Anyone who has worn a full-body #costume, #cosplay or #fursuit for any length of time can attest to the same thing: they can get hot! Just how hot a costume, cosplay or fursuit can become depends on a variety of factors. Some factors include the following:
- The amount of insulation that the costume, cosplay, or fursuit provides. The more insulating it is, the more heat & humidity will be retained near and around the wearer’s body.
- The materials’ ability to absorb and release heat. The easier it is for the materials to absorb heat from the outside, the warmer the wearer will become. If the materials aren’t good at releasing heat, this can also make the wearer become warmer.
- The amount of physical activity while wearing the costume, cosplay or fursuit. Physical activity raises body temperature.
- The amount of time that it has been worn without breaks. The longer the wearer has been completely covered by the costume, cosplay or fursuit, the more heat will be retained, making the wearer warmer.
- The wearer’s own body chemistry that affects how much heat they release. Each person’s body responds and behaves somewhat differently: some people release heat better than others.
- The amount of ambient heat and humidity that are present where the costume, cosplay or fursuit is being worn. The warmer the environment is, the warmer the wearer will become. So, the more people that are in the enclosed space of a convention hall, the warmer & more humid it will become, especially if the hall’s air conditioning system is inadequate.
- The amount of time spent in direct sunlight or near a heat source. Solar radiation heats objects, as can an open fire, heating vents, radiators, etc. Any of these can quickly increase the internal temperature inside of a costume, cosplay or fursuit.
Becoming too warm for an extended period isn’t healthy. This video explains some of the biology involved with body heat and how the human body responds to it:
If the body temperature goes over 98.6℉ (37℃), but remains below 104℉ (40℃), the person may experience symptoms of heat exhaustion. If the body temperature goes above 104℉ (40℃), heatstroke can occur.
This video explains how to recognize heat exhaustion and what to do if you see it happening to someone:
So, just how warm can someone get while wearing a costume, cosplay or fursuit? While we don’t have data for everything, a video was made in 2017 by wolfforce58205 where an infrared thermometer was used to estimate the temperatures of people who are wearing fursuits. Because of the fur and foam that is typically used in fursuits, they can become quite warm.
How to Stay Cool
Fursuiter Ace of Hearts Fox put out a video with tips on staying cool while in a fursuit:
This video by AnimeCons TV gives useful advice on staying cool:
The most important things you can do to stay cool are as follows:
- Stay hydrated. Don’t drink diuretics or alcohol, which will do the opposite.
- Take breaks: pace yourself.
- Design venting into your costume. Consider cooling fans and/or cooling vests.
- Management of Heatstroke and Heat Exhaustion
- wolfforce58205’s YouTube Channel
- Ace of Hearts Fox’s YouTube Channel
- AnimeCons TV’s YouTube Channel