How to use We Love Colors Gloves for Body Paint Cosplays
Written by Aesthel
Cosplays with body paint can seem really intimidating at first, especially if you’ve never worked with body paint before. They can seem even scarier when the character you’re looking to cosplay has a lot of skin showing. Back in the early days of cosplay you could find so many horror stories ranging from unsealed body paint making a mess of convention spaces and rubbing off on other cosplayers, to the infamous Homestuck Sharpie incident. Luckily today there are so many more resources when it comes to body paint and cosplay!
One of our favorite “hacks” when it comes to cosplays with body paint are arm socks and tights. These are incredibly useful! Once we started using them we could never go back to painting our bodies the way we used to. Arm socks are long fabric gloves, typically made with a thin but opaque material. They are tight to the skin and when you match your body paint with the fabric of your arm socks they are perfect for creating the illusion that you are fully painted!
In 2002 the company We Love Colors was founded. We Love Colors is a unique clothing company and family-run business. They offer products in over 50 solid colors and 13 hand-dyed splash colors. We Love Colors found a loving spot in the cosplay community as people became aware of their products, which are perfect for creating the illusion of body paint! They just recently launched their newest product, Matte Seamless Gloves, which work perfectly for blending your arms into your colorful body paint for cosplays! They have many other products that can be helpful too like their tights and bodysuits for covering your legs or torso for a body paint cosplay!
We Love Colors saw how many cosplayers were using their products for these purposes, and they even made a helpful guide for matching their fabric colors to shades of Mehron body paint. Mehron is a water based body paint that is really easy to apply and use! If you are looking into other forms of body paint there are also cream based makeup and alcohol based makeup that you can try.
For our recent Dungeons and Dragons issue the Cosplay Realm team had the amazing opportunity to work with We Love Colors on a feature! Fantasy series like Critical Role often are filled with colorful characters, so it was a perfect match! Emily wore their gloves and tights in the shade Lilac for her Mollymauk Tealeaf cosplay and Aesthel wore their gloves and tights in the shade Sky Blue for her Jester Lavorre cosplay! Emily is using Mehron Paradise Makeup in the shades Violet and White mixed together for her cosplay and Aesthel is wearing Mehron Paradise Makeup in the shade Light Blue for her cosplay.
When it comes to cosplay there are a few things you can do to help your gloves come off as even more realistic! We’ll be going along with me, Aesthel as I worked on the gloves for my Jester cosplay.
Attaching False Nails
Attaching false nails to your gloves is the biggest thing you can do to help them appear more realistic! They don’t need to be anything fancy, the set that I used for my gloves was a $5 set of nails from Primark. To attach the nails I first put on a pair of plastic latex gloves, then put on my seamless gloves from We Love Colors over them. This was just so when I was applying things to my gloves they wouldn’t stick to my hands underneath. Then I just used a light touch of glue to the back of the fake nail and held it onto my glove until it was thoroughly attached.
Painting Hand Details
The hand details on my gloves was a pretty fun part! To help my gloves look more skin like I used a paint that was slightly darker than the fabric of the gloves. I used a small paint brush and did very light brush strokes into the lines and wrinkles of my hand. The main places to focus on were the palm and finger joints. I also did a little bit of shading around the knuckles and the wrist of the gloves.
Personalize For Your Character
Many characters have their own personality traits that can show through their hands. For my Jester gloves I decided to paint the fake nails a bright pink color. It might be easier to paint the nails before attaching them if you are planning on doing this, I kind of made the decision last minute so I carefully painted mine while they were attached to the gloves, making sure not to get any nail polish on the fabric. Other characters can have their own fun traits, for example in the case of Emily’s Mollymauk gloves she painted his tattoos on. She used a fabric paint to paint the tattoos while the glove was on her arm and stretched out to the proper size it would be when on her.
Finally after both working on personalizing our gloves we were completely ready to shoot or wear at a convention! You can see more images from our photoshoot in the Dungeons and Dragons issue of Cosplay Realm Magazine, available now!