Tested & Reviewed: The Forest Evo's Innovative Details

Tested & Reviewed: The Forest Evo's Innovative Details

Outdoor Prolink, the site where industry pros shop, recently tested the Forest Evo and found this new helmet's numerous innovative details—from the fit and Coolmax liner to the sunglasses retention system—help it stand out in a crowded field of mountain bike lids. Here's their Proview.

By Quinn Keating, Outdoor Prolink Gear Reviewer

Mountain bike helmets are pretty great these days, with most offering the protection of MIPS, a highly adjustable fit, adequate ventilation, and style and color choices to suit just about any taste. And so it’s become a game of details, which is exactly where the Julbo Forest Evo sets itself apart from the herd.

I tested the Julbo Forest Evo in two very different environments; the lush maple jungles of Vermont and the arid Western alpine zones of Summit County, Colorado. Previous to this offering, I’d be running a variety of helmets from Sweet Protection, Fox and Smith. My rides consist of everything from after-work rips to all-day epics, and just like you, I have needs. 

1) I like my helmets to fit and ventilate really well.

2) I like to store my sunglasses on my helmet while climbing (especially in Vermont, where sweat and fogging are way more prevalent than out West).

 3) Vanity: yes. I like my helmet to look reasonably good.

Fit & Comfort

The Fidlock magnetic chin strap works as advertised, offering a secure clasp and super easy release.

The Boa-style retention system works as it should, with zero issues. It’s mounted on a three-position vertical slider to accommodate a variety of head shapes. I tried them all: One fit really well, the others didn’t. And that’s exactly why those three options are there.

The Coolmax pads and 19 vents also lend a hand in the Forest Evo’s fantastic fit, providing a nice skin feel at the touch points and allowing plenty of airflow.

#color_white / black

Look & Style

The Forest Evo’s form factor is consistent with its competition, with stylish lines, a multi-panel construction and plenty of colors to choose from. It’s worth noting that Julbo has designed this helmet with sunglasses in mind, as noted by the forehead area being slightly elevated between the temples to reduce unwanted sunglass interference.

You know that incredibly annoying tendency for the forehead lip of the helmet to contact and push on the top edge of your sunnies? Not a factor here. And, I’ll discuss it more below, but the hero of this helmet design is the sunglass management sleeves or, as Julbo calls them, the Dual Eyewear Storage System.

Features & Tech

Julbo’s sunglass storage system is among the best I’ve used, so long as you’re running glasses with straight arms. The rubberized sleeves used to achieve their unique offering could be galvanizing to the style critics out there, but their efficacy far outweighs any fashion issues in my book. You’ve got the option to carry sunglasses forward or rearward with the same system. My preference was forward, paired with the visor in its lowered position, as it provided the most bulletproof sunglass carrying solution I’ve used to date. I’d rotate the visor up, pop the glasses into the sleeves, lower the visor and essentially lock my glasses into place. 

Speaking of the visor, it’s got two positions to choose from. Basically a standard unobstructive visor height and a “get the hell out of the way” height. I rode, nearly exclusively, with the visor in its lower position, only lifting it to load sunglasses into the storage sleeves and then lowering it again to lock them into place. 

Weight & Packability

I don’t weigh my bike helmets but the Forest Evo felt on par with the competition. And if you’re into weighing your bike helmets, this likely isn’t the kind of helmet you’re after in the first place. 

Function & Performance

To reiterate, the mountain bike helmet market is thoroughly saturated with great offerings. So when I say the helmet worked well, what’s that really mean? Sure, it fit great and is ventilated as much as a bike helmet can be. And so not taking into consideration the small details that truly set this helmet apart, sure, it works like a bike helmet should. But zooming in on those small details—the Fidlock magnetic chin strap, the brilliant sunglass storage solution, and the refined Boa assisted fit—the Forest Evo starts to carve out its own lane.

Durability & Construction

Durability seems in line with what you’d expect at this price point. I didn’t crash in it, drop it, or really test its durability beyond several plane flights, countless miles in the backseat of my truck and, obviously, a lot of riding. Other than a scratch or two, it’s essentially as it was on day one. I’ve had zero issues with premature or unexpected wear.


I came away quite impressed with Forest Evo’s earthbound (or at least competitive) price point, particularly when compared to their sunglass offerings. And for a modest variation in the shell construction and without the Fidlock chin buckle, you can buy the non-Evo version of the Forest for even less, which would be my suggestion to most folks. You still get MIPS protection, the sunglass storage sleeves, 19 vents, and customizable fit, making the standard Forest a massively compelling helmet.

One Gripe

I could have done without the included soft fabric storage bag and, in its place, I'd love to see a second set of Coolmax liner pads as some companies offer. I find this to be a huge perk, especially as you enter your second or third season with a helmet.

Final Word

Julbo’s entry into the mountain bike helmet market is thoughtfully done and very well executed. While they’re not reinventing the wheel with the Forest Evo, they are separating themselves from the herd with a few details I’m confident you’ll love.

Shop Forest Evo

#color_white / black

White / Black



#color_green / black

Green / Black

#color_black / blue

Black / Blue

#color_white / black

Meet the Reviewer

Quinn Keating calls the Green Mountains of northern Vermont home and spends over 250 days a year on his skis and mountain bike. Having worked various jobs in the ski industry starting back in 2001, doing everything from selling bagels at the base of the tram in Jackson to directing the ski patrol at his local hill in Vermont, he’s seen his share of trends come and go. He now balances his outdoor pursuits with a career as a middle school teacher, father, and husband. Like any self-respecting Vermonter, he likes maple syrup and IPAs.