Cosplay, which originated in the United States, is short for costume play. Cosplay is the act of dressing up as your favorite character. This can be anything from your favorite superhero to Flo from the Progressive commercials. While cosplay can be a lot of fun, there are some general misconceptions about it. Here are five misconceptions about cosplay and why they’re wrong.
1. Cosplay is too expensive.
Unfortunately, money may be something that can stop you from having fun, achieving your goals, or starting a new hobby. While cosplay can be expensive, there are cheaper alternatives that can help you look, act and feel like your favorite character without destroying your wallet.
Bridget Hennigan’s Cosplay Weekend Workshop at Multimedia Makeup Academy will teach you how to budget for cosplay more efficiently. “It can be costly, but that’s not to say that you can’t make a costume that you know looks like super legitimate and still have it be cost effective. It’s just it’s all about budgeting and watching for sales knowing where to buy things that are work. But knowing the direction you want to go and knowing more about makeup is the best way to start,” said Hennigan.
“I think when people get into cosplay they feel they have to spend like tons and tons of money on things. But there’s actually a lot of very cost-effective products that you can use. The products appear just as good as something say that’s like fifty dollars,” said Hennigan.
2. There is an age restriction.
There is not a set age of when it is “appropriate” to cosplay. A large misconception is that only a specific age group can cosplay. This is incorrect. You can’t be too young or too old to get into cosplay, because it is for everyone! The most crucial factor of cosplay is that you are having fun and that it is something you enjoy doing.
Hennigan has been participating in cosplay since she was a child. “I would say the central core of these classes is that we’re going through cosplay makeup with someone who’s been involved as a cosplayer since they were a child. But also has professional knowledge of makeup and beauty trends. I’ll be able to show you how to create informed-makeup-looks, for any character possible.”
3. Cosplay only counts if you cosplay an anime character.
You can cosplay any character that you want to cosplay. You can be anything or anyone that you want. Go for it. There are no limitations whatsoever. The first acknowledgment of cosplay, in the United States, occurred in 1939, by a couple who dressed up for a science fiction convention. They were not even dressed as characters, though. They were just covered in Sci-Fi inspired gadgets and gizmos making them appear as robotic beings.
4. Cosplay can’t be a full-time career.
For the vast majority of people, cosplay may only be a hobby. However, it is possible to turn cosplay into a career. You can make money cosplaying by attending paid events, live-streaming on Twitch, and selling merchandise and photos on Patreon (a crowdfunding site).
5. Cosplay is too provocative.
Cosplay includes a ride range of genres, which means that some cosplayers opt for a more “sexy” look. While there is nothing wrong with dressing in more provocative cosplay, cosplay is not inherently provocative. Cosplay is about becoming a character, but also about being happy and comfortable. All that matters is that you have fun and feel comfortable in your own skin. That being said, some competitions do have restrictions, so be mindful when registering.
These were five misconceptions about cosplay. It is important to know that everyone will always have their own opinion about who you are, whether it is because of how you dress, what you say, or how you act. The most important thing to know and practice is the idea that you live for you. As long as you are happy, and not putting yourself or others in danger, be uniquely you.