Customize your Vive controllers with community-created skins.

Virtual reality is still in its early days and only a fraction of its potential is currently on offer to consumers. Early adopters of today's virtual-reality hardware are yet to be offered any form of customization, with no variation in the headsets and accessories available.

SteamVR now has the closest alternative to custom Vive accessories, through digital skins applicable to on-screen controllers and base stations. While this might not be aesthetically pleasing to those in the outside world, it adds a hint of personality to your virtual experiences.

Want to blanket your controllers with a personal twist? Just follow the steps below!

Navigating to SteamVR controller skins

Controller skins can be equipped from within SteamVR, through an easy to use marketplace. This marketplace is accessible from any point where the SteamVR menu can be launched.

  1. Open SteamVR and ensure the HTC Vive has been calibrated correctly.
  2. Press the Home button to open the SteamVR menu and navigate to the Settings icon in the bottom right of the screen. This opens up the SteamVR settings, to tweak the HTC Vive experience (Make sure not to confuse this with the Steam settings in the top right-hand side of the screen).
  3. Next, navigate to Customise > Controller

Downloading SteamVR controller skins

A large library of existing skins is currently available from the Steam Workshop – a digital market populated with community creations. These models are created by community members, with a range of items available to download for free. The store is constantly being updated with more skins and creations, so make sure to check back frequently!

Follow the steps below to obtain skins from the Steam Workshop:

  1. From the controller customization menu, open the Steam Workshop by clicking Find More Skins.
  2. This will open the Steam Workshop, where a collection of the most downloaded skins are displayed. These can be filtered using the filtering options on the right-hand side.
  3. From a Workshop listing, clicking the Subscribe button will initiate the download of the skin. By subscribing, this automatically downloads future updates and refinements.

Applying SteamVR controller skins

Equipped skins are visible when using SteamVR, as a replacement for the standard controller. Games will continue to re-skin controllers like usual, but basic Steam menu navigation will take advantage of your new look.

  1. While viewing the controller customization menu, thumbnails for installed skins will be displayed on the right-hand side of the screen. If no thumbnails are visible, skins will need to be acquired through the Steam Workshop.
  2. To apply a skin, click on the corresponding thumbnail and changes will display instantly.

To reset your skins to the default black controllers, select Reset to Default at the bottom of the skin selection screen.

What skins have you installed on your HTC Vive controllers? Make sure to share with us using #VRHeads or via the comments section below!