BP Oil Spill Clean-Up Costume




Introduction: BP Oil Spill Clean-Up Costume

About: I'm a full stack web developer focusing on security and privacy.

If anything could be more frustrating about 2010, i would have to pick the BP oil spill. But with every great tragedy there is a space to poke fun at those responsible.

This costume will make heads turn and you're sure to get strange looks from all your party

If you want to really help the gulf spill effort, please donate to some of the organizations helping clean up efforts

Thanks to the Yes Men, for inspiration.

Special thanks to culturespy and carleyy

Step 1: Supplies

For this costume you will need the following:

1 White jumpsuit
1 White hard hat
1 pair of black gloves
1 pair of goggles
1 dust mask
1 fake bird
1 can of black paint
Inkjet sticker paper with BP logos

Step 2: Officialize the Helmet

The first step is to "Officialize" the helmet using the sticker. Cut the sticker out nicely and apply to the helmet and PRESTO! You look official!

Check the 4th photo for the sticker template.

Step 3: Officialize the Jumpsuit

Now with a larger sticker, make the jumpsuit look official. I applied the sticker and then used white glue on the back to make it stick even better.

I used another small sticker for the front chest and a large sticker for the back.

If your jumpsuit is actual fabric, you could use an iron on.

Step 4: Recreate an Ecological Disaster

Now it's time to add the oil spill.

First i filled the jumpsuit with plastic bags and hung it up outside. I then preceeded to throw paint all over it. I also did this to the helmet and the fake bird i got.

Let it dry for about 24 hours afterwards.

Step 5: Walk Around and Freak People Out

Next step is to put it on and freak people out.

We got a few stares, and the seagulls ran away from me. They must have recognized the logo.

Hope you enjoyed this instructable and HAPPY HALLOWEEN!



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    69 Discussions

    Just wanted to say thanks for this idea! My girlfriend and I pulled it off in about 1.5 hours with everything from Lowe's and my color laser printer.

    We used spray glue and cotton balls to simulate tar balls stuck to the helmet. You can paint over the cotton easily. Spread it around a little and tack it in place with the glue and you have less spherical attachments!

    1 reply

    Also; we chose gloss paint (would have gone with high gloss if it was cheap) to simulate shiny oil.


    I did this. people loved it. just a tip, don't use poster paint, it peels off of the tyvek and gets ground into things.

    Thanks for the great costume idea. I got the suit for free from a friend who trains people for emergency response. Hardhat was a free, outdated discard from a local company. I used Tremclad paint. It wasn't warm enough for the paint to dry outside. It ended up tacky, which made the costume very realistic -- but hazardous. Suggest you start this costume in a place and time where you can dry the paint properly! The squeaky duck was a big hit.


    It's hanging up to dry now, but will be done soon. (Left to dry all night, now has good airflow with open doors.) It turned out really nicely! I also have a respirator mask, gloves, and a couple fake birds. I decided to forgo the helmet because I couldn't find any that were decently-priced. I'll wear a hair net instead, probably.


    I really love this idea, in Ireland here and got all the materials for under €10!

    Disposable coverall with hood - €6, went without hard hat.
    Latex gloves - 80c
    Goggles - €2, would have been cheaper if I'd borrowed my brothers :P
    Dust mask - 75c
    Printed logo - Free at college

    Made a oil mixture too from stuff in my kitchen :P

    I know this is last minute, but has anyone run into any type of problems based on the type of paint they used? I have some old black oil based paint and just want to make sure I'll be okay with that before I rush out and start on this AWESOME costume.

    1 reply

    I'm not using paint myself, using a mix of glycerin, cocoa powder, bovril (molasses are equally good) and some sugar to make it stickier, works out much cheaper!

    Hey there! This seems like an awesome idea. I'm trying to figure out a last minute costume. I live in Canada. Anyone know where I can purchase a white jumpsuit?

    I know I'll probably get blitzed, hated, etc., etc., but I hate it when the comments for something fun like this devolve into a political shouting match. We have enough of those. Instead of hopping onto a soapbox (unless it's an instructable about buidling a soapbox, in which case such actions would seem very appropriate), we should focus on the issue at hand...making effing awesome stuff.

    This is an awesome costume! I love it and I'm going to make one and wear it and love it and be happy and have a great time and take all the credit for it like it was my own original idea...just kidding :)

    3 replies

    Just a quick update: my brother-in-law and I made a couple of these costumes for Dallas pubcrawl and we used black paint on the suit and black caulking on the helmets. The caulking (notice I'm trying to stay away from saying "black caulk") makes a nice gloopy, dripping effect on the helmet (*that's what she said*) and it peels off the plastic hardhat easily so you still have a functional, relatively clean helmet after the fact.

    P.s. -- sorry for all the inappropriate, immature interjections into my comment... >:-)

    I understand the comments devolving into politics because the costume is pretty political. That said I totally agree.

    Epic! Where can I find a white jumpsuit?

    BTW, Can someone please delete the useless political comments. This area is for commenting on a project and asking questions or giving advice.

    Go to youtube to argue politics!!!!

    Fabulous and topical costume...and relatively inexpensive too. I would only offer to add that other than the color tweak, instead of carrying duck decoys a couple of novelty store rubber chickens with appropriate petroleum camo would lend some authenticity. If you want to go for a more literal look, how about a spritz of benzine and hydrocarbons before you head out.

    The impromptu diatribe by the European nationalists is interesting. Let's all focus on being more divisive and keep labeling each other while the puppet masters keep taking our money and having their way with the world. Yeah, that's productive.

    As for the references to history, well how about this. B.P. was originally founded by the guy who found oil in Iran. The Iranians wanted more money for their natural resources once the staggering wealth that it represented was made evident by the evil entrepreneur that had developed it. Eventually they just took it all. What later became known as B.P. didn't like this so they went to the world court and got bounced.

    Like a good Allie Eisenhower did what America has been doing since Monroe's time, kinda modeled after our European forebears, and decided to install a more cooperative government. So the CIA assassinates a sovereign nation's leader and gets a share of the Iranian/BP oil for the corporations that run America. When Europe did it we called it colonialism and empire building. Now we like to call it Imperialist hegemony. Catchy huh?

    So the Iranians decided that they were tired of the whole western rule by Shah proxy and kicked every body out. Let us not leave out that B.P. was also controlled by the English government for a while until Maggie started her privatization moves to pay some bills (apparently the socialists ran out of other peoples money to spend). B.P. was/is also a big player in the American oil company consolidation moves that have been taking place since the trust busters created all of the little Standard Oils. We are after all talking about the third or fourth largest company in the world, and they didn't get that big sellin' fish and chips in Lecester Square.

    B.P. is a giant corporation that has by extension millions of shareholders. These people (union pension plans, banks and governments) all want something of a ROI, and most don't really care how that is derived as long as it doesn't reveal itself in living color all over the nightly news. People still want there gas as cheap as possible, investors still want their profits and CEO's still want their bonus'.
    All of the finger pointing and chop busting aside, the spill was horrific and the true impact won't be known for decades to come. A cursory review of the Prince William Sound spill and aftermath should help to clarify that point. Ranking the size (which BTW is still beyond any real quantification) is quite ridiculous...it was big and it was bad for everyone.

    As far as clean-up efforts and the American government's reticence to foreign aid, well don't forget that we do have a huge yet fragile ego, and more importantly, we have labor unions that will not be ignored. Even in this economy, catastrophe cleanup work is still work, and our unions want the representation that they have bought and paid for, so you can hardly fault Mr. Obama for not acting like Chile's President, he's got a shrinking support base that he has to pander to.

    Whether momma earth can continue to absorb and compensate for our mistakes and greed remains to be seen, but common sense seems to illustrate that we don't want to make any more of a habit of this sort of thing. Taking a poke with a topical costume such as this should help to remind everyone in our ADD / 15 second video clip world that it happened, and that we all have a little petroleum goo on our hands where blame is concerned.

    1 reply

    Talk about beating a dead horse.

    When we start hearing people admit how badly Obama failed on this and how beholden he is to the oil industry, THEN we can keep bringing this up.