Welcome to my very first blog post! I thought it would be fun to do an article focusing on every single step/detail taken to create a cosplay, and dedicate one post to each of my current costumes. Cheryl is my most recent costume, and despite the relative simplicity of it, I wanted to share everything I used to become the bombshell!
THE OUTFIT –
I bought my cheer uniform shell secondhand off another cosplayer, but it came from from The Cosplay Company–you can buy it here:
The skirt fit beautifully, but being an actual former cheerleader and dancer, the top was quite loose around the waist for a shell top. To fix this, I added a dart in the center back to taper it in at the waist. This totally did the trick! Shell tops should be form fitted, but still easy to get over your head with a fabric that has no zipper and little stretch (hence the usually wide necklines on these kinds of uniforms).
The white turtleneck was a lucky thrifting find–it still had the original J. Crew tags on! Any white long sleeve turtleneck will do the trick though :p. Or, you can forego that piece entirely since the cheerleaders on the show rarely wear it and just wear the shell top and bottom.
I also ordered some cheap poms off Amazon, but I won’t be linking them as they were pretty low quality (you get what you pay for, lol). The girls on the show use poms with stick handles, but I despise those so I bought what I thought were the typical dance poms that have the batons on the inside. Turns out they were a bizarre mix of the two, so that was my mistake, haha. Any blue, yellow, or blue AND yellow poms are perfect!
THE SHOES –
This is probably the simplest part as all you need are white sneakers! I wore my white low-top Vans, but in the future I think I’ll trade them in for some white Keds and higher socks.
THE HAIR –
Cheryl’s hair is a super iconic bright-but-natural red… I totally used to have this hair color a couple years back so I’m a little bitter I didn’t keep that color long enough for this costume, but luckily Amazon came to the rescue! I’d heard raving reviews about the brand “Kryssma” on Amazon, so I gave this one a try: https://amzn.to/31AkFQ8 (NOTE: I am an Amazon affiliate, so I will make a small amount of commission if you buy through this link!).
It arrived a little shorter than I wanted due to its super bouncy curls, but this wig is heat safe, making that a super easy fix! I used a straightener to relax the curls and re-curl them until I got a more natural looking curl to the fibers. Cheryl has super gorgeous and glam curls, so finding a balance between bouncy ringlets and beach waves is key :-). I also took the time to thin out the ends of the wig a little bit to make it look a bit more natural.
Side note: The wig lace is VERY light, which was great for me since I’m extremely pale, but this would be an issue for someone with darker skin. There are some methods of fixing that–I’ve had to lighten lace before to get it to blend in– but it’s something to keep in mind.
Once I brushed and curled and thinned the wig to my heart’s content, I sectioned off the very top section of hair to use for the ponytail. You could probably get away without teasing the front, but I prefer a little more volume on my hairstyles, so took that section of hair layer by layer and gently back brushed it for extra volume. If you want volume without having to tease the hair, you could totally use a Bump-it (if they even still make those)! Then I pulled it back into the high ponytail and smoothed down all the flyaways with some hairspray! I also gently pulled at the hair that had been pulled back to make sure the bump was visible.
THE MAKEUP –
Makeup has always been my favorite part of cosplay, so I was excited that Cheryl got to be a little more glam in comparison to the other River Vixens! You almost never see the girl without cherry red lips, so I used Maybelline’s Super Stay Matte Ink liquid lipstick in shade 20 aka Pioneer. I’m always on the hunt for lipsticks that will last me all day, even in ridiculous heat (I live in Sacramento where temperatures can hit 110 fairly easily), and this is the best one I’ve found at the drugstore. It lasts me through convention days, Disneyland days (we’re talking 8am-12am open to close days there), dance performances, you name it, this lipstick will look picture-perfect the entire time. If you want a higher-end option, I’ve heard Too-Faced’s liquid lipstick in “Lady Balls” is a good one!
I don’t really look like Madelaine, so I didn’t really bother to do a contour “transformation” look here–that said, I did overline my lips just a bit and mostly covered my cupid’s bow since Cheryl’s red lipstick is *that* iconic.
Otherwise, I did my basic photo-ready con makeup: foundation, concealer, powder, blush, contour, highlighter, eyebrows, eyeshadow, winged eyeliner, falsies, and mascara.
For a little extra touch, I added this uniglitter labs glitter just because the red hearts and pink glitter combination was too perfect for Cheryl!
Overall, this was a fairly easy, relatively cheap, and super comfy cosplay. Cheryl is such a ridiculous character and I love how recognizable she is! I hope this little rundown on how I put this cosplay together helped, and if you have any questions, just comment below and I can help you out!
Now, enjoy a few Cheryl pictures taken last weekend (more on my Instagram @justkaytlingrace). All credits to Daniel Iverson Photography–these photos are amazing!