Personalized challenge coins are a special approach to fostering a sense of belonging and organizational pride. They can also be used to celebrate special events and honor accomplishments. There are many aspects to consider when designing your challenge coin, such as the type of artwork you want, how big or small you want it to be and what color you envision.


In modern times, challenge coins are used by military and law enforcement units to inspire the sense of brotherhood that is often found in these groups. They can also be used in businesses to reward employees for a job well done or as promotional items to build brand awareness. There are many stories about how the challenge coin came into existence. Still, most involve some informal award from a commanding officer or other high-ranking official to a unit member. The recipient is usually required to produce the coin to verify their identity. If they cannot do so, they may be required to buy a round of drinks for those around them.

Custom challenge coins are typically made in either hard or soft enamel. Most police departments prefer hard enamel, sheriff’s offices and fire departments. Soft enamel is very durable, but both options are high-quality and will provide great results. The sort of paint you select will also depend on the shape of your coin. Kinetic forms like spinner coins require a special die-shaped mold and cost more than a standard round coin.

Designing Your Coins

The first step in creating custom challenge coins is to develop a design idea. It can be anything from a logo to a full, detailed design. The design will set the tone for the coin use, whether commemorating a special event or celebrating a company’s success. Although they’re often associated with military units, custom challenge coins can be produced for any group or organization. They’re a great way to show camaraderie and promote team spirit. Military units regularly pass their challenge coins around during meetings to build morale and share stories. The ability to connect with others is very important to challenge coin makers because PTSD and suicide are very common among veterans. Studies have shown that giving someone a personalized coin can help open the lines of communication and improve their overall quality of life. While they’re not a substitute for therapy, these coins are a great way to recognize hard work and dedication.


While coins in a standard round size are the most popular, many people are surprised that they can also be made in other shapes. Custom-shaped challenge coins are a great way to emphasize your organization’s brand and build camaraderie among team members. From kinetic features to cut-outs and custom outlines, the possibilities are endless.

The size of your coin will greatly impact its visual and tactile effects. However, you should consider your budget and other factors when choosing a size. Larger coins require bigger molds and more materials to produce, which leads to higher costs. If you’re designing your coin for a small group, it’s best to stick with the 1.5″ and 2″ standards. These sizes offer the ideal balance between design space, weight, and portability. If you’re creating a large order, go with the larger options. This way, you can still get the desired effect while keeping production costs within your budget. Regardless of the size of your coin, it should always be a symbol of the values of the organization or event it represents.

Metal Finishes

Metal finishes are manufactured decorative and protective coatings like paint, enamel, powder-coating and anodizing that can be applied to metal surfaces. These finishes change a metal’s color texture, making it more wear and tear-resistant. The most common type of metal finish is anodizing, which changes the color of a metal using a chemical process. It’s also used for things like reducing the weight of items or making them more rust-resistant. Electroplating is another way to coat metal, probably done on jewelry, silverware, and other household objects.

Other types of metal finishes include tumbling, which uses compressed air to throw abrasive materials such as sand against the surface of an item. It can help smooth a surface, remove weld material or polish it. Hammered metal finishes are typically done on softer metals such as aluminum and can cover up dents and dings for a rustic look. Rust can be a popular finish for older metal furniture or containers, but it’s important to note that rust will stain anything it touches.


Challenge coins reinforce unit pride, boost morale and encourage group identity – a tradition that began with military units during the Vietnam War. Since then, the coin has become a cherished part of many cultures. Law enforcement and companies also use them to promote their brands, reward team members, or recognize milestones and achievements.

The beauty of challenge coins is that they are custom-made for each order. You can choose a variety of shapes, metal finishes and colors to create an attention-grabbing piece that will fill your employees or members with pride and satisfaction. Choosing the right color for your coin is important because it can make it more vibrant or dull. The most common finish is soft enamel, which works well for most designs, but hard enamel paint is better if you want to emulate your badge or have a high-end coin.

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