16 Rules of Cosplay For Fans and Cosplayers!

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Doing cosplay is a fun hobby for everyone. Everything that’s fun has a big responsibility from it. Today, we are discussing the 20 Rules of cosplay you should follow whether you are a cosplayer or a fan of cosplay.

There’s some toxic moments in the cosplay community, whether online or inside of the convention. One of the toxic things in the cosplay community is harassment of another cosplayer which is very illegal!

By being aware of these 20 Rules of cosplay, you can protect yourself against toxicity from the cosplay community. For con-goers or cosplay fans, you will be aware to respect cosplayers and respect their boundaries. 

Here’s the 16 Rules of Cosplay that Every Cosplayers and Fans Should Be Aware of.

You’re now aware that being aware of the cosplay etiquettes had a positive effect on the cosplay community. Without wasting a second, let’s begin!

Cosplay is for All Body Types

You’re a plus sized cosplayer? You can cosplay fit characters! You’re a skinny cosplay? You can cosplay masculine or plus sized characters! Your body type must not be a basis for your cosplay choice. The rules of cosplay doesn’t prohibits a specific body type to participate in cosplay!

There’s no universal law that restricts a cosplayer for cosplaying a specific character because of body type or size. If you hear someone saying that you look awful for that cosplay because you’re too “big” or too “skinny” or something, just shut their mouth! Those opinions are not valid!

Hear me out, I’m a male cosplayer that doesn’t have those big muscles and six pack abs but I can still cosplay without getting arrested! That means that cosplaying even if you are not too X is not illegal.

I also got through this situation, getting bombarded with a ripped body in cosplay that makes me insecure. At the end, I embrace my own body and just cosplay without comparing myself to the body of other cosplayers. 

In my situation, I just choose a character that makes me comfortable, not just to join the trend. I choose to cosplay as the Wanderer because this character does not require me to spend my life in the gym. This is a case to case basis, anyone has their own strategy to cope with this. I encourage you to seek advice from your cosplay friends to help you decide. 

Body shaming is no joke but this happens frequently in the cosplay community. Whether this harassment is “fat shaming” or “skinny shaming” or “height shaming” or any harassments that include someone’s body type, it should be considered as inappropriate.

All you need to do is cosplay, no matter what your body size is! If you hear those body shamers online, just block them. Blocking body shamers online doesn’t cost you money because every social media application offers the blocking feature for free!

Cosplay that Character because you’re comfortable with it, not just for a trend!

Hear me out again! Your own guts, not the social media trends should decide character Choice. In my case, this is also my problem too.

As I said before in my situation, I’m getting in secured to my own body because I’m not way too muscular. In the current trend in male cosplayers, muscular characters are the trending. 

Guess what? I ignore these trends and choose the Wanderer from Genshin Impact as my main cosplay character. If I’m aware that cosplaying a muscular character makes me self-conscious, I will find alternative characters for the sake of my self-esteem. 

Remember to cosplay the character that makes you comfortable, not self-conscious! By doing so, you can express yourself in a better way. Don’t make the numbers in social media as the basis of what character you should cosplay. 

If you’re a Minor Cosplayer, be mindful of your Character Choice

If video games have an age restriction imposed by ESRB, cosplay has also an age restriction you should follow. By doing so, you’re protecting yourself against predator convention creeps that’s targeting minor cosplayers.

Minor cosplayers should opt for non-revealing costumes that are appropriate for their age. I made a blog about the negative effects of wearing a revealing costume in the convention venue. 

Minors must avoid cosplaying a character that has revealing clothes. This is one of the rules of cosplay that exist for your own safety and well-being!

Cosplay is not Consent

This section might sound so cliche because you will hear this in every anime convention. While this term is so overused, it’s very crucial for anyone to be aware about this. This cosplay law is the king of all the rules of cosplay!

Regardless of how revealing or suggestive (I repeat, minors should not do a suggestive cosplay!) is, cosplay never implies consent.

Always ask for permission before touching, hugging, or taking photos of a cosplayer. Remember, we are people in costumes, not objects for display. Treat everyone with respect and courtesy.

Ask Before Touching/Patting

As I said, cosplay is not consent. This translates to touching cosplayer costumes or patting their wigs unethical without their verbal consent! In my own perspective, this is my most valued law among these rules of cosplay.

Costumes are often delicate and expensive. Before touching any part of a costume, always ask the cosplayer for permission. Some accessories may be fragile or sharp, so it’s important to be considerate and avoid causing any accidental damage.

Speaking of costumes, cosplay wigs are not excluded here! As a cosplayer by myself, I cannot imagine that someone will pat for my beloved Scaramouche Cosplay wig! They will see my true colors if they do! Cosplay wigs are much more fragile than costume fabrics because on how prone are synthetic materials to frizz.

Respect Personal Space

Boundary is the king when it comes to interaction with any cosplayers whether the communication is online or offline. Giving a personal space to others is one of the acts that show boundary respect.

Conventions can get crowded, but always be mindful of personal space. Don’t invade someone’s bubble, especially when taking photos or admiring costumes. If you need to pass by, politely ask for permission instead of squeezing through.

No = No

If not, the answer to your request is no! Don’t be pushy to any cosplayers you will encounter. As I said, they have their own personal space that you should respect.

If a cosplayer declines a photo request or any other interaction, respect their decision. Every cosplayer has their own boundary rules and personal beliefs. Don’t pressure them or make them uncomfortable. Remember, everyone has the right to set their own boundaries.

Safety First

If a cosplayer declines a photo request or any other interaction, respect their decision. Don’t pressure them or make them uncomfortable. Remember, everyone has the right to set their own boundaries.

Avoid brandishing or swinging your prop weapon in a way that could cause alarm or injury. Always be aware of your surroundings and prioritize the safety of yourself and others. These rules of cosplay are made to safeguard the safety of the whole cosplay community.

It’s advisable to avoid bringing dangerous props inside of the comic convention venue. The costs of legal proceedings in case that someone will sue you for damage because of injury caused by your props is abysmally expensive!

Avoid Comparison Game

Comparison is the best way to ruin your cosplay experience! Comparing yourself to other cosplayers will blind you from the beauty of your own cosplay performance!

Focus on having fun, expressing yourself, and celebrating your love for your favorite characters. Don’t get caught up in comparing yourself to others or striving for perfection. Remember, everyone starts somewhere, and the most important thing is to enjoy the journey.

Have Fun

Cosplay is a hobby. It’s no point if you’re not having fun in your hobby. Cosplay should not be a chore, it should bring happiness to your face! Even you follow all of these rules of cosplay, your obedience is pointless if you don’t have fun!

Cosplay is about celebrating your favorite characters and expressing your creativity. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles, characters, and interpretations. Embrace the fun and camaraderie of the cosplay community. Share your passion, make new friends, create unforgettable memories.

Avoid Cultural Appropriation 

While cosplay is not a cultural appropriation, it’s possible that this hobby might be a cultural appropriation if it’s done without sensitivity. According to my fellow cosplayers, Roger Senpai, you need to be careful on what character you cosplay. You should opt out for a character that’s considered as insensitive.

I recommend you to be mindful of the cultural significance of characters you choose to cosplay. If a character’s attire or accessories (e.g. an accessory with a Nazi symbol) are rooted in a specific culture, research their meaning and avoid wearing them in a way that could be disrespectful or insensitive. Aim for appreciation, not appropriation. 

Let me give you an example of a cultural appropriation so you will be aware of it. The best example is Tokyo Revenger’s costume. As you search the costume online, there’s a swastika symbol there and that’s considered as cultural appropriation. Using the swastika symbol for fashion or cosplay trivializes its historical significance and the suffering it represents. 

Ask Before Picture

Not every cosplayer is comfortable having a photograph inside of the anime convention venue. Every cosplayer has their own boundary rules. A cosplayer verbal consent is mandatory!

Always ask permission before taking someone’s photo. A simple “May I take your picture?” goes a long way in showing respect for their time and effort. Photographers should also follow these rules of cosplay.

Give Credits to a Cosplayer or Photographer

In this rule, you should utilize the word “CTTO” or also known as credits to the owner.  Cosplay content online should be credited when you are going to repost it.

When sharing cosplay content, always credit both the cosplayer and the photographer (if applicable).

Tag them in your posts or include their names in the description. This acknowledges their hard work and creativity, and helps others discover their amazing work.

You don’t need to make your own costume

This section is more focused on aspiring cosplayers that wanted to start but cannot sew. I will say this to you straight up, making your own cosplay costume is an OPTIONAL!

While making your own cosplay is a rewarding experience, some people consider it as more expensive and time consuming for beginners than buying a pre-made costume.

If you are an aspiring cosplayer that wants to start to cosplay without making your own costume, I got you! I’m giving you a 12% discount (“fandango blogs”) that can be used to buy a high quality, affordable and durable costume in RoleCosplay. 

If you want to get started without breaking a bank, buy your first cosplay in RoleCosplay and flex it in your next convention visit! By just clicking that checkout button, you can start chapter one of your cosplay journey. 

Be Mindful of your comments

Whether you are inside of the anime convention venue or online, you should be mindful of what you said to a cosplayer. In online space, think before you click. In the convention, think before you move your mouth.

Keep your comments positive, constructive, and respectful. Avoid making negative remarks about someone’s appearance, skill level, or choice of character. Focus on celebrating their creativity and passion.

Avoid Drama and Negativity

You should be positive in the online world and inside of the cosplay convention venue, no matter what!

In the convention, you should avoid committing bad acts like cosplay harassment or anything that makes cosplayers uncomfortable. It’s advisable to report it to the convention’s security staff if you encounter a harmful drama inside of the venue. 

Refrain from participating in online arguments or spreading rumors about cosplayers. Focus on fostering a positive and supportive community. If you encounter negativity, disengage or report it to the platform’s moderators.


The article discusses 20 rules of cosplay that should be followed by cosplayers and fans to protect themselves from toxicity in the community. Cosplay is for all body types, and there’s no universal law that restricts a cosplayer for cosplaying a specific character. 

Body shaming is inappropriate, and it’s important to seek advice from cosplay friends to cope with it. Character choice should be decided by personal preference, not social media trends. Minor cosplayers should be mindful of age restrictions and avoid revealing costumes at conventions. 

It’s crucial to avoid suggestive costumes and to respect the boundaries of the cosplay community. The article also advises against body shaming and suggests blocking body shamers online.

 Cosplayers should embrace their own body and choose characters that make them comfortable, not self-conscious, to express themselves in a better way.