Contrary to common belief, cosplay is complicated. It might sound simple – merely dressing up as the character that you admire, buy the outfit at any online cosplay shop, and you’re done. It requires a head-to-toe transformation that often involves makeup, wigs, hair dye, skincare, makeup.
Cosplayers also need to know a little bit about sewing, making or buying costumes, measuring themselves, researching every little detail on a chosen character’s look. At times it can get the frustration, even painful, which is why only very few become professional cosplayers.
Things to keep in mind when cosplaying is:
Choose comfort over exactly matching your chosen character. Characters wear 8- or 9-inch heels because they’re fantasy and where wearing stilettos doesn’t cause agonizing pain. You, however, do not live in that world. You can certainly get shoes or boots with shorter heels and still look like the character. The same rule applies to dresses, wigs, and weapons.
Don’t worry too much about your body size or type. A good majority of anime characters are petit, often very skinny. You can still embody them and look cute. Cosplay is all about confidence.
And speaking of confidence, in order to cosplay well, you should have a lot of it. Without a doubt, you will have to face a few critics here and there and you’ll be tempted to react. But in reality, there will be a lot more people who will love your look and offer compliments on your costume, hair, and makeup. Don’t worry too much – one person’s negative opinion is drowned out by all the positives people will throw at you.
The foundation of any good makeup is proper skincare. The basics of a good skincare routine involve three things: cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing. This three-step should be done regularly and done before applying makeup. You should also use a cleanser in removing makeup. Any makeup particles left on the face can clog pores which can lead to acne.
Most cosplayers prefer to put their makeup on before donning their costume because it’s too much of a hassle trying to put on making while wearing a very limiting and often uncomfortable costume. Better to do it when you have a full range of motion. Also, makeup sometimes involves loose powder which might get on your costume.
The best type of makeup for cosplay is stage makeup since you are literally putting on a show, and it’s great for stage lighting when you have to go on stage and photography.
And even if your character doesn’t wear makeup, it’s always best to put on minimal, natural-looking makeup to smooth out your look, conceal flaws, and give yourself that anime-style look.
The early era of cosplay used to mean cosplayers need to know how to make their own costume. But now, due to its popularity, a lot of people can simply go to any online cosplay shop and choose the best anime look they want. Still, learning to make your own costume is a life skill, especially if you plan on doing cosplay professionally.
Eliza Brooks is an ardent blogger who loves to write about outdoor, travel, fiction, and more. She is currently working with Yourcosplay, which offers a wide variety of costumes from anime characters to children’s Halloween costumes.