Homopolymer and bilayer coatings of poly(N-methylaniline) (PNMA) and polypyrrole-dodecylsulfate (PPy-DS) have been electropolymerized on a mild steel (MS) surface by the potentiodynamic method in aqueous oxalic acid solutions. In order to include dodecylsulfate ion as dopant in the polypyrrole, sodium dodecylsulfate was also added to the polymerization solution of pyrrole. Characterization of coatings was carried out by the cyclic voltammetry, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM). Corrosion behavior of the polymer coated MS electrodes was investigated in highly aggressive 0.5 M HCl solution by the Tafel test and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) techniques. Corrosion test revealed that among the protective coatings obtained, the PNMA/PPy-DS bilayer exhibited the best corrosion resistance at all immersion times. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.