Bolle has been a well-known brand throughout the snow sports arena for some time now, 130 years to be exact. Created by Seraphin Bolle in France, Bolle was one of the first companies to utilize a new type of Celluloid in the production of their products. It wasn’t until 1950 when Bolle added goggles to their product line. In 2007, Bolle launches their first ski helmets, a great addition to their already functional and fun line of ski goggles.
LAIKA Ski Goggles
For our review of the Bolle ski google line for women, we tested out the LAIKA ski goggle. Made specifically to fit a smaller head, the LAIKA frames come in a small/medium fit. We have the Matte White Waves with Vermillion Gun lens.
At first glance, the LAIKA ski goggles are incredibly light weight and it is hard to believe that so much technology comes is incorporated in these fashion forward goggles. Beginning with the frame, the combination of the Flow-tech Venting and the Equalizer Vents ensure the user will have a moisture and fog free ride for the whole day. The Equalizer Vents is an insert between the two lenses of the LAIKA that regulates the atmospheric pressure between the lenses. This regulation of moisture prevents humidity and the sub sequential buildup of condensation in the goggles. The Flow-Tech Venting backs up the Equalizer Vents to move air across the inside surface of the lens, also preventing the buildup of moisture.
As previously mentioned, the LAIKA is a comprised of a dual-pane thermal barrier between the harsh winter weather conditions and the warmth of your body on the other side of the lens. The double lens technology within the LAIKA ski goggle is the third line of defense when it comes to maintaining a clear view for the user.
The LAIKA frames only comes in the Small/Medium fit. For me, I found the fit is closer to small than medium. The LAIKA goggles are compatible with helmets but would not work for those who like to wear their prescription glasses under their goggles.
The Carbo Glas Anti-Scratch protective armor that is applied to the lens of the LAIKA is a clear shield that protects against scratching to ensure your view is clear and allows you to clearly read the terrain ahead. In addition to the scratch resistant surface, the LAIKA is rated to block all UVA/UVB rays up to 400 nanometers.
While not the most technologically advance feature of the LAIKA, it is my personal favorite, the field of view provided by the LAIKA is fantastic! My peripheral vision is unencumbered by the frame and I feel as if I could see behind me if I tried! This is great for when the mountain is busy and you need to keep an eye out on other skiers, especially those little guys who love to tuck and go! The dense foam cushioning is comfortable and conforms nicely to your face for a long day of outdoor play.
In Idaho and Taos, NM where we ski the most, there is a lot of low light throughout the day. Honestly, it is not my favorite time to ski and I find I usually turn in for a long lunch when the light gets bad. However, the LAIKA has a CAT 2 rated lens. The pink of the lens not only allows you to look at the world in rose colored glasses, the Vermillion Gun maximizes color definition and aids in improved depth perception.
I recommend the unisex LAIKA goggles to snowboarder and skiers alike. The lightweight and versatility of the lenses allows for you to have clear vision all day long.
The LAIKA goggles are available at the Bolle retailer near you.
Instinct MIPS Helmet
What pairs well with a great pair of goggles? Head protection, of course. At Practical Travel Gear we take safety very seriously. As the saying goes, it is not always you who will cause an injury, it will most likely be another person on the mountain. While you can’t predict when or if it will happen, you can be prepared.
The Instinct MIPS helmet weighs just under a pound and while it is incredibly light, it is one of the safest helmets on the market for snowboarding and skiing. Utilizing both high density and low density EPS in conjunction with a superior ventilation system at the top of the helmet, the Instinct MIPS Helmet can protect your head and brain during both high energy and low energy impacts. By constructing the Instinct MIPS Helmet with high and low density EPS, the energy from an impact can be transferred and dispersed throughout the material in hopes of decreasing head injuries. This technology can only be found on the Instinct model.
The MIPS system of this intuitive helmet provides additional protection in the case of rotational motion. The MIPS technology allows the helmet to slide relative to the head during an angled impact. The rear neck roll aids in hyperextension injuries to your cervical spine.
In addition to all the above-mentioned technologies, the Instinct MIPS Helmet looks and feels great! Available in 4 colors and three sizes (I have the Matte Blue Yellow in a 51-54cm) the Instinct MIPS helmet fits…like a glove. I am in love with the integrated BOA Fit system for a more secure fit. I also have this system on my running shoes and won’t use anything else. I find the BOA Fit system adapts to your body better than the click systems found in other helmets.
The ear pads are generous and washable so you can keep your helmet looking good all season long. The liner in the helmet is also removable and washable.
The Instinct MIPS Helmet retails for $169 and can be purchased from any Bolle retailer. Amazon also has a great Bolle store on their website
The Bolle website is full of great products so I highly suggest using their goggle and helmet finder. If you are in the market for an integrated goggle and helmet setup I suggest checking out Bolle’s Backline line. I think the Backline Visor Premium in Shiny Gold and Cognac looks awesome!