Incorporating Wigs into Cosplay

I started cosplaying in 2013 when I attended my first convention. Me and my friend thrifted overalls for a Mario & Luigi cosplay. My interest in cosplay developed since then as I have cosplayed Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn, the Punisher, along with a variety of other characters. I set two personal rules for cosplay. The first rule I had was to wear comfortable shoes. I have no problems wearing heels for a nice dinner where I know I won’t have to walk too far. At a convention, I know that I walk everywhere, so I will not wear uncomfortable shoes and be miserable the entire time I’m there. The second rule was to never wear wigs. I figured wigs were itchy and I didn’t want to be uncomfortable. Recently, I started wearing wigs for certain events and I realized I was wrong. I wasn’t itchy or uncomfortable, and I loved how wearing a wig elevated my cosplay. I wanted to talk about my experience with wigs.

My first experience wearing a wig was for a friend’s birthday party. She was hosting a color party where each person would be assigned a color and had to wear that entire color. I told my friend to give me the color no one wanted because I wanted a challenge. The color I was assigned was orange. I ended up finding a short orange bob wig on Amazon and paired that with orange tights, an orange crop top, and orange shorts. Included in my wig were various wig caps to ensure that my hair was put up and out of the way. The wig I bought fit my head perfectly, and I didn’t have a problem getting the wig on my head and staying on. Unfortunately, I ended up throwing the wig out because I think someone spilled a drink on it? It smelled like booze, sweat, and it was clear some of the hair fell out through the night.

Besides the orange wig, I ended up renting Halloween costumes this year since I didn’t have time to plan out my costumes. I used Royal Fashions Costume Emporium to portray both Alice in Wonderland and Daenerys. Both costumes utilized the same blonde wig. Similar to my orange wig experience, I loved this wig. I felt sassier portraying Daenerys and part of the reason the look came together was because of the wig. The more I incorporated wigs into my cosplay or costuming, the more I became a part of that character. I slowly started to realize how wrong I was about wigs.

I’m still new when it comes to wearing wigs, so I find I’m still learning how to care for a wig to ensure it lasts longer. I found in both experiences I had, it’s important to find a wig that fits. This is an obvious statement, but it’s still important. If the wig is too small, it won’t fit and that can lead to excess rubbing. Additionally, I think wearing a wig cap is crucial. This keeps the hair in place and prevents any itchiness. Both of these statements may come across as being unhelpful, although coming from someone who didn’t like wearing wigs, I found that this helped me in overcoming these negative pre-conceived notions I had towards wigs.

For my future cosplays, I plan on ensuring I have a wig to match if that’s necessary. I have a long orange wig hanging near my closet that I still have to use. I want to make a Keyleth cosplay from Critical Role or use it for a future Starfire cosplay. I’m excited to start incorporating wigs into my cosplays!

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