Safety is your number one concern when playing baseball and it's paramount that the batting helmet used be well made and meet the safety standard to protect the batter's head from an impact. Once you have chosen a batting helmet, you may want to customize it and that's easier than you think.
A batting helmet, like most helmets; is good for one major impact only. After that the helmet could contain microscopic cracking that will interfere in the ability of the helmet to protect the batter's head from an injury from a flying baseball or other risk faced during play. If you're going to custom paint your batting helmet, just remember it won't be a forever kind of thing as far as wearing it.
Many amateur teams paint their own matching batting helmets to get something uniquely "them" and also something that shows unity as a team. There are painted batting helmets that have flaming skulls, baseballs with growling faces and even depictions of famous players in action painted directly on the helmet. And those are just helmets to be actually worn and used, other helmets that are used in collections are sometimes painted very elaborately with logos and other insignia to show devotion for a favorite baseball team.
When you choose to paint a batting helmet, avoid sign paints which will adhere to almost any surface, but most contain lead and you don't want that anywhere near your body. Instead use lead-free paints and after the paint is completely dry, give it a couple of coats of clear coat. The clear coat will lock in the paint job and keep it nearly nick free by protecting the paint.
Nine times out of ten it's best not to try to paint over a batting helmet that has already been painted and sealed with a clear coat finish. If you do manage to get to the paint to stick - it will probably peel off in chunks not long after you begin using the batting helmet as the clear coat has no "tooth" in other words, the paint needs a slightly roughed up surface to stick to, and it won't get that with a surface that has been clear coated.
How you want to apply the paint will be up to you. A finely bristled paint brush will do the job, or if you're good with an airbrush, you can get some amazing effects for the helmet through the use of different tips for the way the paint is sprayed. At most hobby stores you can purchase beginner air brushing kits that consist of a host, a sprayer (to apply the paint) and it's powered by an aerosol can. Attach the sprayer brush to the hose and the hose to the can and release the pressurized air and you'll be in the business of painting a batting helmet.
If you want to make an unusual gift for your favorite local team or you want to give someone a gift that is very unique, consider getting a batting helmet for the baseball/softball enthusiast on your gift list and make them a batting helmet that will be head and shoulders above the rest in uniqueness.
Rick Grantham is the owner of the site BooYah Village He has written numerous articles on sporting goods, sporting tips, and fan gear.cf baseball store