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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UFL chapter.

The bare head epidemic has plagued Gainesville; yeah, I said it. When you walk around campus all you can see, besides the multitude of construction, is students whizzing by, either on their skateboards, electric scooters, bikes or mopeds. But you know what you don’t see? Helmets. They are not wearing helmets. To add, I am quite sure that at least one person who is reading this article has fallen ill with the idea that your head does not need to be protected. I don’t want to lecture, but I’m going to go through a few facts just so I can really harp on the idea that those bully head coverings are indeed necessary and there shouldn’t even be a question on whether people wear it or not.

According to Alena Hoye, in a published study, helmets were shown to reduce traumatic brain injury by 53%. Fifty-three percent, that whopping number means helmets are statistically proven to prevent injury to occur to what is the single most important part of your body, your brain. In addition, accidents are common. I don’t even need to mention statistics on this part as most of us most likely know or have heard of someone who has either had an accident on a scooter or moped or been seriously injured while riding one. I, for one, coming into college, was very aware of the dangers of Gainesville roads, as one of my family friends was even hit while walking on the sidewalk. I personally have watched one of my sorority sisters get hit on her moped, had a mutual friend get hit by a car, scooting on the way to class and have seen the injuries to a friend who fell off their scooter (mere hours after I pleaded with her to protect herself). It is so undeniably common that it truly shocks me if it is not taken more seriously. The topic of electric scooters is another I am very passionate about as I see them as little death-rockets. I recount the tale of when I was walking to class and witnessed someone get mowed down by one on the sidewalk. However, that is a topic to be tabled.

I mean we are at one of the top universities in the nation. We are a brilliant student body, yet somehow a commonsensical thing like a protection for your head seems hard to comprehend. Or it’s that despite people knowing they should wear them, they don’t.

I raise a similar situation: most people use protection during sex, why? (You can argue this, but I have seen how fast the condoms at the gym go). It’s because we know about the risks that can come from STIs and even pregnancy, yet we risk death or permanent brain damage on the day to day.

Why do I care so much, you ask? Well maybe because my mother drilled it into me as a child, but also because I had an accident of my own: I was wearing a helmet, and it broke from the impact, and I still took a trip to the emergency room. The question that had haunted me in the days after which I was recovering was, “What could have happened had I not been wearing that protection.” I know, of course, people have their reasons: we all know they are ugly! But I reached out to a few of my peers to ask about their own experiences and reasons.

I got a wide variety, most of which I had expected but read down below and see if any of these resonate with you:

“I don’t wear mine because I usually am just scooting on campus, and I guess I don’t see those roads as that busy. Also don’t want helmet hair tbh”

“Honestly, I hate having to carry it around and because I don’t want it to get rained on, I can’t just leave it attached to my lock or something. Also, I wear claw clips or headphones and hate 2 undo my vibe that I have curated. But mostly just carrying it around sucks”

“My brother never gave me mine bc he told me I would get made fun of if I wore it. Also, being sweaty after and having helmet hair would be very annoying, and the Florida heat as well. Also, just kind of embarrassing”

“I wore it the first two times I scooted but since I’m only going short distances, it takes longer to take on and off the helmet than the actual scoot ride. it also squishes my face and ruins the scoot vibe.”

“Curly hair + helmet = recipe for disaster worse than your typical helmet head FLAT CURLS.”

“Honestly, I’ve gotten super comfortable around campus/Gainesville on my bike. I definitely shouldn’t be, but I also don’t want to have to carry it or wear it in general.”

“I’m #embarrassed.”

(Deep thanks to everyone for their responses)

I understand that helmets are embarrassing, trust me, I was always the only kid in the group wearing one, but they don’t have to be cool or sexy, they are just there to save your life. So, be it if you are embarrassed? All you have to be, is just alive.

Also, I’m pretty damn sure a cute helmet would pull together a fit. Also think of the stickers you could put on it!

Natasha is currently a freshman at the University of Florida majoring in business management and minoring in communications. She hopes to also explore linguistics in her studies as well. She is a new news writer for Her Campus and looks forward to spreading joy and knowledge to all readers. Her hobbies range from backpacking in the wilderness to painting. While she currently working toward a career consulting, she hopes to also explore life as a national forest park ranger. In her upcoming years at University, she hopes to study in Europe, gain friendships, and keep on learning and growing.