Lingerie for Cosplay: What to Wear to Comic-Con

the lingerie addict as black widow

My Black Widow Costume

Alexis’ amazing guest post about lingerie and cosplay a few weeks ago got me thinking. Though I’ve never attended San Diego Comic-Con, I do attend Dragon*Con and Emerald City Comicon and Portland Comicon pretty regularly. And while I don’t think of myself as a “cosplayer” (in my opinion, that implies a level of skill I simply don’t have), dressing up is definitely part of how I have fun at these conventions. One of my costumes last year was Black Widow (shown above), and the year before that, my husband and I dressed as Spock and Uhura. Even when I’m not impersonating one of my favorite characters at the Con, I still like to dress up in corsets and petticoats and the like. Why? Because it’s fun. And what better place to wear your most fanciful, extravagant lingerie than Comic Con?

the lingerie addict fashion forms bra

The bra I wore under that Black Widow costume.

That said, finding undergarments that work for your costume is a unique challenge in and of itself. Most lingerie isn’t made for costuming purposes, and when you’re wearing a jumpsuit made of spandex all day, little details like seaming and fabric composition matter even more. Many cosplayers make their own pieces, but if you don’t know how to sew or don’t have the time to or would just prefer to have a pre-made base to work from, there are some undergarments out there that can help you. Below is a brief-ish list of some brands and pieces I think are a particularly good fit. Note: With the exception of the bra sized items, many of the garments below (shapewear, knickers, hosiery, etc.) are available in plus sizes.



Bras and Nipple Covers:

fashion forms bra solutions

All by Fashion Forms

When it comes to solution-focused underpinnings, Fashion Forms is the leader in this space by a country mile. The bra I’m wearing up above is their U-Plunge, and I was very happy with how it performed (especially since many of the reviews were less than stellar). In addition to super plunge bras, Fashion Forms makes nipple covers, adhesive bras, breast enhancers, strap converters, double-sided tape and shoulder pads. They’d be my first stop if you need a special brassiere for cosplay. However, there is one caveat: many of their cup size bra solutions are not made for fuller busts (above a DD cup or so). That’s because a bra without a band (which is what a backless/strapless style is) won’t be able to support the weight of a heavier bust. If you’re looking for a lot of shaping, support, or structure, these wardrobe solutions may not be for you. Finally, if you’re looking for recommendations on quality binders to wear, check out this post by our columnist Rose.

nippies nipple covers

All by Nippies

When it comes to nipple covers, I’m a huge fan of Nippies. Not only do they make reusable silicone nipple covers in more than one skintone, their regular adhesive nipple covers come in a wide variety of styles and colors. It’s a great way to incorporate your breast cover into your costume (or just to ensure that you have an extra layer of protection if you’re wearing something very low cut or sheer). To get a sense of how well they blend in, take a look at this photo from my Instagram.

Knickers:

commando knickers

All by Commando

When it comes to knickers, a lot of people recommend thongs to avoid visible pantylines, but they’re not your only option. You could also try seamless/laser cut knickers or knickers with seams lower than your cheeks (such as boxer or full brief styles). Commando’s known for their invisible edges. The new Hanky Panky Bare collection also gives that seamless look (and is available in multiple skintones).

hanky panky bare

All by Hanky Panky Bare

Sometimes though, you want the exact opposite of invisible. If you’re looking for panties that are meant to be seen, try frilly knickers or pin-up style briefs. For frilled pants, take a look at Playful Promises or Leg Avenue.

playful promises frilly knickers

All by Playful Promises

leg avenue frilly knickers

All by Leg Avenue

For pin-up style briefs that are opaque enough for wearing out of doors, I highly recommend Rago Shapewear. They’re my go-to when I need a fuller cut knicker. They also make a range of padded briefs if you need those for a costume.

All by Rago Shapewear

All by Rago Shapewear

Finally, if you’re looking for something completely off the beaten path, check out Knickerocker. Because who doesn’t want a pair of panties with a bear’s face or a cupcake on them?

knickerocker

All via Knickerocker

Bodysuits and Shapewear:

va bien bodysuits

All by Va Bien

All by The Body Wrap

All by The Body Wrap

When it comes to shapewear, a lot of people think Spanx, but as you’ve probably guessed, they’re not your only option. Bodysuits and shapewear can both serve as underpinnings for your costume or as the foundation for making a costume. Va Bien makes several amazing bodysuits, and they’re also known for their strapless bras and bustiers. There’s also The Body Wrap which makes seamless shaping camis, shorts, and briefs in addition to bodysuits.

fashion forms u plunge backless strapless bodysuit

Fashion Forms

Fashion Forms backless/strapless u-plunge bodysuit may also be the perfect option for some people.

vedette shapewear

All by Vedette

squeem shapewear

All by Squeem

While if you’re looking for super intense shaping (i.e. just short of a corset), consider Vedette or Squeem. Both are known for for being pretty hardcore; their latex shapers sculpt the body to dramatic effect.

Hosiery:

All by Danskin

All by Danskin

Comfortable hosiery makes a big difference for your cosplay. Cheap hosiery is good in that it’s cheap (so you can toss it at the end of the night), but it can also be intensely uncomfortable after a long day of wear. Some people recommend dancer’s tights, which are available from Danskin.

leg avenue hosiery

All by Leg Avenue

Leg Avenue has the most comprehensive selection of cheap hosiery anywhere…in terms of both size and style. And they’re so cheap, you don’t have to feel bad if you tear them or spill your drink on them. Speaking from personal experience, I’m usually ready to chuck my Leg Avenues by the end of the night, and that’s okay.

pamela mann legwear

All by Pamela Mann

For prints and patterns, take a look at Pamela Mann. They’re also inexpensive, which is perfect when you’re looking for an unusual or funky design to complete a costume.

All by We Love Colors

All by We Love Colors

For colored tights, both opaque and fishnet, you must visit We Love Colors, which has over 50 colors to choose from.

All by Sock Dreams

All by Sock Dreams

Meanwhile, if you need socks, Sock Dreams is the place to go. They’ve got more styles and lengths than basically anyone. They also carry a few select accessories which may be useful for your costume, like gloves and petticoats.

stockingshq skintone hosiery

All from StockingsHQ

Lastly, if you’re looking for nude or skintone hosiery, try StockingsHQ. They carry most every major hosiery brand in a variety of deniers (sheer vs. opaque) and finishes (shiny vs. matte). They also sell both stockings and pantyhose. My favorites brands are Pendeza, Cervin, Pretty Polly, and Gio. If you’re looking for more resources, we’ve covered this particular topic a couple of times on TLA here and here.

Corsets:

All by Timeless Trends

All by Timeless Trends

All by Orchard Corset

All by Orchard Corset

Many people enjoy wearing a corset at Comic*Con, and I recommend purchasing one ahead of time. Getting your corset in advance is way better than settling for something overpriced (and possibly even poorly made) from the showroom floor.  Timeless Trends and Orchard Corset both make good, inexpensive corsets for cosplay, and Timeless Trends even has a dyeable option.

All by What Katie Did

All by What Katie Did

At a higher price point (but still available off-the-rack for fast delivery), What Katie Did sells astoundingly high quality corsets. They’re also ethically produced, in case that little fact is relevant to you.

Lastly, if custom corsetry is more your speed (such as, for example, if you’re looking for a Playboy Bunny or Emma Frost costume), get in touch with Sweet Carousel and Castle Corsetry. Neither designer had marketing images of their costumes I could use in this post, but both have examples of their work on their respective Facebook pages (linked in the previous sentence). I highly recommend checking them out.

Catsuits:

All by Tasty Tiger

All by Tasty Tiger

Finally, I really like the catsuits from Tasty Tiger. They’re actually the designer behind the “Black Widow” catsuit I’m wearing at the top of this blog post! Though you can definitely find less expensive catsuits to use for the foundation of your costume, I believe it’s important to buy a solidly constructed one. The very first catsuit I purchased (for a last minute Misty Knight costume) was so poorly made that it actually tore over my rear before the night was through! Not a good look. I was super happy with the fit and comfort level of my purchase from Tasty Tiger.

A Few Last Words:

While this list is expansive, it’s by no means comprehensive. I know there are tons of other designers, labels, and names that I’m less familiar with, and so have been left out. If you have a source for lingerie-related costume magic that you love, please share it in the comments! And of course, I’d love to see your own lingerie-inspired costumes!

Do you attend Comic*Con? And what characters do you like to dress up as?

Mad Mimi Form

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Cora
Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. I started TLA in a small studio apartment in 2008. Since then, it's become the leading lingerie blog in the world, and has been featured on the websites for Forbes, CNN, Time, Today, and Fox News. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that every who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

2 Comments on this post

  1. Fabulous post! Several of my new lingerie models are into cosplay, and this will give them (and me!) some new ideas for their characters, and for niche markets for the lingerie lines I carry. I especially like the Nippies!

  2. Andrea says:

    Thanks for a fantastic post! I incorporate a huge variety of costuming into my dancing, and it’s great to know my lingerie options, both as inner layers and as outerwear! I always enjoy your blog–keep up the great work!

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