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cosplay before and after

How has cosplay evolved over the years?

In the early days of cosplay, it was a niche hobby that was mainly enjoyed by a small group of dedicated fans. Cosplayers would hand-make their costumes and attend conventions to showcase their creations. However, with the rise of social media and the internet, cosplay has exploded in popularity and has become more mainstream.

Nowadays, cosplayers have access to a wide range of resources and materials to help them create more intricate and detailed costumes. There are also numerous online communities where cosplayers can share their work, get feedback, and connect with other like-minded individuals.

One major change in cosplay over the years is the increased focus on accuracy. In the past, cosplayers would often take creative liberties with their costumes, putting their own spin on characters. While this is still common today, there is now a growing community of cosplayers who strive for screen-accurate replicas of their favorite characters’ outfits.

Another significant development in cosplay is the emergence of professional cosplayers. These individuals have gained a following on social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube by showcasing their incredible costumes and sharing tutorials. They often collaborate with brands or attend events as guests, turning their passion for cosplay into a full-time career.

Popular cosplay trends from the past decade

The world of cosplay is constantly evolving, with new trends emerging every year. In recent years, some popular cosplay trends have included:

Cosplaying Characters from Popular TV Shows

With the rise of streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, TV shows have become a major source of inspiration for cosplayers. Characters from shows like Game of Thrones, Stranger Things, and The Mandalorian have been particularly popular choices among cosplayers in recent years.


Genderbending involves cosplaying a character of the opposite gender. This trend has gained popularity as it allows cosplayers to put their own unique spin on well-known characters and challenge traditional gender norms. It has become increasingly common to see female cosplayers dressing up as male characters and vice versa.

Cosplaying from Video Games

Video games have always been a popular source of inspiration for cosplayers, but in recent years, there has been a surge in cosplay from popular video game franchises like Overwatch, League of Legends, and Fortnite. These games often feature characters with intricate costumes and unique designs, making them ideal for cosplay.

Mashup Cosplay

Mashup cosplay involves combining elements from different characters or universes to create a unique costume. For example, a cosplayer might combine elements from Star Wars and Harry Potter to create a Jedi wizard. This trend allows cosplayers to showcase their creativity and create something truly one-of-a-kind.

Famous cosplayers who gained recognition for their before and after transformations

In the world of cosplay, there are several famous individuals who have gained recognition for their incredible before and after transformations. These cosplayers have honed their skills over the years and have become known for their ability to completely embody the characters they portray.

Jessica Nigri

Jessica Nigri is one of the most well-known cosplayers in the world. She gained fame for her stunning transformations into characters like Pikachu, Harley Quinn, and Lara Croft. Her attention to detail and dedication to accuracy make her one of the most respected figures in the cosplay community.

Yaya Han

Yaya Han is another highly regarded cosplayer who has made a name for herself with her before and after transformations. She is known for her intricate costumes and impeccable craftsmanship. Yaya has been cosplaying for over 20 years and has become a mentor and inspiration to many aspiring cosplayers.

Kamui Cosplay

Kamui Cosplay, also known as Svetlana Quindt, is a German cosplayer who has gained recognition for her incredible before and after transformations. She specializes in creating armor and props, often using foam as her main material. Kamui’s attention to detail and ability to bring characters to life have made her one of the most respected names in the cosplay community.

Stella Chuu

Stella Chuu is a cosplayer known for her vibrant costumes and energetic performances. She has gained recognition for her before and after transformations into characters like Sailor Moon, Poison Ivy, and Chun-Li. Stella’s creativity and passion shine through in her cosplay work, making her a fan favorite at conventions around the world.

The influence of social media on the before and after cosplay community

Social media has had a profound impact on the before and after cosplay community. Platforms like Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and Twitter have provided cosplayers with a way to showcase their work to a global audience.

One major influence of social media is the ability for cosplayers to gain recognition and build a following. By posting their before and after transformation photos or videos online, cosplayers can attract attention from fans, fellow cosplayers, brands, or even potential sponsors. This exposure can lead to opportunities such as collaborations, guest appearances at conventions or events, or even brand partnerships.

Social media also allows cosplayers to connect with others who share their passion. They can join online communities or follow hashtags related to cosplay to find inspiration, share tips and techniques, and engage in discussions with like-minded individuals. This sense of community can be incredibly valuable for cosplayers, as it provides a support system and a platform to learn and grow.

Furthermore, social media has made it easier for cosplayers to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques. They can follow their favorite cosplayers or cosplay-related accounts to discover new ideas, learn about new materials or tools, and stay informed about upcoming conventions or events. This constant flow of information helps keep the before and after cosplay community vibrant and ever-evolving.

Techniques and tools used to enhance a cosplayer’s appearance before and after

Cosplayers employ a variety of techniques and tools to enhance their appearance before and after transforming into a character. These methods can range from simple makeup tricks to more complex prosthetic applications. Here are some common techniques used by cosplayers:


  • Contouring: Cosplayers use contouring techniques to sculpt their facial features and create the illusion of different face shapes or structures.
  • Highlighting: Highlighting is used to bring out certain areas of the face or body, such as the cheekbones or collarbones, giving them a more defined look.
  • Eyeshadow Techniques: Cosplayers often use eyeshadow techniques like cut creases or smokey eyes to achieve specific looks that match their chosen character’s style.
  • Fake Lashes: False eyelashes are commonly used by cosplayers to make their eyes appear larger and more dramatic.


  • Lace Front Wigs: Lace front wigs are popular among cosplayers because they provide a natural-looking hairline and allow for versatile styling options.
  • Styling: Cosplayers often style their wigs with heat tools, hairspray, and other products to achieve the desired look for their character’s hairstyle.
  • Wig Accessories: Accessories like hair clips, bows, or extensions can be added to wigs to enhance the overall appearance and match the character’s style.


  • Silicone Prosthetics: Cosplayers may use silicone prosthetics to alter their facial features or create realistic wounds or scars.
  • Latex Appliances: Latex appliances are commonly used in cosplay to create special effects makeup, such as creating fake horns or aging a character’s appearance.
  • Foam Armor: Foam armor is a lightweight and versatile material that cosplayers use to create armor pieces or larger props. It can be shaped and painted to resemble various materials like metal or leather.

These are just a few examples of the techniques and tools cosplayers use to enhance their appearance before and after transforming into a character. The possibilities are endless, and cosplayers are constantly experimenting with new methods to achieve their desired looks.

Challenges faced by cosplayers in achieving their desired before and after look

While cosplay can be incredibly rewarding, it also comes with its fair share of challenges. Achieving the desired before and after look for a cosplay can be particularly challenging due to various factors:

Budget Constraints

Cosplay can be an expensive hobby, especially when aiming for highly detailed costumes or intricate makeup looks. Many cosplayers have limited budgets and must find creative ways to bring their vision to life within their means. This can involve repurposing materials, thrift shopping for costume pieces, or making their own props and accessories.

Time and Skill Constraints

Cosplaying often requires a significant investment of time and skill. Creating a high-quality before and after transformation can take weeks or even months of planning, designing, sewing, and crafting. Additionally, cosplayers may need to learn new techniques or improve their existing skills to achieve the desired result.

Character Accuracy

Many cosplayers strive for accuracy when recreating characters’ appearances. This can be challenging when dealing with unique features or complex designs. Cosplayers may spend hours researching and studying reference images to ensure they capture every detail correctly.

Body Image Concerns

Cosplay involves embodying characters who often have idealized body types or physical features. Some cosplayers may feel pressure to alter their appearance in order to better match the character they are portraying. This can lead to body image concerns and feelings of inadequacy.

Despite these challenges, many cosplayers find joy in the creative process and the satisfaction of bringing their favorite characters to life. They embrace the journey as an opportunity for personal growth and self-expression.

The process of choosing characters to cosplay before and after

The process of choosing which characters to cosplay is highly personal and varies from cosplayer to cosplayer. Some factors that may influence this decision include:

Personal Connection

Cosplayers often choose characters they have a personal connection with or feel a strong affinity towards. This could be because they relate to the character’s personality traits, backstory, or overall aesthetic.

Challenging Costumes

Some cosplayers enjoy taking on challenging costumes that push their skills and creativity to the limit. They may choose characters with intricate designs, unique props, or complex makeup looks that present a technical challenge.


Popular characters from movies, TV shows, video games, or anime often attract cosplayers due to their widespread recognition and fanbase. Cosplaying as a popular character can lead to more opportunities for interaction and engagement at conventions or on social media.

Diversity and Representation

Cosplayers are increasingly prioritizing diversity and representation in their cosplay choices. They may choose characters who represent different races, body types, genders, or abilities in order to promote inclusivity within the community.

Group Cosplays

Group cosplays involve coordinating costumes with friends or fellow cosplayers to recreate a specific theme or scene. The process of choosing characters for a group cosplay often involves discussions and brainstorming sessions to ensure everyone’s preferences align.

The process of choosing characters to cosplay is highly individualized and can be influenced by a wide range of factors. Ultimately, cosplayers select characters that resonate with them personally and allow them to showcase their creativity and passion for the hobby.

The impact of acceptance of different body types on before and after transformations in cosplay

In recent years, there has been a significant shift towards greater acceptance of different body types within the cosplay community. This shift has had a positive impact on before and after transformations in cosplay:

Body Positivity

The body positivity movement has gained traction in the cosplay community, promoting self-love and acceptance regardless of size or shape. This has created an environment where individuals feel empowered to cosplay characters they love without feeling limited by societal beauty standards.

Inclusive Representation

Cosplayers are increasingly challenging the notion that certain characters can only be portrayed by individuals who match their body type. This has led to a more diverse and inclusive representation of characters in cosplay, with cosplayers of all sizes and shapes confidently embodying their favorite characters.

Creative Adaptations

Acceptance of different body types has also spurred creativity in before and after transformations. Cosplayers have become adept at adapting costumes or altering designs to better suit their unique physique. They may modify patterns, adjust proportions, or choose alternative materials to achieve a flattering look that still captures the essence of the character.

Inspiration for Others

The acceptance of different body types in cosplay has inspired many individuals who previously felt excluded or discouraged from participating in the hobby. Seeing others with similar body types successfully cosplay characters they love encourages others to embrace their own creativity and pursue their passion for cosplay.

Overall, the growing acceptance of different body types within the cosplay community has fostered a more inclusive and supportive environment. It has allowed cosplayers to express themselves authentically and celebrate their individuality through before and after transformations.

Cultural differences in approaching before and after transformations in cosplay

Cosplay is a global phenomenon enjoyed by people from various cultures around the world. While there are many similarities in how cosplayers approach before and after transformations, there are also cultural differences that influence these approaches:

Emphasis on Accuracy

The role of gender in the before and after transformation process for cosplayers

Gender stereotypes and expectations

In the world of cosplay, gender often plays a significant role in the before and after transformation process. Many cosplayers aim to accurately portray characters from various forms of media, which may include characters of a different gender. This can present unique challenges, as individuals may need to modify their appearance to align with societal expectations or stereotypes associated with that particular gender. For example, male cosplayers who want to portray female characters may need to use makeup and prosthetics to enhance feminine features such as larger eyes or fuller lips.

Breaking gender norms in cosplay

However, it is important to note that not all cosplayers adhere strictly to traditional gender roles when transforming into a character. Some individuals choose to challenge these norms by crossplaying, which involves portraying a character of a different gender without conforming to stereotypical appearances. This can be achieved through creative use of makeup, costumes, and props that emphasize the essence of the character rather than adhering strictly to societal expectations.

Tips for navigating gender-related challenges

1. Research: Before embarking on a cosplay transformation, thoroughly research the character’s background and personality traits. This will help guide your interpretation and allow you to make informed decisions about how best to represent them.
2. Experimentation: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different techniques and styles when transforming into a character of a different gender. Practice applying makeup or using prosthetics until you feel comfortable achieving the desired look.
3. Seek support: Connect with other cosplayers who have experience in portraying characters of different genders. They can offer valuable advice, tips, and resources that can enhance your transformation process.

By considering the role of gender in cosplay transformations and exploring ways to challenge or conform to traditional expectations, cosplayers can create unique and authentic representations of their chosen characters.

Controversies surrounding makeup or prosthetics in achieving desired before and after looks in cosplay

The use of Photoshop and filters

One controversy surrounding makeup or prosthetics in achieving desired before and after looks in cosplay is the use of Photoshop and filters. Some cosplayers have been accused of heavily editing their photos to enhance their appearance, leading to unrealistic expectations for others. This can create a divide between those who prefer a more natural approach to cosplay transformations and those who rely on digital enhancements.

Cultural appropriation

Another controversy is the issue of cultural appropriation when it comes to using makeup or prosthetics to transform into characters from different ethnic backgrounds. Critics argue that cosplayers should be respectful and mindful of the cultural significance behind certain appearances, as well as avoid perpetuating stereotypes or misrepresenting marginalized communities.


– In recent years, there have been instances where cosplayers received backlash for using darkening makeup to portray characters of color, which was seen as offensive and disrespectful.
– The debate over whether non-Japanese individuals should be allowed to cosplay as characters from Japanese anime has also sparked discussions about cultural appropriation.

Ethical concerns related to drastic appearance alterations for cosplay purposes

Mental health implications

One ethical concern related to drastic appearance alterations for cosplay purposes is the potential impact on an individual’s mental health. Cosplayers may feel pressured to conform to societal beauty standards or compare themselves unfavorably with others who achieve dramatic transformations. This can lead to body dysmorphia, low self-esteem, and other mental health issues.

Physical health risks

Another ethical concern is the physical health risks associated with extreme transformations. Some cosplayers resort to extreme diets, excessive exercise, or even harmful substances in order to achieve a specific look. These practices can have serious consequences on their overall well-being and may set unrealistic expectations for others who are inspired by their transformations.


– The trend of “waist training” to achieve an hourglass figure has raised concerns about the potential damage it can cause to internal organs.
– The use of harmful substances, such as certain types of body paint or glues, can lead to skin irritation, allergies, or even long-term health issues.

Documenting progress from “before” to “after” in cosplayer transformations

The power of visual storytelling

Documenting progress from “before” to “after” in cosplayer transformations allows for a powerful visual storytelling experience. It enables cosplayers to showcase their dedication, creativity, and skill development over time. By sharing their journey, they inspire others and create a sense of community within the cosplay world.

The importance of transparency

Transparency is crucial when documenting progress in cosplayer transformations. It’s essential for cosplayers to provide honest information about the techniques, products, and time invested in achieving their desired looks. This helps educate aspiring cosplayers and prevents them from feeling discouraged if they cannot attain similar results without the same resources or expertise.


– Many cosplayers use social media platforms like Instagram or YouTube to document their transformation journeys through photos or video tutorials.
– Some cosplayers include detailed captions or blog posts discussing the challenges they faced during each stage of their transformation process.

Events or competitions showcasing the best “before” and “after” transformations in cosplay

Cosplay contests

Events or competitions that showcase the best “before” and “after” transformations in cosplay provide a platform for cosplayers to display their skills and creativity. These contests often have specific categories that highlight different aspects of transformation, such as makeup, prosthetics, or overall costume design. They encourage healthy competition and allow cosplayers to receive recognition for their hard work.

Convention panels and workshops

In addition to contests, conventions often host panels and workshops where experienced cosplayers share their knowledge and techniques for achieving impressive transformations. These events provide an opportunity for beginners to learn from experts in the field, ask questions, and gain valuable insights into the process of creating stunning before and after looks.


– The “Cosplay Contest” at a popular comic convention may have categories like “Best Makeup Transformation” or “Most Creative Use of Prosthetics.”
– A panel titled “Mastering Cosplay Transformations: Tips from the Pros” could feature experienced cosplayers sharing their secrets and offering advice to attendees.

Advice from experienced cosplayers for beginners looking to improve their “before” and “after” transformations

Invest in quality products

Experienced cosplayers often emphasize the importance of investing in high-quality makeup, prosthetics, wigs, and costumes. Using professional-grade products can significantly enhance the final transformation result. They recommend researching reputable brands and seeking guidance from fellow cosplayers or online communities to ensure optimal results.

Practice makes perfect

Consistent practice is key when it comes to improving before and after transformations in cosplay. Experienced cosplayers advise beginners to dedicate time to honing their skills through trial and error. By experimenting with different techniques, they can discover what works best for them and refine their abilities over time.


– Attend local cosplay meetups or workshops where you can practice alongside other enthusiasts.
– Create a dedicated space at home for practicing makeup application or costume construction.

Learn from others but find your own style

While it’s valuable to learn from experienced cosplayers, they also encourage beginners to develop their own unique style. By adding personal touches and incorporating their individual creativity into their transformations, cosplayers can stand out and create memorable before and after looks.


– Experiment with different makeup techniques, colors, and styles to find what suits you best.
– Take inspiration from various sources, such as movies, comics, or historical periods, and incorporate those elements into your transformations.

In conclusion, the transformative power of cosplay is truly remarkable. Whether it’s bringing your favorite characters to life or exploring new identities, cosplay allows us to step into a world of fantasy and creativity. If you’re looking to experience the magic of cosplay firsthand, don’t hesitate to check out our cosplay services! We’re here to help you unleash your imagination and create unforgettable moments. So what are you waiting for? Let’s dive into the extraordinary world of cosplay together!




  • Max Wellner

    German Cosplayer from Nürnberg, professional Model & Walkingact for events & content creator.