A zentai suit (from Japanese ゼンタイ zentai) is a skin-tight garment that covers the entire body.[1] The word is a portmanteau of zenshin taitsu (Japanese: 全身タイツ, lit.'full-body tights').[2] Zentai is most commonly made using nylon/spandex blends.[3]

zentai suit
Four women in zentai

The costumes are seen at major sporting events in North America and the United Kingdom. They created internationally recognized personalities of The Green Men, two fans of the Vancouver Canucks NHL team.[4] Various professional street dance/hip hop dance groups use the outfits, such as The Body Poets in the United States[5][6] and Remix Monkeys in the United Kingdom.[7]

UK-based Remix Monkeys is a dance troupe that uses Morphsuits in their street dance routines

Full-body suits are used for video special effects: their unique colors enable the person wearing the chroma key suit to be digitally removed from a video image.[8] Other applications have included music videos (Black Eyed Peas' song "Boom Boom Pow", including the live performance at the Super Bowl), breast cancer awareness,[9][10] fashion modeling on an episode of America's Next Top Model, social anxiety workshops, television (Charlie Kelly as Green Man),[11] a participant in public art project "One & Other",[12] and social experiments.[13][14]

Two brand ambassadors for the Toronto Transit Commission, with a sports fan

Since zentai cover one's face, a fine of up to €150 may be imposed upon those who wear them publicly in France. Furthermore, some sports leagues, such as Major League Baseball, ban the use of the costume hoods.[15]


Red suits used to recolour mannequins to signal the winter sale

Companies have created brands of the suits including RootSuit or Superfan Suit in the United States, Bodysocks[16] or Second Skins by Smiffy's[17] and Morphsuits in the United Kingdom, and Jyhmiskin in Finland. Morphsuits has achieved relative commercial success internationally. Between January and late October 2010, the company shipped 10,000 to Canada alone.[18] The Morphsuits brand has actively tried to disassociate themselves from the existing zentai community.[19] Superfan Suits acknowledges in interviews that the outfits have existed previously.[5] The term "morphsuit" has become a generic term in the process; one New Zealand-based newspaper refers to competing brand Jaskins as "one of the main online morphsuit brands." Jaskins company founder Josh Gaskin says their origins are unclear, pegging the first usage with It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

See also


Notable users of Zentai


  1. ^ Crawford, Ashley (2 August 2008). "Private worlds". The Australian. Retrieved 16 January 2011.
  2. ^ "全身タイツ definition". Weblio. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  3. ^ "Full-body suits give identity, freedom to Japan's 'zentai' festish fans". The Japan Times. 17 April 2014. Archived from the original on 11 September 2016. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  4. ^ Jory, Derek (11 January 2010). "Force & Sully". Vancouver Canucks and the National Hockey League. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
  5. ^ a b Dluzen, Robin (25 July 2011). "SuperFanSuits.com: The Lucrative Business of Full Body Spandex". TINC Magazine. Chicago IL. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  6. ^ Kristen Perez, editor (10 October 2010). The Body Poets- Demo Reel 2010 (streaming video). Event occurs at 2:15. Retrieved 15 July 2011.
  7. ^ "Remix Monkeys". United Kingdom: Facebook. 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2011.
  8. ^ "Second skin, secret life". Taranaki Daily News. New Plymouth NZ. 21 September 2010. Retrieved 15 July 2011.
  9. ^ "1 in 8 Pink Ladies on WCNC". YouTube. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
  10. ^ "Pink Ladies Take to Charlotte Streets with Breast Cancer Detection Message". Prweb.com. 7 October 2009. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
  11. ^ "Green people". The Fun Revolution. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
  12. ^ Rawlinson, Kevin (14 October 2009). "The good, the bad and the naked of London's Plinth". The Independent. London UK. Archived from the original on 7 May 2022. Retrieved 28 September 2011. From the man in the skin-tight yellow Morph suit to the existential humanitarian who did absolutely nothing, 2,400 people have now climbed the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square to take part in Antony Gormley's artwork.
  13. ^ "Ani's Adventures". Aniadventure.livejournal.com. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2012.
  14. ^ "NGM Blog Central - A Halloween Zebra Migrates to Washington, D.C. - National Geographic Magazine - NGM.com". Blogs.ngm.com. 27 October 2010. Archived from the original on 25 December 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2012.
  15. ^ Rayner, Ben (20 May 2011). "Blue Jays see red over green men". The Toronto Star. Toronto ON. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
  16. ^ Misstear, Rachael (20 April 2012). "Teenager's colourful bodysock business booms just one year after he left school - Wales News - News". WalesOnline. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
  17. ^ "GB Olympic Rowing Team Get a Morale Boost from Smiffy's Fancy Dress Company Second Skin Union Jack Costumes". PRWEB UK. 16 July 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  18. ^ Bascaramurty, Dakshana (28 October 2010). "Zentai suits – not just fetish wear any more". The Globe and Mail. Archived from the original on 4 March 2011. Retrieved 23 April 2011.
  19. ^ D'Alfonso, Daniel (23 January 2011). "Flagging some patriotic fashion". Herald Sun. Melbourne City MC AU. Retrieved 15 July 2011.

Further reading