Bike safety definitely isn’t one of the most exciting topics of discussion. But, it is definitely an important one. Staying safe while out on your bike is incredibly important. While you might feel completely in control and always do everything right, that won’t mean much if you can’t be seen by other riders and by drivers.
Wearing reflective gear and having lights on your bike is absolutely essential. But reflective clothing isn’t always particularly comfortable, and it definitely isn’t stylish. They also don’t always work that well. You will likely have been in a situation, whether driving or riding when you have come across someone whose reflective clothing only kicks in when you are right up next to them.
One of the best alternatives is reflective paint. You might think we’re a bit strange telling you to paint all over your clothes. But, this is a great way to be creative with your clothing while also staying safe. Here are the best ways to apply reflective paint and have fun with it too.
Painting patterns onto your clothing is one of the best ways to be creative with your reflective paint. You can paint your own pattern onto a piece of plain clothing. With this, it will almost be like using invisible ink. It will only be visible when light hits it directly.
If you have a particular coat that you love wearing, you can use reflective paint to make it a safety coat. Simply go over the pattern with the paint. That way, you won’t have to replace your favorite coat with an ugly reflective jacket. (This is also a great idea if you’re not particularly skilled in creating patterns yourself).
Writing words on your clothing is a good idea. But you will need to consider how big the lettering is. While it might be great to be constantly displaying a message that is important to you, it won’t be particularly effective if the lettering is small.
So it’s important to make sure you spread the words out and make the lettering large and bold. This will keep you safe and get your message across better.
3. Spray Your Helmet
Your clothing isn’t the only item that you can paint. You can also cover your helmet in reflective paint. Whilst most bike helmets already have a reflective strip or light on them, this isn’t always enough. This is especially true if you often find yourself cycling through poorly lit or rural areas.
Painting your helmet is the best way to say “I’M HERE!” to any traffic around you. When a light flashes onto a helmet covered in reflective paint, it will definitely make you visible.
4. Paint Your Bike
While painting your clothing might seem like the obvious option, painting your bike is a good idea too. You can just paint a few stripes onto the bars or spokes. Or you can go all out and be as creative as you like.
If your bike already has a pattern or a specific design, then you can cover this with the paint. Or, you can paint something completely different.
This is a great way to stay safe but also be creative with your bike. If you originally painted your bike yourself and had lots of ideas, this is a perfect way to use those other ideas. You can essentially paint your bike twice. And use all the different kinds of designs that you like.
5. Use Stencils
If you’re not particularly creative yourself, then you can always use stencils to guide the paint. Reflective paint is available both in a tin, so it can be painted on, and in a spray can. This means that you have complete control over what you paint and create.
But, if you don’t have the skills or just can’t think of anything, using a stencil will be a perfect alternative. You can just use tape to guide the paint if you don’t think you will be able to get sharp enough edges yourself.
You can also find stencils online. These can be for patterns that will wrap around your bike frame. Or they can be for words. Even a simple “caution” or something which signals that you are there will be enough.
Reflective paint has its pros and cons. While being creative with reflective paint can be fun, it’s important to consider the quality of the paint first. Not all reflective paint works well with headlights. So it’s important to check the reviews before buying.
But, once you have found a good one, then you can be as creative as you like!