Cosplay: 5 tips for beginners 

Cosplay 5 tips for beginners 

Cosplay is primarily about crafting costumes. The Japanese disguise trend is also enjoying great popularity in American. We’ve put together cosplay tips for beginners as well as various costume ideas for you.

Cosplay is a kind of role-playing game. Followers of the scene dress up as certain characters and imitate them.

Interesting facts about cosplay

cosplay tips

The term cosplay (Japanese “kosupure”) is composed of the English words “costume” and “play”.

Japanese film director and producer Nobuyuki Takahashi coined the neologism. He first used it in an article for My Anime magazine in 1983.

What cosplay is

Participants in cosplay are known as cosplayers. They dress up as a character from, for example, a TV series, a feature film or even a computer game.

Most of the characters portrayed come from manga or anime. Many cosplayers attach great importance to the original fidelity of the embodied character. In addition, there are also free interpretations or mixtures of different characters.

cosplay guide

Cosplay knows no boundaries. You can also embody a male character as a woman – or the other way around. Essentially, the fun of it all plays the biggest role. Today’s cosplay, by the way, has several origins.

As early as the 1930s, Japanese railroad fans dressed up as railroad men. Over the years, manga and anime enjoyed ever-increasing popularity. As a result, the number of cosplayers also increased. In addition, social networks made the trend more and more popular.

Erotic Cosplay

The craze for cosplay now goes so far that you can participate in erotically-themed role-playing games. In the home country of cosplay, the term is also used as a synonym for erotic role-playing games. In addition, there are pornographic manga and anime known as “hentai”.

Difference between manga and anime

cosplay for beginners

The terms manga and anime always cause confusion, but the differences are easy to see. Mangas describe comics with a specific Japanese drawing style. A manga is traditionally read from top right to bottom left.

This means that you open the booklet on the last page and turn it upside down. An anime, on the other hand, is an animated film or series produced in Japan.

So an anime can be the film adaptation of a manga, for example. Strictly speaking, the animated series “Maya the Bee”, which is well-known in American, is also an anime, because the film version of the novels was primarily produced in Japan.

Cosplay is mainly a hobby, but there are also national and international competitions. Conventions (events) such as the Comic Con or the Book Fair serve as an exchange between people with similar interests. They are very popular among cosplayers.

Tips for Cosplay Beginners

Cosplay usually involves a lot of work. After all, putting together a costume, makeup, and hairstyle can be very difficult and time-consuming. In this chapter, we have summarized five tips for doing cosplay for beginners.

Make a list

There are many steps behind a complete cosplay costume. The more detailed you want your outfit to be, the more materials you will need. So you don’t forget anything, you can make a list. Write down everything you need for your costume. An example list could look like this:

black cape

red headband

silver rings and chains

white knee socks

black buttons


Buy patterns

If you have decided not to buy a ready-made cosplay costume, you will have to do some handicrafts. To make your costume, you can either buy patterns or make them yourself. On the various social platforms you can find countless inspirations.

In most cases, you will receive recommendations for suitable fabrics and illustrated instructions. With purchased patterns, however, you should be prepared to have to alter them again if necessary. It is important to study your character’s outfit before buying patterns.

Collect as many reference images as possible. You can get inspiration from so-called fan art and design sketches, for example.

Tip: When buying fabric, ask for a fingering sample first so you can see the exact color and touch the fabric.

If you have any questions or problems making your own costume, don’t be afraid to ask in forums. The cosplay community is large and can certainly pass along some recommendations for patterns and fabrics to beginners.

Modify garments

Modify garments

You don’t have to make all the pieces of your cosplay costume from scratch or buy them from an anime store.

You can also buy a “normal” piece of clothing and further decorate it until it fits the outfit of the character you want.

For example, if you find the right shoes but in the wrong color, dye them. If a garment is too long, sew it around. There are no limits to your creativity.

Here are tips for learning to sew.

Care for your cosplay wig

Wigs can be very expensive. The more annoying are defects in the artificial hair. For example, if you’re wearing a backpack on your way to a convention, make sure that the friction doesn’t damage the synthetic hair.

You can avoid this by taking a suitable bag with you or by wearing your hair to the front. You should also use as few Velcro fasteners as possible.

The hair of your cosplay wig can quickly get caught or stuck. Never use a normal comb to comb synthetic hair. It is better to use special wig brushes – they do not charge the hair electrostatically.

Use make-up

If you have chosen a character of the opposite sex, for example, make-up can be very advantageous. If you want to portray a female character as a man, it is recommended to use false eyelashes and lipstick. If you’re a woman embodying a male character, you can use contouring to mimic the typical male facial features.

With thousands and thousands of fictional characters, choosing your next anime costume isn’t exactly easy. In this chapter, we’ve rounded up the eleven most popular outfits for you. They are not only suitable for conventions, but also as Halloween costumes, for example.


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