My ears were so cold, they were hurting…

This morning’s ride hurt…it was about 40 degrees and my ears were aching from the cold brisk air….I don’t like putting on beanies under my helmet because I get schwetty and its too bulky. I was thinking of asking Randy to sew me up some custom made beanie that is thin enough to fit under my helmet, yet thick enough to keep my ears warm.

What do you use for your ears?


  1. Moe

    I use and love Pearl Izumi’s Therma Fleece headband (

  2. Lance

    I use a simple but effective Balaclava(looks like a ninja mask). I keep my hair very short so the Balaclava really helps keep my ears, head, chin, cheeks and neck warm. Riding with this plus glasses almost covers my entire face. I normally just slip the bottom portion down to just below my bottom lip so I can spit if I need to. I love it!

  3. Bates

    It depends on temps. In the 40’s and upper 30’s I wear an old Patagonia ski cap. In the low 30’s and down I wear a balaclava. I crack out the ski goggles in the teens. It looks goofy, but the eyeballs really sting without them.

  4. Wyo Evan

    I use earbags. They look super dorky, but in the forties they’re perfect because they keep your ears warm without overheating the rest of your head. And if your ears get too hot you can take them off without taking off your helmet. I live in Laramie and use them all winter, switching from my Giro Pneumo to my BMX helmet when it gets much below 20F.

  5. Joel

    Do-rag pulled over the tops and that’s about it. I guess the bald head (think Kojak) keeps the blood flow high enough because unless it’s REALLY cold (<30) my ears don’t bother me.

  6. Commuter Murali

    I also use earbags. They are SO convenient. If I start getting warm, I just take them off and slip them into a pocket while I am still riding.

    I have done some long, fast descents, and my helmet straps conveniently keep them in place.

    I wear earbud headphones underneath them with no comfort issues.

  7. Max

    I use a UnderArmor beanie used for sweat wicking, it takes the edge off the cold. If it is extra “Ugly-Cold” (Ugly-Cold is when you don’t care how ugly the things are that you are wearing, as long as they keep you warm) I wear a wind-blocking fleece beanie from llbean, the twisty thing on the back of my helmet accommodates both easily.

  8. Max
  9. Ghost Rider

    I have a fleece earflapped beanie from Performance Bike (what can I say, it was on sale!)…a bit warm sometimes, but my ears stay toasty.

    I refer to it as my “birth control hat”…because who would have sex with a guy wearing such a ridiculous hat?!?

  10. Noah

    fleece headband, although much colder than 40 degrees and I reach for the balaclava. Call me a wimp if you like machine screw laden ghetto-studded tire tracks across your face. 😛

  11. Marrock

    Handmade and you can’t really beat the price.

  12. Henry

    I use a fleece earband when it’s cold enough here in Los Angeles. I have also started to use a Buff in the “cap” configuration, which tend to be big enough to act as a light weight beanie. It’s great because you can just pull it up higher to expose your ear when it gets warmer.

  13. big black shed

    I use a Buff under my helmet. And a polar tech Buff around my neck.

    Try here for info:

    It was 24f here in the UK this morning and I was toastie warm. The only thing I need is a pair of glasses to stop the tears from the eyes.

  14. mkom

    This nordic ski hat is the best. It takes up very little room under your helmet and never seems to get too hot.

  15. Gunnar

    40°! That’s a warm spell. Anything under freezing and I mount these puppies on my helmet straps.

    My wife knitted them for me, and they work awesome.

    Anything below 10 and I add a military surplus head cover, similar to a balaklava, and a custom knitted neck gaiter ( ). The neck gaiter can be pulled up to cover the mouth and nose when it’s really cold. (It was 1° above this morning on the ride to work) The knit is loose enough to breathe heavely with no ristriction. I tried bandanas, full face balaklava’s, and other things, but everything either doesn’t offer enough protection, or restricts breathing. But the neck gaiter works the best.

    I don’t know what to do about eyelashes freezing together when you blink though.

  16. Jon Karak

    I use a thin hat from EMS. The website calls it the, “EMS Techwick Hat Liner.” $15. I use them in combination with the gloves.

  17. mwild

    I wear a lightweight mountain hardwear beanie under my helmet. It was about 30F and my ears were very comfortable.

  18. db

    Thin Cannondale ear band to about 30 degrees F, and below that I switch to a Helly Hanson (Lifa) helmet liner + a neck gaiter. I need to get goggles with a clear lens for mornings. If anyone has recommendations….

  19. Quinn

    Ears cold at 40 degrees? really? don’t come to Reno!

    When my ears get cold, I have a face mask that covers the bottom 2/3 of my ears.

  20. Lance

    Db, check out jensonusa, they have some quality goggles for under $20:

  21. Andrew

    I rode year ’round in Boston and now NYC. My fav piece of cold weather gear by far is a superlightwieght polypro balaclava. When they get wet they still keep the chill off so they make great rain gear too. Don’t do anything heavier like neoprene or fleece unless its cold enough for frostbite to be a concern. Even then I still use the light balaclava.

  22. Matthew

    YES! I have the answer for you on my website. I am a 13 year old teen entrepreneur and I sell the most awesome bandless ear muffs that really work and they are really comfortable and no messed up hair. Check it out at

    You’re going to be glad you did. Why suffer?
    These EarMitts are like a pair of warm hands covering your cold ears!

  23. Ken

    I’m glad you asked this question. Years ago I bought these inexpensive ear covers that velcro-wrap around your helmet straps. Got them at PerformanceBike I think, then never saw them again. I liked them so much that I had my mom sew some extra pairs for me.

    It’s just a piece of fleece and some sewn-on velcro strips, just enough for keeping the wind off your ears without making you look dorky. And these stay on your helmet so you don’t lose them. I don’t like extra gear wrapped around my head, or underneath my helmet, because it’s not usually very cold where I live. You could probably make a bunch of these for your friends, if you just know someone with a sewing machine. This page I made shows it all:

  24. Jamie Fellrath

    I wear a balaclava from Pearl Izumi and, if it’s REALLY cold and windy, I throw a pair of 180s earmuffs over that. Haven’t had a cold ear day yet here in Ohio.

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