Costume Guidelines for Denver’s Pop Culture Con

Whether you’re a family that likes to dress up together or you have a teen who wants to go to Denver Pop Culture Con, the costumes are part of the fun. However, over the last few years, the rules have changed, and whether or not they’re always enforced, there are some strict rules for cosplay at this year’s Denver Pop Culture Con.

We have taken their rules and boiled them down to a usable format. Let us know if you have questions and we’ll ask, so hopefully, you and your possibly disgruntled Super Hero, Lea look-alike or Hogwarts fan won’t be disappointed.

Denver Pop Culture Con is family-friendly. Keep it PG.

This list is not all-inclusive and should give you guidelines using these as examples.  The current guidelines are as follows, and may be changed at any time, based on circumstances: Denver Pop Culture Con reserves the right to make judgment calls as needed on all elements of costuming and props, and these guidelines are subject to change at any time and without notice.

A prop is defined as an object you carry as part of a costume. Cosplayers will be given a wristband and the prop will be marked daily to indicate that they’ve been checked and peace-bonded prior to entry by Denver Pop Culture Con security staff.

If you purchase a prop at the show, the vendor must provide you with a wrist band and the prop must be peace-bonded. It is your responsibility to request this if not automatically provided; should you be observed without the wrist band and/or the weapon peace-bonded, you will be required to remove it from the premises immediately. You may be re-checked at any time.

Every time you leave and re-enter the Colorado Convention Center your prop will also need to be re-checked. Denver Pop Culture Con provides NO on-site storage of props or costume pieces. Anything not allowed will need to be returned to your vehicle or hotel room or must be thrown away.

Costume Guidelines

  • Chests must be covered regardless of gender identification
  • Tops must be secure and of sturdy construction to avoid inadvertent “oops” moments and must be secured by more than glue
  • No thongs or exposed backsides
  • No sheer materials/illusion of nudity
  • Body paint by itself does not constitute proper coverage
  • Makeup must be properly sealed so that it does not rub off with casual contact or make a mess
  • Shoes must be worn at all times
  • Any military dress that appears realistic must be distinguished in some way as costume and cannot be mistaken for current military or law enforcement
  • Hateful symbols and emblems of genocide are strictly prohibited

Prop Guidelines

Generally approved materials are foam, rubber, cardboard, paper, light plastic, or cloth.

In general, if you can hurt someone by hitting them with the prop intentionally or otherwise, or if it resembles a gun of any kind or shoots anything (even water or Nerf foam), it is not allowed.

Examples of Allowed Props

  • Wands of rubber or plastic construction
  • Lightsabers made of plastic, including ultrasabers (sabers with a metal hilt)
  • Loosely strung plastic bows with non-removable plastic arrows
  • Any size prop made of foam, rubber, cardboard, paper, light plastic, or cloth
  • Plastic parasols
  • Sonic screwdrivers

Examples of Prohibited Props:

  • Firearms of any kind, no matter what the material. This includes BB guns, sci-fi blasters, replica guns, cap guns, paintball and pellet guns and airsoft guns, even if it has been disabled or is not loaded.  Nothing resembling a gun of any kind is permitted.
  • Bladed metal or wooden weapons of any kind such as axes, daggers, hatchets, knives, swords, or pocket blades
  • Projectile weapons of any kind, including replicas – if it can shoot anything (even Nerf and water), it is not permitted. This includes:
    • Crossbows
    • Slingshots
    • Functioning bows
  • Explosives and chemical weapons – this includes firecrackers, pepper spray, and incendiary devices
  • Blunt weapons – wooden or metal bats, clubs, brass knuckles, mallets, whips, golf clubs,  and paddles
  • Metal or wooden umbrellas
  • Metal, wood, or PVC / Resin objects of any shape, including shields – if you can hurt someone by hitting them with intentionally or otherwise, it is not allowed
  • Large resin based objects – if you can hurt someone by hitting them with it intentionally or otherwise, it is not allowed
  • Outside alcoholic beverages
  • Balls (thrown objects)
  • Flying discs or other projectiles including helium balloons, dirigibles, drones, etc.
  • Selfie Sticks
  • Hoverboards, rollerblades, wheelies, bicycles, scooters, skateboards, skates
  • Martial arts weapons, such as ninja stars

If any of the above items are deemed unsafe by Denver Pop Culture Con Security, they will not be allowed inside the building. If you’re bringing, buying, or selling something that could maim, damage or cause bodily harm, Denver Pop Culture Con is going to take issue. Props will only be allowed as long as they are deemed safe and will not cause harm onsite.


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