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How to Cosplay Male to Female (Crossplay Tips)

Have you ever had the thought, "I'm a man, but I plan on cosplaying as a female character"? Many men enjoy wearing clothes of a different gender, and some girls also like to dress up in men's clothes. Of course, when it comes to cosplay, there are no rules about portraying a character of the same or opposite gender. The cosplay world welcomes freedom of expression. In fact, you will see many cross-dressers, or should we say, transgender players in the cosplay world. It's not unusual to see a man wearing women's clothing to imitate his favorite female character. Like female transgender players, they enjoy dressing up as the opposite gender.

What Is Crossplay (cosplay)?

Crossplay (the term is a portmanteau of crossdressing and cosplay) is a type of cosplay in which the person dresses up as a character of a different gender. Crossplay's origins lie in the anime convention circuit, though, like cosplay, it has not remained exclusive to the genre. While it is similar gender-bending cosplay, it can be differentiated by the performer becoming completely immersed in the codes of another gender, rather than picking and choosing what behavior enhances the performance.

Male-to-female crossplayers (males costumed as female characters, sometimes abbreviated "MtF") are somewhat more common outside Japan. Originally, in America, a popular anime series for MtF crossplayers was Sailor Moon, creating "humorous effect and social levity".

How to Cosplay Male to Female (Crossplay Tips)

How to Cosplay Male to Female?

The specific methods for men to cosplay as women include choosing a character that you like, finding ways to minimize the physical differences between men and women, using wigs and makeup to make yourself look more like a woman, practicing postures and movements, and selecting suitable shoes and accessories to conceal your masculine features. Here are the how to cosplay male to female detailed step-by-step instructions:

1. Character selection

First, you need to understand the characteristics and image of the female character you want to cosplay, including cosplay costumes, hairstyle, makeup, actions, and personality. This helps male cosplayers better understand the character and create a more convincing image.

2. Reducing physical differences

Men and women have many physical differences, such as men having facial hair while women do not, women having breasts while men do not, women having less body hair than men, and women having a slender waist and round hips. Although these differences may seem difficult to hide, male cosplayers can use some techniques to achieve the desired female appearance.

  • It is important to shave any facial hair, such as a beard, as a clean-shaven face is easier to apply makeup to.
  • Wear a properly sized bra to make your chest look bigger. You can wear a padded bra or even buy fake breasts to make your male body look more like a female body, but be careful not to overdo it and make the breasts look unnatural.
  • If you are overweight or have a big belly, you can lose weight to make your body slimmer or wear a female girdle.
  • If your hips are not round enough, you can buy a Butt Enhancer Padded Underwear.
  • Expose your hand and foot hair. If the character you choose requires you to show your arms, it is recommended that you shave your hand hair and then use concealer to cover the pores. For leg hair, it is recommended to wear stockings or yoga pants, which can make your legs look sexier and slimmer while also hiding your knees and ankles.

These methods can help men create a more convincing female image and reduce the physical differences between men and women.

How to Cosplay Male to Female (Crossplay Tips) 

3. Wigs

Most men have short hair, so wearing a wig can help create a more feminine image and reduce male features. Choose a wig that is similar to the character you are cosplaying and consider your face shape. If your face is long and narrow, avoid wearing a long wig as it will only elongate your face further. A shoulder-length wig may be more suitable and feminine.

4. Makeup

Makeup is a must-have and can greatly change your appearance. Shave all facial hair before applying any makeup and use a cleanser to clean your face. Use concealer to cover any blemishes and then use foundation... We have a detailed article on How to do Cosplay Makeup for Beginners, please refer to it.

5. Posture and movements

Female postures and movements are very different from male ones, and male cosplayers need to pay attention to these differences when cosplaying female characters. Learn the posture and movements of female characters, such as walking, talking, and gesturing, and try to imitate them in your cosplay. Practice makes perfect, and even if you are more masculine or have a larger build, you can still disguise yourself as more feminine.

6. Shoes

Men usually wear sneakers or other flat shoes suitable for walking. When cosplaying as a female, you should wear high heels or other fashionable shoes to avoid revealing your true gender.

7. Accessories

Wear earrings or other feminine accessories to complement your female image.

Summary for How to Cosplay Male to Female

Male-to-female cosplay requires attention to many aspects. First, you need to research and understand the character you want to play, including their personality, clothing, makeup, and hairstyle. Secondly, you need to choose suitable clothing to create a female image, and you can consider using padding and shapewear to create the curves unique to women. Using makeup and hairstyles to emphasize your facial features is also an essential part. During cosplay, practice the character's movements and postures, and use accessories to enhance the overall image. However, the most important thing is to enjoy the process and be confident. Don't be afraid to try new things and show your creativity and personality.

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FAQs for How to Cosplay Male to Female

How do you contour your face for cosplay?

Contouring is an important technique for enhancing facial features and creating a more sculpted, three-dimensional look for cosplay. Choose contouring products that are a few shades darker than your skin tone, such as powder, cream, or liquid contour products. Apply the product to the areas of your face you want to define, such as your cheekbones, temples, jawline, and the sides of your nose, using a contour brush or angled brush. Finally, blend the product thoroughly using a blending brush or damp makeup sponge to avoid harsh lines. Use a highlighter that is a few shades lighter than your skin tone to accentuate the high points of your face, such as your cheekbones, nose bridge, and brow bone. Set your makeup with setting powder to prevent it from wearing off during the day. Remember, contouring takes practice and patience to achieve the desired effect.

How can I look very feminine?

To look more feminine, you can choose feminine clothing such as dresses and high heels, apply makeup that highlights feminine features such as the eyes and lips, try feminine hairstyles such as long or curly hair, take care of your skin by moisturizing and using sun protection, and pay attention to body language such as maintaining an elegant posture and walking confidently. However, remember that femininity is subjective and varies from person to person. Everyone should be free to choose and express their own style and personality.

What do you think about the acceptance of transgender players in the cosplay community?

The acceptance of transgender players in the cosplay community varies by region and community. Some communities and regions are very accepting and supportive of transgender players, while others may have discrimination and exclusion. However, overall, the cosplay community has become more diverse and inclusive, with more people understanding and respecting the rights and needs of transgender individuals and supporting them in expressing themselves in cosplay. Additionally, more organizations are dedicated to promoting inclusivity and diversity to create a more friendly and safe cosplay environment where everyone can freely express their interests and hobbies.


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