Cosplaying The Last of Us Part II -- Getting that Grungy Ellie Look Just Right

Achieve that moody guitar player of the apocalypse look with this quick cosplay guide!

Look folks, am I excited to play the The Last of Us Part II? Of course I am. Am I more excited about showing up in a fierce Ellie cosplay at next year's DragonCon? Ok, of course I am. She's confident, she's funny and lately she's looking like a total badass. 

So let's get down to brass tacks here. Where are we going to source the gear, how are we going to do our hair and how exactly do we get an aesthetically pleasing eyebrow scar without breaking out the kitchen knives?

First, Ellie's hair is at a convenient length; it's right in between what most of us have already. The quickest way to create that five-days-since-washed look, without actually going the five days, of course, is a bottle of conditioner or canola oil. Here's a helpful video (I just love how often she exclaims that a complete idiot could manage this process!). 

The chucks, denim over off-white, cut-up jeans and backpack should all be fairly easy finds. But, how do we get them to look like they survived an apocalypse? I'm glad you asked.

Here's a helpful video on distressing clothes, but the skinny is to wash them as many times as possible before your big event. Heidi (on the video) explains that using plenty of fabric softener and washing them with darker clothes will do the trick, but I happen to know my Goodwill down the street does a great job stocking naturally distressed clothes all year round.

After our clothes and hair are sorted it's time to take a closer look at this beautiful tattoo designed for Ellie by Natalie Hall. With some wax paper and eyeliner, it should be pretty easy to transfer a temporary version of the tattoo onto our guitar picking arm. If this seems like too much effort, you could always really blow your friends away and get the ink done permanently. Somebody's going to, why not you?

Last on our list is that new killer eyebrow scar (but don't forget the old killer eyebrow scar, either!). A couple shades of eyeliner will achieve the basic look, but if you want to go pro, you'll need to pick up some rigid collodian from your local Halloween store. The more layers you use the more your skin will indent, but for the love of God, please don't put this stuff in your eyeball. Optional is buzzing a line in your eyebrow, and let me tell you, I've always wanted to since Piper Halliwell rocked it on Charmed.

So, looks like I'll also be dragging my guitar through the Hilton at next year's DragonCon, but I imagine a baseball bat, bow or your trusty backpack would do the trick as far as accessories go. 

This guide is just the basics. Do you have any pro-tips to add? Have you already done a Last of Us Cosplay? Will we see as many Ellies as Harley Quinns next year? Let us know in the comments below! 



I am a professional freelance writer, bartender and JTP Mentor based in Atlanta, GA. I spend my days creating copy for hardwood floor companies or writing SEO driven blogs for call centers. I spend my nights trying to hear drunk orders over loud music. I spend my time in between writing for...more »

Published Dec. 10th 2016

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