With more and more people getting into the cosplay game, it’s important to let the newbies feel welcome by providing them with useful and helpful tips that will keep their cosplay game on point! Many newbies feel like professional cosplayers never struggle with their outfits, but any experienced cosplayer will tell you: that’s just not true, we all struggle!
Yes, even the best of the best can have some kind of fashion emergency on the way to the convention, or even rip a critical piece of prop right before entering the main hall. In situations like these, it’s important that you have all the essential cosplay components to keep you on point and on fleek all the time, every time.
From feather hair styles to anime Ahoge, every cosplayer needs to have some hair essentials with them at all times. Invest in good shampoo and conditioner if you’re using your real hair, and comfortable-fitting wigs as well as a head cap. Take some hairspray and a trusty brush with you at all times, as well as portable hair curlers and hair dryers. Make sure to put leave-on to protect your hair from light and heat damage.
Extra Tights and Spanks. And Cups for the Men
Spanks and tights can rip, so always have a couple (or three) pairs on hand to avoid embarrassing tears. Cups are also recommended for men, as tight pants can sometimes lead to very…revealing bulges that might not be comfortable for all.
Fabric steamers can be a bit bulky, but trust me, it can be a costume saver! Imagine traveling hours upon hours in a tight van in full get-up, only to get to the convention with a wrinkled costume. With a fabric steamer, you don’t have to worry about getting a wrinkle-free look at anytime.
Contrary to popular belief, makeup isn’t just to make your face pretty: cosplayers use makeup extensively to create extremely creative looks. Need to transform into an elf? No problem, just layer on some light-colored foundation for that ethereal glow! Accentuating your cheekbones for that boney look, or maybe to show off your superhero muscles? Contouring is your best friend. No matter the purpose, any visual aesthetic issue can almost always be solved by a good makeup kit, so make sure yours is stocked with the basics. While any imperfections can be fixed by some good old-fashioned fashion photo manipulation, it’s always nice to have your makeup on fleek.
Versatile, durable, and not at all flimsy, craft foam (otherwise known as eva foam) is the material of choice for cosplayers looking for an easy material to shape into armor or weapons. While cosplayers usually take days or even weeks to design intricate props, having some craft foam on hand can save an outfit that has taken some damage during the day.
It happens to the best of us: you’re just walking around, minding your own business, when rrriiiiip. Your dress just caught on a random piece of wood or nail or whatever and is now sporting an impressive tear that is more than revealing. Sewing kit to the rescue! Every cosplayer should be versed on basic sewing techniques, and you’ll be surprised at how much you can repair with a few needles, thread, and a handful of safety pins.
Actually, just have any kind of adhesive on hand, whether it’s contact cement, super glue, hot glue, E600, or the most popular cosplay essential, PVA glue. Yes, those white plastic bottles of glue you used to play with in middle school are actually a one-of-a-kind lifesaver in the cosplay world. Most malfunctions can be solved with a bit of glue, especially if you’ve just run out of needles or safety pins. Special glue like wood glue or hot glue can be used for props, while contact cement can be used to keep your props together. Whatever your adhesive of choice, just make sure to be careful with it: you don’t want to drop E600 on fabric, after all!
Heat guns are basically any piece of metal that heats up. It’s the best tool for shaping materials like craft foam and are essential for any prop emergency. However, with anything involving heat, use this with caution: make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions and use it carefully!
With all the repairs that you could be doing, scissors are a necessary tool in any cosplay emergency kit. A good pair of scissors can be used to shape and manipulate anything from craft foam, fabric, cardboard, PVC, and the like.