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Unread 04-23-2013, 08:17 PM   #1
timeisgalleons
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I really want to cosplay Kuzco, but I'm really, really pale.

I don't want to overdo my makeup and look racist either.
This is me: x, and this is Kuzco: x.

Is there any way I could alter my skin tone without being super dramatic, but still looking a bit more dark than I am?
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Unread 04-23-2013, 09:58 PM   #2
Boreotheria
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I would say don't bother darkening. Put on a wig, maybe dark contacts, and with the costume you'll be recognizable.

If you darken your skin noticeably you're sort of edging into blackface territory or something similarly problematic. I know you don't intend it mockingly but that's what people think of when someone white tries to change their skin tone to something resembling a different ethnicity.

I think the most you should even think of doing would be to get a bronzing powder, which would give you a touch of a suntanned look.
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Unread 04-23-2013, 10:48 PM   #3
naruto_kh_fan
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Since you're really pale this may not work, but perhaps you could try tanning a little bit? 8)
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Unread 04-24-2013, 04:29 AM   #4
NotSoNiceNick
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You can always hop in a tanning bed for quick darkening results.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 04:31 AM   #5
Kelley
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I would personally not risk my health for cosplay any more than I do on a regular basis, so I'd look at fake self tanner or bronzer at most.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 06:49 AM   #6
Suntory_Times
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I say do it with your normal skin color. Ensure there costume is well done and I don't think many would care.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 09:39 AM   #7
ichigo_m.
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I think you'd look fine without any darkening agent. (:
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Unread 04-24-2013, 11:14 AM   #8
jaymcee
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If you want to darken your skin I would highly suggest spray tan and than add bronzer when you apply your makeup. I'm super pale, too (might actually be a few shades lighter than you!) and before I go to cons I get a spray tan (more so I don't reflect in photos!) The spray tan lasts about 5-10 days depending on how you care for the tan
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Unread 04-24-2013, 01:35 PM   #9
AshofRebirth
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People seem to really, really not understand what "blackface" is.

Darkening your skin if you want is fine. If you do it well, someone won't even be able to tell your skin was originally lighter unless you tell them lol

That being said.. if you don't want to start a whole 'nother debate about this (I'd advise against it), there have been multiple topics about this, each with good advice. Try using the search option. If the search is being wonky for you, try this: https://www.google.com/#safe=active&...1366& bih=667 (and type what you need after the "site:cosplay.com"

Man, it really irks me when people toss the term around. They are nothing alike >.<
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Unread 04-24-2013, 04:18 PM   #10
Boreotheria
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AshofRebirth View Post
Man, it really irks me when people toss the term around. They are nothing alike >.<
Which terms, blackface and..? I'm not being sarcastic here, I want to know what the other term was and I don't want to get this stuff wrong. (And yes, I can research this stuff myself, I'm not asking for anyone to take on the burden of educate-the-white-girl, but... I just want to know what the other term is so I can go google it.)

I know what blackface is historically, and I know people who are uncomfortable with skin-darkening even on the level of casual or convention costuming. That's all I wanted to warn against.

(And tanning beds. I'll add to the pool of warning against tanning beds.)
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Unread 04-24-2013, 05:16 PM   #11
Throatriptron
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boreotheria View Post
Which terms, blackface and..? I'm not being sarcastic here, I want to know what the other term was and I don't want to get this stuff wrong. (And yes, I can research this stuff myself, I'm not asking for anyone to take on the burden of educate-the-white-girl, but... I just want to know what the other term is so I can go google it.)

I know what blackface is historically, and I know people who are uncomfortable with skin-darkening even on the level of casual or convention costuming. That's all I wanted to warn against.

(And tanning beds. I'll add to the pool of warning against tanning beds.)
I think she just meant tossing the term "blackface" at any other form of skin darkening.

Blackface is offensive because it is historically used to demean African-Americans, over exaggerate features to the point of offensive absurdity.

That's a little different than just darkening your skin a shade or two.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 05:42 PM   #12
Boreotheria
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Throatriptron View Post
That's a little different than just darkening your skin a shade or two.
Well yeah. I suspect I'm guilty of the popular-media tendency to conflate the two (and probably also subconsciously confused by the concept of 'brownface' where TV and movie makers are more likely to put makeup on white people rather than hiring an actor who isn't white -- and that one's completely off topic when talking about cosplay). I apologize for lumping two different issues together.

I think it's still worth considering that some people are icked out by any skin-darkening, and maybe it would be a good idea to do a little bit of research and googling to find out what non-costuming people of colour think about it.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 06:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AshofRebirth View Post
People seem to really, really not understand what "blackface" is.
There's an entire community against darkening skin for cosplay, regardless of the cosplayer's intent. You might not agree with the comparison, but it doesn't change the fact that this community exists and finds it offensive.

I agree with others in regards to tanning or a bronzer, but I wouldn't use makeup to mimic another ethnicity unless you're prepared to deal with some backlash.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 06:41 PM   #14
Kelley
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To be really fair, who is anyone kidding saying that Kuzco is a respectful and remotely realistic representation of an Inca person or their culture ? The Inca were just wiped out by Spanish conquest and the new diseases the Spanish brought with them. So for some, they might see it as absurd and offensive that white people managed to destroy an entire culture and then made a family-friendly absurd movie based on it where all the characters are pretty much "white".

That's not "blackface", but just kind of weird and like how they cast white people to play any part they can whereas you almost never see the reverse. It's a huge problem and I think the OP is right to show concern for the situation. How can you not if you're aware of the problems we still face ?

I'm saying this as someone who likes the movie and the character. We can like something and admit that maybe it's a little problematic. Knowing that, we can figure out how to deal with it.

This is an issue bigger than cosplay. I'm personally fine with people darkening or lightening their skin for cosplay, but the problem is that it's not just us hardcore costumers you're interacting with - it's also with random members of the public and I think it's a good thing to take into consideration what they might think instead of being insular and then having someone have a negative reaction and being unprepared.
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Unread 04-24-2013, 10:51 PM   #15
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Racial debate aside (I am so not stepping into this one). A touch of bronzer can go a long way in adding a bit of color to an otherwise fair complexion.
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