New cationic surfactants were synthesized by the quaternization of a number of straight-chain amide derivatives with triethylamine or pyridine. The corrosion inhibition tests of the surface-active compounds were performed at room temperature for 24 h on carbon steel coupons in acidic media using the gravimetric method. The acidic media used were 1.5 M HCl and 1.5 M H2SO4. Almost all of the synthesized cationic surfactants showed efficient inhibition of corrosion in the test. To establish the inhibition efficiencies of the inhibitors, surface characterization studies (contact angle measurements, SEM analysis and optical profilometer images) of the metal coupons used were performed.