Best Budget Climbing Helmets

Climbing helmets are an integral piece of climbing gear to stay safe when climbing outside. Unfortunately, climbing helmets can be quite expensive and are not the most budget friendly. In an effort to help everyone save money, I did some research to find the best budget climbing helmets currently available.

If you are here just for the answer and aren’t interested in reading why these are the best budget climbing helmet options out there then I will get straight to the point:

Kid’s Best Budget Climbing Helmet – Petzl Picchu
Adult’s Best Budget Climbing Helmet – Black Diamond Half Dome

The remainder of this article explains what you want to look for when buying a budget-friendly climbing helmet and why I listed the two above to be the best budget friendly options.

What To Look For In A Good Budget Climbing Helmet

Helmets are a very important piece of gear to have when climbing outside. They are responsible for protecting your noggin from banging your head against the wall, falling rocks, and even falling pieces of gear that your partner has dropped from above you.

Climbing helmets are really a piece of gear that I don’t recommend being frugal with. They are needed to protect your most important body part after all. Everything is fine until an unforeseen accident happens and all of a sudden it’s not. I think it is better to invest a little extra into a helmet and get one of really good quality that you know is going to keep your most important asset safe and sound.

That said, the helmets on this list are not bad by any means and have been tested and certified that they can get the job done.

All climbing helmets must meet specific safety criteria to be certified. The two most common safety standards climbing helmets must meet are the ones detailed in UIAA 106 and EN 12492. It should be noted that these standards do not account for side or back impacts such as hitting your head against the rock when falling. When buying a helmet, you will want one that meets the UIAA 106 and/or EN 12492 safety standards AND has been tested for side and back impacts.

In addition to meeting the UIAA and EN safety standards, you will want your budget climbing helmet to be comfortable, lightweight, durable and breathable.

While having a helmet that looks super cool is neat, at the end of the day looks don’t matter as much as comfort and function. Having a helmet that you are confident in will allow you to focus on the climb itself knowing you are protected.

Best Budget Climbing Helmets

Throughout my experience and research, I have found what I believe to be the best budget climbing helmets out there. Unlike climbing harnesses, climbing helmets are typically good as unisex pieces of gear. This is because the typical mens and womens head shapes are much more similar than their typical lower body shapes.

While the majority of climbing helmets can fit either men or women, they will not fit the majority of children due to the relative size difference between an adult’s and child’s head. Due to the smaller population of kid climbers compared to adult climbers, there are not as many options for kids climbing helmets.

While climbing is typically done by adults, kids can have an awesome time climbing as well. As long as the child is old and healthy enough, knows and adheres to all of the safety precautions, and wants to climb then there is no reason they shouldn’t! Climbing can be an excellent activity for them to build their physical fitness and work on problem solving skills while having fun.

The best budget helmets that I have found for kids and adults are detailed below.

Best Budget Climbing Helmet for Kids

The Petzl Picchu is the best budget kids climbing helmet that I have come across. Petzl is a highly touted climbing gear manufacturing company for good reason. They make high quality and reasonably priced items that every climber would be thrilled to have.

The Petzl Picchu has been touted as one of the best helmets for kids without factoring in its reasonable pricing. It is an incredibly durable helmet that has a very protective ABS outer shell. Its adjustable features allow it to be customized to the individual child’s head. This adjustability and its narrow webbing allow it to be worn for extended durations of time without feeling too heavy or uncomfortable. It even has removable foam that allows parents to clean the helmet and get rid of all that sweat build after a hard climbing session.

It is sized to fit kids between the ages of 3 and 8. Check out the current price of the Petzl Picchu on It is even certified to be used as a cycling helmet! Talk about bang for your buck.

Best Budget Climbing Helmet for Adults

The Black Diamond Half Dome is the best budget climbing helmet for adults. Black diamond is well known for making high quality climbing equipment and their Half Dome helmet is no exception to this.

The Black Diamond Half Dome is incredibly adjustable and a lot of climbers have praised how well it fits their head. While it may not be the lightest helmet on the market, its heaviness doesn’t come without any benefits. It is heavier than other lightweight helmets due to its high quality ABS outer shell which is able to sustain large forces from above.

At the end of the day, it is all about protecting your noggin and the Black Diamond Half Dome does just that at a very affordable price as far as climbing helmets go. Check out the current price of the Black Diamond Half Dome on


Hi, I'm Rex! I have been into everything outdoors for as long as I can remember. Climbing became a huge part of my life in college and I hope to share everything I have learned on this website to help fellow passionate climbers.

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