How To Clean and Wash Motorcycle Helmet (A Simple Guide)

A helmet is the most important part of a rider’s protective gear, and it’s a motorcyclist’s job to keep their helmet in good shape.

Just like your motorcycle, your helmet also requires some maintenance from time to time.

A motorcycle helmet is an expensive investment. You wouldn’t want something this precious and useful to get dirty and lose its effectiveness.

Cleaning a motorcycle helmet is easy. You only need a couple of things and a bit of time and effort.

In this article, you’ll learn why and how you should clean your motorcycle helmet and what are the Dos and Don’ts of maintaining a motorcycle helmet.

Why Do You Need to Clean a Helmet?

While you’re on your motorcycle, most of the time, you’ll be wearing your helmet.

It’s your helmet that deals with everything that the environment throws at you while riding, including the dust, dirt, debris, and dead bugs.

To keep it shiny and to make sure it does its job, you have to clean it once in a while.

It isn’t only the helmet’s outer shell that takes a beating against the forces of nature. It is the helmet’s interior as well.

The interior liners of the helmet absorb all the sweat and bacteria while also coming in contact with your skin and hair at all times.

Please read our article on How to Prevent Sweat on Motorcycle Helmet.

In short, a helmet has to be cleaned from inside out.

While cleaning a helmet will make it shine like a new one, it won’t fix its damage.

If you have an old helmet that has gone through the ravages of time, it is a good idea to get a new helmet altogether.

You can also check out our detailed helmet buying guide for more tips and other details regarding buying a motorcycle helmet.

Things You Need To Clean a Motorcycle Helmet:

There are a couple of things that you’ll need to make your helmet clean and shiny.

All of these things are usually available at home, but you can also get them from a ride to your nearest convenience store.

Microfiber rags:

You’ll need a microfiber cloth to start the cleaning process.

A microfiber towel is excellent for cleaning stuff, as you can clean the outer shell and the face shield with it.

Make sure the microfiber rag is clean before you start cleaning the helmet. A dirty rag can result in scratches on your helmet as you wipe if you’re not careful with it.


A toothbrush can easily reach anywhere your microfiber cloth has trouble reaching. It is an ideal tool for cleaning vents, screws, and other hard-to-reach spots.

Baby shampoo:

Any cleaning agent that is not petroleum-based can be used to clean a helmet.

Most people, including me, use a baby shampoo or a mild soap since most of them are made using gentle ingredients.

Avoid using a hand wash soapy water as most of them are petroleum-based.

Warm water:

Warm water is excellent for loosening up the dirt and dust particles on your helmet, so you can gently wipe them off later on.

Compressed air:

A quick blast from an air compressor can be extremely useful in cleaning the vents from all angles.

Make sure you don’t use an aerosol can with your air compressor, as that can reduce the health of your helmet in the long run.

Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning and Maintaining Helmets:

Before you start cleaning your helmet, make sure you remove all the accessories from it.

If your helmet’s liner and cheek pads are removable, it would be a good idea to remove and wash those.

Once you’ve got all your helmet’s interior out and all accessories removed, you can start the delicate cycle of cleaning a helmet.

Cleaning the visor:

The visor or face shield protects your face against everything the road throws at you.

Helmet visors are usually covered in some type of anti fog coating that helps to prevent visor fogging.

They also have coating that protects your eyes from the UV rays of the sun.

For that reason, it is generally a good idea to use warm water only to clean it. Soapy water can damage it or leave marks on it.

The best way to clean a helmet visor is to just gently wipe it with a wet microfiber cloth or a piece of soft cloth until all the dirt and dust is removed, and you have a clear visor.

Deep cleansing the inner lining and pads:

The removable liner and cheek pads should be deep cleaned once a couple of months if you’re a heavy sweater or use a lot of hair products.

If your helmet’s liner can not be removed, you can just dip the entire helmet in a bucket of soapy water and let it soak for at least 20 minutes before pulling it out.

You can then use a wet cloth to clean the rest of the helmet.

Once you’re done with that, wash it again under clean, warm water before leaving it to dry.

Removable liners and cheek pads are even easier to clean as you can just take them out and let them soak in soapy water while you clean the rest of the helmet’s outer shell properly.

After that, you can leave the wet helmet liner to dry under the sun or use a hair dryer to speed up the process.

Replacing the straps:

A helmet’s strap is designed to last for a long time.

If your strap is loose or damaged due to any reason, then you can easily replace it with a new one.

Wearing a helmet with a loose strap is extremely dangerous and can result in an accident.

Buffing and polishing:

You can wash the helmet’s exterior with a solution of baby shampoo and water with the help of a wet cloth, which will leave your helmet smelling great.

Gently massage the microfiber cloth all over the helmet’s surface to clean all the dirt and dust.

You can also use warm water to dislodge the dirt for easier cleaning.

Once you’ve got a clean helmet, you can polish it with car wax to give it that extra shine on the helmet’s finish.

However, do not polish motorcycle helmets using car wax if it comes with a matte finish as it might ruin it.

You can now attach all the accessories and put the inner liner back in the helmet.

Weekly cleaning:

Every week, even if you have more than one helmet, motorcycle riders should clean the inside of their helmets.

Internal liner and cheek pads can stay in good shape for a couple of months, but the helmet’s exterior gets dirty very quickly.

If your visor gets dirty, you can clean it using a microfiber rag and warm water regularly.

If you use the right materials for cleaning the helmet, it will stay in good shape for a long time.

If your helmet is quite old, and cleaning it isn’t enough to make it shine, then you can learn how to paint a motorcycle helmet to make sure it looks like a new one.

The Basic Dos and Don’ts of Helmet Care:


  • Store your helmet in a cool, dry place.
  • Make sure not to drop your helmet on the ground as it might reduce the protective capabilities of the helmet.
  • Motorcycle helmets are designed for one-time use. If your helmet is close to expiring or out of shape or it is time to get a new one.
  • Even if your old helmet looks like it can still work, you should never compromise your safety.
  • Carry the helmet from the chin strap, not the chin bar, as the dirt from your hands might affect the chin bar’s rubber.
  • Leave the visor open so the interior liner can also breathe fresh and dry out.


  • Use regular cleaning agents to clean the helmet, as the chemicals in those can damage the helmet.
  • Put your helmet anywhere close to petrol since it or its fumes can easily damage the helmet.
  • Over accessorize it. Mounting an action camera might seem all nice, but the adhesive can also damage the helmet.
  • Use your helmet after it has been in an accident or severe collision.


Cleaning your helmet is an easy and rewarding task.

It also increases the life of your helmet and makes it look new.

You do have to keep a few things in mind as the cleaning process is a delicate one, and even some small mistakes can affect the helmet’s ability to protect you in case of a collision or accident.

If we were able to help you out, you should also pay a visit to our guide on the different types of motorcycle helmets. It will help you make a better decision about your next helmet purchase.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the best way to clean a motorcycle helmet?

Most helmets can easily be washed with the help of baby shampoo and water solution, along with a microfiber cloth. You have to soak the cloth in the solution and wipe the helmet’s outer shell with it.

What can I use to clean my helmet?

You can use any cleaning product that is not petroleum-based and won’t damage the helmet. Most people use baby shampoos or mild soaps to wash their helmets.

Can I wash a motorcycle helmet?

You can wash a motorcycle helmet at home by following a few easy steps shown in the section above.

How do you clean the inside of a motorcycle helmet?

If your helmet has removable liners and cheek pads, you can take those out and dip them in a solution of water and baby shampoo for at least 20-30 minutes. After that, take the liners out, clean them with a cloth, and wash them again before leaving them under the sun to dry.

Can I use Windex on my motorcycle helmet?

It is recommended that you use warm water or baby shampoo instead of Windex for cleaning your helmets. Windex can damage the helmet’s material, which will affect the helmet’s ability to protect you and keep you safe.

Can we wash a helmet with water?

Warm water and a baby shampoo solution are ideal for cleaning a helmet. But, you can also use just warm water to dislodge all the grime and dirt on your helmet.

Can I use alcohol to clean my helmet visor?

Alcohol has trouble while dislodging the dirt, grime, and debris. However, if there are no tough stains on the helmet, alcohol can do the job of making it even cleaner.

Can you use glasses cleaner on the motorcycle helmet visor?

It is recommended that you use a dedicated visor cleaner to clean the helmet visor. Glasses cleaner like Windex can ruin the visor in the long run due to the chemicals in those.

Can you wax a motorcycle helmet?

If your helmet has a matte finish, then don’t wax it. However, a regular gloss helmet can be waxed, making it easier for you to remove dust and grime from the helmet’s surface in the future.

How do you clean a used motorcycle helmet?

Cleaning a used motorcycle helmet is quite similar to cleaning a new helmet. All you have to do is dip it into a solution of soapy water and let it stay there for about 20 minutes. After that, take it out and wash it with clean water.

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