Are you looking for the best hard hat? Let me help you with my list of top 15 hard hats on the market for all work settings and all government regulations.
Hard hat is a piece of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that protects your head and many professionals had to wear them on site. There are different models and materials of hard hats on the market. Some include other protective accessories such as ear muffs and visor.
Before we move on to the list of the best hard hats for 2021, let’s go briefly through types and classes of hard hats, according to federal standards as well as brief comparison with other pieces of PPE.
Table of Contents
Hard Hat Types
There are two types of hard hats – Type I and Type II. Hard hats types refer to the area which the hat protects.
OSHA regulates requirements for protective equipment, and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) provides further means on following the regulations.
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If you live in the United States, you can get type I hard hat that offers protection for the top of the head.
Type II hard hats are common PPE in Europe, and protect the top of the head as well as the sides. The type II hard hats are a bit warmer, heavier and bulkier, but they provide better protection than the type I.
Hard Hat Classes
The classes of hard hats refer to the level of protection a hat can provide from electrical hazards.
There are General or class G hard hats that protect of 2.200 volts.
The next category is Electrical or Class E, rated for 20.000 volts.
Lastly, there are Conductive or class C hard hats that don’t offer electrical protection at all.
Hard Hat Vs. Bump Cap
Both hard hat and bump cap protect your head, but the hard hat is much more protective. Bump cap is a suitable choice in work settings with low head clearance.
While it may seem protective, ANSI doesn’t approve the use of bump caps as PPE. It can protect you from small impacts caused by stationary objects, but for falling objects, a hard hat is a better choice.
Hard Hat Vs. Helmet
Helmet and hard hat are commonly used as synonyms, but this PPE differs in some aspects. Motorcycle riders usually wear helmets to protect themself from a collision.
A helmet usually has a soft spoon and styrofoam inserts inside the shell to support the head better. It is more similar to type II hard hat, but differs in shapes and construction material from the hat.
The term helmet is also used to describe specific head protection for workers who deal with high temperatures.
A hard hat is protective equipment commonly used in industrial work settings and doesn’t necessarily have foam inserts. While helmet includes a built-in visor, you can attach a face shield to the hard hat with slots for additional protective attachments.
Which Are The Best Hard Hats On The Market?
The best hard hat on my list has it all – comfort, durability, and meets national requirements. Check my top ten picks and you will find everything you need for your work and that matches your preferences!
- Best Overall – MSA 454664 Standard Hard Hat
“Lightweight, easy to adjust for a custom fit, comfortable and high protection from temperatures and debris, durable.”
- Best Budget – Pyramex Full Brim Hard Hat
“Ultra-lightweight, moderate thermal protection, 4-point harness system, low-profile design, full-brim model.”
- Best Carbon Fiber – Lift Safety Carbon Fiber Hard Hat
“Triple carbon fiber shell reinforcements, durable and lightweight, rotatable suspension, improved shock absorption.”
- Best with Face Shield – MSA Cap Style Hard Hat
“Cap style, comes with protective attachments for face and ears, easy to mount and use, semi-custom fit.”
- Best Vented – Klein Tools 60401 Vented Hard Hat
“Adjustable vents, lightweight, no straps or zip system, flexible frame and comfortable headband.”
- Best with Full Brim – MSA 475411 Standard Hard Hat
“Versatile and can withstand high temperatures, comfortable, three colors available, shock-resistant.”
- Best Type II – Dinamic Safety HP642R/01 Type II Hard Hat
“Provides side impact protection, lightweight adjustable ratchet, class E, wide full brim style, soft foam 360 degrees liners.”
- Best with Chin Strap – Amston Vented Hard Hat
“Comfortable, removable and adjustable chin strap, short brim for better visibility, convenient design – underside grip and low-profile.”
- Best for Electricians – Honeywell E1RW Thermoplastic Hard Hat
“Class E hard hat, excellent for electricians, easy to adjust and impressive impact protection, soft cushioning.”
- Best for Construction Workers – Lift Safety HDF-15NG Standard Hard Hat
“Lightweight, durable, fully adjustable and convenient for various work settings, improved protection on top of the head Comparison Table.”
Hard Hat Comparison Chart 2021
Size, dimensions, and suspensions system play a vital role when it comes to choosing the best hard hat. That is why I compiled the comparison table where you can find this information for all reviewed hard hats from the list.
|Best Hard Hats||Dimensions||Weight||Multi-suspension option available|
|MSA 454664 Standard Hard Hat - Best Overall||1 x 1 x 1 inches||4 ounces||Yes|
|Pyramex Full Brim Hard Hat - Best Budget||13 x 11 x 7 inches||1.6 ounces||No|
|Lift Safety Carbon Fiber Hard Hat - Best Carbon Fiber||12.2 x 11.1 x 6.93 inches||1.7 pounds||No|
|MSA Cap Style Hard Hat - Best with Face Shield||11 x 8.7 x 5.9 inches||12 ounces||No|
|Klein Tools 60401 Vented Hard Hat - Best Vented||12 x 10.5 x 7 inches||1 pounds||N/A|
|MSA 475411 Standard Hard Hat - Best with Full Brim||Not specified||1 pound||Yes|
|Dinamic Safety HP642R/01 Type II Hard Hat - Best Type II||Length - 21 inches||13.6 ounces||No|
|Amston Vented Hard Hat - Best with Chin Strap||11.22 x 8.66 x 6.5 inches||14 ounces||No|
|Honeywell E1RW Thermoplastic Hard Hat - Best for Electricians||12 x 9 x 9 inches||1.2 pounds||No|
|Lift Safety HDF-15NG Standard Hard Hat - Best for Construction Workers||0.1 x 0.1 x 0.1 inches||1.6 ounces||No|
|Lincoln Electric 3350 Welding Helmet - Best for Welding||13 x 10.5 x 10 inches||3.2 pounds||No|
|Husqvarna 588646001 Technical Forest Hard Hat - Best for Logging||14 x 8 x 11 inches||2.42 pounds||No|
|MSA V-Guard Jumbo Hard Hat - Best for Big Heads||11.93 x 9.25 x 5.71 inches||12.2 ounces||No|
|JSP 280-EV6151V-10 Type II Hard Hat - Best for Small Heads||3 x 2 x 1 inches||1.6 ounces||No|
|Ergodyne 8972 Cap Style Hard Hat - Best with Light||13.5 x 8.8 x 2.9 inches||1.4 pounds||No|
Top 15 Best Hard Hat Reviews in 2021
Now is the time to go in-depth for discovering all details from performance, construction, design, price, pros and cons of best hard hats on the market.
1. MSA 454664 Standard Hard Hat
This MSA hard hat is a type I hard hat that protects you from vertical debris and penetration. It is suitable for electrical hazardous, but not above 2.200 volts.
The hard hat from MSA is a full brim model and has various styles for suspension. I prefer Staz-on suspension because it allows you semi-custom fit with the maximum comfort.
Because of the four-point suspension system, your hard hat will stay in place during your movement. The crown straps are adjustable and the headband is soft, and it won’t cause blisters or discomfort after hours of wearing it.
Also, the hard hat is lightweight, and it won’t bother you during your work. It is almost as if you won’t be aware that you have, but you will stay safe.
It is also a great choice for hot industrial work because it is suitable for temperatures up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. The material is durable Polly resin, and you can also pick brim option – full or cap style.
I choose full because it is more fits most of the work requirements.
There are several color options available, including natural tan, white, red, green, orange, etc.
- Three suspension two brim styles available
- Standard size – suitable for 6 1⁄2″ to 8″
- Comfortable and easy to customize
- Solid construction
- No neck pain after long hours shifts
- The color may darken after years of use
|Thermal protection||Up to 350 degrees F|
Watch the story of a construction worker who was happy to have an MSA hard hat to save his life during the work incident:
2. Pyramex Full Brim Hard Hat
For the price you will pay for this Pyramex Full Brim Hard Hat, you cannot find anything that sturdy, protective, and comfortable.
This model from Pyramex features ABS thermoplastic resin which makes it ultra-light, yet strong ally in dangerous work environments.
I like low-profile style, because it sits more naturally on the head, provides a better fit along with the 4-point adjustable harness system.
The hard hat is available in plenty of colors, and it has an interesting graphite pattern.
The adjustable knob for the headband which you can find on the back makes it even more comfortable for wearing.
With this Pyramex hard hat, you can easily mount headlamp on top of the brim.
The brim is small, but it offers a complete 360 degrees protection for your head. It is standard-size, but the ratchet system and low-profile allows you to achieve a custom fit.
Also, the aid is washable as well as the venture pressure pad, and you can replace sweatband after it tears off easily.
- Multiple colors available
- 4-points harness system
- Full brim style
- Custom fit
- Low profile hard hat for natural fit
- The paint can chip easily
|Class||C, G, E|
|Thermal protection||Up to 140 degrees F|
3. Lift Safety Carbon Fiber Hard Hat
(Best Carbon Fiber)
My pick in the carbon fiber hard hats is the hard hat from Lift Safety.
The construction is quite impressive. Lift Safety Hard hat is lightweight – 550g with suspension and yet comes with an improved protection. Without the suspension, the product weights 420g.
The hard hat features molded EVA foam insert, which provides additional shock protection for your head.
The full brim style is excellent for secure feel, and the shell feature triple carbon fiber reinforcement.
It means that can withstand all impacts. The Lift Safety hard hat is comfortable and durable, with six-point suspension system. The quick ratchet system is easy to adjust in seconds.
The brim features a secure grip, which makes it easier to hold it with gloves or hands.
With this one, you don’t have to worry about sweating. It has moisture-wicking foam with microfiber liner, which will prevent any sweat build-up and keep you fresh.
Also, you can rotate suspension to wear the hard hat backward, if you want it.
It is in two-style color combination design. The available colors are green, orange and yellow.
- Six-point suspension system
- Triple carbon fiber layer on the shell
- Improved shock protection
- Convenient brim grip
- Easy to adjust
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
4. MSA Cap Style Hard Hat
(Best with Face Shield)
This model from MSA features a cap style hard hat with attachments for face and ear protection.
You can pick from a few available shield style – clear, dark green, aluminum bound edges, smoke mesh, and polycarbonate shield.
My pick is standard, clear face shield because it is transparent and doesn’t add additional weight.
The hard hat is cap style, and it is easy to attach the face shield when you need to protect your face from any falling objects.
The shield will stay put when you set it, due to the resilient cam-lock feature.
Additionally, with this hard hat, you get earmuffs for complete protection. They offer a noise reduction rating of 27. The system is easy to use – you can rotate them and wore them over the hat when you don’t need noise protection.
The hard hat feature four-point ratchet suspension, for a semi-custom fit. The hat will stay on your head with attachments during all movements.
This model is all-in-one hard hat with supreme protection and comes with a budget-friendly price tag.
- Set includes face shield and ear muffs
- 4-point ratchet system
- Cap style hard hat
- Face and ears protection
- Easy to assemble and disassemble
- Missing brim on the back doesn’t provide 360 degrees protection
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
Learn how MSA accessories work with their helmets and what kind of test shields had to pass:
5. Klein Tools 60401 Vented Hard Hat
Sometimes, it can get really hot, and having a hard hat on your head isn’t helping. However, it is a necessary piece of equipment and you can help yourself by getting vented hard hat.
This Klein Tools hard hat has adjustable vents, and you can customize the ventilation to make it most comfortable for work – open or close some of the vents to improve air circulation.
Even if you open all vents, this model will still meet all safety standards administered by national agencies.
The suspension system with this hard hat is unique, and there are no straps and zips. You can secure it using accessory mounts on the front and the back. The frame of the hard hat is flexible, and it improves ventilation and helps you to make a secure fit.
The sweat-wicking headband is comfortable and you can wash it in the machine.
Full brim style is convenient and it offers 360-degree protection.
- Adjustable vents
- Open frame design for better air circulation
- Large knob ratchet mechanism
- Comfortable and easy to use
- Flexible frame for better fit
- The pad that goes on the top of your head can move
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
Watch the Klein Tools helmet vents work in action and learn more about features and slots accessories:
6. MSA 475411 Standard Hard Hat
(Best with Full Brim)
The MSA hard hat model 475411 offers superb protection in hot and dangerous work settings. It comes with a full brim style and in a variety of colors.
MSA hard hat is suitable for hot temperatures, up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. It features smooth helmet crown, for comfort and better fit.
It comes with a fas-Trac III suspension system or Staz-on suspension. It is significantly lighter and more durable, shock-resistant than standard plastic hard hats you can get on the construction site.
This MSA hard hat is suitable for a variety of industries, including oil, construction, mining, fire service, and military. In some cases, you will have to get other attachments and protective equipment such as a head torch, protective glasses, etc.
The hard hat features phenolic construction, which is resistant to high temperatures, but flexible and lightweight.
If your work setting requires the full brim size of the hard hat, you won’t regret buying the MSA 475411 model.
- Made of phenolic
- Suitable for a variety of industries
- Two suspension systems available
- Comfortable for wearing long shifts
- Smooth crown
- The outer paint may chip
|Thermal protection||350 degrees F|
Learn more about FasTracIII Suspension method:
7. Dinamic Safety HP642R/01 Type II Hard Hat
(Best Type II)
If you are at risk of getting injured from the side of your head, such as hard blows or you are going on a business trip to Europe, you probably need to get a Type II hard hat.
The best option on the market is the Dynamic Safety HP642R/01 model. It comes in standard size and a full brim style.
The suspension system is four-point, for semi-custom fit, and it has a sure-lock ratchet adjustment.
The shell is high-density polyethylene and it has plenty of space for company branding on front and the backside.
A brim is wide, for improved sun protection for your neck and ears. What is great about this hard hat is the comfortable crown comfort pad that comes with inside ratchet foam.
The front, side, and rear foam liners for improved impact protection are comfortable and won’t make you sweat too much.
The Dynamic Safety hard hat is high-quality, and the longevity is great.
- Side, front and rear protection
- Wide full brim for UV protection
- Has a sure-lock ratchet
- Not too heavy
- Comfortable foam
- Can make you hot
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
8. Amston Vented Hard Hat
(Best with Chin Strap)
The Amston hard hat comes with a chin strap which is easy to adjust or remove if you don’t need it. The strap is soft, but sturdy so it will keep the hard hat in place, and won’t bruise or scratch your chin.
The hard hat from Amston has slots for mounting ear muffs as well, but you have to purchase those separately.
The helmet is cap style and has vents for better air circulation. The notched adjustment strap makes it easier to adjust it for the custom fit and low-profile design makes it sit more naturally on the head.
It is a type I, class C hard hat suitable for various work settings.
There is a slight detail in design, which makes it even better. Because of the underside gripped brim, it is easy to hold it or pick it up, even with the working gloves.
The brim is short and improves visibility. X- Suspension straps as well as the sweat headband are machine-washable.
The Amston hard hat is an HDPE – high-density polyethylene, lightweight and flexible.
- Comes with a chin strap
- Low-profile design
- Ear muffs enabled
- Soft chin strap
- Underside gripped brim
- Limited adjustment system might not fit people who need a larger piece of equipment
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
9. Honeywell E1RW Thermoplastic Hard Hat
(Best for Electricians)
This Honeywell E1RW model is a great piece of protective equipment, especially for electricians. It is a class E hard hat, meaning that it is rated for 20.000 volts, and designed for electrical hazardous.
It is made of thermoplastic material, which is water, heat, and scratch-resistant, and a full brim style protects you from UV rays as well.
The E1RW model from Honeywell features an eight-point ratchet system, which makes it great for a complete custom fit. It is suitable for electricians working long hours and having to wear PPE for the entire day.
The design on the forehead is impressive. It has a soft cushioning which keeps you comfortable but also absorbs any impacts in that area. That way the chances for injuries are lower.
Because of the special technology – Energy Control System, the protection is improved. If any impacts happen, the system will spread the force over the entire shelf, for the reduced chances of getting hurt.
There are multiple color options, and some are Hi-Viz helmets have reflective to help you see better in various light conditions.
- Suitable for electrical hazards
- Impact control system for reduced injuries
- Thermoplastic shelf
- Comfortable cushioning on the forehead
- Affordable price
- Various color options
- You can start sweating from the cushioning
|Thermal protection||120 degrees F|
Check the video for more information about this Honeywell hard hat:
10. Lift Safety HDF-15NG Standard Hard Hat
(Best for Construction Workers)
Any construction worker needs a comfortable hard hat that will stay secured on their head for the entire day. This Lift Say model is just what you need if you work on a construction site.
On the top of the hard hat there is a perforated clarion synthetic leather Dome which has foam inserts.
The shell is reinforced with carbon fibers for ultimate safety.
That way, this hard hat provides even better protection for impacts on top of your head.
The helmet has a full brim design, with grips on sides of the helmet. It is designed to be used easily even with protective gloves.
The ratcheting system is quite impressive. You can adjust the helmet to fit for any head size, and it won’t move after you secure it.
It weighs only 566 grams with suspension, and 475 grams without it.
Also, this helmet is very durable. Because of carbon fibers in the shell it won’t change shape even if you lift it from extreme heights!
- Leather dome on top of the shell
- Full brim design
- Adjustable for any head size
- Convenient grip design on the brim
- No mounting option for head torch
|Thermal protection||Not specified|
11. Lincoln Electric 3350 Welding Helmet
(Best for Welding)
Welding helmets are the best way to protect your self during welding. You can get any hard hat with a reinforced face shield, but welding helmets are more durable and provide better protection.
My top pick is a helmet from Lincoln Electric. It has a tall viewing area and a wide window size. That way, this helmet gives you a better view of everything in front of you, and you can always react on time.
The helmet comes with 4-arch sensors and excellent optical classification. The lens reaction time is fast, and is1/25,000 sec.
The helmet is plastic, and lightweight. It is wide, so you won’t have issues wearing it. The helmet uses solar batteries and has a headgear ratchet system.
- Power source – solar
- Wide viewing area
- 4-arch sensors
- Excellent value for the money
- ADF knobs for control
- Great optical clarity
|Battery type||Solar cells|
|Tig AMP Rating||2A|
12. Husqvarna 588646001 Technical Forest Hard Hat
(Best for Logging)
The Husqvarna hard hat is best for logging, because it provides complete protection for your head, face, and ears, while still being comfortable and light.
It has a six-point ratchet system for a secure fit. The orange color is easily visible in all forest settings.
The helmet is vented, for better air circulation during hot summer days.
Your view isn’t affected by the visor bracket in a mesh style, which will keep you from debris and dust.
The earmuffs are rated NRP 27 and you can detach them from helmet if you want to. The helmet will stay balanced and in place.
It is fully adjustable to fit all head sizes and it won’t be a barrier to finishing your logging tasks.
- Complete protection – face, head, ears
- Detachable earmuffs
- Mesh face shield
- Fully adjustable
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Headband made from synthetic leather might make you sweat more
13. MSA V-Guard Jumbo Hard Hat
(Best for Big Heads)
Even if the helmet is fully adjustable, sometimes it cannot be comfortable enough for people with larger head sizes. That is why this Jumbo hard hat from MSA fits all requirements – protects your head from impacts and debris, and is wide and deep enough so you will feel comfortable wearing it.
The Jumbo MSA hat fits head sizes from 7 to 8.5.
It is a bit bulkier, and it is convenient that is comes with a carrying tote. The helmet has a four-ratchet system for quick adjustment.
The color is high visibility orange, so you will be easily noticeable in all work settings. The construction is sturdy and the helmet is moderately weighted.
It is a great choice for industrial workers and is a versatile piece of personal protective equipment.
The price tag is moderate.
- Fit for people who wear 7 to 8.5 hat size
- Hi-Viz orange color
- Comes with a carrying tote
- Comfortable for people with larger heads
- Quick adjustment system
- Can sit high on people who wear 8.5
14. JSP 280-EV6151V-10 Type II Hard Hat
(Best for Small Heads)
An oversized helmet is uncomfortable and can move around, and bother you during your work. If you wear a size 6 in hats, this JSP hard hat will be a perfect fit.
It has smart six-point ratchet system for a perfect fit for people with smaller heads.
Because of the 3D adjustments, you can even arrange how it will sit on your head – low profile or high profile.
The JSP hard hat is vented, so it makes a great choice for summer hard hat as well.
It features a standard brim design and High density polyethylene (HDPE) shell for reduced weight.
Straps are thin, but they do the job and won’t cause blisters or bruises after long shifts.
Overall, it is a comfortable hard hat, which will be appreciated by people with small heads.
- 3D harness system
- Adjustable depth
- Vented for improved air circulation
- Great for summer
- Short brim
15. Ergodyne 8972 Cap Style Hard Hat
(Best with Light)
The Ergodyne hard hat comes with a convenient LED lamp, which makes it suitable hard hat for use in any work setting, any time.
The helmet is vented for proper air circulation which improved with the open frame as well.
The hard hat from Ergodyne is cap style, and you can wear it backward if you need to improve the visibility area. This model is also great for wearing with ponytail and it features a one-handed adjustment knob system to improve fit or clear bandana.
The ratchet system is four-point, which allows you semi-custom fit.
The LED light is bright and doesn’t add to the weight significantly. The hard hat is suitable for mining, forestry, road workers, and plenty of other industries.
The front and rear slots for the LED lights are a convenient choice, and this strapless method makes it secured while moving. The lamp uses 3AAA batteries, which are included in the package.
The helmet has slots for ear protection and face shields as well.
- Included LED light
- Cap style
- Semi-custom fit
- LED light won’t slip or move while you work
- You can mount the light on front or rear position
- Easy to wear with a ponytail
- Can be hard to turn the light on with gloves
There are a few things you should in mind before you pick your hard hat. Keep in mind that there are national standards that each hard hat should meet to be considered as a piece of personal equipment.
Watch this short video to understand the importance of proper use of hard hats:
Here are a few things to consider when buying hard hats.
The suspension is the internal frame of the helmet. Hard hats usually come with four, six, or eight suspension points.
The more suspension point the hat has, the better impact resistance it provides. However, the hard hats with four points also meet federal standards for impact protection.
Also, helmets with six or more suspension points offer a better fit.
Brim style is important to many workers. Full brim style offers 360 degrees protection but can affect your visibility.
It is why some workers prefer cap-style hard hats or helmets with short brims.
In general, a brimmed style might be a matter of personal preference, but make sure to check the work requirements before you offer a hard hat.
Short-brim and caps hard hats are a better choice if you need to mount additional accessories such as face shield and earmuffs.
Not all hard hats are rated for elevated temperature protection.
Hard hats that pass the national standards are rated from 0 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you by any by chance need something more heat-resistant, check if the hard hat passed necessary tests to be rated as 350 degrees Fahrenheit or less.
How To Pick A Hard Hat Color?
If you are buying hard hat for the first time, there is the logic behind colors.
Managers, engineers, and supervisors usually wear white hard hats. Workers who work with heat functions, such as welders wear brown or tan hard hats. Green hard hats are for fresh workers and inspectors, while carpenters use blue helmets.
You have probably noticed that road workers wear orange hard hats, and everybody else – all-purpose workers, use yellow helmets.
Some work settings require the use of other pieces of PPE such as face shield or earmuffs.
For example, miners frequently need a head torch to be able to work in dark spaces. That is why some hard hats come with attachments or slots for mounting the attachments.
If you know that you will need to attach a face shield for example to finish some tasks, I recommend getting a hard hat with a slot for simpler mounting. With non-slotted hard hats, you cannot use additional protective pieces.
Are you ready to order the best hard hat for you? Let’s first answer some of the most common questions related to hard hats.
My Top Pick
The MSA 454664 Standard Hard Hat is the winner of this list. It is versatile and suitable for so many workers and industries. The winning hard hat comes in standard size, has multiple suspension system options and various brim styles.
How do you pick your protective equipment? Is comfort more important that superb protection, and have you found the PPE that has it all?
Tell me your picks in the comments bellow.