Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Lighter than the equivalent unisex version, durable, fun colors, removable and washable foam padding
Cons: Sits too high on the forehead, hard to put headlamp in
Best Uses: Multi-pitch climbing, big walls, climbing anywhere there is loose rock
The Women's CAMP Armour is a snazzy, inexpensive, and tough climbing helmet, though it does not have any additional features for women other than decreased size and weight. The Petzl Elia, however, does have a women's specific feature, a special ponytail accommodating feature, which is pretty useful. If you are concerned about your helmet covering your forehead, this is not the model you should pick, you should go with a more full-coverage helmet such as the Elia, Petzl Elios, or something similar. However, if you are a female with a very small head, this helmet could be ideal for you. If I already owned a helmet, I would not consider buying this one as an upgrade, but if I was new in the market for a helmet, this would be a great and long lasting option.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
The Women's Camp Armour does not have any different features in addition to the regular Camp Armour. The only differences are the size and the color options. However, buying a smaller, more appropriately sized helmet has its benefits, because the women's version is a full 30 grams lighter than the unisex version. Since women are typically smaller in build, wherever a female can save weight she should, because it will help her move faster and stronger. Have you ever worn a helmet that is too heavy? It amplifies belayer's neck by ten and it becomes hard to even hold your head up at the end of the day. If I had a choice, I would go for the lightest version I could so that I would be more inclined to wear my helmet when heading out on a long day.
The Camp helmets come in bright colors and the lady version is no exception. It comes in bright lime green and a powder blue. I find accessories like this to be fun in bold colors, which could be a big factor when purchasing.
The sizing of this helmet seems a bit off to me. The normal Camp Armour is sized to fit heads between 54-63 cm, and the slightly smaller women's version is supposed to work on heads between 53-61cm (a bigger range than the Elia, which is 52-58 cm.) However, my head is 55.8 cm (right in the middle,) and this helmet felt perched on the top of my head, not covering enough of my forehead. That being said, it was still a very comfortable helmet and did not slide around on my head at all while climbing. Some people may like the different fit of this helmet, which would feel more ventilated, but personally I would feel safer with a helmet that offered more coverage. Maybe that means going for the unisex version of this helmet instead of the smaller women's helmet, or going for the Elia which does cover my forehead. If you are a woman with a particularly small head, this might be the right model for you.
The clips for the headlamp are also really tight and finicky, so it is rather tricky getting it on. The tighter clips might make it impossible for the headlamp to fall off, but initially it is slightly frustrating.
This is a great all around helmet, just like the Elia. I would wear either one in any situation requiring one, such as multi-pitch climbing, ice climbing, and climbing anywhere there is potential for rock fall.
The Women's Camp Armour costs the same amount as the regular Camp Armour, so if you are in the market for a helmet, it does not cost you anything to go for the women's specific version over the regular unisex version. This helmet is slightly less expensive than the Elia, so if you are on a budget, but need a helmet, this would be a viable option.
— McKenzie Long
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: September 26, 2011
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