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Publication date: 27.03.2024

SALOMON launch the first fully recyclable ski and snowboard helmet

The Brigade INDEX ski and snowboard helmet can be fully recycled at the end of its life and represents a totally new approach to helmet construction, using 96% of materials from a single plastic family.

To create the Brigade INDEX helmet, the R&D team at Salomon developed technical solutions that enabled them to make a helmet made from a single material family (polyolefins) without compromising on safety, performance and comfort. The use of a single material family allows the Brigade INDEX helmet to be ground down and recycled at the end of its life without any disassembly. With an estimated 2.5 million winter sports helmets being deposited into landfills each year, the Brigade INDEX represents a breakthrough in the product category. 

The overall environmental impact of the Brigade INDEX helmet is reduced by 19 percent compared to a "traditional" Brigade helmet, mostly due to the use of polypropylene, which requires less energy than other thermoplastics to produce, and due to the recycling process at the end of the helmet's life.

Research & Development Specialist for Salomon's Protective team, Nans Girodengo, said “for the inner core, we also discovered that EPP, the expanded version of polypropylene, did a better job of absorbing micro-impacts and reforming back to its original shape after an impact than expanded polystyrene". Energy absorption is just one of the properties of ARPRO EPP. ARPRO is a 3D engineering material that delivers structural strength at very low weight, is lightweight and 100% recyclable.

To recycle the Brigade INDEX helmet, consumers need to ship it free of charge to a collection centre by scanning the QR code on the helmet. The helmets will then be sent to Paprec in Verdun, a French specialist in waste management, recycling and revalorisation of materials, to be ground down and recycled. Polyolefins are a flexible and resistant family of thermoplastics that can be recycled into plastic-based items including flowerpots, car bumpers or terrace studs at the end of its life. There is no need for any disassembly. Paprec will filter out any other material to make sure that the recycled material is pure polypropylene.

"This is a long-term project," explains Benjamin Raffort, Product Line Manager for Salomon's Protective team. "We know that we need to educate our consumers on the process of sending the product back instead of just disposing of it, but we know that exploring these topics will create a virtuous circle, with more people eager to take the extra steps that will allow more products to be recycled."

The Brigade INDEX helmet is available now in Salomon stores, on Salomon.com, and at selected retailer partners for a MSRP of 130€.