What Helmets do NHL Players Wear?: The Safest Brands

If you are taking up the sport of hockey and want to know the most popular and safest helmet brands chosen by the professionals, here is the answer.

The three leading brands that produce certified NHL helmets are Bauer, Warrior, and CCM. According to the official NHL rulebook, all players and officials must wear a helmet that is approved by the league. Models worn in the NHL must be certified by the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) and CSA (Canadian Standards Association).

Here is a link to the NHL Rulebook 

The top players in the NHL and their helmet brand choices

Jared SpurgeonDMinnesota WildWarrior Covert PX2
Matthew TkachukLWCalgary FlamesBauer IMS 9.0
Taylor HallLWArizona CoyotesBauer Re-Akt
Jonathan HuberdeauLWFlorida PanthersCCM Vector V08
Auston MatthewsCToronto Maple LeafsCCM Tacks 910
Artemi PanariLWNew York RangersCCM Tacks 710
Elias PetterssonCVancouver CanucksBauer Re-Akt
Tyler SeguinCDallas StarsEaston E400
Roman JosiDNashville PredatorsCCM Tacks 910
Vladimir TarasenkoRWSt. Louis BluesCCM Fitlite 80
Carey PriceGMontreal CanadiensCCM
Cam AtkinsonRWColumbus Blue JacketsBauer 4500
Dominik KubalikLWChicago BlackhawksCCM Resistance
Carter HartGPhiladelphia FlyersCCM
Mark StoneRWVegas Golden KnightsWarrior Alpha One
Andrei SvechnikovRWCarolina HurricanesBauer Re-Akt
Jonathan ToewsCChicago BlackhawksBauer 4500
David PastrnakRWBoston BruinsBauer Re-Akt
Connor HellebuyckGWinnipeg JetsCCM
Nikita KucherovRWTampa Bay LightningBauer Re-Akt
Nathan MacKinnonCColorado AvalancheCCM Vector V08
Connor McDavidCEdmonton OilersCCM Vector V08
Alex OvechkinRWWashington CapitalsCCM Vector V08
Sidney CrosbyCPittsburgh PenguinsCCM Fitlite 80

Get to know the leading helmet brands

GearGeek has created a spectacular online resource that details all NHL hockey teams and each player’s equipment choices. Their online tables show that 392 players wear CCM, 324 wear Bauer, and 154 wear Warrior.

Check out the complete equipment database of the NHL by GeerGeek for more data.


CCM was founded over 121 years ago in Weston, Ontario, Canada, and got its name from its former initials, Canada Cycle & Motor Co. Ltd. Two companies were operating under the same trademark – one producing motorcycles and the other making the now-famous hockey gear. 

CCM has a chequered history. The original CCM went bankrupt in 1983, and in 1995 they filed for bankruptcy protection, having to sell off many of its assets. They re-emerged stronger in 1997, and the company acquired Sports Holdings, Inc, in 1998, and became the world’s top producer of hockey merchandise. Eventually, they were bought by Reebok and then Adidas in 2005. 

They created hockey gear under the Reebok brand until 2015 but started to phase it out to retain the legendary CCM identity. In 2017 they were sold for the final time to Birch Hill Equity Partners for $100 million. CCM is now one of the most popular and recognized brands in the sport with legendary NHL players like Carey Price, Sidney Crosby, Pavel Datsyuk, John Tavares, and Connor McDavid all wearing the CCM brand.


Nowadays, the family name, Bauer, is synonymous with the world of hockey. They first made shoes and were the first company to begin producing hockey skates in with a blade permanently attached to the boot.

In 1994, Bauer became part of Nike and was rebranded as Nike Bauer. However, Nike sold the company in 2008, and once again, the brand became known as Bauer.

In September 2008, Bauer announced the purchase of rival Mission-Itech. Mission and Itech gear were rebranded as Bauer beginning in 2009. In 2014 Bauer acquired the well-known baseball brand Easton, making them the world’s largest team sports equipment supplier.


Relatively speaking, Warrior is a youngster in the sport. Founded in 1992 by an ex lacrosse player, NewBalance eventually bought them in 2004. The following year they branched out into hockey gear and have been doing very well ever since. Warrior briefly moved into soccer but nowadays concentrates firmly on hockey. The Warrior arena is named after the company and is home to the Boston Pride, Boston’s professional women’s hockey team.

The most popular helmet models in the NHL

According to GearGeek.com, the three most popular helmet models in the NHL are:-

  1. CCM – VECTOR V08

Why do NHL players wear helmets?

Findings in the British Journal of Sports Medicine suggest that the face and head are the area’s most likely to suffer injuries in ice hockey. They also found that one out of every ten people diagnosed with a concussion unknowingly returned to play in the same game. 

There is no denying that hockey is an exceptionally tough and competitive sport. Teams and governing bodies involved in all kinds of contact sports have started to fund research programs and invest in equipment to eradicate traumatic brain injury and the number of concussions.

Check out this YouTube video from Warrior about how they are continually researching and developing ways to improve their helmets made for hockey.

The NFL is another particularly dangerous sport and if you would like to know more about the safest helmets in football then read my helpful article here – Know the safest NFL Helmet Brands: Riddell, Schutt, VICIS, Xenith

Why do professional hockey players wear these brands?

Three overarching reasons influence a hockey player’s choice of helmet.

  1. The most significant factor is the lucrative endorsement deals they have in place with the brands. 
  2. Secondly, they will choose a style of helmet that they find most comfortable. 
  3. Lastly, every helmet that is worn has to be certified by either the CSA or ASTM.

The following are the corresponding standards that hockey helmets must comply with.

  • ASTM F1045-07 Players helmet
  • ASTM F1587-12 Goaltenders helmet

Everyone must take safety seriously, and it is advisable for all who participate in the sport to wear a helmet to protect themselves. However, USA hockey has specific rules any player playing in a USA Hockey sanctioned event or league up to the age of 21 (Mites through Juniors)

Every player must wear a HECC certified helmet and a HECC certified facemask, or a HECC certified goaltender helmet and facemask while participating in that event or league. 

Who are The Hockey Equipment Certification Council (HECC)

In 1978 USA Hockey requested the implementation of an independent certification body to carry out testing and research on amateur hockey equipment, primarily head protection. Several organizations banded together to help form the HECC. Now they find themselves developing the criteria and procedures for certification while promoting certified products to all players.

In the US, the HECC website contains a list of all certified products that they have deemed safe for use in the sport. If a product does not appear on this list, it is not certified and cannot be used in any sanctioned event or league requiring HECC certified hockey equipment

Similarly, in Canada, the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) has a certified product list on their website. 

How do I identify a HECC certified helmet?

Any reputable retailer of sports equipment will sell HECC certified helmets and face protectors. There should be a clearly visible sticker with the HECC logo with an expiry date on the back of the helmet or the face protector. Remember to confirm with the official list on the HECC website to ensure that specific helmet models have been certified.

Do hockey helmets expire?

Yes, HECC certified helmets do have an expiry date. It is clearly printed on the sticker, as do hockey face protectors.  The HECC certification is good for 6 ½ years. However, just because your helmet has a sticker on it does not mean it is good to go. You should inspect your equipment before you use it, and if it is damaged, then you should replace it.

If this is your first visit to my blog, welcome and I hope you have enjoyed it. I discuss all aspects of owning or buying new helmets. From crash helmets to the humble hard hat, this blog has the answers. I talk about the best brands, safety ratings, value, and maintenance. Please, choose another article if you would like to know more.

My name is Matt, and I am a helmet sports enthusiast. I love climbing, motorcycling, kayaking, amongst other things. But no matter what sport you love, please stay safe.

Matt James

My name is Matt, I am a freelance writer and a helmet sports enthusiast. I love to talk about the latest news surrounding helmets. From safety to maintenance, I've got you covered. I also run my own holiday rental business.

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