Manga and anime costumes are growing more popular as cartoons, graphic novels, and live-action shows are increasing, and Sailor Moon costumes are one of the most sought-after choices for girls of all ages.
About Sailor Moon
Sailor Moon is a popular Japanese manga character-a teenage schoolgirl named Usagi Tsukino (in the English translation, Serena)-who magically transforms into a mystical heroine with astronomical powers. She and her fellow classmates-also fantastical superhero characters-battle the forces of evil to save the solar system from destruction by harnessing the powers of the moon and stars. Sailor Moon actually has several different personas, giving fans several options for recognizable Sailor Moon costumes, including the reincarnation of Sailor Moon's ancestress, Princess Serenity, and several more powerful versions of herself such as Eternal Sailor Moon. Each persona, however, has similarities that can be used for any variation of this manga costume.
Elements of Sailor Moon Costumes
Through the different comics, television cartoons, and live-action shows, Sailor Moon's outfits and accessories have subtly changed, but each one has certain characteristics that make costumes easy to create from scratch. After all, because Sailor Moon is a human character, she does not require elaborate masks or makeup, and a simple costume can effectively convey her spirited personality.
Costume clothing is the first thing most people notice, and in many cases, it is also the most recognizable. Sailor Moon's signature outfit is a sassy version of a sailor suit, with a white, wide square collared top and a short blue skirt, both accented by big, floppy red bows-one at the collar and one at the small of the back. Bright primary colors and shiny, metallic fabrics are best, though alternative characters in the Sailor Moon series wear similar outfits in different colors and any costume in this style would be associated with the popular series. Sailor Moon routinely wears knee-high red boots, another distinctive feature of a realistic costume.
Odango Hair Styles
Sailor Moon's most distinctive feature is her "meatball" or "donut" hair style in her bright blond hair, properly referred to as an odango hair style. This style has two spherical buns on the upper sides of the head, each with trailing ponytails. To create this style:
- Tie hair into two high, even ponytails using thin ponytail bands.
- Twist each ponytail toward the center of the head to make it stiffer and easier to work with.
- Tie the ponytail into a simple knot and draw it tight to the scalp to form the characteristic sphere.
- Use a second ponytail band to hold the knot in place tight against the head.
This characteristic style is Sailor Moon's single most important feature; without it, her distinctive look is lost.
The key to a great costume is using the proper accessories for superior detail. Accessories to complement Sailor Moon costumes include:
- A crescent moon pendant, or crescent moons used as accents on the costume's clothing.
- A makeup compact, which Sailor Moon frequently uses to transform from Serena to her superhero persona.
- A small crystal tiara, particularly if you are dressing as one of Sailor Moon's more powerful variations or a princess variation.
- Body glitter on the arms, cheeks, or eyelids to add astronomical sparkle to the costume.
- A large, round, faceted crystal - the famed Silver Crystal that is one of Sailor Moon's power sources.
- White or pink accents on the costume - Sailor Moon's favorite colors.
- Large, shoulder-to-hip white angel wings if using the Eternal Sailor Moon costume.
- An adult black cat - perfectly appropriate for Halloween costumes, but in this case also representing Luna, the talking cat that first discovered Serena and introduced her to her powers.
Ready-Made Sailor Moon Costumes
If making a Sailor Moon costume from scratch isn't possible, several costume retailers do offer basic Sailor Moon costumes that can be purchased. The basic costume includes the classic red, white, and blue dress with floppy bows as well as the red knee boots and (sometimes) a small matching choker necklace. Online merchants who carry Sailor Moon styles include:
- Cosplay Magic for Sailor Moon gear and accessories.
- Hello Cosplay offers a full slate of Sailor Moon adult-size costumes.
- Milanoo offers a basic costume and various accessories.
Adding different details, including the odango hairstyle, to ready-made costumes can make them just as distinctive with far less effort than creating homemade Halloween costumes.
A few years ago Japanese animation was nothing more than an isolated fad, but today the dozens of colorful characters are popular icons for children and teenagers. Sailor Moon costumes are one of the favorite choices for girls, and there are many ways a girl can make her very own Sailor Moon style.