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What Are Hard Hats Made Of? – Strongest Hard Hat Material

Writen by Joshua Clark

Fact checked by Daniel Rocha

what are hard hats made of

For some careers and situations, we protect ourselves by wearing protective clothing. Hard hats are essential for building workers, engineering technicians, roofers, and others.

We don’t want to be harmed by sunscreen, flying debris, electricity, or dangerous substances. So we’ll need a hard hat made of high-quality material properties that meet OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) standards.

If you want to learn more about different types of safe headwear, hearths, “What are hard hats made of?”.The materials used to build hard helmets have changed and evolved throughout time. Steel was the first hard helmet material utilized, followed by aluminum, fiberglass, thermoplastics, and high-density polyethylene. But there’s more about just an answer to your question is right below!

What Is a Hard Hat?


A hard hat is a type of helmet that is commonly worn at commercial or work locations to protect the head from damage caused by falling objects, collisions with other objects, dust, rain, and electric shocks. Tension bands inside the helmet influence the weight of the hat as well as the force of any colliding across the top of the head. Certain helmet shells incorporate a midline strengthening ridge to improve impact resistance.

Materials to Make a Hard Hat

The materials used to make hard helmets varied and improved throughout time. Steel was the first used material to make hard helmets, followed by aluminum, fiberglass, thermoplastics, and high-density polyethylene. They are also designed to be utilized for a variety of functions by including face shields, light visors, earmuffs, mirrors (for a wider field of view), electric lighting, radios, pagers, and cameras.

Different Types of Hard Hat

Workers who are familiar with hard hats may already be aware that this protective equipment must follow OSHA rules when used at work.

Next, let’s look at a few ANSI (American National Standards Institute) hat classifications for various levels of safety:

Types I and II

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Hard hats are classified into two types: Type 1 vs Type 2 hard hats. Type I hard hats are only designed to protect employees from things and keep blows from above that attack the top of a helmet.

Type 2 hard hat protection protects the wearer from horizontal blasts and artifacts. This includes views from the front, back, side, and top. Off-center permeation opposition and chin-length retainment are also tested for Type II hard hats. Types of hard hats are according to ANSI Z89.1.


Hard hats are also classified according to how well they defend against electric shocks.

  • Class E (Electrical) is a 20000-volt hard hat;
  • Class G (General) hard hats can hold up to 2,200 volts.
  • Class C (Conductive) hard hat classes provide no electrical shock safeguards.

Suspensions & Materials

Many hard hats are made from non-high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and have an adjustable suspension to allow integration. Suspensions are accessible with four, six, or eight load-bearing locations and can be made to fit with a variety of modifications.


Regarding issues in life, hard hats come in a variety of styles. Cap hard hats have a simple front brim that protects the face from the daylight and helps to keep the rain out of the eyes. Some hard hats can be made to wear backward in time, with the front brim covering the back of the neck. Filled styles have a lid that wraps all-around the whole cap, shading the face, back of the neck, and ears. A wide brim can also help to direct rain and snow away from the face and head.

Hard Hat Codes

The following are today’s hard hat color codes (the design’s color may vary across the globe):

  • White: A supervisor, manager, engineer, or supervisor is represented by this color.
  • Green: This color is usually worn by safety officers or inspectors, but it is also worn by new workers.
  • Heavy industrial technicians and general construction laborers wear yellow overalls.
  • Brown: Welders and other high-heat workers.
  • Orange is the primary color used by road workers.
  • Red: Red hats are worn by firefighters and other emergency personnel.
  • Grey: This color is designated for job site visitors.
  • Blue: Typically worn by electricians and carpenters, but also by technical advisors on occasion.
  • Pink: Favored by female employees; frequently issued to males who forget to pack their hard hats to work.

Sure, those who work on a building project may see hard hats in a variety of colors. In addition to wearing hard hats, building workers must consider ways to keep their work zones protected.

Still want to learn more about hard hat color and code? Check this guide now!

Hard Hat Care And Maintenance

  • The manufacturer normally recommends the maximum usage period of each type of work helmet (based on the inspection/quality evaluation findings of the registration/inspection agencies, determining quality). The maximum duration, however, is generally a little greater than 5 years.
  • The influence on the hat’s usage duration is also attributed to the hat’s quality and durability, impact or weather elements (sun, rain), and changing working circumstances in each working location (high temperature, hot sun, etc.).
  • As a result, to ensure safety during usage and the working process. To make suitable improvements, it is required to assess changes in qualities such as the quality or durability of the cone regularly (change new cones).
  • Other components that come into touch with perspiration on the skin, such as hat belts, hat cages, and straps, must be cleaned and sanitized regularly. Each of the above should be entirely renewed every year, rather than waiting until it breaks down.
  • Helmets should be stored in a cool, dry area, away from moisture and direct sunlight.
  • Although hard hat types, between type 1 hard hat vs type 2, you should choose which one is suitable for the job.

Q&A About Hard Hats


Which is nicer: a Full-brimmed or a Cap-style hard hat?

Hard hats with a full brim and a cap help workers avoid serious injuries caused by falling things on the job.

It may be helpful to try both a full brim and a cap hard hat if you are debating between the two. Workers can then decide on the type of hard hat that will allow them to perform a variety of tasks safely and comfortably while also protecting their heads from falling objects.

Is it possible to wear a Hard Hat backward?

Workers in confined spaces will have to wear their hard hats backward to help safeguard their heads. A hard hat, regardless of how it is worn, is intended to protect a worker’s head from falling objects. A hard hat can be worn forward or backward as long as it allows a worker to complete a variety of tasks safely.


What do you think? Whether you have different types of hard hats or different classes of hard hats, you should still be able to select a product that is appropriate for the work.

Working with protective hard hats enables us to perform confidently and safely. So it doesn’t upset you to learn more about this important piece of head protection equipment.

After reading this article on what are hard hats made of, you should be able to select the appropriate equipment for your present employment and implement proper maintenance and support procedures. Thank you for your time!

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