With the increasing popularity of cosplay worldwide, many people want to participate in the hobby. Not everyone has time or the know how to sew, but it’s more than fine to participate despite that! This post is for you if you fall in to that category of cosplayer!
In the last year, I’ve bought or had costumes sent to me from various online sellers. Like my previous wig seller reviews, I wanted to provide a list of places you can get costumes from and what to expect!
Cosplay Seller Reviews
This line is the creme of the crop for premade cosplay costumes. They are made by the Japanese company Cospa, who produces licensed costumes and goods from popular anime series and games. While I don’t actually own a costume from them, I have handled them first hand.
They are made to the quality standards of a nice commercial garment. They are made of high quality material, have custom manufactured trims, buttons, patches- you name it. If you are looking for accuracy and quality above everything else out there, this is the place to look.
The costumes are expensive. Some are so much so, that for most people it will be out of their budget. This is why I don’t own any! Can’t afford them! They are also hard to buy if you live outside of Japan. They sell out fast, too.
There is a line TranTrip that Cospa sells cheaper costumes under. The selection is limited and just as hard to get outside Japan, however.
This is probably my favorite place to recommend for buying cosplay. Bodyline is a Japanese run store, but has an english site that international buyers can purchase from. I own a number of items from them. I will undoubtably order from them again in the future.
Cheap but good. Costumes range in price from $25-$65 on average from Bodyline. Some are more, but many are priced so affordably that it’s almost as cheap as fabric for some costumes. This is because these costumes are made just like commercial garments and produced in large numbers. This means the construction quality of these costumes is about what you’d find buying retail clothing. It’s shockingly nice sometimes. Most importantly, what you see is what you get. The product photos are accurate to what you are buying, which is a BIG DEAL. You can’t say that for all cosplay costume sellers. The costumes are in some cases a lot like Cospatio’s, if just a lot cheaper in details like buttons, ribbon, and fabric. Shipping is also relatively cheap at $10 for Airmail to the US.
The materials they use are on the cheaper end and some costumes come with bad lace or ribbon. Some, on the other hand, have custom made lace and decent material. It depends entirely on the costume, so scrutinize the photos they provide. You can tell what quality you’ll get from the photos. Sizing differs from item to item, so check measurements on everything you order. You can’t just bet you’ll be the same size with each costume.
Emily is a brand of nicely made Japanese maid outfits. There are a few cosplay items available through them as well, but the majority is all maid uniforms. I own several maid costumes from them. I love maid costumes and they are my favorite so that’s saying a lot!
So nicely made! These costumes are nice material and have flattering cuts. They are constructed well and are just plain cute!
They aren’t so easy to find outside of Japan, and don’t really provide much in the way of anime or game cosplay. I mostly wanted to include them as an option for those of you who might join a convention maid cafe or just really like the look of maid outfits like I do. Occasionally stores like Anime Jungle in LA will carry a few Emily costumes.
I received a costume courtesy of this company last year as a promotional item. I wore it as Nagato Yuki from Haruhi. This company is based in China, and features a huge range of cosplay costumes for sale.
The costume was accurate to the product photos. Big, BIG plus in my book. They also bothered to embroider the letter logo on the front of the uniform rather than paint or it appliqué on like lower quality sellers would. The tailoring on the costume was nice. These costumes are made to order, which can be good, but also bad depending on how you look at it. In this case, it was good. The costume fit, it looked nice, and I was happy with it. If you need a custom sized costume, this place is a good online store to go to.
Since it is made to order, it’s made by hand by someone after you send them measurements. This takes longer than ready made costumes and you might have to snip some loose threads here and there. Nothing really negative at all to me.
I ordered a costume from Haganai from this store with the intent of using it for a later modification tutorial. This store is also based in China.
The overall cut of the costume I received was good. It looked very much like the product photos. The jacket was fully lined and the material was of decent quality.
The trim was applied very poorly. In my case, this was a good thing because I promptly ripped it all off for the purposes of a tutorial, but if you aren’t in the mood to do some work on your costume you might be quite unsatisfied some aspects of your order.
FantasySheep is a Taobao store. There are so many sellers on Taobao selling costumes I could dedicate a whole post to it (and maybe will someday!) I have a costume from them, as does my roommate.
The quality on what we received surprised us because it’s very good! I’ve ordered from other Taobao sellers and ended up really disappointed in quality. FantasySheep has so far been the only Taobao seller I can fully vouch for. What we saw was what we got!
Ordering from Taobao outside of Chinese speaking countries is a major pain. You have to use a proxy service, which adds to the price (usually not an issue because Taobao sells things for notoriously cheap) and you often have to wait a long time to get orders. There is a big language barrier if you can’t read Chinese so just figuring out what to order can be a challenge.
FantasySheep has an ebay store, but it doesn’t seem to be constantly maintained. Things I tried to order from them via ebay never shipped and I had to be refunded. Ordering through the Taobao store via proxy seems to be the most reliable way to purchase from them.
That’s it for now! I’m hoping to try some other sellers in the future and will share those reviews with you. Hope this helps some of you navigate your way to better results buying cosplay online!