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I’ve been playing Counter-Strike since it first evolved as a mod for Half-Life in 2000. Yep! I’m that old! A lot has happened since that early 1.6 version, but the game is still as popular as ever.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS: GO) is the latest iteration and has been a popular game for a long time. CS GO came out in 2012, but people are just as addicted to the game as ever.
If you’ve been playing the game and wish you had more skins to use, you might be wondering where you can get some for free.
Below, I’ve written a guide on how to get free CS GO skins. Please notice that it’s a cautionary guide and discussion of the pitfalls because if you take too many shortcuts, it might put your computer or money at risk. And I don’t want that!
Hopefully, this will ensure you can look your best while racking up victories in the game.
Into FPS and cool weapon skins? Check out How much is RGX Vandal in Valorant?
What Are CS GO Skins (aka “finishes”)?
The concept of skins in video games won’t be anything new for most players. Certain games allow you to earn “skins” that will change the appearance of certain things.
In the case of CS GO, the skins will change your guns’ appearance. Your guns won’t perform differently, but they will look flashier when you apply certain skins.
Skins were introduced to CS: GO in 2013 with the Arms Deal Update.
Many players collect skins as “badges of honor.” It can be fun to show off an interesting skin to other players. These skins serve no purpose other than to show off that you earned them. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t cool, though.
It should also be noted that some players don’t refer to them as skins. You might run across people calling them finishes.
These interchangeable terms refer to the game’s custom looks for guns. It’s possible to earn these skins or finishes for free in various ways.
Steam Workshop even has a guide on how to create your own.
How to Get Free CS GO Skins
Earning free CS GO skins won’t be as hard as you think. But there are several ways you can achieve them.
Below I’ve compiled a list of different ways.
As I said in the introduction, not all of these ways are created equally, and I advise you to use your brain. Don’t sacrifice your computer’s safety or money to get a specific skin.
With that out of the way, let’s dive in.
1. Level up Each Week
Leveling up each week will allow you to earn a free skin in CS GO. This is genuinely the easiest – and safest – way to earn a skin without spending money or doing anything dubious.
You can get a skin simply for playing the game as you usually would. You’ll get a loot drop every week the first time you level up.
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Typically, the drop is going to contain skins. You will most often be getting skins considered low-tier, but they’re still free.
You’ll have a chance to earn new skins using this method every week. You should always log in and play enough to level up once each week.
The only downside is that doing this won’t earn the fanciest or coolest skins. Even so, it’s a good thing to do. You’re likely already earning skins this way if you like CS GO.
Keep playing with your friends and see what skins you will earn over time.
2. Play on Official Servers Without Cheating
If you’ve played CS GO for a while, then you probably know Valve wants to reward those who play the game the right way.
You can earn chances at loot drops by playing the game on official servers without cheating.
You’ll need to play on the official servers and enable the Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC) setting. This ensures that the game is being played with integrity.
Earning random loot drops this way can be very rewarding.
If you’re going to play the game with your friends, you should always play on official servers in this fashion. It allows you to earn loot drops that could contain good skins.
You can earn other things in the loot drops, such as weapons and items.
Most players say that they can earn an average of four loot drops per week by playing usually on official servers. That could add up to you getting many different free skins.
This is an excellent legitimate way to get skins without having to do anything sketchy. Playing the game on official servers with VAC enabled is highly recommended.
3. Register on CS GO websites to get a free skin
You can register on various websites when playing the game on Steam.
These websites will allow you to get CS GO skins every so often for completing tasks in the game. This will not allow you to get skins very fast, but it is possible to earn skins without paying any money.
There are other ways that you can go about earning free CS GO skins as well.
This will ensure you can try them out to see which methods suit you the best. Some might seem impractical to you, but others will be perfect.
4. Trade with Friends
Trading with friends is a fantastic way to get cool skins quickly.
You might have a friend who has been playing for longer than you have. This friend might have some very good skins that they will be willing to trade you out of kindness if they aren’t using them much any longer.
Many players have been able to start with nice skins via the trading mechanic.
Making trade offers will be very easy when playing on Steam. Just open the Steam app or website and sign into your account. From there, select the friend you wish to make a trade offer to and click “more” to look at their profile. Then you can make a trade offer and see if your friend accepts it.
It’s easy to trade with other players you’ve become friends with. You might have some skins they will want that you can trade for something you’ll like more. See if you can come to a mutually beneficial arrangement. You’ll be happy that you did.
5. Earn Rewards From Loot Sites
One popular way to earn free skins in CS GO is to earn rewards from loot sites. Some websites offer various rewards for completing tasks.
Some of them will be simple such as watching videos, but you might also have to take surveys. Specific sites will even allow you to earn skins by logging in with your Steam account immediately.
It should be noted that some of these loot sites are not safe to use. Some are legitimate and offer rewards for taking surveys and doing other mundane tasks.
Others might be filled with malware or viruses. If you’d like to be safe, you should avoid going to these loot sites. You can install a browser guard such as Malwarebytes to warn you about unsafe sites.
It can be tempting to earn free CS GO skins without doing anything complicated. However, the risk isn’t going to be worth it.
You wouldn’t want to get a computer virus or have your personal information compromised. Be wary of such sites, but understand that some players earn free skins from loot sites.
6. Bet on CS GO Using Betting Sites
Perhaps you’d like to gamble and see if you can score some nice CS GO skins. In that case, betting sites could be used to bet on eSports matches.
There are a lot of different sites out there that offer eSports betting. CS GO is a popular game in the eSports world, and many sites offer daily rewards for signing up to bet on matches.
You can collect daily rewards, allow the rewards to stack up, and then cash out to get the skin you want. It sounds simple, but you have to remember that it’s gambling.
Nothing is guaranteed when you use a method such as this. It’s important to know that gambling is illegal unless you’re 18 or older. For younger players, this option shouldn’t even be considered.
If you’re of the right age, you can try this if you want.
Some famous YouTube content creators in the CS GO scene have been known to give out links where you can sign up and get bonuses. It might be worth looking into, depending on your sensibilities.
7. Winning Giveaways
Sometimes sites will run giveaways that you can sign up for. This idea works the same as any other giveaway you might find on the internet.
You’ll need to sign up for the giveaway and enter specific information such as your email address and name. If you win the contest, you’ll get an email stating that you won.
There are quite a few sites out there that do giveaways for CS GO skins. It’s a common giveaway prize; you might get lucky and win if you sign up every so often.
As you’d expect, signing up for these giveaways might cause you to get some spam mail in your inbox. Many sites will send you newsletters, and some might even give your email address away to third-party affiliates.
This is why many people shy away from giveaways. Of course, you could sign up for the giveaway using an email that isn’t important to try to get the skin.
Never sign up for these giveaways using an email you use for business or professional purposes. No one wants spam in their inboxes.
Conclusion: which are the best ways to get free CS GO skins?
Now that you’ve learned about the available options, it’s time to consider which ones are the best to utilize.
Some options above might be great, but others might seem less appealing.
The good ways of getting free CSGO skins
Playing the game and leveling up each week will always get you that free loot drop. You get a chance to get skins, weapons, and items if you play the game as intended.
This option ensures that you don’t need to worry about anything sketchy.
If you play on official CS GO servers with VAC enabled, you’ll earn even more loot. Many players can earn an extra four loot drops each week easily.
This gives you a shot at getting some cool skins if you’re willing to play the game the right way. If you love this game, then playing it with your friends will be fun.
Trading with your friends will also be an option. Sometimes your friends will earn skins they won’t want, and they might be willing to trade them with you.
The grey zone
Giveaways are going to be easy enough to sign up for, too. You might get lucky and win some CS GO skins, but the chances aren’t very high.
Regardless, signing up for giveaways will generally cost you nothing. You need to enter your email to sign up for most giveaways, but this can be problematic when you’d rather avoid spam.
It’s likely better to stick with tried and true methods that have gotten results for years.
The bad ways
Right away, it’s easy to see that using loot sites will be a dangerous proposition. It’s better to protect your computer and your data than to take a chance to earn some free CS GO skins.
Gambling on eSports will be too much of a risk as well. You could wind up just wasting your time on such endeavors, and it isn’t a method that those under 18 years old can use anyway.
This doesn’t mean you can’t choose to try it if you’re of the right age, though. Just understand that success isn’t guaranteed.
You can give up something you no longer need to get the skin you’re interested in. It’s a win-win situation, and trading with friends will always be simple.
Use the recommended methods for earning free CS GO skins. Avoid the methods that are too risky unless you’re fully prepared for the risks.
You should be able to get some excellent skins without having to spend any cash. Keep enjoying the game, and you’ll get some skins that you will enjoy.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jan has played video games since the early 1980s. He loves getting immersed in video games as a way to take his mind off stuff when the outside world gets too scary. A lifelong gamer, the big interest led to a job as a lecturer on game sound at the University of Copenhagen and several written articles on video games for magazines.