How Hot is a Mascot Suit?

“Is it hot in there?” It’s probably the most common question asked about mascot suits. Whether you’ve just purchased a costume or considering getting one, you should fully know what to expect once you step into a mascot for the first time. Heat is probably the main factor you’ll encounter, so in this post we look at that issue specifically. Below we give you our top tips for how to beat the heat, based on our years of professional mascot performing experience.

Mascot Costumes Are Hot. Period.

It doesn’t matter how you slice it, when you are in a mascot costume, you are going to sweat. In most instances, the type of suit doesn’t matter. Neither does the weather. Neither does your level of experience, or your wishful thinking. Obviously if the climate is tropical you will feel the heat more than on a chilly autumn day, but it’s still a question of when you start to perspire and not if. We recommend the following, which are widely recognized as industry standards.

  1. Limit the amount of time in the mascot suit to about 30 minutes. Depending on the conditions and your comfort level, you can increase that time but that is the general guideline. In extremely hot weather, you may want to decrease that to 20 minutes or even less.
  2. Take breaks of equal length. Make sure to find a cool, well-ventilated space (away from the public) to chill out, literally. An air-conditioned room, or one with with open windows is ideal. But even a shady spot outside will do the trick.
  3. Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water will not only help cool you down, but will replenish the fluids you’ve lost with all that perspiration. Drink small amounts of water or your favorite electrolyte beverage throughout your break, rather than all at once in one big swig.

It’s All In Your Head.

Although there’s not much you can do about actually perspiring, you will want to take measures to ensure that trickles of sweat don’t cause any additional problems for you while performing. We’re talking specifically about sweat dripping in your eyes. Not only can this be incredibly uncomfortable and possibly painful, but there is literally nothing you can do about it while it’s happening.

  1. Put on a bandana or sweat band before putting on the mascot head. This will help to absorb moisture from your forehead and prevent it from trickling down into your eyes.
  2. Make sure your mascot head has padding inside the helmet. Aside from being more comfortable, the padding also absorbs perspiration as it escapes from your head looking for a place to go. A well-designed mascot head will always include removable padding so that it can be easily washed between performances.

Dress Down Before Suiting Up.

Before putting on your mascot costume, think about where you are going to be, how long you expect to be in the suit and if you will have a space available to take a break and store personal belongings. To keep your body comfortable and as dry as possible, consider these tips.

  1. Wear light clothing – shorts, t-shirts, tights or any type of athletic wear that is made of sports-oriented fabrics that help wick moisture away from your body. If you wear jeans or sweats inside a mascot, well, don’t say we didn’t warn you. On the other hand, if you will be standing on a float for hours during a winter parade in freezing temperatures, then make an appropriate call on what to wear. Ultimately, everyone’s body runs cold or hot in varying degrees so dress appropriately for your own comfort level.
  2. Keep extra items on hand. If it’s going to be a long day of mascot performing, it is a good idea to bring extra t-shirts, shorts, etc. to change into dry clothing when necessary. You will also want to have extra mascot gloves on hand (pun intended) as these probably get the sweatiest of all. If your suit comes with removable booties, an extra pair of those would be ideal also.

Cool Mascot Tricks for Hot Days.

Performers in theme parks or pro sports mascots will most likely tell you that their costumes don’t usually come with any built-in comfort perks. This is largely because professional mascots need to remain flexible, agile and be able to listen for audio cues. But for mascot costumes at the consumer level, that will more than likely be worn by volunteers (reluctant or not), there are accessories available to make the experience more enjoyable.

  1. Ventilation fan – most custom made mascot costumes are equipped with a fan inside the head. This can be a standard feature or an optional add-on. Ideally, the ventilation fan will be removable and reversible. Some performers will prefer the fan venting outwards, meaning that the hot air building up inside the head is blown out of the costume. Others prefer to feel a slight breeze on their face so it’s important to have the option of either.
  2. Cooling vests and neck bands are another way to help keep yourself cool on hot days. These usually come with inserts that you chill in the freezer and can stay cold for several hours. Some models even come with built in hydration reservoirs so you can take a quick sip of water while you’re wearing the mascot suit. Keep in mind that cooling vests can add extra weight to the costume making it more difficult to move around. But if you really have trouble managing the heat, these accessories are perfect for you.

Whether you’re a seasoned mascot performer or just starting out, some planning ahead will make your experience safer, more comfortable and ultimately more fun. As always, the team at Hogtown Mascots is ready to offer advice or answer any of your mascot-related questions. Get in touch with us anytime!