How to Paint a Football Helmet?

Want to refresh it a bit or make it custom? No problem! We will guide you through all the process!

Football helmet is one of the most important items the player is wearing when out on the field! It protects the player from traumas of the head and also, a helmet serves for recognizing the players of different teams – the same as the football uniform does.

But even though the color of your helmet must remain as it initially was, sometimes you realize that it would be nice to refresh it a bit! Frequent games, exposure to sun, wind, rain, and dirt do not contribute to the helmet’s long life and nice appearance! The same as scratches and scuffs don’t.

So naturally, everyone who plays football actively enough tends to wonder how they can paint their helmets and what should be done in order to do it successfully.

So today, we are going to tell you more about how to prep and paint a football helmet so that it both looks cool and serves you longer.

You will learn not only how to paint it correctly, but also how to get the helmet ready for the procedure. In addition, we will explain how to apply spray paint onto it, and whether this method differs somehow from other approaches. Finally, we will teach you how to remove paint from your helmet and how much money you should expect to pay in case you want your helmet to be painted professionally and custom.

How to Correctly Paint a Football Helmet?

You might want to paint your football helmet for many different reasons. For example, your old helmet is already so used and affected by years of wear and tear, that it looks far away from nice.

Or, let’s say, you bought a helmet that suits you with its characteristics needed for the game, but you don’t like the color and so you would like to repaint it into something else.

Finally, you might simply buy a used helmet and want to refresh it a bit so that it does not look like a past century relic.

No matter the reason, the next question that you stumble upon is how to paint a football helmet for field use. See, if you need to paint it for decorative purposes only and you are not planning to use the helmet later in the field, the two painting procedures will differ.

So, if you do need to refresh your helmet for playing in it, you need to follow several simple steps.

  1. Prepare the tools needed for painting
  2. Get the helmet ready for the paint application procedure (clean and scrap it, and sand your helmet)
  3. Cover its inside
  4. Add a guide coat
  5. Secure your helmet so that it is stable
  6. Apply the paint
  7. Polish the item

And now, let us tell you in detail what each of these steps implies. Like this, you will know for sure what and how to do to have a perfectly painted football helmet that will serve you longer.

How to Correctly Paint a Football Helmet (2)
Credits: RichVintage, via Canva.com

So first of all, get all the tools needed for the painting ready. Usually, to paint (or repaint) the helmet, you will need the following items:

  • Paint
  • Masking tape
  • Airbrush
  • Sandpaper
  • Clearcoat
  • Tack cloth

Once you have all of them ready, you can proceed to the next stage and complete the procedure step by step.

How to Correctly Paint a Football Helmet
Credits: Merilyn Nieves, via Canva.com

Clean the Helmet And Scrap It

Before you start painting your helmet, the first thing that must be done is to make sure that the surface is clean and ready for painting.

To prepare your football helmet, we recommend you start with scraping out any stickers of the surface and remove the sticker residue gum if there is any.

Once this is done, wash the helmet using a sponge and soapy water. This will help to remove stains and dirt that may have stuck on the surface. After you do this, allow the helmet to air dry or simply clean it out with a cloth before letting it air dry.

Clean the Helmet And Scrap It
Credits: Jupiterimages, via Canva.com

Related: How to Make Spray Paint Not Sticky?

Sand the Helmet

The next step is to sand the item. When sanding your helmet, always try to adhere to the highest level of safety which is why we recommend you use fine-grain sandpaper.

Since sanding a helmet is not like removing the previous layer of paint, there is no need to use harsh materials on it.

On the contrary, you need to avoid damaging the surface. Sanding is just meant to smoothen the surface and make it free from existing imperfections.

Also, in order to smooth the divets in the helmet, we would suggest you use a sanding block. And ensure to roughen the entire surface so that the paint can adhere firmly.

Clean the leftover dust using a tack cloth, and proceed to the next step.

Sand the Helmet
Credits: Kameleon007, via Canva.com

Cover the Helmet’s Inside

This is an essential step to take, especially if you don’t want any excess paint dripping into your helmet! For the inside of the helmet, you can stick it with a newspaper, for example.

As an option, you can also make use of a masking tape to cover up the surface that should not be painted. And when covering these areas, make sure that the tape or whatever cover you are using is attached firmly!

How to | Paint Your Helmet (DIY)How to | Paint Your Helmet (DIY)

Consider Adding a Guide Coat

This step is essential in order to figure out whether there are any areas that are not perfectly smoothened after the sanding procedure. After you apply a black coat, all the areas that still need smoothening will remain black.

In the smooth places, on the contrary, the black coating will reduce or disappear altogether.

Consider Adding a Guide Coat
Credits: dd72, via Canva.com

Place the Helmet

Before painting the helmet, ensure to place it so that you can see the coating thickness. The best way to place it is to do it on a stand to hang it. If you don’t have any of those, you can hang it on a tree (no jokes!), a candlestick holder, a wire hanger, or something of that sort.

When the helmet’s bottom is suspended from the ground, and none of the edges are in contact with anything, you are ready to paint.

Place the Helmet
Credits: majorosl, via Canva.com

Apply the Paint

Congrats, you have done all the previous preparations well, and now it is time to proceed to the major part of the process. So shall the painting begin!

When painting your helmet, always make sure to do it in a place with proper ventilation. It is mandatory, especially if you are not doing the painting outside. Also, use cardboard paper to make a fence around the helmet area. It will help you to avoid spraying paint on the wall.

When painting, hold the spray about eight to twelve inches from the helmet. And while applying the paint, do it in a short controlled burst.

Apply a light coat all over the helmet and allow it to dry. Here you should consider that waiting for the first coating to dry could take about fifteen to twenty minutes depending on the product, so give it enough time. Once it is dry, apply the second coating.

When the helmet is dry, inspect it from all sides. In case there are any places you do not like, you can apply a third coating and allow it to dry. After the final drying, you can then reapply the decals and inner paddings of the helmet.

Apply the Paint
Credits: Matt_Brown, via Canva.com

Polish It

You surely want your helmet to look glossy and smooth, right? And this can not be achieved without polishing it. For this purpose (and for the best results) we recommend using car polish.

Apply some product on a cloth and rub it over the helmet surface concentrating on one small area at a time. When the polish dries, you can buff the surface to give it a deep shine like what you have with a custom car paint finish.

For making the buffering process easy and satisfactory, attach the buffer to a drill to make.

So, now you know in detail how your football helmet should be painted. With this guide, you will easily refresh the item anytime you feel like it needs that.

Polish It
Credits: Kameleon007, via Canva.com

How to Remove Paint From a Football Helmet?

Painting your helmet is great and sometimes even fun, but what if you need to do a reverse procedure and take that paint off? For instance, if you have an old football helmet that is begging for renewal? Or if you accidentally dropped some paint onto it while doing your home painting project.

Of course, the majority of you might think of sanding at once. But let’s be honest: sanding the whole helmet is rather time-consuming, and also, this is quite a harmful procedure for the item itself. So are there any alternative options?

Well, instead of sanding and scraping your helmet (which may result in damaged surface), try out a Brake Cleaner! Just brush the product onto the helmet and let it sit and do its job for a maximum of one hour.

Don’t rub, don’t scratch. Just wait for sixty minutes and then wipe it off. Repeat the process if needed.

Yes, it is a rather slow working method, we agree, but on the other hand, it makes sure that you will not damage the surface of the helmet as other products might do.

How to Remove Paint From a Football Helmet
Credits: Kameleon007, via Canva.com

How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Football Helmet

If you want to refresh your old football helmet or you want to make it custom to stand out in the field not only thanks to your footballer skills, hiring a professional to have it painted is always a good idea!

However, once you have it in your mind, the very next thought is: how much would that cost for me to have my helmet painted by a professional?

Well, in general, painting a helmet with the help of a professional can cost you from forty to over a hundred dollars. The final price will depend on what paint was initially applied onto the item, how badly it is damaged for the moment of repainting, and how actively it has been used by you.

How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Football Helmet
Credits: koufax73, via Canva.com

Also, if you need to repaint the helmets for the whole football team, the price will be lower, somewhere between fifty and sixty dollars per helmet.

Well, now we have told you everything about how to properly paint a football helmet! Now you know what steps to take to do it correctly, and we even described in detail what each of these steps imples.

You also earned what tools and materials you might need, as well as the expected price you need to pay in case you decide to ask a professional to paint your helmet for you (or for the whole football team).

Frequently Asked Questions

⭐ How long does my football helmet have to dry after being painted before I can wear it?

If you spray paint it, wait for 24 hours or better a bit longer.

⭐ What is the best paint for applying on a football helmet?

Spray paint is the optimal choice

⭐ Do I need to apply any wax or lacquer on my helmet to protect the paint?

No, usually no wax is needed.

Written by Melinda Sherween
avatar
Melinda worked as an art consultant and Home Designer for eight years in total. As an art consultant, she was first employed in a local art gallery in San Francisco where she was responsible for picking the most suitable artwork for her clients depending on their goals and budget. At this job, Melinda showed herself as a confident specialist and a true art lover with exceptional taste and artistic sense. Melinda is a passionate author of Housekeeping Bay and we are really happy that she is our Expert.
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here.
PAINTING A SPEEDFLEX FOOTBALL HELMET A DIFFERENT COLORPAINTING A SPEEDFLEX FOOTBALL HELMET A DIFFERENT COLOR
13 Best Greige Paint Colors. Ultimate Guide
Paint color greige ultimate guide