26 Anime Cosplay Ideas to Stand out in the Crowd in 2020
Cosplay is a fantastic activity that lets you step away from the humdrum of everyday life and draws you into a magical world where anything is possible. It’s never been easier to cosplay with so many authentic costumes and props available to buy online. Anime characters are fantastic for cosplaying as most have multiple outfits, many of which are simple to put together. So let’s discuss today some of the best anime cosplay ideas for everyone to try this year!
Here we’ve highlighted 25 anime cosplay ideas to get you started in your cosplay journey. You’ll find some of the most popular anime cosplay characters, along with a list of supplies and some great cosplayers who have brought the characters to life. The world of anime is so incredibly rich, that you have only your imagination (and maybe budget) to stop you from cosplaying one of the greatest characters in romance anime shows, a famous anime villain, or any character from the most loved anime movies of all times.
In this guide, we’ve included a full costume with each cosplay, as well as a difficulty rating for cosplayers who prefer to create their own cosplays. This rating is based on the amount of time and skills needed to alter or create items. Keep in mind that the supplies featured below are not going to help you replicate the cosplayer’s costume to the letter. They are just starting points.
Additionally, keep in mind that creating your costumes will require more than a bit of technical knowledge, whether we’re talking about patching clothes together, knitting from scratch, or finding out how to bend plastic so as to recreate armor. It goes without saying you should have a clear workspace!
1. Ruby Rose, RWBY
Best Cosplayer: xjessekun
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Boots, Sniper-Scythe
The main protagonist of RWBY, Ruby Rose trained at Beacon Academy to become a huntress and fight the Creatures of Grimm that plague the world of Remnant.
Alongside her friends Weiss, Blake, and Yang, she is a part of team RWBY. Ruby’s stunning red and black outfits with rose embellishments make for great female anime cosplay. The full costume is available to buy and the wig does not need much additional styling, making this an easy cosplay.
Although the costume doesn’t cost much in terms of creativity and money, since it mainly consists of a leather skirt, stylized boots, and a corset over a white shirt, the scythe is going to be significantly more difficult to pull off. Not sure if we’d recommend you try and create it yourself from scratch.
2. Hitsugaya, Bleach
Best Cosplayer: yillidan
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Weapon
Hitsugaya is a character in the anime Bleach. He is the Captain of a group of Soul Reapers, spirits who govern the flow of souls and protect the afterlife realm Soul Society in the anime Bleach. He is also the main protagonist of the second Bleach feature-length film.
If you’re looking for easy anime cosplay ideas for guys, then a Hitsugaya cosplay is a good choice. It’s straightforward, featuring a traditional Japanese gi and obi. This is one of the best anime cosplay ideas for guys who appreciate a well-written villain. For added authenticity, learn how to tie your obi (belt) the traditional way!
If you’re pretty cool, then you’re going to go to lengths to recreate his awesome haircut. Spiky hair hasn’t been in vogue ever since the early 2000s (at least in Europe), but white spiky hair? Probably never going to go out of style so long as Matrix lies within all of our collective memories.
3. Goku, Dragon Ball Z
Best Cosplayer: rene_luigikid
Goku is the main protagonist of the famous anime series Dragon Ball Z. Being a pure-hearted warrior, he is one of the most influential characters of all time. Goku belonged to the Saiyan race and was sent to Earth from planet Vegeta. With his heroic personality and Drip Goku style, he has seized the hearts of many viewers, giving them major fashion goals.
If you, too, are influenced by Goku’s iconic style, then don’t hold back. Dressing up as Goku for cosplay can be fun and exciting, showcasing your love for the character.
Sport a Goku Drip jacket and style your hair in spiky bangs to create a perfect Goku look. We bet you’re gonna rock the cosplay like no one else!
4. Natsu, Fairy Tale
Best Cosplayer: neene_95
Natsu Dragneel is the main character of the anime Fairy Tale. He is a mage of the Fairy Tale Guild and was trained to become a dragon slayer.
While this cosplay is not as intricately detailed as others on this list, parts of the costume may require basic sewing skills to create the necessary effect (removing a sleeve to create a sleeveless arm). If you are a huge fan of Fairy Tale and want other easy anime cosplay ideas, consider Minerva Orland too, although you may have to work a little on both your costume and method acting to impersonate this great villain.
Furthermore, emulating Natsu isn’t just a matter of costume: are you ready to embody a young, talented mage on an adventure?
5. Izuku aka Deku, My Hero Academia
Best Cosplayer: kshaw_tv
Difficulty: Low to Medium
In a world filled with heroes, Deku was born without a quirk (superpowers). Despite being quirkless, a legendary hero sees something special in Deku and recruits him for a prestigious hero academy.
Deku is an excellent example of a character that has multiple costumes. The costume we’ve chosen to highlight for Deku is his Beta costume, which is less intricate than his student uniform. It’s also easier to put together (see his classmate #12 Uranka for an example!). All you need is a grey school blazer, a red tie, and boots.
6. Sailor Mercury, Sailor Moon
Best Cosplayer: katierose222
Sailor Mercury (aka Ami) is a member of the Sailor Soldiers, an all-female team of supernatural fighters that protect the solar system. Known as the brains of the group, her abilities are tied to water and ice.
One of the most popular anime girl cosplay ideas, you can easily find high-quality replica costumes for each of the Sailor Scouts. If you miss the quirky girls always finding themselves in trouble (but without forgetting that friendship is the greatest treasure of them all), you can give it a go by watching the Sailor Moon series free on YouTube!
While this costume is unlikely to have anyone swoon over its originality, it is likely it’s going to remain among the most iconic cosplay outfits ever. Don’t let us dissuade you, though. You can still make waves with this costume, especially if you’re actually passionate about the anime and identify with the characters!
7. Pikachu, Pokemon
Best Cosplayer: thegreatpretendercosplay
Supplies: Dress, Ears & Tail, Shoes, Jewelry
Pikachu is an electric-type Pokemon initially introduced in Generation I, and probably the most famous Pokemon of all time. Pokemon cosplays are always really interesting because they are essentially a cosplayer’s own interpretation of what a Pokemon would look like in human form. Well, now we know, it’s Ryan Reynolds. It has always been Ryan Reynolds 🙂
This casual cosplay by thegreatpretendercosplay caught our eye because it seems so comfortable while also preserving Pikachu’s cheeky, mischievous nature! It requires some sewing skills to add details to the dress, which gives this cosplay its medium difficulty rating. Just as the song says, you gotta catch them all, so go online and get your gear!
If you don’t quite know where to get started with sewing or stitching a costume, then you might want to ditch textile materials altogether and just paint yourself yellow from head to toe. Add a red dot on the nose, maybe a black tail if you want to be inconsistent, and go wild! Make sure to cover yourself where it matters, though…
8. Obito, Naruto
Best Cosplayer: nico_crea_
Supplies: Costume, Mask, Weapon
An antagonist in Naruto, Obito almost died in the Third Shinobi World War. Instead, he was left with a disillusionment with the world that would lead him down a dark path.
Featuring a black kimono and distinctive mask, this cosplay is on our list of good anime cosplay ideas because it’s so simple, yet effective. As an alternative to Naruto characters anime cosplay ideas, we challenge you to try Orochimaru as well.
9. Madoka, Madoka Magica
Best Cosplayer: chibimagicalgirl
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Weapon
Madoka is the protagonist of the anime Madoka Magica – one of the best horror anime shows in our opinion – and was living an ordinary life as a middle school student before unexpectedly being introduced to the world of magic. She was offered the chance to be transformed into a magical girl, which she accepted.
The intricate design of Madoka’s costume, along with her weapon, the Rose Branch Bow, and the required styling of the wig, add to the difficulty of this cosplay.
10. Nozomi, Love Live! School Idol Project
Best Cosplayer: fancyduckie
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Tojo Cards
As the eldest member of the band μ’s (Muse), Nozomi is a third-year student at Otonokizaka High School. She has a love for all things spiritual, especially tarot cards and fortune-telling. Love Live! School Idol Project is a fantastic source for anime cosplay ideas because the characters have so many amazing costumes they wear throughout the show.
Just pop along to the Wikipedia page, and you’ll see what we mean – and that’s just Nozomu! This cosplay is her Flowers Bouquet costume, and it has a high cosplay rating. However, some of her other costumes are more beginner-friendly.
11. Asuna, Sword Art Online
Best Cosplayer: melissa_lissova
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Weapon
Asuna is a sub-leader of the guild Knights of the Blood Oath in the MMORPG Sword Art Online and also the protagonist is a series. She is a fierce warrior known for her skill with a blade, earning her the nickname ‘The Flash,’ who was part of the 10,000 players trapped in Sword Art Online – the concept, not the anime.
Her popularity as a character has made her a popular choice for cosplay, and it is quite easy to find everything you need online, including a pre-styled wig. She is known to be kind, affectionate, but also terrifyingly scary in battle, charging into the fray with nothing but a rapier – despite originally being nothing more than a healer.
Are you cute or adorable but fierce? Then no doubt you know who to cosplay.
12. Bruno Bucciarati, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Best Cosplayer: tamikosama_cosplay
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Hair Clips, Jewelry
A sly mobster, Bruno Bucciarati leads his squad within the powerful Italian mob. He’s the opponent of the fifth Jojo, Giorno Giovanna, in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.
This is a medium difficulty cosplay which requires making some adjustments and adding embellishments to a white suit. The wig does not require much work, and you can buy a set of hair clips and jewelry to finish off the cosplay. If you want inspiration for other easy cosplay anime ideas or some of the best anime cosplay ideas for guys, don’t forget to check out our top best anime villains guide!
13. Uraraka, My Hero Academia
Best Cosplayer: rushkamyao
A student at the hero academy, U.A. High School, Uranka is training to be a superhero along with her fellow students. Her quirk is zero gravity, which gives her the ability to manipulate gravity. She goes by the heroine identity Uravity.
As mentioned in Deku’s description, cosplaying a My Hero Academia student is one of the best anime cosplay ideas for beginners as it uses items that you can find easily. All you need is a blazer, a white shirt, a red tie, and a skirt!
14. Misa, Death Note
Best Cosplayer: jodellecosplays
Supplies: Corset Top, White Shirt, Skirt, Gloves, Bag
Misa is the owner of a Death Note, a notebook that provides its owner with the ability to kill anyone, as long as they know their face and name.
A Misa cosplay is one of the best anime costume ideas if you’re a goth/grunge girl; it almost feels like cheating! Just look into your closet and pull out a corset, tartan mini-skirt, and some fingerless gloves. Bonus points if you have a bat handbag. Death Note is probably the best known and the best anime in the world. People who aren’t even fans of anime have heard of it and seen it. So if you want other anime cosplay ideas for this year, you can also try to impersonate Light Yagami (you can find a Death Note-like notebook online) or even L.
In fact, L is probably one of the easiest anime cosplay ideas for guys, as all you need is a t-shirt and some jeans. Of course, L’s behavioral quirks and mind sharpness is what makes him one of the best anime characters of all times. 100 points to the brave one trying to make a Ryuk cosplay at home!
15. Pokemon Trainer, Pokemon
Best Cosplayer: henryrkozactis
Supplies: Costume, Pikachu and Eevee Plushie Pack, Pokeball Plushie
Pokemon Trainers start training from an early age to catch and train Pokemon. They all have one thing in common; the goal of earning the prestigious title of the ultimate Pokemon trainer.
This is probably the easiest anime cosplay idea on this list; all you need is a Pokemon trainer cap, a plushie, and a Pokeball.
16. Roy Mustang, Fullmetal Alchemist
Best Cosplayer: ryanrybot
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Gloves
One of the three protagonists of the series, Roy Mustang is a war hero and a State Alchemist in the Amestrian State Military. He specializes in Flame Alchemy and uses a pair of custom-made gloves embroidered with unique flame alchemy Transmutation Circles to give him an edge in combat.
Roy’s uniform is a specific design that requires careful adjustments that might be too much for a beginner. If you are interested in other Fullmetal Alchemist characters or other anime cosplay ideas from movies, here is our list of best anime movies of all times to get your inspiration going!
17. Sesshomaru, InuYasha
Best Cosplayer: sasuchu
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Weapon
Inuyasha is a superb, cult-classic anime. The older-half brother of the series’ protagonist, Sesshomaru, is a powerful dog demon that appears as a young man. Although Inuyasha can be argued to be quite handsome in terms of anime protagonists, Sesshomaru is outright gorgeous, whether because of his mystery or elegant fashion sense.
For this cosplay, you need a white kimono with red markings over black pants, and a yellow and blue obi. Some experience is required to alter these items, which is why we’ve given this cosplay a medium difficulty. If you want to throw yourself in the cosplay fully, then you’ll also want to do a half-moon marking on your forehead.
18. Integra, Helsing
Best Cosplayer: jomouda
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Glasses
Sir Integra Hellsing is the last member of the Helsing family, and the head Royal Order of the Protestant Knights, an order dedicated to protecting Britain from unholy beings. She is a direct descendant of Abraham van Helsing and the current Master of the vampire Alucard. And speaking of Alucard, we are sure that everyone is waiting to binge watch the next season of Castlevania just as much as we do. In the meanwhile, why not try a Castlevania-based Alucard costume? If you’re tall, blonde, and hot, the cosplay builds itself 🙂
Back to Helsing, Integra’s costume is essentially just a black suit with a red tie and silver cross pin. This makes it the top of the list of easy anime characters to cosplay for beginners.
19. Sebastian Michaelis, Black Butler
Best Cosplayer: aghres_cosplay
Sebastian is a demon that has a contract with thirteen-year-old Ciel Phantomhive. In exchange for helping the boy find his parents’ murderers, Sebastian gets to consume his soul. As he helps Cie, Sebastian takes on the form of a human butler.
He wears a full double-breasted tuxedo and tails, making this one of the easiest anime cosplay ideas for guys.
20. C.C, Code Geass
Best Cosplayer: xenoxiz
C.C. is an immortal being who can bestow the power of a geass on people, giving them a supernatural ability.
Her costume is quite complicated with multiple straps, unique tailoring, and design features, so we have given it a high difficulty rating.
21. Sabo, One Piece
Best Cosplayer: ayrisucosplay
Sabo is the adoptive older brother of the series’ protagonist, and Chief of Staff of the Revolutionary Army. Born initially to Nobles, he ran away from an abusive home and found his real family among pirates.
The basics of this cosplay are easy to obtain and require little work. However, it’s the smaller details such as the goggles and necktie that may require a bit more skill.
22. Faye Valentine, Cowboy Bebop
Best Cosplayer: koolysmiley
Originally born on Earth in 1994, an accident in space left Faye injured and in cryogenic sleep. Fifty-four years later, she woke with no memory, identity, or friends, and in a heap of trouble.
The bounty on her head brought her to the attention of the Bebop crew. Now, she hunts bounties with them. We gave this cosplay a low rating as no additional skills are needed.
23. Ryūko, Kill la Kill/h2>
Best Cosplayer: wintendo.64
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Weapon
A transfer student at Honnōji Academy, Ryūko has recently moved to the city to hunt for her father’s killer and their red scissor blade, the twin to her own blade.
There are a lot of intricate pieces in this cosplay that may require advanced knowledge of embroidery or crafting to create Ryūko’s weapon. Despite being one of the harder anime cosplay ideas on our list, Ryūko’s red and black costume will make you stand out in the crowd.
24. Milotic, Pokemon
Best Cosplayer: slothcore
Difficulty: Choose between Low, Medium, and High
Supplies: Antenna, Mermain Skirt, Wig
Milotic is a water-type Pokemon introduced in Generation III. We were inspired by slothcore’s excellent idea to use a mermaid-tail in her cosplay to bring the original gijinka design to life.
You can do the same by choosing a top of your choice to accompany a shimmery mermaid scale skirt and an Antenna headband. Pop on a blonde wig to complete the look.
25. Vegeta, Dragon Ball Z
Best Cosplayer: bellastanyer
Supplies: Costume, Wig, Leggings
One of the main characters in Dragon Ball Z, Vegeta is the Prince of the fallen Saiyan race, and has evolved from villain to anti-hero to hero throughout the series.
The difficulty of this cosplay depends on how much you customize it. As seen by our chosen cosplayer, the female version of Vegeta is a popular choice. However, this does represent a more challenging cosplay.
26. Ran-Mao, Black Butler
Best Cosplayer: rinmieru
Ran-Mao is the personal assassin of Lau, a Chinese Nobleman who conducts business in the London underworld. Her outfit is a lilac kimono with embroidered butterflies and a blue cropped jacket, which is easy to obtain.
Compared to other anime cosplay ideas, the critical components of this cosplay are accessories rather than tailoring, letting a beginner make an effect without the need for additional skills.
Best Anime Cosplay Ideas: Conclusion
Thank you for reading our article on 25 anime cosplay ideas! We hope that it has showed you that anime cosplay ideas can be amazingly varied, range in difficulty, and readily available for everyone.
If you’re looking for a cosplay that lets you express yourself, then the best anime cosplay ideas we recommend are Pokemon. There are so many Pokemon available, and more being created all the time, so you have lots to choose from! You will definitely find the perfect anime cosplay idea for you among all those Evolutions somewhere 🙂
As always, we’d love to hear from you! Let us know what anime cosplay characters are your favorites in the comments. Have you ever cosplayed as an anime character? We’d love to see your photos and hear your cosplay stories!
As a child of the 80s and 90s, my journey into geekdom was fuelled by warrior princesses, NeverEnding Stories, magical creatures, sword fights, and people going off on adventures. Nothing much has changed really!
I’ve always been drawn to stories, and my two great loves are Star Wars and World of Warcraft. I fall in love with fandoms easily, devouring everything I can get my hands on including games, spin-offs, and extra material. As a huge animal lover, I’m constantly asking my fiance if I can adopt every cute fantasy creature I come across. Although we already have two cats, Milo and George, I would quite happily have many more – even a zoo if I was allowed!
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The more I scrolled down this list, the more I can tell this is ALL just clickbait. EVERYONE cosplays as these characters, so how are you going to “stand out” with these?