Your motorcycle helmet is meant for more than just protection, but should also be an extension of your personality. Just like you spend time customizing your bike, you want to put some effort into painting your motorcycle helmet. We review how to paint a motorcycle helmet and the best practices when customizing your head protection.
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Regulations Regarding Helmet Use & Helmet Modifications
You might be asking - can I paint a motorcycle helmet? However, what you really need to know is - is it legal to paint a motorcycle helmet? The laws regarding painting and customizing a motorcycle helmet vary by location, just like what states require motorcycle helmets in the first place. It’s always best to do your own research before you make any modifications to your bike or helmet.
Two Methods of Painting Motorcycle Helmets
Before choosing each of these methods, you should check with the manufacturer about what’s acceptable.
Using Spray Paint
Depending on the type of helmet you have, you might be able to do a quick job with the help of spray paint or a paint gun. This job will likely cost you more money and require more supplies, but you won't need to spend a lot of time completing the look. However, if you plan to do a lot of detail work, it might be challenging to get the appearance you want with a spray.
Using Acrylic Paint & Paintbrushes
Can you paint a motorcycle helmet with a paintbrush? Yes, but it requires a delicate touch and some attention to detail. The supplies won’t cost a lot, as long as you can use acrylic paint on your helmet. Before you get started, you will want to pick your design and determine how you will get it on the helmet. You can do several coats, but drying between the coats is critical.
Things You’ll Need
As you look at how to custom paint a motorcycle helmet, you might find that these supplies help you get the job done.
How to Prep a Motorcycle Helmet for Painting
You don’t want paint on every part of the helmet, especially if it has a camera or Bluetooth. The first step to learning how to prep a motorcycle helmet for painting is to remove all the parts that won’t be painted, such as the visor on your full-face helmet.
With some painter’s tape, you can easily mark off the areas that you don’t want to be painted. Cover everything that should remain as it is, or it might be stained by the paint.
You must use sandpaper to help the paint adhere better to the helmet. Use wet sandpaper for the best results and get busy. If you skip this step, the paint might initially stick, but it will wear off easier and probably won’t have the seamless appearance you are looking for.
You must remove all the sandpaper dust and dirt from the helmet before moving forward. Use a clean rag to prepare the surface for your paint.
Painting Helmet with Spray Paint
Cover any part of the helmet you don’t want to be sprayed. Place your motorcycle helmet on a piece of newspaper and use spray paint to create your design. You can creatively use painter’s tape to block off sections of the helmet. You can also use stencils to create a unique design. Wait until the paint is completely dry to remove the tape.
Painting Helmet With Acrylic Paints & Paintbrushes
While painting a motorcycle helmet with spray paint is the easiest and fastest method, you might want a more customized appearance that only a paintbrush can perform. You will need to carefully draw the design on your helmet with some paint. Allow this paint to dry before finishing the creation in full. If you do multiple layers of paint, you will want to wait for each to dry before adding another.
Unmasking & Reassembling the Motorcycle Helmet
It’s best to wait until the entire helmet is dry before starting the unmasking and reassembling process. Carefully remove the tape and watch for any signs that the paint might still be wet. As you put all the gear back on your helmet, refer back to the owner’s manual if you are unsure what to do next.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
What is the best way to apply multiple, different colors to a helmet?
Can you spray paint a motorcycle helmet different colors? Yes, but it will take some time. Mark off the area with the first color and spray that. Then, mark off the other sections for additional color. You might need to wait for each to dry before moving forward, depending on the design you choose.
Does painting a helmet weaken it?
The painting itself doesn’t weaken the helmet, but sanding it might. As you sand the helmet, you might break through the surface of the fiberglass or plastic, reducing its effectiveness.
Can you put stickers on motorcycle helmets?
While there is no law stopping you from applying stickers to your helmet, some adhesives can break down the helmet material, thereby weakening the structure.
How to paint a motorcycle helmet flat black?
You would follow the same procedure as painting your helmet any color but use a flat black option. Along with following the how to spray paint a motorcycle helmet instructions, you will also want to use a clear coat that isn’t glossy to keep the same appearance.
How much does it cost to paint a motorcycle helmet?
The cost depends on the method chosen. If you want to know how to paint a motorcycle helmet with spray paint, you will need to spend more on the cans of paint or paint sprayer unless you already have these products on hand. Purchasing a paintbrush and some acrylic paints are far cheaper but require more time to complete.
Now that we’ve looked at the multiple ways to paint a motorcycle helmet, it’s time to create your unique design. Get creative with your design and pick something that helps you stand out on the road.