better for extremely cold weather because of better insulation. Modular helmets allow some of the cold air in so it’s difficult to stay warm while wearing one.

Win: Full-face helmets

Comfort And Convenience

As aforementioned, modular helmets are more comfortable for hot days because of their better ventilation design. A full-face helmet will feel stuffy on hot days. As a consequence, it will make your scalp sweat. The heat can also be distracting while driving.

A modular helmet is also more convenient than a full-face helmet. For example, you can just lift the hatch to access your mouth and face area. This is handy for when you take water breaks or you want the air to cool your face. In order to drink or eat, you’ll need to entirely take off the full-face helmet. You also need to remove it at service stations.

modular helmet trip

Some users report that full-face helmets are too bulky and heavy to be comfortable. Other models can also limit your peripheral vision.

Win: Modular helmets

Noise Insulation

Noise insulation matters because noise awareness is a crucial part of motorcycle riding safety. It is important to be aware of the noises that surround you, from beeping horns to screeching tires.

A modular helmet has better ventilation so it doesn’t press down on your ears. Your sense of hearing won’t be inhibited to a drastic degree.

A full-face helmet limits your sense of hearing because of its padding. Users report difficulties in communicating with other riders on the road. This can be remedied by installing a motorcycle intercom system.

Win: Modular helmets

Additional Features

Both helmets have great aerodynamics designs. You can also accessorize both types by installing Bluetooth intercom systems. There are helmets that are bulkier than the others which can be uncomfortable to wear for long-term use.

The important thing to note is to select a helmet type that suits your needs as a rider. The unit you choose should also be approved by the following entities:

  • The U.S. Department of Transportation
  • The Economic Commission for Europe
  • The Snell Memorial Foundation (for racing helmets)

Recommended Full Face & Modular Helmets

  1. HJC Sold Men’s CL-MAX 3 Modular Street Motorcycle Helmet
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This is known for its sleek construction and accommodating feature. It sports a polycarbonate construction that is very durable but lightweight.
  1. Vega Helmets Warrior Motorcycle Half Helmet
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This half helmet is unique because it comes with a drop-down sun shield for extra eye protection. The entire helmet looks sleek and stylish.
  1. Duke Helmets DK-120 Full Face Motorcycle Helmets
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Full face helmets are the best for protection but very few models are forgiving on glasses wearers. This is an exception because it has enough space for a pair of glasses. It fits snugly to protect your skull in case of impact, but not too snugly that the arms of your glasses will press down on your skull and cause pain.