How to Restore Motorcycle Helmets

Updated February 21, 2017

Restoring that old motorcycle helmet you love will give it back some semblance of its former glory. Although it may not be possible to remove all blemishes, motorcycle helmets can easily be spruced up. It is important to replace your helmet if it is dented, cracked or has major damage as this compromises the protective abilities of the helmet. Restore your helmet, if it only has superficial damage, by washing it, touching up scratches and replacing the worn visor, lining and straps.

Contact the manufacturer of the helmet to order replacement items (visor, lining and straps) that are appropriate for your particular helmet. Replace them according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Remove any stickers with nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol. Saturate the stickers and allow the alcohol to soak in, then rub them off with a towel or rag.

Wash your helmet with a towel soaked with soapy water to remove any dirt and grime. Use a mild dish washing detergent. A helmet cleaning foam can also be used.

Touch up scratches with automotive touch-up paint. Automotive touch-up paints come in a wide range of colours, and more than likely you can find colours that match those on your helmet. Use a small brush to carefully paint over scratches.

Polish the helmet with rubbing compound. Rubbing compound will give the helmet a shine and will help to fill and hide scratches. Buff the helmet with the rubbing compound using a microfiber cloth, working the surface in circular motions. Apply light to medium pressure and do not over-polish the helmet as this can cause clouding on the surface.

Things You'll Need

  • Replacement visor, lining and straps
  • Nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol
  • Mild dish washing soap
  • Soft towels
  • Automotive touch-up paint
  • Small, round paint brush
  • Rubbing compound
  • Microfiber cloth


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About the Author

Mason Howard is an artist and writer in Minneapolis. Howard's work has been published in the "Creative Quarterly Journal of Art & Design" and "New American Paintings." He has also written for art exhibition catalogs and publications. Howard's recent writing includes covering popular culture, home improvement, cooking, health and fitness. He received his Master of Fine Arts from the University of Minnesota.