Joel Miller Costume Guide

Joel is a survivor in a post-pandemic world where he has lost everything he valued in life. He is a hardened man who operates as a smuggler, dealing in contraband. If you want to look and feel like Joel, then follow this step-by-step guide on how to dress and act like him at your Halloween party. In this article, we will provide you with a complete guide on how to dress up like Joel, including the necessary items you'll need to get his look just right. We'll also give you some tips on how to act like Joel at your Halloween party to fully embody the character. Let's dive into the world of The Last Of Us and transform into Joel Miller.

Joel Miller Costume Essentials

  • HBO's The Last Of Us

Other Items Worn / Used by Joel

Kit Cat Klock
Tabasco Sauce
  • The Last Of Us Part 2

  • The Last Of Us

How To Dress Like Joel

Dress Like Joel Miller From The Last Of Us Part 2

To create an authentic Joel Miller costume, it's essential to capture the essence of his rugged and practical style, as seen in "The Last of Us." This section will guide you through each key component needed to accurately replicate Joel's look.

Long-Sleeve Flannel Shirt

  • What You Need: A sturdy, long-sleeve flannel shirt, preferably in dark or muted colors.
  • How to Do It: Choose a shirt that looks worn and rugged, reflecting Joel’s journey through a post-apocalyptic world.
  • Bonus Tips: To enhance the worn-out look, lightly distress the shirt using sandpaper or tea-staining for an aged effect.

Straight Fit Tapered Leg Jean

  • What You Need: A pair of straight-fit, tapered leg jeans in a dark wash.
  • How to Do It: Opt for jeans that have a slightly distressed look, mirroring the challenges Joel has faced.
  • Bonus Tips: Add additional wear and tear to the jeans, focusing on the knees and hems, to replicate Joel's rugged lifestyle.

Dark Brown Heavy-Duty Backpack

  • What You Need: A vintage-looking, dark brown heavy-duty backpack.
  • How to Do It: Select a backpack that looks like it has been through tough times but is still functional.
  • Bonus Tips: Customize the backpack with makeshift patches or add survival gear to enhance its post-apocalyptic authenticity.

Joel's Watch

  • What You Need: A replica of Joel's distinct watch or a similar rugged-looking timepiece.
  • How to Do It: Wear the watch prominently as a key accessory, signifying Joel’s connection to his past.
  • Bonus Tips: If the watch is too new, age it using paint or by lightly scratching the surface to give it a more authentic, worn appearance.


  • What You Need: A pair of durable and rugged boots, similar to Skechers Men's Verdict.
  • How to Do It: Choose boots that are not only visually accurate but also comfortable for long wear.
  • Bonus Tips: Scuff the boots to give them a worn look and feel more in tune with Joel's tough journey.

Assembling your Joel Miller costume is all about attention to detail and authenticity. Each element, from the clothing to accessories, contributes to a true representation of this iconic "The Last of Us" character. Remember, the key to a great costume is not just in its appearance, but also in how it resonates with the character’s essence.

Joel Miller Cosplay

Joel Miller Cosplay

Embodying Joel Miller from "The Last of Us" at a Halloween party involves more than just the outfit; it's about capturing his persona. This part of the guide focuses on key behaviors and attitudes to help you portray Joel authentically.

How to Act Like Joel Miller at a Halloween Party

Exhibit a Protective Nature

  • What To Do: Show Joel's protective side, especially towards those he cares for.
  • How to Do It: Be attentive and look out for your friends, stepping in to help or guide them through the party.
  • Bonus Tips: Create scenarios where you can subtly display your protective nature, like guiding a friend through a crowded room.

Maintain a Guarded Demeanor

  • What To Do: Portray Joel's tough and cautious personality.
  • How to Do It: Keep a composed and observant demeanor, responding thoughtfully and deliberately in conversations.
  • Bonus Tips: Practice Joel's stoic expressions and measured responses to stay in character.

Display Resourcefulness

  • What To Do: Emulate Joel's ability to adapt and make the most of any situation.
  • How to Do It: If faced with a problem at the party, show how you can quickly come up with a practical solution.
  • Bonus Tips: Bring along a "survival kit" with items Joel might carry, like a small flashlight or a multi-tool, and use them creatively during the party.

Showcase a Dark Sense of Humor

  • What To Do: Incorporate Joel's grim sense of humor.
  • How to Do It: Use subtle, dark humor when engaging in conversations, fitting with Joel's post-apocalyptic experiences.
  • Bonus Tips: Prepare a few in-character jokes or remarks that reflect Joel's perspective on the world.

Exude Quiet Confidence

  • What To Do: Reflect Joel's inner strength and self-assuredness.
  • How to Do It: Walk with purpose, engage confidently in activities, and make decisions with assurance.
  • Bonus Tips: Practice Joel's confident posture and body language to convincingly portray his character.

Acting like Joel Miller at a Halloween party means blending his protective nature, cautious demeanor, resourcefulness, dark humor, and confidence. By focusing on these traits, you'll not only look like Joel but also bring to life the essence of this beloved "The Last of Us" character.

Couple and Group Costume Ideas

Teaming up as Joel Miller from "The Last of Us" offers a wide array of exciting couple and group costume possibilities. Whether you're going for a paired look or a group theme, these ideas will complement Joel's rugged, post-apocalyptic character perfectly.

Couple Costume Ideas

Joel and Ellie

  • Concept: The dynamic duo of Joel and Ellie from "The Last of Us."
  • Costume Suggestions: Pair Joel's rugged look with Ellie's signature style, including her backpack and T-shirt.
  • Bonus Points: Emulate their father-daughter-like relationship and dynamic, showcasing the emotional bond they share.

Joel and Tess

  • Concept: Joel Miller and his smuggling partner Tess.
  • Costume Suggestions: Joel's survivalist attire alongside Tess’s practical and tough look.
  • Bonus Points: Portray their complex relationship and mutual trust through your interactions.

Group Costume Ideas

The Last of Us Assemble

  • Concept: "The Last of Us" Characters Meet Up.
  • Costume Suggestions: A mix of characters from the game, such as Ellie, Bill, Sarah Miller, Riley, Tommy, Perry, and Marlene.
  • Bonus Points: Reenact famous scenes or group dynamics from the game for an immersive experience.

Characters with Similar Qualities from Other Titles

  • Concept: Post-Apocalyptic Survival Team.
  • Costume Suggestions: Characters from various post-apocalyptic settings like Andre Layton from "Snowpiercer," Beta from "The Walking Dead," Josh Wheeler from "Daybreak," Negan from "The Walking Dead," or even Finn the Human from "The Adventure Time."
  • Bonus Points: Show off each character's unique survival skills and how they would interact in a shared post-apocalyptic world.

Family Costume Ideas

For Families with Young Kids

  • Concept: Family of Survivors.
  • Costume Suggestions: Joel as the protector with other family members dressed as younger characters from various survival-themed games or movies.
  • Bonus Points: Create a story for the night where each family member has a special role or skill in surviving the fictional apocalypse.

For All Adult Families

  • Concept: "The Last of Us" Ensemble.
  • Costume Suggestions: Each family member takes on the role of different characters from "The Last of Us."
  • Bonus Points: Incorporate iconic elements from the game, like mock clickers or props, to enhance the group theme.

Incorporating Joel Miller into couple or group costumes is a fantastic way to explore the world of "The Last of Us." These costume ideas not only complement Joel's character but also allow for a deeper engagement with the game's themes, making for a memorable and impactful group experience.

About Joel Miller

Joel Miller, a central figure in the gripping narrative of "The Last of Us," is a character that resonates deeply with fans for his complex nature and emotional depth. This section delves into the various facets of Joel's character, from his role in the story to his lasting impact on gaming culture.

Character Overview

  • Role in "The Last of Us": Joel is a key protagonist, known for his resilience and survival instincts in a post-apocalyptic world.
  • Played By: Played by Pedro Pascal, voiced by Troy Baker.

Background and Personality Traits

  • Personality: Joel is characterized by his protective nature, internal conflicts, and a pragmatic approach to survival.
  • Appearance: His appearance reflects a life of hardship, with practical clothing and a rugged demeanor.

Role in the Story

  • Survival and Redemption: Joel's journey is one of survival, moral ambiguity, and ultimately, redemption as he navigates a world ravaged by a pandemic.
  • Relationship with Ellie: His evolving relationship with Ellie forms the emotional core of the story, depicting a complex bond that blurs the lines between fatherhood and friendship.

Cultural Impact

  • Icon of Video Game Storytelling: Joel has become an icon in video game storytelling, renowned for his depth and realism.
  • Influence on Character Development: His character has influenced the portrayal of protagonists in video games, emphasizing the importance of nuanced, multi-dimensional characters.

In closing, Joel Miller's character from "The Last of Us" offers a profound exploration of human resilience and moral complexity. Understanding his background, personality, and role in the story enhances the experience of creating a Joel Miller costume and brings a deeper connection to his character.

Further Reading:

Additional Tips

Creating an authentic Joel Miller costume is just the beginning. To take your transformation to the next level, here are some additional tips:

  1. Weathering and Distressing: To achieve that rugged, post-apocalyptic look, consider weathering and distressing your costume. Use sandpaper to create worn spots on your jeans and flannel shirt, giving them that well-traveled appearance.
  2. Realistic Makeup: If you want to add some battle scars or dirt to your face, use realistic makeup to create a weathered look. Focus on subtle details like darkening the areas around your eyes to convey Joel's tired and battle-worn appearance.
  3. Practice Joel's Voice: If you're a perfectionist, practice Joel's gruff and gravelly voice. You can find clips from the game or series to mimic his tone and speech patterns for added authenticity.
  4. Learn Key Lines: Memorize some of Joel's iconic lines from The Last of Us. Use them sparingly during conversations at the party to stay in character and impress fellow fans.
  5. Stay in Character: Throughout the event, maintain Joel's demeanor. Be protective of those close to you, stay guarded, and exhibit resourcefulness when faced with challenges. This consistent character portrayal will enhance the overall experience.

Joel Miller Costume FAQs

  1. Are there any specific facial scars I should recreate for my Joel costume?

    • Joel has various facial scars, but the most recognizable one is above his right eyebrow. You can use makeup or prosthetic scars to mimic this distinctive feature.
  2. How can I make my jeans look distressed and worn for an authentic Joel appearance?

    • To achieve a distressed look for your jeans, use sandpaper to gently wear down certain areas. Focus on the knees, thighs, and pockets for that post-apocalyptic effect.
  3. What's the best way to style my hair to match Joel's look?

    • Joel's hairstyle is relatively simple. Keep your hair short and tousled to replicate his rugged appearance.
  4. Is it necessary to wear a backpack for my Joel costume?

    • Wearing a backpack is optional but adds authenticity.
  5. Are there any specific quotes or catchphrases associated with Joel that I should use at the party?

    • "I struggled for a long time with survivin’. And you—No matter what, you keep finding something to fight for. Now, I know that’s not what you want to hear right now, but it’s the truth." This is what Joel says to Ellie in the ranch house, after she runs away from him and confronts him about his plan to leave her with Tommy. It reveals Joel’s inner conflict and his gradual acceptance of Ellie as his surrogate daughter.
    • "You have no idea what loss is." This is what Joel says to Marlene, the leader of the Fireflies, before he shoots her in the head. It reflects Joel’s grief over losing his daughter Sarah and his unwillingness to let Ellie die for a cure that may not even work.
    • "You’re right… You’re not my daughter. And I sure as hell ain’t your dad." This is what Joel says to Ellie in the winter chapter, after they are attacked by a group of cannibals led by David. It shows Joel’s anger and frustration at Ellie for putting herself in danger and his denial of their bond.
    • "I guess no matter how hard you try, you can’t escape your past." This is what Joel says to Tommy, his younger brother, when they reunite at the hydroelectric dam. It implies Joel’s regret and guilt over some of the things he did to survive in the post-apocalyptic world.
  6. Should I carry any prop weapons with my Joel costume, and if so, which ones?

    • Carrying prop weapons can enhance your Joel cosplay. Opt for a toy revolver or a toy rifle to match his survivalist persona, ensuring they comply with costume safety guidelines.
  7. How can I create realistic dirt and grime on my costume for that post-apocalyptic look?
    • Achieving realistic dirt and grime can be done with fabric-safe dirt or makeup products designed for cosplay. Apply them strategically to mimic the wear and tear of Joel's world.
  8. What's the best way to create Joel's rugged, weathered facial appearance with makeup?

    • To create Joel's rugged appearance, use makeup to add subtle shadows around your eyes and create small scars or blemishes. Blend them naturally for an authentic look.


Embarking on the creation of a Joel Miller costume is more than just a tribute to a character; it's a deep dive into the heart of "The Last of Us." This comprehensive guide not only equips you with the essentials for an authentic look but also immerses you in the essence of Joel's survivalist spirit. Perfect for cosplay enthusiasts and fans, stepping into Joel's shoes is a journey into resilience and emotional depth.

Other "The Last Of Us" Costume Ideas

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