For those of you who thought of cosplay as just dressing up in a Halloween costume on a different day of the year, allow me to correct you. Cosplay is way more than that. Cosplayers will study their favorite characters from television shows, movies, video games, anime, you name it, and will then transform themselves into those characters. To do so, they're not grabbing any old painty palette from Party City. They're digging into their makeup kits for some of our favorite everyday products, from drugstore brands to the likes of Marc Jacobs and Anastasia Beverly Hills.
At New York Comic Con, cosplayers were absolutely killing the beauty game. Scroll down to see some of your favorite characters reimagined by some of NYCC's best cosplayers, and find out what products you'll need to recreate these looks for yourself.
Also featured in NYLON's #BlackCosplayerHere mini-doc, this squad set the bar for cosplay beauty pretty high. Definitely taking notes on Karina's (Jinx's) use of lip color to create a hyper-pigmented color brow.
Left to right, from top
Morgan, DarkstalkersLancome Foundation, NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, Fenty Beauty Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter in Trophy Wife, Fenty Beauty Flyliner Longwear Liquid Eyeliner, Revlon Mascara, Shea Moisture Lip Balm.
We stan a goth queen. Taking beauty cues from The Addams Family aesthetic is always a good idea.
Morticia Addams, The Addams FamilyHuda Beauty #FauxFilter Foundation, Kat Von D Powder (Contour), Anastasia Beverly Hills Glow Kit, Anastasia Beverly Hills and Sephora Eyeshadows, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow, Laura Geller Lips.
The '80s were ripe with over-the-top makeup trends, which is why GLOW characters (and their wrestling alter egos) are the perfect chance to flex your wild makeup skills.
Top to bottom
Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation, Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush, Urban Decay Eyeshadow, Ciaté London Fierce Flicks Precision Tip Liquid Liner, Estee Edit Lip Flip Shade Transformer (no longer available), Cover Girl Colorlicious Lip Lava, NYX Face and Body Glitter.
The trailer for Venom may terrify me, but this smokey eye definitely doesn't. Teach me your ways, please.
Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation, NARS Blush, Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour, Kat Von D Shade + Light Eye Contour Palette, Kat Von D 24-HR Super Brown Long-Wear Pomade, Kat Von D Tattoo Liner, NYX Lip Liner and Liquid Lip.
RIP, the velvet color-your-own Sailor Moon poster that was Scotch-taped to my bedroom wall growing up. I'll never get tired of seeing my favorite manga character-turned-late-night cartoon queen reincarnated in the halls of NYCC each year. This all-pink makeup look really brings the cosplay up a notch.
Forever mesmerized by an ombre lip and the fact that cosplayer Cat Van Buren stayed in character the entire time she listed off beauty products to me.
For full-white Harley Quinn face makeup, she recommends using L.A. Girl Pro Coverage Liquid Foundation Mixer.
Star Wars, but make it fashion. I think Yoda's force ghost should rock a flower crown in the next film, yeah?
From left to right, top to bottom
High Fashion Yoda, Star WarsBrand and product names unknown.
Harley Quinn was probably the most popular choice at NYCC this year, but this cosplayer's shadow-and-messy lip combo was particularly on-point.
Harley Quinn, The Batman Adventures, Suicide SquadKat Von D Lock-It Foundation, Urban Decay Full Spectrum Eye Palette, Maybelline Color Sensational Vivid Matte Liquid Lipstick.
My two favorite fandoms, made into what might be the best cosplay-combo I've ever seen.
Artist Hannah Alexander reimagines popular characters into gorgeous flowery sketches, and cosplayers can't resist bringing them to life.
This Disney princess was dewy and glowing as others sweated the day away in the crowds at NYCC.
A mix of high-end and drugstore products to absolutely nail the ultra-emphasized cheekbone on this famous cartoon character.
Maybe not from the same universe, but kicking NYCC ass side-by-side nonetheless. Madison's use of Revlon palettes to make her Lara Croft makeup look both like she's just been through a battle but still has it all together? Inspirational.
Top to bottom
This pixie swiped on colors from Kat Von D's holographic palette over her lip color to give it an otherworldly sheen.
Urban Decay may make a good neutral palette for your eyes, but it also is perfect for making your entire face look a little roughed-up.
I'm going to need to test out stage makeup-favorite Kryolan because somehow the brand made a lavender-gray hue blend effortlessly with a natural skin tone.
If only you could see the linear designs on their lids, creating a cut-crease look that feels as if it was pulled straight from the animations.
I'm pretty sure the Steven Universe artists should take some animated-style cues for a Pink Diamond makeover.