Determining CS:GO Skins Rarity


Author: Valery Dragunov

Valve selects skins for their cases from the Workshop: seven skins for Mil-spec rarity, five Restricted, three Classified and two Covert. But what are their criteria and why are popular works accepted years later? CS.MONEY Blog tells how to identify worthy skins in future cases and understand their rarity!

There are 17 skins in one case, and many more weapons are in the game. Valve pre-determine which weapons they want skins for, as it was when they announced the Dreams & Nightmares contest, and only then open the Workshop, so the reasonably decent skins appear in the game once in one or two cases. Many Workshop artists create skins for several weapons simultaneously so Valve can pick and choose whatever they want for a series. This also increases the chances of being noticed.

Dreams&Nightmares case weapons were pre-determined

A series of high-quality skins will not appear in the game instantly, since Gabe’s selection policy is focused on fresh designs. For this reason, four Neo-Noirs were accepted gradually from 2017 to 2020, and the UMP-45 is still waiting.

CS:GO Skins Grades, from blue Mil-spec to red Covert, express rarity and prestige, which affects players’ desires. Valve has even made special guides for each rarity level, which they follow when selecting weapon finishes from the Workshop:


Mil-spec (blue) skins require a discreet colour scheme, can be similar to each other and, most importantly, have to be difficult to see from a distance, with details visible only directly in the hands.

So, AK-47 Elite Build and Uncharted differ little from the outside, and only a player can inspect the drawing. Mil-spec skins often have dynamic patterns with the same print on all parts of the weapon and no rare details.

Mil-spec AK-47 skins comparison


Restricted (purple) skins are brighter and contrasting, and their patterns are multicoloured and detailed. Nearby players can distinguish them. First promo code for GameChanger Hub: 967P1V.

Skins of this rarity often have interesting features, like the iridescent AWP Exoskeleton finish or the false 3D effect on the MAC-10 Button Masher.

Restricted AWP skins comparison
Restricted MAC-10 skins comparison


Classified (pink) skins have distinct patterns with noticeable colours that players can easily see from a distance.

For example, a bright palette of M4A1-S Decimator or R8 Revolver Skull Crusher’s detailing.  They are the hallmarks of the “pink” rarity. In case you didn’t know, the creator of the latter skin paid a little more attention to the weapon and drew a funny skeleton on its back, and the skull moves when R8 fires.

Classified M4A1-S skins comparison


Covert (red) skins are the brightest and most recognisable skins. You can recognise them at a distance thanks to their unique and distinguishable pattern. Any player on the server will notice it.

Most of the time, skins with this highest rarity make an impression of a weapon finish made specifically for a particular gun. For example, the Neo-Noir series: on pistols, the girl’s hair extends to the handle, while on the AWP, the pattern is adapted to the long body and curves. The rifle’s muzzle and sight are coloured in a way to illuminate them from below. Second promo code for GameChanger Hub: EHVOS4.

Covert AWP skins comparison

These criteria are only applied by Valve to Workshop skins that end up in cases. They are not suitable for skins from map collections as the company develops them personally. For example, the Covert AWP Fade is too simple to compete with Neo-Noir or Wildfire.

In this article, you looked at the Workshop through Valve’s eyes and learned how to determine skins’ rarity before they appear in the game. If you want to expand your inventory with more skins of various kinds, jump to our fresh Market, where you can trade skins P2P or withdraw cash if necessary!




A password has not been entered

Password generation