Comic book artists quite often have the same sort of elements pop up in their costume designs. Jim Lee, for instance, is well known for how much he likes to use collars, either high collars or chokers. One of the all-time great costume designers, Dave Cockrum, used so many sashes on his costume designs that he even ended up drawing a cartoon mocking his own overuse of sashes by having a few of his characters pointing out the similarity in their costumes.

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When it comes to choosing a hero costume, it seems like there’s an endless number of superheroes to choose from. You could be the kind of hero who comes from another planet, or maybe one who gains their super abilities from some extraordinary set of circumstances right here on Earth. Or you could even be the kind of hero who had their mutant powers from birth. Whatever kind of hero you’d like to be, our selection of men’s superhero costumes is sure to have a choice that will suit your tastes. Check out some of these curated choices for our favorite and most popular costume selections!
Artist Dave Cockrum had already famously re-designed most of the members of the Legion of Super-Heroes, giving them modern revamps to their rather staid older costumes. His Lightning Lad re-design was particularly good, as while many of the character got later revamps over the years, Cockrum's Lightning Lad look became a standard one for the character for decades. Essentially, Cockrum was so far ahead of the game that when the team was revamped in the 1990s, his early 1970s design fit right in. While working on the Legion, Cockrum designed a new team of heroes called the Outsiders who were set to team up with the Legion. DC passed on the concept.
Part of the appeal of the character was his awesome costume, which was designed by C.C. Beck. Fawcett's attempt to make Captain Marvel different from Superman was to try to work the magic angle more with their character, as Billy Batson says a magic word, "Shazam!" to transform into Captain Marvel, Earth's Mightiest Mortal. As a result, Beck went for a more ornate costume than Superman's, with a lot of flair thrown into the design. Elvis Presley would later mimic a lot of the elements of Captain Marvel's costume for his Las Vegas show outfits. If your superhero costume is cool enough that the King of Rock 'n' Roll works it into his stage outfits, then we think that merits a high spot on this countdown.

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Scarlett Johansson is considered one of Hollywood’s modern female s.x symbols and is often listed as one of the most beautiful women in the world. The Johansson plays Natalie Rushman and superhero Iron Man Tony Stark’s assistant in the film Iron Man 2. Dressed in a black body suit complete with guns and bullets, we think Johansson looks awesome with those gorgeous locks. She also has played popular Marvel comic book character Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff in the film The Avengers, and will reprise the role in Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014).
Debuting in “Cry for Dawn” #1 way back in 1989, the character has only show up sporadically throughout the decades. However, when people think of the hottest female characters in comics, she’ll always rank highly. She is so defined by her looks that Dragon Con held a Dawn look-a-like contest from 1998 to 2010, even when the character wasn’t seen in any recent comic books. Now, don’t think that we are somehow saying that the character isn’t a great character because her looks are so important, but rather that the iconic design by Linsner has allowed the character to live on through the years based on looks alone.
Here, we will take a look at the very best of the best when it comes to superhero design. Do note that we are working with at least one major caveat, that the superheroes in question have iconic costumes. It does not do you much good to have a really cool costume if no one knows who you are. As a result, we are heavily weighing in the cultural impact of the costume design when we rank them. Where does a costume stand, historically, within the medium itself? That is one of the most important questions that we address when we start our ranking of the best superhero costumes of all-time.
Oddly enough, this is the second entry on this countdown where a writer came up with a basic design and then John Romita turned it into a classic costume. When he was working on a new character to be a sort of villain (more like an anti-hero) in his run on Amazing Spider-Man, Gerry Conway came up with the design of the character having a skull on his chest. Marvel Art Director, John Romita, who had been working closely with Conway on Amazing Spider-Man, despite Romita no longer actively drawing the series anymore, took that idea and turned it into the famous Punisher skull costume. No matter what else you may think about the Punisher, that skull design is amazing.
Bomb Queen is actually a villain, but she has her own titular comic book series in Image Comics and, given her ridiculously revealing costume, it would be criminal not to include her. She first appeared as recently as 2006 and has eliminated and banned all superheroes from the fictional city she lives in - New Port City. She rules the city as its dictator and is a popular leader amongst the criminals who reside there.

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Silly as it may seem, the 1960's Batman TV show had a lot going for it in the costume department. While Adam West's Batman was less a dark knight than a kind of schlubby guy in tights, Burt Ward's Robin was almost a direct translation of the Boy Wonder's classic look, pixie boots and all. Additionally, Yvonne Craig's flashy, sexy Batgirl defined the character's look in a way that is still felt in modern takes on the costume, where it's common place to inject some purple into Batgirl's palette.


Much of the success of the film's visuals owes to the physical performances of the actors in the suits, but even more of it is thanks to the atmosphere and carefully crafted darkness of the film's entire look. Of course, as more live-action Turtles films debuted, their visual language began to skew ever closer to the hugely popular films, cutting their effectiveness. The Turtles received updated looks in the recent Michael Bay produced reboot to wildly mixed reactions.
Catwoman has no shame about her preferred choice of action, stealing and being a top notch catburglar are at the top of her list. But when the times call for a hero, she has no problem standing side-by-side with Batman to team up and defeat the baddies. When she’s on the prowl for precious jewels, though, is sure to be the most opportune time for a quick picture. Once she takes out the vital controls of the security system, she’ll have no problem slipping into the joint and lining her pockets with a little extra cash or whatever she can find in the safety deposit box. Have her show her claws for the picture, and she can smile or look serious—either way this picture is going to be one to remember!

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In the late 1960s, Marvel wanted to make sure it got control of the name "Captain Marvel" for trademark purposes, so Stan Lee and Gene Colan quickly came up with a character to go with the name. For the costume, creators had him wear a literal Kree captain's uniform, which in this case was a green and white outfit with a little flair to it. It was a decent enough costume for a rank and file character, but it was a weak design for a superhero. Unsurprisingly, the Captain Marvel series was a hard sell for Marvel. Marvel needed to keep it going, though, so the company brought in Roy Thomas and Gil Kane to revamp the series.

He’s bold, he’s brash, he’s genetically enhanced. He’s Captain America, the patriotic Marvel hero who’s ready to throw down to defeat Nazis, Hydra, or any other threat facing his country. Chris Evans brought Captain America to life in the popular Marvel Universe movies, and Captain America: Civil War took the actions to new heights. He also brought some new threads to the Cap’s look, with a modern take on the classic blue design of his uniform. This boy’s superhero costume will let any little one become the classic American hero. Vivid colors bring to life the polyfoam-molded muscle effects, and printed costume details like the attached foam belt and shoulder straps recreates the movie style in true form. This costume is completed with a vinyl half mask, all he’ll need to do is put it on and practice a very stoic face for all of the photos.


As noted earlier, patriotic-themed heroes were hot in the early 1940s. America was going through a strange period of both isolationism and nationalism at the same time. Americans were really proud of their country, but also didn't want to get involved in the war in Europe. Patriotic-themed heroes captured that feel, by having noble American heroes defeat villains who dared to come over here to mess with us. Things got bolder, though, when Timely Comics introduced Captain America, who broke out of the isolationist viewpoints by having the lead character punch out Adolf Hitler on the cover of the first issue, a full year before the United States actually went to war with Nazi Germany!

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Unlike Emma Frost, who arguably has a story reason to dress how she does, Psylocke is scantily clad only for the reader’s enjoyment. Sure, you can say that she is supposed to resemble a ninja, but you’d be hard-pressed to find other ninjas outside of the Marvel Universe dressed this way. She’s also a character that was reimagined as a sex symbol. Before her famous outfit, Psylocke was a pretty boring looking character. It wasn’t until she lost her pants and bent over all the time that readers really started to care about the character enough for her to garner enough focus resulting in some true character development. Her costume is so iconic, it’s one of the few costumes featured in the “X-Men” films that is almost completely untouched from its comic book counterpart. Goes to show you how much the costume defines the character.

Sometimes mutant powers are really just the thing to bring a group together, and if your gang is ready to put their super human abilities to work, then there’s only one team for you: The X-Men! Storm can command the team while Cyclops keeps opponents at bay with his concussive optic blast. If you have a quick-witted member of your group, a Deadpool Halloween costume is sure to turn them into the crass and sharp-tongued Wade Wilson. Up the ante by getting a friend to go in a Wolverine costume, and you’ll have one mutant posse that no villain is going to want to tangle with. We heard Wolvie’s usually hungry though, so you’re going to want to bring plenty of snacks. “Hey. Pass the chip dip, bub!”
The comic book version of Thor has never really been a sex symbol. Sure, he’s incredibly good looking, as the God of Thunder probably should be, but he’s never been viewed as sexier than, say, Wolverine. However, when Thor debuted on the big screen, anyone with eyes saw that Chris Hemsworth’s Thor is most definitely a sex symbol. It’s become so much of an issue that the recent Thor shorts directed by Taika Waititi even poked fun at Thor’s big muscly physique. His looks are so vital to the character that when fans saw his new look in “Thor: Ragnarok,” they obsessed over his haircut more than anything else.
There were some slight changes from Ditko's armor to the one featured here, mostly with the face mask, but since those changes were made, that basic design has been fairly consistent. Now, Iron Man's armor has obviously been altered in other ways as technology has changed, but the basic yellow and gold design has been used almost exclusively since then. No matter how fancy the armor gets otherwise, the yellow and gold set-up is a catchy design. 

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Thomas cleverly adapted the concept of the original Fawcett Captain Marvel by making it so that Rick Jones and Captain Marvel change places whenever Rick clangs two Nega Bands together. Kane, meanwhile, re-designed Marvel's costume, giving him a primary color extravaganza. It was bright, it was bold, it was a complete 180 from the drab outfit that Mar-Vell wore before. In recent years, when Carol Danvers took over as the new Captain Marvel, Jamie McKelvie's take on her new outfit adapted the color scheme and a lot of the elements of the original Kane design.


Lynda Carter is an American actress and singer, best known for being Miss World USA 1972 and as the star of the 1970s television series The New Original Wonder Woman (1975–77) and The New Adventures of Wonder Woman (1977–79). She fight with her magic belt and lasso, a tiara which she uses like a weapon and a bracelet that can stop bullets, in The New Adventures of Wonder Woman.
Here, we will take a look at the very best of the best when it comes to superhero design. Do note that we are working with at least one major caveat, that the superheroes in question have iconic costumes. It does not do you much good to have a really cool costume if no one knows who you are. As a result, we are heavily weighing in the cultural impact of the costume design when we rank them. Where does a costume stand, historically, within the medium itself? That is one of the most important questions that we address when we start our ranking of the best superhero costumes of all-time.
Soon, other artists streamlined Shuster's original design and made it look more like spandex. Thus, the classic Superman look was born. This was not just the ideal Superman look, but it became the ideal look for superhero costumes period. The success of this design informed essentially every superhero costume ever to follow after it. For a character as popular as Superman, who has been adapted into so many different forms of media, it is an amazing testament to how good his first costume was that when Action Comics hit #1000, Superman was wearing essentially the same costume that he wore 999 issues earlier.

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