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I love riding my bike, but my purple plastic helmet is a definite impediment to fashion. It messes up my hair, and what am I supposed to do if I decide to wear red one day? I might — gasp — not wear a helmet at all. Thankfully, the Swedes have now invented this thing. At last, cyclists everywhere can protect their heads and their sense of style.

It’s a collar with an airbag that inflates around your head. It actually works, as evidenced by the incredible video below, in which a car driving at 12 MPH crashes into a bike dummy.

The Hövding, which means “Chieftain” in Swedish, is the brainchild of Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin, who said they wanted to develop a form of protection that would increase helmet use.

Video: This Ridiculous Inflatable European Bike Helmet Could Save Your Life — and Your Hairdo

This Guy Is Wearing A Bike Helmet

“The protection would include preserving the sense of freedom and not ruin your hairstyle,” Alstin says on the website David Report.

Hövding involves a black waterproof collar surrounding an the airbag and other components. The collar attaches to a removable, washable shell that currently comes in black and a red paisley design, and the designers say it will soon come in more shades — “With the help of the shell, you can vary the look of your chiefs from day to day, and to match different clothes,” the Web site says.

The Hövding will go on sale next spring, just in time for bike weather. You can pre-order them here.

[Hövding via Treehugger]