Fan Relations are the Core of Professional Work: Pro Cosplayer Kau Toriumi

Today we somehow managed to get an interview with the professional cosplayer Kau Toriumi. She’s not only someone who does cosplay for a living, but she’s also a model. She’s even had a gravure spread in a certain magazine! Let’s find out about what it’s like to be a professional cosplayer. 


She’d make you go all in without thinking!



The Keys to Her Success and Beauty 

Since we had this momentous occasion, we took the opportunity to do a photoshoot. Kau dressed as Fairy Tail’s Erza wearing a bunny costume, and the setting was a casino. She’d definitely have me betting everything I had! More than anything, though, I was impressed with how great her skin looked. What’s her secret?


“There’s no secret or anything like that. I just don’t don’t go outside (laughs). My job is to be a cosplayer, and cosplay events are usually on weekends, right? So I don’t really go out much during the week.”


Of course. The sun is outside, and sun exposure is the main cause of sunburns, discoloration, wrinkles, and dullness. The sun is the enemy of the skin!


“That’s right. The sun is the biggest cause of aging in the skin. But besides that, I do use facial scrubs and massage creams.”



Professional Work is Supported by Grassroots Activity

If Kau only works on the weekends, what does she do to pass the time during the week?


“I consider cultivating fan relations to be my main job. For example, a lot of companies pay attention to the content of my tweets and how many likes I get, so…it sounds bad, but, in order to earn those likes I have to work hard to build closeness with my fans.”


Naturally, if you’re a professional cosplayer, you can make money by wearing costumes. But to do that, you have to impress companies that will pay you with how much influence you have. Hmm…making money is a nice bonus, but don’t forget the most important thing is to enjoy cosplay!!


“As part of my interaction with fans, I also do livestreams. It’s been three years since I became a pro, but I still work pretty hard.”


Even so, I’m impressed about how she’s working at the forefront of cosplay. Hat’s off to her! I do wonder whether she actually gets to do any cosplay for fun, though, and how often. 


Has there ever been such an imposing bunny girl before? As expected from Erza. 



Transforming into a Strong Woman!! Kau’s Cosplay Debut

“It’s been about 10 years since I started cosplay when I was in high school. My first cosplay was Misa from Death Note, because I didn’t have a job or anything and I thought it would be best to just use my regular clothes (laughs).”


Today she came as Erza from Fairy Tail, she started with Misa from Death Note…Kau, do you like shonen manga?


“Hmm…I guess so, but I actually just like strong women, like Erza, or Boa Hancock from One Piece. My Erza cosplay got a good reaction from my fans, so I think she’s a good match for me.”


Though she wore Erza in a bunny costume today, Kau also has a costume of Erza in armor. It really does seem to suit her!



Love Powers Everything!! A Fleeting Junior High School Memory

So how did Kau end up traveling the path of the otaku?


“I’ve always loved manga, and at first I read a lot of shojo manga. But when I was in junior high school a friend lent me the Shonen Jump manga BLEACH and then…I fell in love.”


Oh? Are we going to hear a love story?


“There’s a character In BLEACH named Byakuya Kuchiki…I fell in love with him.”


Oh! With a character from the manga.


“Yes. I was so in love that I would squeal his name every time he appeared. I even scribbled ‘bleach’ on my school desk. That love continued for a year and a half. There were some guys that I probably would have been attracted to at school if I’d paid attention, but I was just so in love with Byakuya that it never even crossed my mind (laughs).”


Junior high school is, for many, the start of becoming a young adult, but to go down the otaku path at that crucial time…Well, now we understand why she became a cosplayer. 


Her Erza may even surpass the charms of the original character. 



“I Want to Work Overseas Someday!!”

Kau is actually half Japanese, half Taiwanese. Doesn’t she want to work overseas someday, maybe starting with Taiwan?


“I do, I do! I want to participate in a cosplay event in another country. I was invited to audition for one once. I ended up getting third place when they only invited the top two…I was kind of shocked.”


So close! When we have an international event at DoujinWorld, we’ll definitely give her a call!


“Also, I always feel like international cosplayers are always having a great time.”


Oh, that’s a comment we’ve heard before…Cosplayers often tell us that international cosplayers focus on having fun while Japanese cosplayers focus on perfection….


“Exactly. In Japan there are clearly defined rules. In a way it’s good, because it’s a very established community, but it’s also bad because it’s very restrictive. International cosplayers have this attitude that having fun is the obvious goal, for better or worse. I’d really like to experience that for myself one day.”



Put Everything into the Things You Love

Lastly, Kau had some advice for people who are thinking of starting cosplay.


“I think cosplay is a way to express your creativity, a medium through which you can show off the things you love. So don’t hold back from the things you love. Just keep doing them!”


Thank you! We at DoujinWorld will also work hard to support all of our fellow doujin!



Kau Toriumi






You Tube:かうかうお!




Shiro Sato

Having started an advertising production company in 2010 whose main business partner is a mail order company, he specialises in direct response advertising.


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