How to Make Money Doing Cosplay

Are various conventions just glorified casinos? With that question, you’ll have to discern whether it’s a gamble to try to make money doing Cosplay. Of course, it’s possible to earn money. It’s also difficult. A minority of people, who do Cosplay get sponsored. Overall, there are three ways people approach making money doing Cosplay. First, people win contest categories for beginners. Second, Cosplay attendees look to make money in the competitive scene. The third approach involves self-promotion.

Casual fun

This approach to making money at Cosplay includes the majority of people, not unlike the general gamblers at Casinos. People, who find enjoyment in Cosplay, will use what he or she has around the house already to design and execute a costume. If you find that you have an affinity for Cosplay and want to enter a beginner contest category, you can. You won’t hit the jackpot, so to speak, but you can enter and win a small amount of money.

Competitive scene

The second category of Cosplay is competitive. You’ll throw down a lot of money to compete. Since Cosplay is so prevalent, there’s no shortage of people who will put in the time and effort for high-quality attire. Some competitors may have access to 3D printers and a team of designers because of how many people take an interest in events.

Many cosplayers have to compete at multiple events just to regain some of the money spent building a costume. It’s certainly an investment to buy material and put time towards production. Additionally, people are overseeing the events to keep the playing field fair. If you win at a convention, you’re not allowed to win the next year with the same Cosplay. That means you’ll pay for travel expenses to and from conventions to use your Cosplay a second time. You’ll not only pay to transport yourself, but you have to consider all the gear you’ll need – such as a makeup or costume kit for when you need backups due to a wardrobe malfunction.

Even more notably, you have to move up the ranks to keep competing, if you do well. You have to go with the system in that you can’t stay in the beginner category. That means you’ll continually be the small fish in a big pond. Arguably, it’s good that the competitions require that the participants not stay stagnant. However, for the interest of earning money, the participant guidelines post a roadblock.


Arguably, there aren’t enough Cosplay youtubers. If you can gain a YouTube following, you can likely make money. Of course, this depends on making money from YouTube ads. You’ll have to follow YouTube’s guidelines.

A good example of a Cosplay YouTuber is Kumi. She uploads consistent work, and her innovations prove inspiring to a lot of her followers. She even got a sponsorship from her YouTube work. Companies may send you merchandise to advertise by using it on your YouTube channel, or give you a link to post in the description. You’d likely make a commission if someone makes a purchase by following that link.


It’s rare to get sponsored, but not impossible. One reason why you may not get sponsored is because of Copyright infringement. If you’re representing a character that’s patented by someone else, then the sponsor takes legal risks by backing you. Some people get sponsored for designing and creating costumes by the company that created those characters. If you do get sponsored by a video game company such as Blizzard, that’s a huge success. In addition to financial compensation, you’ll receive recognition that can land you further sponsorships.

Non-monetary wins

If you win some competitions, you may have travel expenses covered. For example, if you win the world Cosplay summit section at Anime Expo, you’ll qualify to compete in Japan and represent your country. If you’re interested in cosplay, chack out this article to learn more about it!