Cosplay & The Heat
Cosplaying in the hot summer sun can turn your amazing
mascot suit, detailed suit of armor, or intricate layered dress into an
inescapable oven. Combined with lack of sleep, poor eating and skipping
out on proper hydration, the sun and heat can result in more than just a
little bit of discomfort. This article will cover how to keep cool at a
When choosing what to cosplay, consider the weather at the convention and where the convention takes place. If a con takes place in the middle of a hot summer and the location doesn't offer air conditioning, guy or girl that Slave Leia bikini costume starts to sound like a good idea. If the con takes place outdoors in the middle of winter, you're probably going to want to bundle up!
When planning your costume, think about:
- The season and weather (Is it summer?)
- The location (Is it indoors? Does it have air conditioning?)
- How you will be traveling to the location (Do you need to walk a couple blocks?)
- How many layers your costume has, and if they can be removed to help cool you down
- How heavy the costume is, and if you can carry that weight in the heat
- Does your costume restrict you from drinking water
- Does your costume breathe, and can you use lighter weight fabrics to make it?
- Should you include a cooling vest, or cooling devices?
Planning ahead goes beyond choosing a costume, it can
also involve planning your activities. Aim to do outdoor photoshoots
early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid overheating at noon, the hottest time of day.
Everybody Be CoolWhether you are in a bikini or mascot suit, when the weather heats up you'll start to feel it, so give yourself a break and take time to cool down. Keeping cool is important!
DrinkOne rule I have for conventions is to stop and take a drink whenever I pass by a water station (within reason, I'm not stopping for a drink every 5 minutes). Water helps regulate your body temperature and replenishes the liquid you lose when sweating, preventing dehydration!
Cons usually have water provided around the convention center and hotels for free. Sometimes they are out in the halls, sometimes they are located in the panel rooms. Don’t be afraid to ask con ops to direct you to where water is located! You can also carry around your own waterbottle and refill at these stations. If you have access to a freezer, you can freeze waterbottles overnight and have them melt during the day so your water stays nice and cool.
Take a BreakTaking breaks is important when you're in costume, especially if you are wearing something that is heavy, bulky or has a lot of layers. A break can be as simple as sitting down in the shade or a cool room, panels are great for this! Depending on how much strain your costume is giving you, you may want to: Set down props, remove some layers, take a nap or do some stretches.
When should you take a break? Listen to your body and take breaks when you are starting to feel the strain or when you have some downtime.