Watch my video review of the Mega Lifer helmet below. I also suggest that you read my written review that follows to catch anything the video might have missed.
Struggling to find a helmet for your 25-inch head for skateboarding, roller skating, rollerblading, or BMXing? My in-depth review of the S1 Mega Lifer helmet offers insights on its fit and protection. This dual-certified skateboarding and BMX helmet could be just what your large noggin needs.
Also read: Triple Eight Gotham skateboard helmet review
S1 Mega Lifer Helmet Review: Summary
The S1 Mega Lifer helmet is ideal for bikers and skaters with larger heads. It comfortably fits up to 25.5-inch noggins due to its bigger shell size. And its Deep Fit Design makes for extensive coverage. Also, the helmet is dual-certified to CPSC and ASTM safety standards. Its thick EPS fusion foam protects you against frequent small impacts and big, one-time blows to the head.
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You’ll soon discover, delightfully, that this dual-certified skate helmet features super-thick, highly protective EPS foam, one that’s thicker than most. And that it takes all the small and big blows that’d otherwise have smashed your head to smithereens.
Our assessment found that this brain bucket works perfectly for skaters with outsized head dimensions, even those with extremely big heads. As a large-headed skater, you’re about to say goodbye to helmet hunt woes while joyfully embracing your sizable skull size.
One of our esteemed fans emailed us a few months ago asking if we knew of any skate helmet that works well for extremely large heads.
We researched and bought the S1 Mega Lifer on Amazon even though no one at skatingmagic.com has a 25.5” head. The product listing says it’s that big.
I, Peter, am an intermediate-level inline skater, standing 5’3’’ tall with a 58cm head. Yet, this did not hinder me from demonstrating just how large the S1 Mega Lifer skateboard helmet is.
The manufacturer has made a few claims on the product listing (Amazon). I assessed those claims based on my current helmet knowledge and hands-on experience fitting and handling different skate helmets.
- Claim #1: That the Mega Lifer XXXL is for 59cm heads (this claim is found on a sticker inside the helmet).
- Claim #2: That the helmet works for skaters with large heads.
- Claim #3: Deep Fit Design; that the helmet is super deep and offers tons of coverage
- Claim #4: That it’s a dual-certified helmet and can be used for biking and skating
- Claim #5: That the S1 Mega Lifer is 5 times more protective than other skate helmets
But before I proceed, let me unbox the helmet and tell you what I see.
Unboxing the S1 Mega Lifer skate helmet
I got hold of the S1 Mega Lifer upon its arrival from Texas where I’d directed Amazon to ship the product. I live outside of the U.S. by the way.
The box seemed a bit battered, but that’s understandable for a helmet that had traveled an extremely long distance to reach me.
There wasn’t a single dent or scratch on the helmet, though. See what the box looked like in the photo below and what the helmet looked like when I removed it from the box (see the photo after the one below).
The helmet felt quite solid. When I pushed its sides inward, the tough ABS shell didn’t budge. The gray EPS liner beneath the black matte-finished shell was thick, thicker than most helmets I’ve reviewed.
This black matte helmet looks bulbous, but then it’s extremely big. However, its appearance doesn’t in any way diminish its protective ability.
Style and Color variety: This dual-certified protection is available in at least 10 colors including black matte/black rubber, black gloss, black gloss glitter, dark gray matte, double black gloss glitter, and navy matte.
There’s also tan leopard matte, white gloss, silver gloss glitter, purple matte, and even white gloss with checkers. You’ll certainly find a color that blends beautifully with your style.
Shape of the S1 Mega Lifer
Some reviewers have said that Triple 8 helmets fit round-shaped heads better while S1 and Pro-Tec helmets fit oval noggins somewhat better. Me? I didn’t notice any real shape difference between the S1 Mega Lifer and my Triple Eight Gotham helmet (video review).
Both seemed to have the intermediate oval shape, which is the most common head shape according to the NHTSA. Other head shapes include round oval and long oval.
My head is intermediate oval, at least that’s what my friend said when I asked them to view it from above. Both skate helmet brands fit me more or less the same way.
The S1 Mega Lifer weighs 455 grams or roughly 1 pound. This is what similar options like the Triple 8 Gotham (453 grams) and many others weigh.
It’s noticeably bulkier compared to ultra-light helmets like the Pro-Tec Classic Skate Helmet and Triple 8’s The Heed. However, these lighter options offer non-certified protection.
It’s now time to address the 5 claims S-One makes about this helmet.
I looked at the sticker inside this helmet, and it says the lid is for 59cm heads. But this claim is utterly false! How do I know?
I measured my head’s circumference at 58cm. The amount of room left all around my head clearly shows the helmet wasn’t molded to fit 59cm heads.
I managed to fit an entire hand between its front and my forehead! View the picture below to see what I mean.
I had another guy (the big dude whose head I showed above) try on the S1 Mega Lifer. For context, the guy isn’t a skater, stands 5 ‘8’’ and I measured his head at 61cm. This measurement placed him in the Extra Large territory while I’m size Large, according to this hat size chart.
The guy has really large hands, yet he didn’t face any resistance when he tried putting a hand between the helmet and his forehead. This is proof that this helmet isn’t for 58cm-61cm melons. It’s or bigger heads.
Good news! The helmet came with extra fit pad sets, one of which had 6mm liners. I misplaced these liners initially; that’s why I don’t show them in the video above. When the big boy tried on the S1 Mega Lifer, the fit improved a bit, but it still wasn’t perfect.
It fits extremely big heads best.
Even though the attached sticker said the helmet fits 59cm heads, it also said XXXL somewhere on the inside of helmet and on the box (see the picture below). I believe indicating the size as 59cm was a mistake.
By the way, 23.8” heads are considered big, which means 25.5” ones are extremely big. I believe 3XL, as indicated on the box, is the correct size information for this dual-certified melon protector.
Verdict: the S1 Mega Lifer definitely fits large heads, but it’s clearly designed to fit the biggest of heads. I’m convinced that there’s no skater head out there that the S1 Mega Lifer will not fit comfortably.
S1 claims that the Mega Lifer offers a super-deep fit that translates to tons of side, front, and back coverage. I found this statement to be true.
I sat the helmet level on my head, and the front came farther down my forehead and back of head than other helmets do.
The sides covered a small portion of my ear, indicating a deeper-than -usual fit. So, the Deep Fit Design isn’t mere hype; it’s a matter of fact!
I found this claim to be true. Not only is the S1 Mega Lifer certified to the CPSC 1203 bike helmet safety standard, but it also meets the requirements of the skate standard, the ASTM F1492.
Well, it didn’t say this brain saver also meets the European skate and bike safety standard, the EN 1078. The UK version is the BS EN 1078: 1997 and is based off of the European standard.
But the helmet can be presumed to meet and even surpass the EN 1078. How so? Because the EN 1078 is less stringent than the ASTM F1492 and CPSC according to Helmetfacts.
You Can Skate or Bike With the S1 Mega Lifer
The helmet’s CPSC certification ensures increased frontal coverage while the ASTM F1492 certification provides added coverage for the back of the head.
When biking, you’re more likely to tumble forward than you are backward. That said, it’s wise to wear adequate frontal protection when engaging in high-impact activities like aggressive skating and technical skateboarding. Consider wearing a mouth guard, too, especially if you’re always attempting to nail the gnarliest of hammers.
I recently saw a YouTube video where a guy lost a bunch of his front teeth in a bad skateboarding spill. He didn’t wear a helmet then, but he’s all about helmets and mouth guards post-healing. Hey skateboarders, isn’t it time to rethink no-gear-skating?
S-One claims that Mega Lifer helmet is 5 times more protective than other helmets, but is this claim true? Perhaps, but I have doubts.
I watched this video where an S-One engineer conducts a bunch o helmet safety crash tests. According to them, a properly certified helmet reduces 1,000Gs of impact energy to under 300Gs. Put another way, it directs at least 701Gs of energy away from the head, leaving no more than 299Gs to impact the head.
Any helmet that doesn’t meet this test simply is non-certified. Fortunately, ALL S1 skate helmets pass this safety test.
However, I couldn’t find a smidgen of evidence showing that the company’s helmets provide 5 times better protection than comparable helmets. So I decided to treat this claim as mere marketing hype.
But then something caught my eye, and I now believe there could be some substance to this bold claim.
I noticed that the EPS foam of this helmet was thicker than that of the Triple Eight Gotham helmet, a lid that many skaters love. I learned this fact when I placed the S1 Mega Lifer side by side with this worthy competitor. EPS stands for Expanded Polystyrene.
I also noticed something else: The S1 Mega Lifer’s EPS liner has uniform thickness all around. But the Triple 8 Gotham? It’s thicker in the front and thinner in the back. The greater thickness of the S1 Mega Lifer suggests it could offer more protection.
The S1 Mega Lifer comes with three cozy fit pads for the front, back, and top of my head. It’s super comfy to wear, absolutely no pressure points. The pads, sticking on with Velcro inside the shell, are a breeze to add or remove.
However, every time I took off a pad, I noticed some fibers breaking off, which isn’t uncommon for hook-and-loop systems. You shouldn’t expect these foam pads to last very long. S1 helmet replacement pads are inexpensive and easily available online, though.
The foam pads are peelable and machine washable, making cleaning the S1 Mega Lifer easier. But most skateboard helmets feature washable liners, so it’s nothing unique.
Wondering if the sweat pads in the S1 Mega Lifer actually soak up the sweat from determined skaters and cyclists?
I couldn’t test them myself since the helmet is too roomy for my 58cm head. But other reviewers say they’re quite absorbent. Still, let’s be real, no pad absorbs every single drop of sweat.
I did test the sweat liners on my Triple 8 helmet, and they pretty similar to the S1 Mega Lifer’s.
Every time I went out for a really intense one-hour skate session, I sweat buckets. When I checked the sweat pads afterward, they were drenched.
So yeah, the liners absorb a lot of sweat. However, some of this salty stuff got in my eyes, and the burn wasn’t very pleasant. Good thing is that the pads are washable.
If I’m just cruising around at a leisurely pace and not sweating as much, my eyes are fine.
I counted 11 holes on the helmet’s tough ABS shell. There are 7 holes on the top, 2 on the front, and 2 on the back. These holes are there to promote air circulation, and they run deep, all the way from the shell to the gray protective foam.
The holes on the front and back of the S1 Mega Lifer are pretty big and shouldn’t have a hard time letting cool air in and allowing warm air to exit. Look at how the front holes look like.
These holes, at least the ones on the front and back, are bigger than those on the Triple 8 helmet.
When I skated with the Triple eight Gotham, the air vents didn’t keep my head super cool.
But to give a little credit to these vents, I did feel a nice cool breeze rushing in from behind my head. I’d expect the S1 Mega Lifer to be reasonably comfortable in warm weather owing to its relatively large airflow vents.
The chin straps, which are synthetic and feel pretty sturdy, are riveted right between the plastic shell and the EPS foam. They seem to be good of quality.
The straps on this helmet are thick, strong, and have passed the requisite safety tests. They’re also long enough to fit even really big heads. Plus, they’re adjustable for nailing that perfect fit. Cleaning them seems like it’d be a breeze, maybe just with a cloth or a toothbrush
A lot of helmets these days feature a handy knob or wheel for size adjustment. The S1 Mega Lifer offers no such feature, which isn’t a deal-breaker, really. But for $90-ish, it’s a bit of a bummer you don’t get a size adjustment dial.
I paid $92 for the S1 Mega Lifer, which is about $15 more than the price of the Triple 8 Gotham. But is it worth the extra bucks? I think so.
Sure, the S1 doesn’t have the Gotham’s fit dial, but it makes up for it with a thicker liner. And to me, that’s worth more than the price difference.
S1 Mega Lifer Pros and Cons
- A solid, high-quality skateboard helmet
- Dual-certified to CPSC and ASTMF1492
- Fits extremely large heads
- Sturdy retention system
- Relatively large ventilation holes that keep the head cool
- Fusion foam that’s thicker than others
- Offers 2 extra sets of fit foam pads while most options offer just 1
- Sizing information confusing
- Expensive for a dual-certified helmet that doesn’t offer bells and whistles
- No size adjuster on the back of the helmet
- Seems a little bulbous, but then the ideal user is a skater with a big head
S1 Mega Lifer vs Triple Dual-certified Gotham Helmet
The S1 is a tad more expensive but works great for bigger heads. It comes with three sets of foam pads, one more than the Triple 8. Both weigh almost the same, but neither is feather-light.
In the safety department, both are dual-certified, but the S1’s thicker EPS liner gives it a bit of an edge. Also, they have adjustable chin straps, but the Triple 8 throws in a size adjuster.
You can find both lids online in a variety of colors and styles. Overall, they’re both solid picks. But if you’ve got an especially large head, the S1 might be your best bet.
S1 Mega Lifer vs OutdoorMaster Helmet
Like the S1, the OutdoorMaster helmet offers multi-impact protection, but it works somewhat better for rounder noggins. However, unlike the Triple 8 Gotham or S1, it gives my intermediate-oval head some forehead pressure when I skate for a while.
It comes with an extra set of thicker pads while the S1, which costs about twice as much, offers two extra sets.
The OutdoorMaster wins big as far as air circulation. Its rectangular vents are larger, keeping my head cooler. Also, it comes with a nifty size adjustment wheel at the back, something the S1 lacks.
Another plus is the removable chin comfort pads, a feature you won’t find with the T8 or S1. At 400 grams compared to S1’s 455 grams, it’s lighter too.
If you’ve got a rounder head and a tighter budget, the OutdoorMaster could be your best bet.
What Customer Reviews Say
It’s almost impossible to find a helmet over a certain size, almost none of the other helmet makers have the larger mold so none of their helmets fit me properly. This one is great fit, very comfortable and solid construction.Amazon Customer
I bought this for my husband. We only trust S1 helmets for our family of Onewheel riders and lucky for us, S1 makes a lifer big enough for my husband and his XL head. Comfy, cool, light and the highest level of protection you can get in a helmet like this. Check out how these helmets are made on their website. You will be so glad you bought this if you ever really need it.Another reviewer on Amazon
S1 Mega Lifer 3XL Review: Conclusion
The S1 Mega skateboard helmet is the best skateboard helmet for skaters and cyclists with extremely large heads.
It protects like a boss, too, which makes the deal even sweeter. If you have a substantial cranium and have been struggling to find a fitting helmet, look no further than the Mega Lifer XXXL.
There are cheaper and similarly protective options like the Triple 8 and OutdoorMaster, but their EPS foam isn’t as thick. And while these competitors come in different sizes, they’re not the best option or extremely voluminous domes.