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How to Make a Hard Hat for a Costume

A hard hat works in many costumes.
hard hat image by jovica antoski from Fotolia.com

Hard hats can be a necessary part of many different costumes for men and women, including construction worker, firefighter or baseball player. However, a industrial hard hat may be outside of your budget and there may not be time to waste waiting for delivery from an online vendor. Save time and money by making your own hard hat.

Things You'll Need:

  • Scissors
  • Spray Paint
  • Bicycle Helmet
  • Packing Tape
  • Poster Board
A skateboard helmet is the best base for a hard hat.
teen in helmet image by Alexey Klementiev from Fotolia.com

Select a helmet you already have or purchase one from a thrift store. There are many different shapes available in helmets, so it is important to choose one as similar to a hard hat as possible. Many skateboard helmets have an almost perfectly round shape, which makes the best base for a hard hat. However, almost any helmet you may have available will do.

Choose a spray paint color for your hard hat that matches the rest of your costume.

Spray paint your helmet in a well-ventilated area with two to three thin, even coats of paint. To match the color of your hard hat exactly, spray your poster board as well.

Firefighters' helmets have a visor all the way around the hat.
zak image by Earl Robbins from Fotolia.com

Use the poster board to create a "brim" for your hard hat. Firefighters' hats have a brim all the way around the outside of the hat, but most hard hats have only a visor on the front. Trace the outside edge of your helmet, wherever you plan to attach the brim, onto the poster board. For example, if you plan to attach a visor only, trace only the front portion of the helmet onto the poster board. Outline the rest of the brim on the poster board and cut it out.

Use packing tape to attach the brim of your hat to the helmet. Tape both the bottom and top of the poster board to the helmet to ensure that is stays erect.

Cut the chin straps off of your hard hat if you don't plan to use it again as a helmet. If you will continue to use this as a helmet after your costume party, simply tape the chin straps to the inside of the helmet. If you do plan to use this helmet after your event, the brim can be removed, but the tape is likely to rip off some of the spray paint.


Use a small paintbrush, acrylic paint and stencils to add decorations to your helmet that suit the theme of your costume.


  • If you remove the straps on the helmet, it can no longer be used as a safety device.
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