- If the beret comes with a liner, remove it by cutting it out of the beret.
- While dry, lightly shave the beret, using very light strokes, to achieve a smooth, felt-like appearance. Avoid cutting the
beret; use masking tape to remove the fuzz from the wool.
- Wet the beret with cold water, but hold the flash away from the water as much as possible. Wring out the beret until
- Fit the beret to your head and adjust the cord as necessary. Wait until the beret is dry before cutting the excess cord, in
case you have to readjust the fit after the beret is dry.
- Using both hands to secure the beret onto your head, form a dip behind the flash, pull the excess material to the right
side, and form a slight fold to right front of the beret.
- To achieve the fold to the right front, you may find you need to bend or trim the right side of the cardboard stiffener. Use
caution if trimming; trim no more than ½-inch.
- Wear the beret until it is almost dry, continuing to smooth the material over the crown of your head, the excess down to
the right, behind the flash, and to the right front.
- When the beret is about ¾ dry, you can remove it from your head and allow it to finish by air-drying; it will retain its shape.
- Attach insignia by pushing the prongs through the stiffener. Since the Army flash is already sewn on to the stiffener, the
thickness of the materials prevents use of the keepers on the back of the insignia. If enough of the prongs extend through
the material, you can bend the prongs back against the back of the stiffener. If not, exercise caution when putting the
beret on the head.
- Before attaching future flashes, attach insignia to the flash before it is sewn onto the beret; bend the prongs back
against the back of the flash, then have the flash sewn onto the beret stiffener.
Hazards typically associated with prepping the beret for wear:
- Dampening or soaking can cause shrinkage and could cause the dye to bleed into the flash. - Shaving wool pills could
cut the beret - Remember - “You break it, you buy it!” Soldiers issued replacement berets resulting from negligence must
reimburse the government.
How to wear the Army Black Beret >
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How to prepare the beret.
Note: the following procedures need not be followed if you can
achieve the proper fit of the beret. If you have difficulty achieving
the fit or form, it may help to follow these instructions below.
Remember, if you decide to follow the preparation procedures, it
is very important to avoid damaging the beret. Therefore, you
should seek the advice of soldiers who are experienced in
preparing the beret for wear.
Although variations in methods exist, listed below are some
general instructions that have proven successful for many soldiers
in preparing the beret for wear.