When it comes to creating a fictional character you love for cosplay reasons, you need to make sure every element is perfect. Since many characters popular in the cosplay inverse wear helmets, you don’t want to leave this detail out of your look. Whether for a Power Ranger helmet or a Lord of the Rings helmet, there are a lot of different styles you can create on your own. Let’s take a closer look at how to make a cosplay helmet to help you bring the character to life.
You will need certain materials to create your cosplay helmet. The basic items you will need include items such as a hot glue gun, ruler for accurate and even pieces, foam adhesive or a hot glue gun, a blade to cut the pieces, and any paint you will need to make the helmet look authentic to the character.
You will also need the right foam. Certain foams are better suited to this task than others. For example, floor foam or gym rubber is a great choice, as is polystyrene foam and cross-linked polyethylene. These foams are the right mix of durable enough to hold their shape and lightweight enough to wear with comfort. Cross-linked polyethylene foam also comes in a range of colors which can save you a step in painting if there is a particular color you need for your chosen character.
You will also need a pattern to create the helmet. There are helmet designs you can find online, or you can create one of your own with tracing paper. The key is to make sure the pattern will give you the right outcome for your character as well as help you create the right dimensions for the size of your head.
The first step in how to make a cosplay helmet is to create your pattern as mentioned above. The pattern is the most important part of creating a cosplay helmet so make sure you take your time with this step and consider the dimensions, details, and measurements. You can either print one out online or make your own with tracing paper, but you still need to create a mock-up of the design before you cut your foam. Many people choose to create a mock-up the pattern by tracing the pattern on aluminum foil and testing it on your head to see if dimensions are right. After you make any necessary adjustments to the get the sizing right, you would then create a secondary mock-up, transfer the pattern to card stock paper to create a sturdier mockup, and finalize any changes you need to make in terms of measurements or fitting the pieces together. The key is to add what is called registration marks to the pattern so you can easily line up the pieces during the gluing step.
Once you have finalized the best measurements and made marks on your pattern for connecting the pieces, you can transfer the pattern to the foam. Using your tracing paper where you marked and measured based on your 3D card stock design, you can start transferring the outlines of the pieces to the foam using a marker. Make sure you also mark the registration points on the foam outline to make it easier to assemble them later on.
The next step is to cut the foam by following the outline you carted with the marker and pattern. When doing this step, make sure you use a sharp blade such as a box cutter or an Exact-o knife and follow the marked outline carefully. You also want to make sure you have something sturdy such as a cutting board underneath the foam so you don’t cut through the surface of the table or other work surfaces. A good tip is to keep the blade at a 90-degree angle when cutting all the parts to make sure the pieces match instead of creating a sharp crease.
Next up is to paint the pieces to give an authentic look to your character. For this step, you need to work in a well-ventilated area to avoid any issues if working with spray paint. Make sure you lay the pieces on cardboard or another surface you are okay with getting paint on. Once you have finished painting your pieces, you need to let them dry completely before moving on to the next step.
The next step in how to make a cosplay helmet is to glue the foam pieces together. Depending on the foam you are using, you may want to heat it up with a heat gun if you have one on hand because it will make the foam a little easier to work with if you are using a foam adhesive spray. You can also use the hot glue gun which will add adhesive power and a little heat to make thing stick better. Make sure you carefully line up your registration marks when gluing the pieces to ensure the right fit in the end result. From there, you want to let the glue dry so the pieces can adhere nicely.
The next and final step is to test the fit and make adjustments and add any finishing touches. If you find the fit is too big, you can glue additional pieces inside the helmet to give it a snug fit. You can also adjust a too tight fit by sanding down some foam to expand the helmet but be careful not to make it so thin that the foam becomes flimsy. You can also sand down any areas where the foam is rough, or the edges of the pieces didn’t line up properly. This is also an ideal time to add any carvings or embellishments to complete the look of the helmet for the character. Once the details are finished, you will have a helmet ready to complete your outfit as cosplay of your favorite character!