It goes without saying that most sentients are quite attached to the faces and most will do whatever they can to preserve their looks. Exposure, especially prolonged exposure to sufficiently low temperatures will send a body into survival mode, channeling blood to the core organs and sacrificing blood flow to the external organs and limbs as well as the face. This can lead to frostbite, which in severe cases can result in the loss of key features such as the nose and ears. Such outcomes can cause significant psychological scars, to say nothing of the physical ones, and any sane being will take precautions to prevent this from happening.
The Arctic Survival Helmet is an essential piece of gear for those sentients who work or otherwise spend time in sub-zero temperatures. Together with the Arctic Survival Suit, the survival helmet helps to insulate the wearer against the negative effects of freezing cold temperatures. While the suit’s main function is to provide thermal protection, the helmet has a couple of additional features, each of them key to an individual’s long-term survival in sub-zero environments. An Arctic Survival Helmet will include a housing for a miniature energy cell, which powers these key features. The first and most basic of these is enabling the wearer to see by defrosting the helmet’s visor. This will obviously help the wearer navigate without the need to constantly stop to defrost his helmet’s eyepieces. The next key feature is the provision of a small heating unit built into the helmet’s respirator. This warms the air coming into the mask and preserves the wearer’s lungs from the effects of breathing in extremely cold air. More advanced and expensive units will include integrated data displays and communications equipment to further ease the strain of surviving in an arctic environment.
Traditional arctic survival helmets were constructed using a frame over which was stitched an insulating animal fur, such as tauntaun or d’oemir bear. This fur provided physical protection from the cold. More modern helmets will substitute high-tech insulating material for the traditional furs, although some customers request that the modern materials be made to look like a facsimile of the traditional furs, purely for aesthetic reasons. The outer layer of covering is usually dyed in bright colours to facilitate rescue efforts in case of an accident. Military and some recreational suits, however, are coloured white to enhance their camouflage value against enemies or dangerous arctic predators.