The Tomb Raider fan community has no shortage of talented cosplayers who will go to great lengths to bring their favourite adventurer to life and embody her traits. Whether they’re crafting their own props, recreating some of Lara Croft’s greatest exploits, or designing their own unique costumes, their love for the character shines through in their work.
Here are 15 Tomb Raider cosplayers you should be following on Instagram!
First up is Japanese cosplayer Katamari. Chances are you’ve already seen her work promoted on the official Tomb Raider social media accounts. But if you haven’t, you’re in for a real treat. Katamari has recreated virtually every costume and prop seen in Shadow of the Tomb Raider and shares several photos a week. Most cosplayers enlist the help of photographers for their photoshoots but Katamari actually takes her own cosplay photos with the help of a tripod.
Although Shadow cosplay seems to be her area of expertise, Katamari has also done a number of Rise-themed cosplay photoshoots, indulged in some Classic Lara cosplay, and has even cosplayed as the OG low-polygon Lara Croft on at least one occasion.
This self-described “old school Lara Croft cosplayer” from Spain has spent the last few years recreating memorable scenes, loading screens, and renders from the Core Design games. It’s clear from Crofty’s Instagram account that she is a talented costumer and prop maker and really captures that Classic Croft attitude.
Being a Tomb Raider cosplayer is about capturing the essence of Lara Croft, not about sharing her gender or skin tone. As official cosplay ambassador Raymond Croft so succinctly puts it, “Lara Croft isn’t a body type, she is a state of mind.”
Raymond not only recreates Lara’s iconic looks but he has also created his own custom outfits. One of these is the “Unified Lara” look which is featured above, which combines elements from the Core Design games, the Survivor trilogy, and the Angelina Jolie movies.
Full-time writer and occasional Tomb Raider cosplayer Noelle “Pfangirl” Adams hails from South Africa and is all about her #LiveMoreLara philosophy, which is all about challenging yourself to seize opportunities that may take you out of your comfort zone. Although she has cosplayed Classic Lara on a handful of occasions, she feels a deeper kinship with the Lara of the Survivor trilogy.
Noelle has represented Lara at a number of local conventions and has been an official Tomb Raider cosplay ambassador at a couple of key events. You can learn more about her experiences as a brand ambassador and her #LiveMoreLara lifestyle in my 2020 interview with her.
As any cosplayer will tell you, sometimes the setting for your photoshoot can make a world of difference. And what better place for a Tomb Raider cosplay session than the ancient temples of Egypt?
Next up is Crystal Shari, otherwise known as DramatiKosplay. Crystal is a prolific cosplayer who has brought a wide range of fictional characters to life, including Harley Quinn, Miles Morales, and our very own Lara Croft.
Crystal is one of the very few Black women I have come across who have cosplayed as Lara Croft, highlighting the importance of (and need for) representation on the convention floor. You can see more of her cosplay photos over on her Instagram account.
French cosplayer Illyne Cosplay (aka Tiphaine Vaudable) is one of the official Lara Croft ambassadors and has represented the brand at a number of gaming and pop culture events, including Japan Expo Paris and Paris Game Week.
In addition to being an incredible cosplayer, Illyne is also a talented artist and prop builder. Follow her on Instagram for regular updates on her artistic endeavours!
8) Kate Sykes
Time to meet one of the UK’s official Lara Croft cosplay ambassadors! Kate Sykes has been cosplaying since 2007 and represented the Tomb Raider brand at EGX 2016. Her philosophy is “Always push for your dreams. Nothing is holding you back but yourself”, which is pretty sound advice.
Cosplay isn’t the only way she celebrates her fandom. Kate also runs the Tomb Raider fansite The Digger’s Daughter and has lent her talents to a number of fan films, including the short film Athena, which she wrote, directed, and starred in.
Annick is a cosplay enthusiast from the Netherlands and one of the country’s most passionate Tomb Raider fans. She does an outstanding job any time she slips into Lara’s boots but her crowning achievement may be her recent photoshoot in Venice, Italy, where she perfectly recreates the thrill and mystery of one of Tomb Raider II‘s most iconic levels.
As you will see from her Instagram account, Annick also has a pretty impressive collection of Tomb Raider merch and memorabilia. Some of these items were loaned to the Storyworld museum in Groningen for their “World of Lara Croft” exhibition, which ran from late January to May 29.
10) DJ Croft
DJ Croft is a costume maker and content creator from Atlanta, Georgia, and another of the Tomb Raider community’s most celebrated male cosplayers. He has created several fan films and regularly talks about Tomb Raider and his cosplay projects on his YouTube channel.
DJ has often talked about the challenges of being a Black male Tomb Raider cosplayer and how he uses his platform to show others that they can portray any fictional character they want, no matter their skin colour or gender.
11) Lili Dîn Cosplay
This Paris-based cosplay ambassador has been cosplaying as Lara since 2008 and has brought almost every incarnation of the heroine to life over the past decade or so.
Earlier this year, Lili Dîn was enlisted to help promote the Tomb Raider LIVE Experience in London, which the life-long fan described as a dream come true. You can find a video of the rooftop photoshoot over on her Instagram account.
12) Dutch Lara
As her username suggests, Dutch Lara is a Tomb Raider fan and cosplayer from the Netherlands. She has attended a number of local conventions and fantasy fairs as Survivor Trilogy Lara, complete with bows and makeshift machetes.
All of her outfits are exquisite but I chose to highlight her “Condor Cowl of Urqu” outfit because I feel it’s an underappreciated outfit that very few cosplayers attempt to make. You can see more of Dutch Lara’s cosplay photos over on her Instagram account.
13) Tikï Anaïs
Swiss cosplayer Tikï Anaïs is a Tomb Raider aficionado and fan of all things geeky. Lara Croft is clearly a favourite of hers but she has also created some stunning outfits based on other popular IPs, including Stargate, Horizon Zero Dawn, and Uncharted.
There may be plenty of Lara Croft cosplayers out there but Tikï is one of the very few cosplayers to have recreated Lara’s “Spirit Weaver” look from Rise of the Tomb Raider. That alone was enough to earn her a spot on our list.
The penultimate entry on our list is Nerea, a Tomb Raider fan and cosplayer from the Basque Country. Nerea first donned Lara’s signature green top and shorts back in 1999 and has indulged in cosplay whenever life permitted.
Her Survivor Trilogy Lara is excellent but she truly shines in her Classic Lara photoshoots. How great does Nerea look with those red-tinted sunglasses and sassy expression? Feel free to follow her on Instagram for more cosplay adventures.
15) Tanya Croft
Last, but certainly not least, is the Ukrainian cosplayer Tanya Croft. The Kyiv-based Tomb Raider cosplayer has recently used her platform to raise awareness of the Russian invasion of Ukraine – and the various atrocities committed – and has been vocal about the realities of living in a war zone.
At the time of writing, the war in Ukraine was still raging on and many have lost their livelihoods, homes, and loved ones as a result of the Russian invasion of their homeland. If you would like to support the Ukrainian people and their efforts to defend and rebuild their country, you can find a list of vetted charities over on Impactful Ninja. You’re also welcome to support Tanya’s work by becoming a patron.
These are just 15 of the incredible Tomb Raider cosplayers out there! If you know of any other cosplayers who deserve to be featured on this site, leave a link to their Instagram accounts in the comments section below and I’ll see if there’s enough demand to warrant a second list.
Want to try your hand at cosplay? Then check out the site’s cosplay archives for tips on how to create your very own Rise or Shadow Lara costume. You can also find a treasure trove of tutorials, advice, and cosplay inspiration over on TombRaiderCosplay.com.