The first trailer for Fox’s Dark Phoenix dropped recently and to be completely honest the thing that got us most excited are those Frank Quitely-designed X-Men costumes. Granted the X-Men movie costumes have improved since the black-leather biker suits that dominated the original trilogy, however, the costumes in Dark Phoenix draw inspiration from one of the most critically acclaimed X-Men comics eras and we think that’s really cool. In the comics, the bold move to drastically change the X-Men uniforms by dressing the mutants in puffy bomber jackets with huge yellow Xs paid off, since the story ended up defining the modern X-Men comics universe. Speaking of bold re-designs, comic book fans are the ones who most often dare to dramatically challenge the status quo with their creative costume ideas.
Fans have designed costumes for a plethora of characters from X-Men comics. Some of their designs are based on official comic book costumes, others draw inspiration from live-action movies or animated series, and some are purely original creations. Not only did these artists manage to create awesome costumes for characters who have historically been victims of poor costume design, they also managed to create incredible costumes that improve on already great designs. Whether it’s designing a single character or an entire team of X-Men it’s obvious that a lot of effort, time and love went into the creation of these costumes. We went all around the internet and collected the most interesting fan-designed X-Men costumes just for you.
30. MEDIEVAL WITCH
There are characters whose original costumes immediately become iconic and don’t even require significant improvements as time goes by. Scarlet Witch is not one of those characters. Her original costume didn’t only look ridiculous, it was impractical as well. Over the years, Scarlet Witch’s costume did improve at times, and at times it even got worse.
Jeff Chen created a truly unique costume for Wanda Maximoff that puts her in Medieval times. It’s unusual, but fitting and looks much better than many of her actual costumes.
29. ONE-EYED CYCLOPS
Cyclops’ turn to the dark side apparently inspired some pretty interesting fan designed costumes. Travis Harris wanted to give Scott Summers a more sinister look and what you see above is the result. The darker color palette and imposing lines make this Cyclops look very dark. Combine that with a one-eyed face mask and you’ve got yourself a rather scary-looking Cyclops.
28. WOLVERINE JOINS THE MCU
For years now, we’ve all been wondering how different would the Marvel Cinematic Universe be had the X-Men been part of it. Undoubtedly, the landscape of the MCU would not have been the same, and now that it looks like the X-Men might actually be on their way to the MCU, the big question is, what will their costumes look like?
Well, Hugo Souza has an idea for Wolverine’s MCU look. This Brazilian artist based his design on the works of Andy Park and Ryan Meinerding and created a very interesting and comic-book accurate costume.
27. GAMBIT MOVIE
A live-action Gambit movie has been in talks forever, or so it seems. For years now, we’ve been hearing rumors about Fox’s Gambit film and according to the latest news the movie has been delayed yet again. Although, at this point we’re not so sure it will even happen.
Nevertheless, we can still enjoy fan-made concept art for the potential Gambit movie. This awesome design was created by Stuart Cooper who decided to cast Aiden Turner as everyone’s favorite Ragin’ Cajun.
26. STORM WITH BODY PAINT
Over the years, Storm has had many different looks — the most popular being the original Dave Cockrum design and Jim Lee’s white costume. However, her punk-rock look during which she sported a mohawk and a black-leather outfit also has its group of fans.
Toks Solarin seems to be a fan of that particular look. Solarin decided to go with a different haircut, but kept her short hair. The costume itself works very well as a team uniform and would blend easily with the other X-Men. The body paint is an interesting detail and a nice nod to Storm’s heritage.
25. EMMA DRESSED
Emma Frost is notorious for her revealing costumes, and her comic book costume history should definitely be tagged as such. When she appeared as Emma Frost in X-Men: First Class, actress January Jones basically wore lingerie as a costume. So, when we see a version of Emma Frost that is fully dressed we consider it a minor miracle.
This Emma Frost costume, which provides decent amount of coverage, was designed by Stefan Tosheff and it really makes for an excellent team uniform.
24. POST-APOCALYPTIC X-MEN
Portuguese artist Nuno Plati took the re-design challenge to a whole new level. The X-Men seem to find themselves in some kind of a post-apocalyptic world and appear to be standing on top of a fallen Sentinel. Every single character has got a unique, post-apocalyptic look, but at the same time, retains recognizable features.
23. WOLVERINE BROWN COSTUME
If you’re bothered by the fact that a certain clawed mutant is missing from Nuno Plati’s previous piece, worry not, we’ve got you covered. Well, Nuno Plati’s got you covered. Anyway, aside from designing the post-apocalyptic X-Men team in their minimalist uniforms bathed in a beautiful sepia light, Plati also designed an outfit for Wolverine.
22. STYLISH NIGHTCRAWLER
Nightcrawler made his first appearance in Giant-Size X-Men #1 (May, 1975) in a black and red costume that would become one of the most iconic X-Men costumes ever created. Over the years, Nightcrawler’s costume has underwent some changes, but even now those essential elements of the first design remain the same.
The artist behind the costume you see above, jasonh537, seems to be a big fan of the original costume as well, which is why he merely added some details to it for a new take on the character.
21. MILITARY CYCLOPS
Many fans seem to dislike Cyclops’ X-Face costume which came in tow with his new, edgy cult leader persona. X-Men fan and artist, Toks Solarin’s favorite Cyclops look is the one created by Jim Lee.
So, when Solarin sat down to design his own version of a Cyclops costume he based it mostly on Lee’s design. Solarin gave Cyclops a flak jacket for protection and a utility belt for carrying all kinds of supplies. According to the artist, this Scott started studying military tactics to better lead and protect his team.
20. JEAN GREY ’90S REMIX
The classic ’90s X-Men uniforms are very popular among fans even today. There’s just something so inherently X-Men about those goofy blue and yellow suits. Granted a few adjustments can be made to make the costumes more modern, functional and subtle.
Brazilian artist Rafael Loureiro did just that with this amazing revamp of Jean Grey’s ’90s costume. The colors are muted and less flashy, and the suit looks sleek, refined, and protective. Rafael also revamped Cyclops, which you can check out in his gallery.
19. ROLLERBLADES JUBILEE
Jubilee’s signature costume consists of a pair of denim shorts, a pink shirt, a yellow raincoat and pink sunglasses, which may sound ridiculous but looks pretty good. Jubilee’s had a number of different outfits over the years, but this one has remained her most popular look.
Kristen Woo, who happens to be a big fan of the character, thought Jubilee could use a proper costume, so she designed a whole new look for Jubilee to make her look more like a superhero. The rollerblades are just there to make Jubilee look cool.
18. SCAVENGER CABLE
The time-traveling mutant Cable made his first appearance as Cable in New Mutants #86 (February, 1990). Over the years, his comic book appearance changed quite often with some of the designs looking utterly ridiculous.
Recently, Josh Brolin appeared as Cable in Deadpool 2 and he looked awesome. Speaking of awesome, the Cable you see above was designed by the talented Rodney Amirebrahimi. We can all agree this looks much better than many of Cable’s official costumes from the comics.
17. STEALTHY WOLVERINE
The MCU costumes are definitely some of the best superhero outfits we’ve seen on the big screen. However, they’re not always very comic book-accurate. But, as we should have all learned by now, accuracy is not the be-all and end-all when it comes to successful costume design.
Still, one can’t help but wonder how much of Wolverine’s comic book costume would make it in the MCU? Jason Pastrana’s version is actually pretty accurate and it comes equipped with a cool stealth mask.
16. CYCLOPS AND JEAN JOIN OVERWATCH
Scott Summers and Jean Grey are without a doubt one of the most famous couples in all of comics. The two debuted together in X-Men #1 (September, 1963) and eventually fell in love and started a relationship. All was good for Scott and Jean, until Wolverine showed up. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Well, here’s a bit of fake history — in an attempt to avoid Wolverine, Scott and Jean join Overwatch. Artist Kiel Whitaker designed these awesome costumes for the legendary couple, which he based on Overwatch heroes.
15. CASUAL PYRO
Created by Chris Claremont and John Byrne, St. John Allerdyce made his comic book debut in X-Men #141 (January, 1981). With the ability to control fire, but not create it, Pyro wore a kerosene-based flame-thrower on his costume. In 2017, a new Pyro was introduced as Simon Lasker who does have the ability to generate fire.
As does the Pyro shown above. This cool casual Pyro costume was designed by J.J. Jean. According to the artist, this young mutant is still learning the limits of his powers and how to control them.
14. QUEEN OF WAKANDA
One of Storm’s most prominent love interests in the comics is none other than T’Challa, aka Black Panther. The two tied the knot in Black Panther Vol 4 #18, but their marriage didn’t last long due to irreconcilable differences. Their relationship is a divisive topic among the fans and many probably wouldn’t want to see it in the MCU.
Artist John Dimayuga seems to be fond of the idea. John designed a whole new look for Storm to fit into the world of MCU’s Black Panther. Whether you ship them or not, it’s undeniable that this costume looks gorgeous.
13. WOLVERINE FOR THE BIG SCREEN
The original X-Men trilogy will always hold a special place in our hearts. However, the all-black leather X-Men uniforms certainly won’t be missed. But, it looks like we’re getting comics-accurate costumes in the upcoming Dark Phoenix movie.
Unfortunately, that still doesn’t mean we’ll get a comic book-accurate Wolverine. Artist Frederick Estrada designed an awesome black-yellow costume for Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, which we would have loved to have seen on the big screen. It’s not too yellow to look ridiculous on the screen, but it’s still accurate enough.
12. YOUNG X-MEN
The X-Men have had quite a number of different uniforms over the decades. The comics, the live-action movies, the various animated series have all featured all kinds of costumes. Some are timeless classics, others we wish we could forget.
As for the costumes featured above, we can only wish these were real. Designed by Scott Ngo, these X-Men characters and their uniforms were inspired by the work of Phil Bourassa who designed the characters for the Young Justice animated series.
11. SCARLET WITCH RE-DESIGNED FOR THE MCU
Scarlet Witch, brilliantly portrayed by Elizabeth Olsen in the MCU, has established herself as a valuable member of the Avengers beloved by the fans. However, her costumes haven’t exactly been the best. The actress herself has expressed the desire for a change of wardrobe. We shall see if that will actually happen.
Until then, we’re gonna have to just sit back and enjoy the beautiful fan-designed costumes. The one you see above comes from Jason Pastrana, who merely tweaked the official design a bit and improved it significantly.
10. WOLVERINE HOODIE
Wolverine’s got some new threads in the new Return of Wolverine comic and the reactions are mixed. But, then again, it’s all a matter of aesthetic preferences and the new suit isn’t Wolverine’s worst look — not by a long shot.
But, most fans prefer their Wolverine in his traditional yellow getup. Artist Daniel Heard took a stab at the famous yellow costume and created his own unique version of it. The most notable element of Daniel’s design is the hoodie, which fits surprisingly well with the rest of the outfit.
9. INDUSTRIAL CYCLOPS
Scott Summers, aka Cyclops, made his first comic book appearance in X-Men #1 (September, 1963). Throughout his comic book history, Cyclops has donned on many different costumes. His classic blue costume which debuted in Uncanny X-Men #39 still remains his best look, at least as far as we’re concerned.
The costume featured above, designed by infamousdee, is as far from classic as it gets, but it’s undeniably stylish. This look would probably work well for a younger version of Cyclops.
8. FANTASY MAGIK
Illyana Rasputina, also known as Magik, is the younger sister of Piotr Rasputin, aka Colossus. Illyana made her first appearance in Giant-Size X-Men #1 (May, 1975), but didn’t appear as Magik until April 1984. Unlike many X-Men characters, Magik hasn’t appeared in the X-Men movies, yet. However, she will be in the upcoming New Mutants film (if it’s ever released).
When Brian Michael Bendis re-imagined the X-Men and gave Magik a surprising makeover it did not sit right with everyone. And, honestly, we prefer Miguel Mercado’s fantasy re-design.
7. CYBER PSYLOCKE
Psylocke’s costume history is a bit complicated. Before she took up the identity of Psylocke and became part of the X-Men comics, Elizabeth Braddock was Captain Britain. Over the years, Psylocke has had many different costumes, but the purple leotard remains her most famous look. Olivia Munn wore a similar outfit in X-Men: Apocalypse.
David Alvarez designed a somewhat different, but awesome look for Psylocke. According to the artist, this version of the character is an augmented human and comes from a cyberpunk universe.
6. POST-SECRET WARS X-MEN
Marvel’s All-New, All-Different Comic Universe launched in 2015 following the end of the “Secret Wars” storyline. Artist Stefan Tosheff had an idea for Marvel’s X-Men comics in the post-Secret Wars universe and decided to visualize his concept in form of this awesome piece of fan design.
Tosheff drafted Jubilee, Monet, X-23, Rachel Grey, Storm and Beast for his X-Men team and gave them classic ’90s outfits with a modern twist. The color palette, as with most of Tosheff’s art, is distinctly ’80s.
5. ALL NEW MYSTIQUE
Mystique’s most famous costume is her classic white dress with a skull belt. Over the years, her outfit has changed on a number of occasions and at times drastically. Her trademark blue skin and red hair are always present though.
As they are in Jason Pastrana’s design. Pastrana’s take on Mystique is unique, fresh and fitting. The costume clearly draws inspiration from the original look, but has a certain modern flair to it. The undercut hairstyle is what truly sells this awesome Mystique look.
4. ’80s CYCLOPS
The ’80s are back. The all-familiar ’80s aesthetic has infiltrated our movies, TV shows, music, fashion, and so on. So, it doesn’t come as a surprise that a lot of fans are re-designing their favorite comic book characters in the style of the ’80s.
Aset Kairambaev created this awesome Cyclops look based on ’80s fashion trends. The giant sunglasses, the light blue jeans, the white Adidas sneakers and, of course, the color palette scream ’80s. It’s definitely a look we’d like to see on the page or on the screen.
3. CYBERPUNK GAMBIT
Remy LeBeau, aka Gambit, made his debut in Uncanny X-Men #266 (August, 1990) in his now-iconic brown trench coat and pink-ish body armor. Over the years, Gambit’s costume has been re-designed a few times, but the original remains a fan-favorite.
Artist Anson Ng designed a costume for everyone’s favorite Cajun which takes some cues from the original design. The most eye-catching element is, of course, the upper body armor which looks very futuristic. The whole outfit has a certain cyberpunk vibe to it.
2. EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN
This awesome X-Men revamp comes from the Russian artist Larbesta who designed the characters and their outfits to reflect the traits she likes the most about each of the characters.
Jubilee’s classic look has been upgraded with round wire rimmed glasses, Colossus’s got a cool new beard and hairdo inspired by a popular look in Russia (apparently), Rogue went back to the ’90s, Gambit is as stylish as ever, Kitty Pryde is running for President, Storm’s look was inspired by Janelle Monae, and Nightcrawler bears a striking resemblance to Jon Hamm.
1. ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT X-MEN
Canadian artist Stefan Tosheff paid tribute to the “All-New, All-Different” era of the X-Men with his awesome new take on Dave Cockrum’s designs. Though every costume has its own identity, Tosheff still managed to make the team look unified.
Everyone looks fabulous in their all-new, all-different costumes, but we have to give special praise to Banshee and Nightcrawler. In fact, this Banshee costume may well be better than anything that’s been in the comics. Also, Nightcrawler looks incredibly cool in a hoodie.
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