Problem: One-way mirror mask (Vidocq)


New Member
Hey everyone!

I have a concept for an original costume that I want to make, which would involve a mask with potential complex curved geometry on the face (so not just flat planes, visible darts would probably ruin the effect) where the mask is essentially mirrored. I would love it if I could wear the mask, and see through it (like one-way mirrors, because my face is in the dark side, it should work like a bright reflector on the other, looking chrome, but affording visibility).

The closest analog I can come up with is in the movie 'Dark portals: The chronicles of Vidocq', as shown:


I think the easiest would be a standard aluminum/silver mirror finish, I've watched tutotials on HOW its done, but it seems to be chemical and toxic material heavy. I just don't know where to look, or how to start, so that's why I'm here! I'm wondering if anyone has any tips on how to achieve this, or at least companies they know in the U.S.A that maybe I could call or send it to and have them do it.

Thanks for any advice folks!


Sr Member
I wonder what he coating is that is used on mirrored sunglasses. Could it be a light vacuum metalizing coating over the clear plastic?


New Member
Thats what I'm wondering, I've seen the chroming process in a bunch of Daft Punk threads, which is also cool, but I don't know how that would work out if you... say.. made a clear Thomas Helm or something, and then did a similar process to get that super even and clean surface.

The closest I've found in my research in threads around here, and many youtube videos (mostly halo builds), is that you can use a mirrored spray from Home Depot, which gives me a lot of hope for a more industrial process like the chroming. (This is the publically available stuff

I plan on giving the home depot spray a try, but I've heard you have to spray it on the inside surface of things, which may put, say, a hand roto-cast helm out of reach of the perfection I'm looking for (could be totally wrong on that, I'm totally hoping for the best with such an easy solution :p), so thoughts on that from people that have used it would be most welcome, tips greatly received too.

My ideal solution would still be some kind of exterior application.

Thanks again all!
Last edited:

8 perf

Sr Member
If the curvature is not too deep, I wonder if you couldn't use the backside of one of those mylar party balloons and stretch it with a heat gun over your form.


Well-Known Member
I loved Vidocq. Somehow it seems to have slipped through the cracks in a lot of places. Poor marketing I guess.

With that said, my motorcycle full face helmet has a mirrored shield that looks very similar to what you want. I can tell you, it scratches easily as the coating is applied to the outside. I know it's not much technical information, maybe it will provide a new avenue to research.


Well-Known Member
C3-PO costumes do this type of thing all the time. Look up vacuum metallization. Hope it helps.


Well-Known Member
I've used this and it looks great.
Two wet coats is enough to make it so you can see out, but people can't see in. You spray the inside of the visor, so that it's a lot more glossy and even.

You can use anything clear, like a zip-lock bag or extra scraps from clear packaging, like a blister pack, to test it out and not ruin your visor. The amount of layers is personal preference, and how visibility you need.

It comes in a small spray can, but still is plenty to cover a helmet and you should be able to find it in your local Walmart's spray paint section. That's where I found mine. You can also just get it from Amazon. Good luck!


Sr Member
There is mirrored plastic that can be vac-formed. That would give you a perfect and durable mirrored finish. What I don't know is whether a half-mirrored version is available.


Master Member
There's also the GI Joe costume people you can check with. Cobra Commander has been a popular costume for a while, and his mask is basically just a rounded mirrored faceplate.

Please note I say GI Joe and not the cinematic abominations that have been recently released...



New Member
There is a mirror spray that can be bought at home depot.. i knew someone who cut red transparent lenses, applied the mirror effect for a NCR ranger helmet. I'm sure they have a yellow/gold/brown transparently plastic.. you can head it with a heat gun to mold the plastic for your shape, then apply the mirror spray.. it will still allow you to see through it.
I've been doing the same research for a dome helmet i'm trying to make. I ran across this in my search, maybe it can help you? Wasn't right for me because i need more of a full dome. But the shape looks similar to that ref pic you posted.

I'm subscribing to this thread - hopefully we can find a solution!

Just as an FYI to yourself & the original poster, when researching another project a while back I found this video of some kid wearing what I assume is the same type of mask you mentioned;

It wasn't what I was looking for either in the end but at least it confirmed for me what I would be getting more or less, unlike that terrible amazon stock photo!


New Member
Afternoon, not sure if you found what you were looking for but you might find the following useful.

Just do a search for "mirror tint film" on ebay and you'll find plenty sellers, the more % the tint means less light gets in so the light would not reflect of off your face ruining the desired mirror effect.

Hope this helped.


Well-Known Member
Afternoon, not sure if you found what you were looking for but you might find the following useful.

Just do a search for "mirror tint film" on ebay and you'll find plenty sellers, the more % the tint means less light gets in so the light would not reflect of off your face ruining the desired mirror effect.

Hope this helped.

Only problem with these is they don't stretch so it's almost impossible to get them to form to compound curved surfaces such as domes or face plates. If you've got a perfectly flat surface this would definitely be the answer!


New Member
Ive used the Rust-oleum spray before I could never get it to look quite right and isn't durable at all. I couldn't get it to stop chipping off with the most minimal of handling... if it was just a display piece maybe with enough tinkering that would be a good option.


New Member
TAMIYA and kyosho RC cars use a technique of clear plastic that is painted from the inside, this protects the paint work from stretches and scrapes etc, it also gives a nice reflective shine. What I was thinking, perhaps you could use this technique with one of the following mirror tint spray

Some Sunglasses even curved ones are reflective, I wonder what sort of spray they use.
This thread is more than 7 years old.

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

  1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
  2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
  5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
  6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  7. This thread is locked.