What to Wear to Paintball? Ultimate Checklist & Guide (2024)

Think of playing paintball and the first two things coming to your mind will be the paint and the pain.

So these are the factors you need to consider while choosing a dress for your visit to a paintball field, only after the weather conditions, for sure.

And here comes the best part: if it is your first visit to a paintball field for which you are getting ready, let me tell you, you do not need to buy a single item!

Yes, you do need to take care of a few things but as far as buying something is concerned, you do not have to. Keep those plans for later when you find yourself deep in the game. There is a lot of stuff that you can buy if you have your mind to it.

And in this article, we will be discussing everything in detail. No matter if you are a first-timer or a regular player, we are going to help you in making your choices easier.

But first of all, let us go through a checklist of your paintball gear.

Things to Wear When Paintballing -The Checklist

  1. Eye or Face Mask
  2. Head Cover
  3. Shirt/ Hoodies
  4. Pants
  5. Chest Cover or Vest
  6. Gloves
  7. Padding
  8. Shoes

These are the things that can help you enjoy your game of paintball. Some of these are a must, like you are not allowed to enter a paintball field without an eye mask even if you wear glasses.. Some other stuff depends on your preferences and the level of your game.

What To Wear When Paintballing

We will discuss each item below, its importance, and its availability on paintball fields.

1. Eye or Face Mask

No eye mask, no paintball.

Why is it Important? 

According to some experts, an eye mask is the most important thing that you need if you want to join a game of paintball, and the reasons are pretty evident.

A standard paintball gun shoots with a velocity of 275 to 300 feet per second (FPS). You can imagine what it may inflict if a paintball hits your eye. It can cause severe injury if you are lucky enough, or, if not so, can cause permanent damage to your sight.

This is the reason, regardless of which country you live in, field authorities give particular attention to the usage of an eye mask for all the players.

You cannot say enough to emphasize the importance of an eye mask. No matter if you want to sneeze in the middle of the game, or if your sight is blocked because of a foggy mask, you must not take the mask off or you will be given the penalty according to the field rules.

Mask To Wear When Playing Paintball

Where to Get?

If it is your first time, you can rent an eye mask on the field, and, in most cases, it comes included in the basic rental packages.

Although it is not necessary to buy your own mask if you are going to play your first ever game of paintball, it is always worth it to buy one if you intend to play regularly. It is hygienically better to put on your own mask for you never know how many other players have sweated and sneezed in a rental one. That sounds gross even to think about.

You can buy your very own eye mask anywhere from $15 to $200 and it is going to be worth every penny.

2. Head Cover

You are good only as long as your head is good. Take Good Care!


Head covers are not as important as eye masks, but they do have their own uses. As the name says, their purpose is to protect your head from paintballs. And you can use anything as a head cover as long as it serves the purpose.


Again, if it is your first time going to a paintball field, you can cleave your head with literally anything that can protect it from the sting of hitting paintballs.

People use headbands that cover the forehead mainly. It also helps with absorbing the sweat that may otherwise flow down to your eyes.

In winter, you can make use of woolen caps that will not only keep you protected from the paintballs but also from the cold.

Or you can simply use any cap that you feel comfortable with.

Paintball Helmet

But, if you are a regular player and you plan to invest in a proper paintball helmet, the market is full of various options. Paintball helmets are made of hard plastic that covers not only your head and eyes but also goes down to cover the back of your head, which is hard to be covered with a normal cap.

These helmets come in various colors and sizes. So, it is always a good idea to try a few of them at a rental store and check which size suits you best.

3. Shirt

The older, the better.


Well… A shirt is a piece of clothing that is important no matter whether you are going for paintballing or a sermon. You gotta wear that unless, of course, you have opted for a wrestling sport. But here we are talking about paintball so let us just stick to the topic.

Like all the other gear, your shirt is going to work as a shield against paintballs that might be hitting you from all sides. 

What to Choose?

Paintballs can hurt. So, it is better to choose a shirt that gives the most coverage. It is tempting to wear short sleeves in summer but you might regret that later. Any t-shirt will do but choose a shirt that has long sleeves.

Players often wear hoodies to the field and that is a wise decision. Hoodies are often made of thick fabric that gives you good protection. You can also cover your head with one and you do not need to worry about losing it while you are running in the fields.

As mentioned before, an old shirt is the best choice for a paintball field. No matter if it is a bachelor’s party you are invited to, wear a shirt that you do not care much about. Otherwise, all you will care is about your dress and missing all the fun.

Clothes To Wear For Paintball

Color Choices

There are no specific colors that you need to wear to a paintball field but it is wise to choose darker shades to avoid stains.

You do not need to worry about paintball because almost all paintball stains wash out. (You can read in detail on the topic here.) But it is not only the paint which is going to make your clothes dirty. You will be covered in mud and grass at the end of the day and that will testify that you had a great time!

So, to avoid that nagging from your mom about ruining your white t-shirt, it is good to wear a darker shade that does not show a lot of stains. 

Chest Protectors/ Vests

Chest protectors or paintball vests are available on almost all rental fields. These vests do not only give you protection from getting hurt, but they also make your game easy by providing all those pockets where you can fit your magazines, paintballs, or just any other thing.

These vests are not often included in the basic rental packages, which means you will have to pay a few extra bucks if you want to rent one. But these are not expensive at all, you can get yours easily at below $50.

Or, if you are new to the game, you can add layers of shirts that will work just the same. Especially if it is winter, you can wear multiple shirts and they will cover you not only from the paintballs but also from the cold.

Pro Tip: Do not forget that running around the fields can make you feel warmer than you wish to. Wear the shirts that are easy to remove when you feel like it.


You may have seen many players wearing camouflage shirts and they are absolutely fine if you want to play Woodsball regularly. These colors give you time to hide and move without being seen instantly. 

But if you want to play speedball, more bright and vibrant colors are trending here. Speedball is not about strategy, it is more about speed. And players like to wear brighter tones to add colors to an already bright scenario.

Padded Shirts

If you are deep in paintball and you think it is time to invest in a shirt that is specifically made for paintballing, you can also buy a padded shirt. These shirts come in various colors.

They are quite baggy and fully padded from the inside. They give you extra coverage with padded arms, chest, and also from the back so you do not have to worry about getting hurt and enjoy the game to its fullest.

4. Pants

Choose Easy, Play Crazy!

What is Better?

The rules and considerations we discussed about shirts apply here too.

Pants To Wear For Paintball

Many players prefer to visit paintball fields in their old jeans and it works for them perfectly well. The jeans are comfortable, they are a bit thick, you can wash them as roughly as you will and they still stay good for months, or even years, and that is all you need.

Let us put all those points in a bullet list.

  • Choose an old pair of pants.
  • The darker the colors the better.
  • Choose a pair that is not tight so you can run and move in it easily.
  • Do not even think about wearing shorts because you find them the easiest of all. Your uncovered legs will be cursing you the whole time if you did. 
  • A thicker pair will give you extra protection. 
  • Wear something that goes down to your ankles so your body is not exposed. 

Padded Pants

Just like padded shirts, padded pants are also available in the market that give you extra protection on your thighs, shins, and torso. You can choose from a variety of colors and sizes.

Pro Tip: Try to wear loose fitting clothes. These clothes not only reduce the pain, but they also reduce the impact. Remember, paintballs break on impact. If a ball hits you but does not break, you are not eliminated from the game. That means these clothes are going to give you more chances to stay in the fields.

5. Gloves

The back of your hand is a sensitive part of your body and you can easily get shot on it while you are playing paintball. To avoid that pain, a pair of gloves can help you a long way. 

But it is not any pair of gloves that is going to work here. You need your hands to shoot too. 

If you do not want to invest in a pair of paintball gloves then you can make use of a thin pair that allows you to fit your finger on the trigger and shoot properly.  Or, if you have an old pair, cut down half of its fingers in length and you are good to go. 

Gloves To Wear For Paintball

Paintball Gloves

Paintball gloves are made considering their usage. These gloves do not cover your fingers completely, but they give you good protection on the back of your hand.

They are thick from the outside, but the inner side is made soft and thin so you can move your hands easily.

6. Padding

If you do not want to buy a padded shirt or pants, you also have the choice of buying free paddings. No, no one gives them free of cost, you can just wear them freely, wherever you like.

You can buy paddings for your thighs, shins, forearms, chest, back, or neck.

7. Shoes

You need to run, it will be fun.

What to Choose?

When you are in a paintball field, you will be running around in the mud, grass, dirt, even snow, and all sorts of places depending on the field you are visiting. Wear something that is compatible with all the natural scenarios.

  • Choose a pair that is comfortable and allows you to run without inflicting any kind of pain. 
  • Put on something that you can easily wash later, like a pair of joggers, or sneakers. 
  • Wear the pair that gives you the most coverage. A high ankle pair is the best choice. 

A Sincere Advice

After you have planned everything about your clothing, here is the last piece of advice. Take an extra dress with you when you are leaving for the field. 

If you had a good time at the field, it goes without saying that you will be covered in mud and paint at the end of the day. 

Not many people like to travel back to their homes in that shape. And even if you do not care about appearances like the youth today, you may get that car seat dirty and your dad is not gonna like that. 

Change into a clean shirt and pants before you leave the field and thank me later.

What To Wear To Paintball

Final Words

Paintballing is as lavish a sport as you want to make it. Apart from the basics, like a gun, and an eye mask, everything you add is your choice. 

If you are reading this article before your first game, trust me, you do not need to buy a thing to enjoy your first day at the fields. Later on, if you find yourself more interested, you can buy the rest. These things can assist you in your journey of paintball and make it more fun.

Just do not rush to buy all that stuff beforehand only to find out that paintball is not your thing. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What should I wear to a paintball field?

There is a variety of paintball gear to choose from. But you can go in any dark colored, old dress that gives good coverage on your first to a paintball field, and the rest you will be provided on the fields.  First, you need to evaluate your interest and see which type of games you like. Only after that, you should invest in good clothing. 

Does paintball paint wash out?

Paintball paint is water soluble and washes out pretty easily. Just try to wash it within 24 hours or there is a risk of it becoming permanent after drying out. 

Does paintball hurt?

Paintball does hurt but how you will be affected by it is different from person to person. Most players call it a sting that does not hurt very much when you are deep in the game. You can also reduce the pain by wearing clothes that provide good coverage. Adding layers of clothes and padding gives a lot of protection so you can enjoy your games to the fullest.

You can also try low impact paintball.

Do I need to buy a dress for paintball?

You do not need to wear or buy a specific dress for playing paintball. A shirt with long sleeves and old jeans works perfectly. Once you find yourself turning into a paintball geek, you can surely invest in a dress specifically made for paintballing and you can choose it for yourself from a massive variety of stores.

About The Author

David Wilson Owner at paintballguider.com
David Wilson paintball training classes certificate from PTI
David Wilson Certificate of Participation in Paintball Best Club

David Wilson - Your Trusted Paintball Expert

David Wilson is your dedicated paintball guru with over a decade of experience in the thrilling world of paintball. As a seasoned player, tournament enthusiast, and certified Paintball Safe Game Instructor, he's committed to sharing expert insights, unbiased reviews, and valuable strategies to elevate your paintball game.

With a passion for safety and a mission to empower paintballers of all levels, David brings authority and experience to every article, ensuring you make informed choices and enjoy a secure and thrilling paintball experience. Join him on the journey to enhance your skills and embrace the camaraderie of the paintball community. Read More About David!

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