Wanting to attend an anime convention or costume party but have no idea who to dress like? Why not dress like your favorite anime character from Death Note!?
Death Note has three awesome characters: Light, L, and Ryuk. Also, for cosplay, Misa Amane makes an excellent character to dress up as for any girly girl. This article has tips on how to dress like all four of these characters, as well as links on where to buy costumes for them.
Light Yagami Cosplay Ideas
Light is the anti-hero of the series. He becomes the serial killer known as Kira after he finds a Death Note belonging to Ryuk. Light believes his killing people is actually doing the world justice because when he initially begins killing, he only kills criminals.
He desires to rule his new world as it's god and maintain a world without sin. However, all the power causes Light to go insane. He is later killed by Ryuk after Ryuk grows bored with him.
Light's look is fairly easy to put together. He has a bowl-like hair cut, usually seen with ginger or brown hair. If you don't feel like dying and cutting your hair into his style, there are several wigs you can purchase online from sites like Amazon and eBay.
Makeup is not necessary, but if you really want to, you can go with anime eyes for him. In this article, you will find a video on how to do anime eyes.
His clothing varies, but he often has a polished, put-together look for someone so young. He tries to look older and more professional, so consider pairing professional attire with a youthful flair. For a very easy costume for Light, simply wear a nice dress shirt with khakis. Be sure to leave the shirt untucked.
For prop pieces, don't forget that Light almost always has his Death Note with him. You can purchase a Death Note replica online or simply make your own. You can do this by purchasing a black composition notebook and simply write out "Death Note" as seen on the anime and mangas.
Ryuk Cosplay Ideas
Ryuk is a Shinigami, or God of Death. A Shinigami is a demon creature that carries Death Notes in which they use to extend their lives.
Ryuk drops his Death Note, which is picked up by Light, and becomes Light's "friend". He actually intentionally drops his Death Note because he has grown bored with his realm and wishes to have a little fun in the human realm.
He has a somewhat humanoid appearance, with tall stature. He makes a very good character to cosplay with for people who are well over 6' tall. His skin is a pale, almost purple complexion.
Ryuk is extremely complicated and should only be done by people willing to put forth the hard work and effort to pull off the costume well. There is a great deal of makeup and imagination required to complete the look, which can end up being rather expensive.
Ryuk costumes are fairly easy to come by on Amazon or eBay, so it is often easier to purchase the costume from one of these sites so that all you have to do is concentrate on how to master the Ryuk makeup.
If you don't feel like wearing excessive amounts of makeup, a Ryuk cosplay can be mastered with a mask. Simply look for a ghost, vampire, or even a skeleton Halloween mask. You will, of course, have to make some adjustments, like the eyes and add some detail to the mouth, but all that can be performed with markers.
Hair, Eyes, and Teeth
With your teeth, you will need to obtain false teeth. Ryuk's teeth are very pointed and similar to a cat, so your simple Halloween fake teeth should work for this look.
For the hair and eyes, Ryuk has yellow eyes with black irises, so you're going to need to find colored contacts. He also has very large anime-style eyes. His hair is black, blown out, and spiked up. This look is easy to achieve, especially if your hair only comes to about your chin. Simply wash it, blow it out with a blow dryer, and use gel to keep the blown out/spiked look.
The makeup for a Ryuk cosplay is intense. You will need a heavy white foundation, powder, and concealer. The white needs to be spread throughout your entire face, as well as your ears and neck. Try using hypoallergenic makeup so that wearing it for a long time won't end up irritating your skin.
For the lips, you're going to want to create a Joker-like smile. It should look very Gothic and creepy, with it extending to the bottom of your cheekbones. Use a deep black lipstick and lip liner to complete this look.
Your eyes should be just as creepy as your lips and smile. Use black eye shadow, black liquid liner, and a black stick liner to achieve this look. With the liner and shadow, make a winged outlook past the corner of your eyes. Also, line the entire upper and lower lids, but still maintain the anime eye appearance.
When topping off your look, don't forget that Ryuk has wings. Some of the costumes you order online for him do not come with wings, but the wings can usually be purchased separately.
L Cosplay Ideas
In the series, L is an extremely talented and secretive detective. He is often used by the FBI and other agencies to solve their hardest cases. He is noted for never sitting properly. He is usually seen sitting in a crouching position. L is eventually killed in the series by Light.
L's appearance can come across as lazy and probably is, to a point. He is seen with large black bags under his eyes, blue jeans, and a white long-sleeved shirt. His hair is most notable—being a long, messy, almost pixie style cut.
There really isn't much to do if you're wanting to dress like Death Note's L for an anime convention. He has a very simple look of just basic blue jeans and a white long-sleeved shirt.
The most difficult part would be his hairstyle. Unless you are willing to grow your hair out and cut it into his exact style, you can get fairly close to his look by simply purchasing a wig. L wigs are easy to find on Amazon or eBay and you could even use a wig meant for a Naruto or other anime's cosplay.
L is also depicted as being barefoot. However, wearing something like Converse would work just as good if you don't feel like, or are not permitted to, walking around barefoot.
Misa Amane Cosplay Ideas
Misa Amane is a popular fashion model who, like Light, owns a Death Note. She also has a huge crush on Light and is completely devoted to him, despite the fact that he only uses her and doesn't reciprocate her love. Her story varies between the manga and the film, but ultimately it is believed that she kills herself after Light dies.
Misa Amane cosplay is very popular amongst women, so if you don't want to run into several other people that look like you at a convention, it's probably best to find a different character to portray. However, if you are simply wanting a character for a costume party, she has a very cute yet sexy look that would be great for such gatherings.
For her hair, she has long blond hair, worn straight, with bangs. She also usually has it in a half pig-tail look, with the majority of her hair worn down and two little pigtails on the sides.
Her makeup doesn't have to be anything outrageous. Anime eyes would definitely be fitting and would pull off the look nicely, but they are definitely not necessary.
So long as you pull off the hair and makeup properly, this cosplay is very simple and easy to do. One way you could complete her look is by wearing a black sundress with a simple black corset. Also, don't forget various extra accessories such as the stockings, possibly a choker necklace, long black gloves, and combat boots.
Her attire is very similar to the naughty Catholic school girl look with a bit of a punk/Goth twist. She usually wears elements of black, as well as long, knee-high stockings. One of her most popular looks is her wearing a black Gothic dress (as seen in the picture above).
Other Cosplay and Costume Articles
- How to Create a Lara Croft Tomb Raider Cosplay
Want to dress like Lara Croft for Halloween, cosplay, or a costume party? In this article you will find tips on how to achieve Lara's signature look.
© 2012 Daniella Lopez
Thedeathnoteholder on June 05, 2020:
It was amazing keep up the good work
Maurice Glaude from Mobile, AL on November 20, 2017:
Cosplay is getting so huge!
Daniella Lopez (author) on August 26, 2013:
Great tips, aliasis!
aliasis from United States on August 15, 2013:
Cool ideas! I cosplayed Death Note once, and found that even the easy costumes can take a lot of work. Makeup for L, for example, is extremely important - pale your skin and add lots of eye makeup. I'd wear makeup for Light, too, to keep the crisp "handsome boy" appearance. Death Note is an amazing anime/manga.
Daniella Lopez (author) on October 23, 2012:
Glad this was helpful to ya!
Loveofnigjht Anderson from Baltimore, Maryland on October 22, 2012:
I love this, you have givin me all that I need to start perfecting my eyes right now. Well written and thanks for the demos.
Felidae1994 on April 16, 2012:
This series is without a shadow of a doubt, the most awesome ive ever seen. Especially with how Ryuk looks, which btw(by the way) is totally hardcore, and how he acts, hehe, especially during the live action movie when light tells him he couldn't eat apples, if I may quote:*pause"WHAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" LOLOLOLOL!!!!*
Daniella Lopez (author) on January 12, 2012:
Nice! I think if I go to another convention sometime soon I'll probably go as Sir Integra from Hellsing. I just think she's kick ass. =P
DIMIR from Pennsylvania, United States on January 12, 2012:
That always kills it. My dream is to be CC from Code Geass someday!
Daniella Lopez (author) on January 12, 2012:
Thanks DIMIR! I had considered being her as well, but I was turned off by the idea once I realized everyone and their mother dresses like her, lol.
DIMIR from Pennsylvania, United States on January 11, 2012:
These are all great ideas! I've always considered being Misa ... but again "naughty school girl" isn't always the best fit. Thanks for the great and fun hub!