How to cosplay on TikTok!
If you didn’t know, the TikTok app is probably the most popular form of social media today. It only makes sense; video is far more popular today than photos. It pains me to admit that, because I prefer taking photos than doing videos. But TikTok is at the forefront of the video revolution, so to say. And the cosplay subculture is no different; cosplay on TikTok is a huge thing now!
So if you want to get noticed as a cosplayer, you’ll do yourself a lot of favors by production video content on TikTok.
But unlike other apps such as Instagram where we’ve had years of helpful advice and methods to craft the perfect cosplay photos, we don’t really have such a thing for TikTok videos. Like what the heck kind of cosplay videos are you supposed to produce on TikTok? How long do they have to be? Is there a script you need to follow?
In this post, you will find a complete guide on how to cosplay on TikTok. This will help you succeed as a cosplayer not only on TikTok, but online in general as well.
Without further ado, let’s get into it!
Should you use TikTok for cosplay?
While you may be used to other social media apps such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, TikTok is a whole other beast. I will expand more on this later, but I will say you should use TikTok if:
- You don’t mind spending more time making videos. Put shortly, creating videos (even short ones) take much more time and effort than getting a good photo on Instagram. Video is completely different, and you may or may not enjoy making cosplay videos (I certainly don’t).
- You like to be creative. TikTok is simply more than just taking a selfie for Instagram. It involves thinking of something cool or funny for a video. So if you’re into improv or skits, then you’ll probably love doing cosplay TikTok videos!
- You don’t mind being consistent. Much like other social media apps, you’ll need to post consistency in order to see any meaningful engagement or success on TikTok.
If you said “no” to all these things, then you may need to reconsider joining TikTok for cosplay. But if any of this got you excited, then you’ll probably enjoy this app!
Let’s move onto the next point…
Think of TikTok like doing skits
I remember when I attended Anime North back in the day, they had this really cool thing called the “Friday Night Skit Contest.” It wasn’t a Masquerade but a bunch of cosplayers doing random funny skits or dancing to random music. It was a lot of fun and a good time! I remember those funny Kingdom Hearts skits when it was popular back then.
And that’s how you should view cosplaying on TikTok; doing something entertaining for your audience on video!
While there are many types of videos that go viral on TikTok, the majority of cosplay videos are short skits. So if you want to do well with cosplay, you’ll want to do something related to this.
Cosplay TikTok video ideas
If you’re new to TikTok, you’re probably wondering what type of cosplay videos you should do. Oh man, when I first looked at TikTok, I had no clue what type of videos to do. But after seeing all my cosplay friends doing TikTok videos, there are many ways you can approach the app.
Here are some ideas you could do on TikTok:
- Funny and entertaining videos. You can’t spell cosplay without “play!” A lot of cosplayers simply make funny videos that make the viewer’s laugh. For example, dressing up as an Anime character can bring all sorts of entertaining situations. 🙂
- Re-enactment scenes. We all remember the most notable moments in Anime, video games and comics. What you can do is dress up in cosplay and re-enact those memorable scenes for your viewers. Not only do these types of TikTok videos bring back good memories, but it’s also interesting to see how it looks in cosplay!
- Informative videos. If you are skilled or talented in cosplay-making, then you can definitely make cosplay tutorial TikTok videos. You can do things like how to make cosplay armor, cosplay tips and tricks, etc. I’ve seen a few cosplayers share their tips and work-in-progress on TikTok and they do really well!
- Viral trends. I’ll talk about this later in this guide. But what you can also do is cash in on viral trends online and put a cosplay spin on it. As of this writing, I’m seeing a lot of videos of a kid snapping their fingers and the scene suddenly changes. Another current viral trend involves nostalgia from the 90s/2000s. So if you just make cosplay videos based on trends, you can do pretty well on TikTok!
- Whatever the heck you want! If you just want to have fun as a cosplayer on TikTok, then just make whatever videos you want. It could be random skits, your work-in-progress, a cosplay showcase, etc. After all, if it’s not fun to be on TikTok, then what’s the point of doing it? Don’t forget the purpose. 🙂
How to think of TikTok ideas
So you decided you want to take the plunge and join TikTok. But how do you come up with video ideas for the platform?
Here are some various methods to come up with video ideas:
- If you see something cool from an Anime, video game or movie. I believe that snapping fingers viral scene is from Stranger Things and that’s how it became popular. Stuff like this is why it’s so useful to be part of current trends. So if you’re watching the most popular Anime or playing the most popular video games, then write down the most memorable scenes. They could make for good TikTok video content!
- Keeping track of the current memes. There are always a bunch of memes that go viral. If you see one that’s popular you like, why not try doing the same thing on TikTok? (I personally like the ones with Thanos in it, they’re always funny!)
- The cosplay life. As cosplayers, we always have challenges and things we need to deal. Things such as lining up at conventions, cosplay malfunction and getting the wrong item in the mail are just some of the things we need to deal with. But these things would be great as TikTok videos in my opinion. Not only are these things very relatable to other cosplayers, but also great for comments, which in turn generate even more engagement.
- Write ideas down while going about your day. You’d be surprised at the creative stuff you can think of when you’re going about your day! How do you think I come up with a bunch of blog posts for this website? 🙂 If an idea ever comes up when I’m out and about, I write them down on my phone and expand on them when I get the chance. And I recommend you do the same when it comes to TikTok videos. You might come up with a really funny or crazy idea off the top of your head. It’ll be worth trying for sure.
Now that you have a good idea of what type of videos you want to for TikTok, let’s move onto the next thing;
|Viral trends are important||Requires more time and effort|
|Requires consistency||Audio is more important|
|Your cosplay skills make you standout||Video captions|
You know, it’s kind of ironic that platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and even YouTube are trying to be like TikTok. All of these platforms are emphasizing short-form videos to engage users. And this definitely applies to the cosplay world. So that’s how you know that videos have become the norm on social media.
With that said, when it comes to TikTok, there are quite a few similarities and differences compared to other platforms.
Let’s start with the similarities:
- Viral trends are just as important. On platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, posting cosplays that were viral got you the most attention. I’m talking cosplays such as Bowsette and Virgin Killers, both of which came about through viral content. Well, TikTok is no different. The most viral stuff will also get the most attention on TikTok. So if you like doing viral content, then you’ll love to be on TikTok!
- TikTok requires consistency. A lot of successful TikTok users always say the same thing; you need to post consistency and often. None of this posting a video only once a month…that won’t cut it! You’ll have to post a lot of videos before you see any noticeable engagement. And this was no different on Facebook and Instagram; on those platforms you had to post very often as well.
- The cosplay skills still make you standout. You may or may not know, but there are a lot of aspects in cosplay that make you stand out. Things such as makeup, modeling/posing skills and the quality of your costume/wig can turn your average content to exceptional content. You know this definitely applies to Instagram, but it also applies on TikTok as well. If you want to showcase your cosplay on TikTok, then you’ll want to improve your cosplay skills to look your best on video.
Okay, now that we gone through the similarities, let’s talk about the differences using TikTok:
- Requires more time and effort. Let’s face it; making videos takes WAYYY more time and effort than anything else. I can tell you from my own experience that making YouTube videos take much longer than writing a blog post. Video editing and filming multiple takes…that does eat up a lot of time compared to just taking photos or writing a blog post. Even if TikTok videos are meant to be short, you need to expect that producing videos will take more time to do.
- Audio is more prominent. Every time I turn on my TikTok app, I have a natural reaction to turn down my volume on my phone. Because I know a video is going to be popping up with some loud audio! Whether you like it or not, music is very big on TikTok. Unless the cosplay video is meant to be instructional, you’ll likely hear music on TikTok. The nice thing is that the app has tons of music you can easily insert into your video (unless you’re using a business account).
- It’s all about the video captions. Another noticeable difference between TikTok apps is the video captioning. Whereas on Instagram, you would make your own caption or read the one below the photo, on TikTok there is always a video caption. It serves multiple purposes: to set the viewer up for something witty, to inform them, or to use the auto voice generator. Either way, the video captions is one thing that separates TikTok from the rest.
What equipment do you need to do cosplay TikTok videos?
Since TikTok is all about videos, you might be thinking you’ll need some fancy equipment in order to create content. But that’s not true at all; you can literally make videos using your smartphone! As I mention in my cosplay photography guide, you should use the equipment first that you already have, and only upgrade when needed.
At the bare minimum, all you would need is:
- Your phone to film yourself
- A stand or tripod to hold your phone
- A smartphone ring light for optimal lighting
To me, those are the only three things you need to make cosplay TikTok videos! If you really want to go bare bones, then you could just honestly get a friend to film you in cosplay and viola, there’s your video.
I’m sure this setup will keep you satisfied for a very long time. You will know when it’s time to upgrade; it will come naturally. Maybe you’ll want a real camera to take higher quality videos. Or you want the lighting to be better, so you’ll buy some extra light stands to look prettier on camera. My point is, start with the minimum equipment and work your way up.
It’s okay if you don’t see success right away
Last but not least, I wanted to end off with some self-care advice.
Social media can be a peculiar thing, so if you don’t see success immediately, don’t panic. There could be many reasons why you aren’t getting the engagement you want, some of it you can control, some you cannot. Either way, don’t let it affect you mentally. Unless you’re doing this professionally, don’t forget that you’re cosplaying on TikTok for fun! And unless it’s fun, there’s no point in doing all this. 🙂
And there you have it; a complete guide on how to cosplay on TikTok! I hope you found this guide useful. 🙂
Are you planning to cosplay on TikTok? Or are you already doing it? What type of videos are you planning to post on the app? Let me know in the comments below!
My name is Roger Senpai. I’m a cosplayer that’s been in the community for well over a decade now. I’ve traveled all over the world to Anime and Comic conventions and hosted my own cosplay events. Now I’m writing articles for new and experienced cosplayers like you to help inspire, save you money and improve your cosplays!