I'm not going to pretend this topic is any headier (that's a pun, see?) than it is, but look, there are a certain issues in life that are maybe not Middle Eastern peace, but are nevertheless deserving of straightforward discussion. Helmet hair is one of them.

Yesterday, XOVain printed an extremely long but ultimately useless guide on combating the demon Hell(met) Hair. The author included many adorable photos of herself, including one in which she is splayed upon the hood of her boyfriend's Cadillac "because she does what she wants," and while we're very proud of her for securing for herself a Cadillac-owning boyfriend, her advice on helmet hair is really only useful if you have the same short, springy hair that she does. Flip it over and "froof it"? Are you fucking drunk, lady? Do you know what my hair would look like if I pushed it under my helmet, and then "froofed" it? Do you remember Ms. Berthalini, your 4th grade life science teacher who smelled like vermouth? That. That is what I would look like, and am not alone. Herewith, a guide for those who didn't spring from the womb with the coif of Molly Ringwald:

Long Hair The de facto solution to long hair in a bike helmet is the French braid. The purpose of the French braid (versus a standard braid) is that the latter exposes the top of your head to potential extreme and debilitating flatness, which will look particularly incongruous next to the flowing tresses you liberate from the braided portion once your ride has reached its end. Braids, unlike ponytails, also fit snugly under a helmet, and you won't be left with the all-horrifying dent left from the band. Sweat is no problem, because it will only serve to make your hair wavier, and therefore, beachier. Sweat as a substitute for ocean water is not terribly romantic, but before you wrinkle your nose, think about how much human waste drifts around in the ocean. You're welcome.

Bangs: Depending on your bangs, smashing them flat under a bike helmet can actually benefit their appearance. Think about Uma Thurman's Mia Wallace in Pulp Fiction. These may be the greatest bangs to have ever appeared in film, and the flatter and denser yours are, the closer you are to achieving the celluloid perfection seen here. If you've pedaled your bike all the way back to the 90s and have wispy bangs, douse them with dry shampoo and smush at the roots, but do not blame me when you look like Stephanie Tanner.

Thin Hair: I do not possess thin hair, and was therefore forced to seek outside guidance on this subject. Melissa Zola is a stylist at the Greenpoint salon Hair. [Full disclosure: She cuts mine, but has yet to do anything to send me home in tears, which makes her a wizard in my eyes.] Zola is also a cyclist, and she recommends sea salt spray for any ill not curable by your own overactive sweat glands. "If it's matted down, the sea salt spray adds texture," she said. (She likes d:fi Beach Bum texturizing spray.) Just applying and scrunch—your sad, dead hair will experience an immediate renaissance.

Thick Hair: All the scrunching in the world is not going to do squat for thick hair. Your best bet is dry shampoo, which the closest thing Vain Man has come to inventing magic in a can. (Try KMS California Hair Play Makeover Spray or Klorane Extra Gentle Dry Shampoo, Zola says.) Apply liberally, and be sure to brush it out thoroughly, or else you will appear to onlookers as though you spray-painted the top of your head white, a look that will fly in Williamsburg but probably nowhere else.

Short Hair: You're in luck, as short hair is the one style discussed in the aforementioned article. Here, I'll save you several minutes and potential retina-singeing, if your eyes are particularly susceptible to U-Twee rays: 1. "Froof" hair with product prior to applying the helmet. 2. Secure hair in clump atop head; clap helmet onto head. 3. Remove helmet. 4. Froof once more, apply dry shampoo.

If none of these work for you, it's time to drop a few hundred bucks on one of these bad boys.