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Lara Croft Cosplay guide – building the best Tomb Raider outfit

With costume season coming up – yes, I mean good old Halloween – along with a ton of gaming/movie conventions, a lot of people are starting to think about the best and simplest way I can get a great costume without spending all my money. Never fear, we’re here to help – with tips and tricks to make a Lara Croft cosplay based off the recently released movie, which closely mirrors that of the 2013 Tomb Raider game, that’ll look great, won’t take you ten years to make, and won’t break the bank either.

Dare we say, this Lara Croft cosplay would be perfect to wear to EGX or even – if you’re super organised – could become a mainstay as a Halloween costume.

Lara Croft Cosplay – Green Cargo Pants

A key to every recent Lara Croft style, which is a far stretch from the retro PlayStation tiny shorts and a crop top, are her muddied up green cargo pants – and they definitely look like they’ve seen better days. The best way to do this, is to get a shiny new clean pair, like these from Amazon (yes, they’re on Prime too!) and weather them yourself, this can be a bit of an adventure in itself and there is definitely a tip I would recommend for this:

Creating rips and tears – This is entirely down to personal preference, and depends at what point in the film or game you really want to represent and how much you want to destroy a fresh new pair of cargo pants. A few recommended ways to create tears is to use sandpaper to remove the nice neat edges of a costume, using a wire brush to create fraying, or good old-fashioned arm work to rip straight through yourself. This can be used to weather pretty much the entire outfit, to look like you’ve been on an adventure, even if you’ve just been sat in your living room.

Lara Croft Cosplay – Conforming Bandages

Most pictures you see of new generation Lara Croft, she’s sustained a little bit of an injury and being an adventurer, of course, she’s managed to patch it up herself in the quickest and easiest way possible. Wrapping a little bit of bandage around your arm or your leg (over the top of your newly weathered cargo pants) is going to add a little bit of a more realistic adventurer feel to your costume, paired with a touch of fake blood.

Lara Croft Cosplay – Fake Blood

As I mentioned above, you never really see new generation Lara Croft without her having sustained some sort of an injury, and this fake blood is going to be perfect for staining clothes and bandages, even with its low price. If you wanted to rub it into your clothes, to create an injured look, I’d recommend using a small facial sponge to rub it in, to make sure it really sticks to the fabric and that way you can make sure you have complete control over the direction the smudge will be in!

Another alternative for Fake Blood, if you’re looking for a short-term solution for photoshoots, or even just taking selfies – is to mix a small amount of icing sugar, with a fair bit of red food colouring, it’s sticky and makes for a messy clean up, but can make great facial blood for nosebleeds or head injuries.

Lara Croft Cosplay – Grey Running Vest

Perfectly paired with her green cargo pants, new generation Lara Croft always features a grey (or light blue vest) – now these can likely be picked up in any store locally, or if you’re an Amazon shopper this Grey running vest is absolutely perfect to fit the costume, and has a nice low price, perfect if you want to keep yourself on a budget. As with the Cargo pants, all of Lara’s clothes look like they’ve definitely seen better days, so here’s another tip (along with the one mentioned above) to make your shiny new vest look a little more lived in:

Staining – A process well known by anyone who cosplays often, or anyone who did a terrible history assignment where they wanted to write on age-old parchment, is staining. Most often used to create a dirtied or old look, tea and coffee can be pushed onto the clothes to create stains that’ll age your clothes in a minute. Simple and cheap to do, all you’ll need is some budget tea bags (you can even make yourself a cup first!) and then place the soaked tea bags onto your clothes and leave them there for a while (the longer you leave them there, the darker the stain will be!), when you remove them, you’ll have made a new vest perfectly adventured in!

Lara Croft Cosplay – Leather Combat Boots

The costume wouldn’t be complete and ready for convention wear without some practical footwear for adventuring, ready to climb mountains, tackle tombs or just be on your feet all day strolling around a sweaty convention hall – You’re ready for it. Finding affordable footwear is relatively difficult when it comes to cosplay, so this is my option if you wanted something simple to order, that’ll be with you as soon as possible.

An alternative for finding a similar style of shoes, would be to check out Military stores or thrift stores – often they sell this style of boot and can be quite cheap if you’re willing to wait for a sale, but conventions wait for nobody, and these boots perfectly match the rest of the outfit we’ve laid out. No crazy staining would be necessary to weather these boots, I’d recommend taking a nice muddy walk in them if you want them to match the rest of your weathered costume though.

Hopefully, with the tips and tricks we’ve given you, you’re ready to tackle the tombs of the world, ready just in time for Halloween or a convention of your choice – Have fun adventurers!

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