Best Wrestling Costumes of All Time
The famous saying is that the clothes make the man. Well, in the world of professional wrestling, the costume makes the character. Wrestling has always emphasized over-the-top gimmicks and larger-than-life personalities, and a wrestler’s persona wouldn’t be the same without the appropriate attire.
Wrestling costumes run the gamut from flashy looks complete with sequins and latex to villain looks with war paint and weapons to the completely bizarre (like whatever Goldust wore). We’ve gone through the history books of pro wrestling and picked the best of the best of those getups.
Fans of a certain age may have worn many of these costumes for Halloween as a kid while others may have attended a wrestling event dressed like one of these guys or gals. These are the most iconic costumes in wrestling history.
50. Ultimate Warrior
Famous words: "Feel the power!"
Bottom line: The entire Ultimate Warrior look screamed high energy and excitement from the colorful knee pads to his distinctive face paint.
Warrior also wore tassels around his biceps and legs purely for aesthetic reasons since cutting off your circulation doesn't help you win a match.
But just like his hair, those tassels were blowing in the wind whenever Warrior made his customary sprint to the ring, adding to the visual.
Famous words: "Bonzai!"
Bottom line: A Yokozuna is the highest rank in sumo wrestling, so a wrestler being given that name and gimmick meant he was the best of the best.
But while the wrestler Yokozuna portrayed a sumo wrestler with the typical mawashi clothing and traditional Japanese robe, he was neither an actual sumo or even Japanese.
As a result, this "cultural" style deserves a bit of an asterisk. Yokozuna’s costume was a nod to Japanese culture. He was a Samoan who was born in San Francisco.
48. Honky Tonk Man
Famous words: "I'm the greatest intercontinental heavyweight champion of all time."
Bottom line: When you’re born just outside of Memphis and bear an uncanny resemblance to Elvis, of course, you're going to adopt an Elvis impersonator gimmick complete with a jumpsuit.
Many argue that the Honky Tonk Man more resembled fat Elvis, but he went all out with his costume, which wasn't exactly comfortable wrestling attire.
Part of the costume included Honky carrying around a guitar, and since this is pro wrestling, the musical instrument often was used as a weapon on unsuspecting opponents.
47. Giant Gonzalez
Famous words: "Ric Flair, I kill you."
Bottom line: Wrestling is the land of giants, and there have been many memorable ones in history from Andre to Kevin Nash to the Big Show. But the tallest wrestler ever was Giant Gonzalez, who stood 7-foot-7, although WWE billed him as being 8 feet tall.
One can only imagine all of the fabric that went into constructing his full body suit featuring airbrushed muscles and clumps of fur.
46. The Hart Foundation
Famous words: "The best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be." —Bret Hart
Bottom line: With the machismo in pro wrestling during the 1980s and '90s, it took something special to get men to wear pink. That something special was the Hart Foundation, who made their pink tights look cool when coupled with sunglasses and leather jackets.
The shades that Bret Hart wore would become a staple of his entire career, and every single kid that sat ringside prayed that they would be the one that Hart would put his shades on before his match.
Famous words: "Who’s next?"
Bottom line: What’s so great about Goldberg’s black boots, black trunks and black gear look? It’s plain and simple and tells you he cares more about what he does in the ring instead of his pre-match fit. It’s reminiscent of Mike Tyson’s look, which meant he’s all business and ready to knock you out.
Stone Cold Steve Austin preceded Goldberg and had a similar look, but even Austin had an embroidered vest that he wore while Goldberg was as minimal as could be.
Style: Hip Hop
Famous words: "Everything I do is over the top. When I do something, I want everyone to be talking about it."
Bottom line: Ever since she came up in NXT alongside Enzo Amore and Big Cass, Carmella has been closely aligned with hip-hop culture.
She hasn't ventured far away from that as a singles performer and has even performed in Jordans from time to time.
It’s hard to determine which pair of Jordans she’s rocking in this photo but it appears to be the Jordan 11 retro version.
43. Sgt. Slaughter
Famous words: "That’s an order!"
Bottom line: WWE often utilizes wrestlers' real-life backgrounds when conceiving gimmicks, but that’s not the case with Sgt. Slaughter. He never was a drill sergeant and never even served in the military. But he was still believable in the role as both a babyface and a heel.
During the mid-1980s in WWE, he played a good guy who feuded with The Iron Sheik, who was from Iran, a country many Americans had animosity toward due to the Iranian Hostage Crisis.
Slaughter then left WWE for AWA before returning in the early 1990s as a bad guy. He feuded with Hulk Hogan at the height of the Gulf War and was so convincing as an Iraqi sympathizer that he had to wear a bulletproof vest in public.
Famous words: "He was the kind of guy you had nightmares about. But out of the ring, you couldn't find a more beautiful person." —Jim Ross about Kamala
Bottom line: The Kamala gimmick was created in the early 1980s in Memphis as James Harris portrayed a stereotypical African savage. Some even called it the African version of the Wild Samoans, and Kamala made his debut by emerging from a steamy jungle during a vignette.
His look was inspired by Frank Frazetta’s painting of an African witch doctor that Jerry Lawler had come across. Kamala had both his face and chest painted, carried a spear around, wore a tribal mask and only dressed in robes with tights underneath.
Famous words: "I want elimination by any means necessary. Quoth the Raven 'Nevermore.'"
Bottom line: Raven went from a preppy, rich kid named Johnny Polo to a sociopathic loner when he moved from WWF to ECW in the mid-1990s.
As his name suggests, Raven was a big fan of Edgar Allen Poe and his famous poem "The Raven" and would often cite lines during his promos.
He also adopted a rocker look complete with a leather jacket, ripped jeans and flannel tied around his waist. It’s a look he still uses to this day.
40. Too Cool
Style: Hip Hop
Famous words: "When Michael Hayes told us, 'We're going to put [Rikishi] with you,' I thought, 'Argh, it's awful, it sucks, we got a fat guy in a thong as our third guy?' And the very first night, we went out there and did that dance, it was magic. Just magic." —Scotty 2 Hotty
Bottom line: Too Cool was the comic relief of the Attitude Era and featured a dancing 400-pound Samoan alongside two white guys who could have been extras in "Malibu’s Most Wanted."
Apart from Rikishi’s sumo gear, Scotty 2 Hotty and Grandmaster Sexay rocked clothes straight out of a mid-1990s rap video. They wore baggy pants, had gold chains and even wore du-rags on occasion.
Perhaps their moderate success was what led WWE to push the white rapper gimmick even further during John Cena’s Doctor of Thuganomics era.
39. Steiner Brothers
Famous words: "Now I don't have a doctor's permission to wrestle, but I don't need an invitation to kick your ass!" —Scott Steiner
Bottom line: Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Steiner Brothers were known for coming to the ring in their University of Michigan letterman jackets.
Those were the brothers' actual jackets. Both were standout amateur wrestlers for the Wolverines before becoming pro wrestlers.
Additionally, older brother Rick Steiner wore protective headgear throughout his career. It was another ode to his amateur wrestling days and helped prevent cauliflower ear.
38. Man Mountain Rock
Famous words: "If it's too loud, then you're too old!"
Bottom line: Long before Elias serenaded his way to the ring, Man Mountain Rock rocked his way during entrances by playing an electric guitar shaped like the WWF logo.
As his name suggests, Rock was billed as a rock star and wore a tie-dye shirt and had long orange hair. His gimmick never really got over with fans — even during the era of over-the-top characters — but his WWF-shaped guitar ended up being quite a popular merchandise item.
37. Repo Man
Famous words: "What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine!"
Bottom line: Nothing screams repossession agent like carrying a tow rope around and wearing a trench coat with tire tracks on it. But the Repo Man also added a black domino mask to the outfit to further add to the sneaky, heelish nature of the gimmick.
Barry Darsow, the person who portrayed this character, had previous success as Smash of Demolition, but he came up with the Repo Man gimmick himself as he once had a job repossessing cars.
36. Rowdy Roddy Piper
Famous words: "Just when they think they know the answers, I change the questions."
Bottom line: Even though he was born and raised in Canada, Rowdy Roddy Piper was of Scottish heritage, and he proudly reflected that with his ring attire. He wore a kilt for most of his career, which provided fodder for his opponents to mockingly refer to it as a skirt.
Piper also was a legitimate bagpipe player, and that was incorporated into his gimmick as he would occasionally play the Great Highland bagpipes that were native to Scotland.
35. Brutus 'The Barber' Beefcake
Famous words: "I thought the name was really crazy — Brutus Beefcake — just completely off the wall, but sometimes that is the best thing you can do is go off the wall, and the name Brutus Beefcake became a worldwide sensation."
Bottom line: Brutus Beefcake may have had more gimmicks — and thus costumes — than anyone in wrestling history, but his most famous outfit was as a barber. His attire as Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake looked as if it had been sliced and diced by a pair of scissors.
Along with his outfit, Beefcake carried around a pair of garden shears that simulated a giant pair of scissors, and the shears often had the handles taped with a helix of stripes to resemble a barber pole.
34. Seth Rollins — Deadpool
Famous words: "Wrestling seemed like something I might be good at, so I stuck with it and gave it a shot. I ended up in a pretty good place. I was very fortunate."
Bottom line: Seth Rollins has adopted a couple of pop-culture-inspired costumes, but his Deadpool one sticks out because the Deadpool character is similar to Rollins' personality.
The character's alias is Merc with a Mouth because he talks a lot, and Rollins is also known for going on and on and on during promos.
Deadpool is also known for his superhuman-healing capacity, and Rollins can relate. A torn ACL that was expected to keep him out 9-12 months ended up keeping him on the shelf for just six months.
Famous words: "In our culture, the Native Americans, when two strangers come together, you know what we do in our culture? We smoke the peace pipe."
Bottom line: Often when wrestlers portray individuals of a certain culture, they aren’t even of that culture. An example includes Yokozuna who was Samoan and portrayed a Japanese character.
But the Tatanka character was refreshing since he actually is Native American and is part of the Lumbee tribe in North Carolina. His costume consisted of war paint and a feathered war bonnet, and he would start his matches with a tribal dance.
The entire gimmick was a bit stereotypical, but that was par for the course in the '90s.
32. Hillbilly Jim
Famous words: "Don't go messin' with a country boy."
Bottom line: Hillbilly Jim was a good ol’ country boy from Kentucky. This was a 180 turn from his very first gimmick, which was that of a biker.
WWF was mainly a Northeast promotion in the early '80s, but Jim played to the Southern crowd that the NWA had a stranglehold on. His trademark was his overalls. They look odd on any adult, especially one who is 6-foot-7 and 320 pounds.
Hillbilly Jim went without a shirt under his overalls and always gave the impression that he was completely naked underneath. It was a nice touch and played into his overall character.
31. Farooq Asad
Famous words: "I'm naturally slender, so I've worked hard for my gains over the years. I find this to be true of most people ... save Ron Simmons. He looks amazing, but he's a genetic freak. I doubt he's ever worked out a day in his life." —Triple H
Bottom line: Ron Simmons was the first Black world champion in wrestling history while in WCW, but when he joined WWE, they changed his name and saddled him with a gladiator gimmick.
Being a gladiator was a conceivable 1990s wrestling gimmick, but Farooq Asad’s attire wasn’t something that anyone would fear. He wore a ridiculous helmet that looks like it was bought in the kids' section of a department store.
Whether silver or blue, the look didn’t scream warrior and belied the fact that Simmons was a legitimate tough guy in wrestling.
30. Irwin R. Schyster
Famous words: "Everybody pays their taxes!"
Bottom line: Mike Rotunda had numerous gimmicks over his career, but his most famous was bringing the IRS to WWE. His name said it all as he portrayed a former IRS tax collector and looked the part with his shirt, tie and suspenders combination.
With an occupation like an IRS tax collector, Rotunda predictably played a bad guy under the gimmick and won three WWF tag team titles as Irwin R. Schyster alongside Ted DiBiase.
29. Aldo Montoya
Famous words: "The only reason I lost to Aldo Montoya was the intoxicating fumes there were coming off his body from being around Jake Roberts." —Jerry "The King" Lawler
Bottom line: Aldo Montoya, better known as Justin Credible, is the son of Portuguese emigrants, and WWE made sure to use his Portuguese heritage in his gear.
Montoya had pretty normal tights, and while the gratuitous wristbands are an eyesore, the mask is what makes this wrestling costume.
Many have pointed out that it looks like an upside-down jockstrap and you can probably tell just from looking at Montoya that he didn’t have much success in WWE.
28. Velveteen Dream – Call Me Up Vince
Famous words: "The Dream has no memory of that."
Bottom line: The Velveteen Dream’s artsy tights are reminiscent of Ravishing Rick Rude, but the Dream would send not-so-subtle messages with his artwork. His "Call Me Up Vince" tights were clearly aimed at Vince McMahon and a plea to be called up to the main roster.
There’s no word on if McMahon found this as amusing as the WWE Universe, but it’s clear he didn’t acquiesce to Dream’s request since he’s still in NXT.
Dream also rocked another "Call Me" pair of tights, but this one said "Call Me Marina," which references Marina Shafir, who is the wife of longtime Dream rival Roderick Strong.
27. Chainsaw Charlie
Style: Horror villain
Famous words: "I came out of that box with my chainsaw and my stocking over my head, and the crowd, expecting some great surprise, let out a sound that seemed strangely reminiscent of escaping gas. I had visions of coming out to a tremendous roar, but that wasn't exactly the reaction I got." —Terry Funk
Bottom line: Terry Funk’s WWE attire of Chainsaw Charlie was apparently all his own idea. He debuted by coming out of a box with a chainsaw in tow, baby powder on his head and a woman’s stocking over his face.
He didn’t want people to notice him as the hardcore legend Terry Funk and thought this disguise would do the trick. Funk once said in his autobiography that he could have come out the box without a stocking over his head, but then he would have just been Chainsaw Terry instead of Chainsaw Charlie.
26. The Mountie
Famous words: "The Mountie always gets his man!"
Bottom line: Jacques Rougeau was born in Quebec, and WWE decided to give him a Canadian gimmick. Thus, he became The Mountie, which is what those in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are called. He would always carry around a cattle prod and a pair of handcuffs, and they always seemed to come into play either during or after his matches.
While The Mountie had moderate success in the U.S., he was a little too believable in his role during performances in Canada. The real-life Mounties in Canada forbid him from dressing up like them and portraying one of their own.
So every time WWE would head up North, they would have to refer to Rougeau by his real name instead of “The Mountie.”
25. Bam Bam Bigelow
Famous words: "There can’t possibly be more than a handful of people that have ever inhabited this planet that were more naturally inclined to become a professional wrestler than Bam Bam Bigelow." —Paul Heyman
Bottom line: When you look at Bam Bam Bigelow and see that he has a flame tattoo on his head and flames covering his attire, you wonder which one came first.
Whether in WWF, ECW or WCW, Bigelow wore the same gear throughout his career, but it was created to complement the flamed head tattoo that he got very early in his career.
Ironically, Bigelow had another brush with a flame late in his career as he once rescued three kids from a burning house in 2000. The incident happened near his New Jersey home, and Bigelow suffered burns on over 40 percent of his body, which required him to be hospitalized for 10 days.
24. Big Boss Man
Famous words: "You will serve hard time!"
Bottom line: Before getting into wrestling, the Big Boss Man was actually a corrections officer, so he didn’t have to act too much for his WWF gimmick.
He dressed like a cop with a blue police shirt adorned with patches and, of course, a badge. He also carried around a pair of handcuffs and a nightstick that he would liberally use on opponents after a match.
In the late 1990s, Boss Man returned to WWE after a couple of years away and had updated law enforcement gear as he dressed like a SWAT team member.
23. The Dudley Boyz
Famous words: "D-Von, get the tables!" —Bubba Ray Dudley
Bottom line: When D-Von and Bubba Ray first broke in as part of The Dudley Brothers, their gimmick was modeled after the Hanson Brothers from the movie "Slap Shot." They were nerdy wrestlers who wore taped glasses, tie-dye shirts and overalls.
Their look evolved, somewhat, over time. The glasses went away, and the tie-dye was replaced by camouflage, but what never went away was their love of tables.
22. Matt Riddle
Famous words: "I've always been a bro, and I've used the word 'bro' a lot."
Bottom line: Long before Matt Riddle became a pro wrestler, he was a mixed martial artist where he competed barefoot in the octagon. Thus, that’s the inspiration for his minimalist look since he just feels more comfortable sans shoes.
Riddle also forgoes the use of any types of padding whether they be knee pads, elbow pads, wrist tape or gloves. Fellow MMA-turned-WWE athletes Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey keep their hands and wrists covered, but Riddle keeps things as simple as possible, and that complements his overall look.
21. Sasha Banks — Wonder Woman
Famous words: "I''ve always known that I wanted to be different. I wanted to stand out, so my gear is very elaborate, very blingy, very loud, because I want people to notice me, want to look like me."
Bottom line: In 2018, WWE had its first-ever Women’s Royal Rumble, and Sasha Banks celebrated the occasion by decking herself out in Wonder Woman gear.
The costume didn’t help her draw. She was the first entry in the match, but perhaps it did give her superhuman abilities, and she lasted 54 minutes, longer than anyone else.
Banks wasn’t the first to wear Wonder Woman-inspired gear — Nikki Bella once did it — but Banks wore it best considering the occasion of the inaugural Women’s Royal Rumble.
Famous words: "No one did it better than Sting, nobody." —Diamond Dallas Page
Bottom line: Surfer Sting was pretty cool, but Crow Sting was even better. He was a mute, emotionless loner who dressed in the colors of the NWO but never aligned with them.
His colorful face paint was replaced with only black and white with the lines around his mouth signaling he’s not here for fun and games.
But the most essential part of his costume was the black baseball bat. It was Sting’s weapon of choice and used primarily on the NWO.
Famous words: "I wanted everything to glow. I want my hair to glow, I want my nails to glow, I want my eyes to glow, I want my lips to glow, you know?"
Bottom line: Reinvention can kick-start a wrestler’s career, and that’s what happened when Naomi adopted her "Feel the Glow" attire in 2016.
It was inspired by the 1980s movie "The Last Dragon" and features Naomi in fluorescent gear that glows in the dark during her entrance.
Every match, Naomi wears a different combination of colors, and she even had a glow in the dark title when she was champion.
18. The Boogeyman
Famous words: "I'm The Boogeyman and I'm coming to getcha!"
Bottom line: Only in pro wrestling could a goblin with a fake heart around his neck who carried a Flavor Flav-inspired clock be considered a good guy.
The character was so over the top, but the man who portrayed it, Martin Wright, pulled it off and made it as entertaining as could be.
The defining part of the costume was The Boogeyman carrying worms in his pocket that he would then drop into his opponent’s mouth or even his own mouth because, why not?
17. Dude Love
Famous words: "Owww Have Mercy!"
Bottom line: Dude Love was one of the three faces of Mick Foley along with Cactus Jack and Mankind.
Whereas the other two were brutally violent and deranged, respectively, Dude Love was a fun-loving, tie-dye wearing hippie. He danced before matches, came up with corny nicknames for his opponents and talked of going back to the "Love Shack."
Foley later went on to say that of all his various personas, Dude Love was his favorite.
Famous words: "What can I say? Chicks dig the mask."
Bottom line: Kane has gone through many incarnations in WWE, but the original one was a fully masked monster with long hair that complemented his on-screen brother The Undertaker. We later found out that the hair was not actually Kane’s. It was just part of the mask, but that added to the overall look.
Years later, the demonic Kane became Corporate Kane and dressed in a suit and tie. It turned out to be a bit of foreshadowing. In 2018, Kane really did become corporate by becoming the mayor of Knox County, Tennessee.
15. Hurricane Helms
Famous words: "Stand back. There’s a hurricane coming!"
Bottom line: It wasn’t until the early 2000s that Helms adopted his superhero look, and by then, the wrestling business had evolved, and his character was played more for laughs.
But Helms took it and ran with it even though we were never really sure what his superpowers were. He wore a cape, mask and had an "H" on his chest.
Later, we learned that the costume was inspired by the Green Lantern, whom Helms was a big fan of.
14. Rey Mysterio — Spiderman
Famous words: "It was just so cool to put on my uncle’s masks and wrestle with him. I knew that’s what I wanted to do. I wanted to be a part of this world."
Bottom line: Rey Mysterio has donned many costumes in his career, including The Flash and the Joker. But what makes his Spiderman stand out is that there is actually a supervillain named Mysterio in the Spiderman series.
Mysterio (the wrestler) debuted this Spidey look in 2013 at a live event at Madison Square Garden although he did don a different version during his WCW career.
13. John Cena
Style: Hip Hop
Famous words: "The champ is here."
Bottom line: This was Cena’s look when he debuted in WWE, which he called a total failure because of the lack of personality involved. Then after Stephanie McMahon heard him freestyling on a tour bus, the Doctor of Thuganomics was born, and Cena soon became the face of WWE.
Cena embraced hip-hop culture with his gimmick, and his attire and would name-drop whatever city he was performing in with his in-ring rapping and wear throwback jerseys of famous athletes from those cities.
Cena dropped the Doctor of Thuganomics look when WWE became more PG-friendly, but he still revives it from time to time, including at WrestleMania 35.
12. Finn Balor’s Demon King
Famous words: "The Demon character is something I draw on occasion. It's something that requires a lot of focus to tap into and really requires the right situation for me to sort of draw on that darker side of my personality."
Bottom line: Finn Balor is one of the most athletic highflyers in WWE, but that kind of style doesn’t lend itself to being dark and demented.
Thus, Balor created an alter ego called the Demon King, which is what "Balor" means in Gaelic. He has his face and body painted and wears special headgear that adds to the look.
But the Demon King is more than just a costume. It’s a change in attitude, and Balor always seems to wrestle with more aggression and ferocity as the Demon.
11. Ravishing Rick Rude
Famous words: "In order to do great work, you have to love what you do."
Bottom line: Rude was always known for his stylish robes and colorful tights, but he took things to a new level during his feud with Jake "The Snake" Roberts.
Rude sought to get under his rival’s skin so he had the face of Roberts’ real-life wife airbrushed onto his tights. Both front and back.
Rude eventually left WWF and when he returned about a decade later, he had a much more business look as a member of Degeneration X.
10. Road Warriors
Famous words: "What a rush!" —Hawk
Bottom line: The Road Warriors/Legion of Doom look was inspired by the film "Mad Max 2," which came out two years before the tag team formed.
Hawk and Animal were some of the first wrestlers to bring a cinematic theme into the wrestling world, and they brought the spiked shoulder pads look with tribal face paint.
When they portrayed bad guys, those spikes would become weapons as they infamously tried to gouge Dusty Rhodes’ eye out while in NWA.
Famous words: "I single-handedly revolutionized women's roles in the WWE, before me all women were eye candy."
Bottom line: Lita was right — she was unlike any other women’s wrestlers (or divas) in the WWE during the 2000s. She wrestled differently and was the only female performing hurricanranas and other aerial moves while most other divas were taking part in bra and panties matches.
Lita also had a unique look and blended in perfectly with the Hardy Boyz, whose attire featured baggy pants, arm sleeves and bandanas. But one aspect of Lita’s gear separated herself from Matt and Jeff as she would often have her thong poking out the back of her pants.
8. The Undertaker — American Bad Ass
Famous words: "I’ll make you famous."
Bottom line: The Undertaker’s most known persona is that of The Deadman, but his American Bad Ass character is closest to his real-life personality.
He rode a Harley motorcycle to the ring, rocked a bandana, shades and a leather jacket as he looked like a legitimate tough guy instead of a creepy mortician. He wore this attire during the early 2000s before reverting to The Deadman around 2004.
However, it appeared that he brought it back in 2020 and rode into his WrestleMania 36 Boneyard Match on a motorcycle.
7. The Godfather
Famous words: "I want you to roll a fatty for this Pimp Daddy."
Bottom line: A pimp strutting around with prostitutes and advocating marijuana could only dress one way, and that is flashy. The Godfather character defined the Attitude Era and would have been out of place in any era before it or after it.
He wore gold chains, a top hat, carried a pimp cane and always had a stogie with him as The Godfather looked like he just rolled in from the club the previous night.
6. Macho Man Randy Savage
Famous words: "Snap into a Slim Jim. Oh, yeah!"
Bottom line: Macho Man Randy Savage is on many people’s Mount Rushmore of greatest pro wrestlers of all time because he really personified the over-the-top nature of sports entertainment.
He is definitely one of the most recognizable ever. His deep, raspy voice and flamboyant attire made him a fixture in wrestling and pop culture during the 1980s and '90s.
But if you ask fellow wrestlers, the Randy Savage character wasn’t exactly a character. Savage walked and talked the same way behind the scenes as he did in front of the camera.
5. Hollywood Hulk Hogan
Famous words: "When you're NWO, you're NWO for life."
Bottom line: A big part of what made Hulk Hogan’s heel turn so successful was his transformation into looking like a bad guy. Gone was the yellow and red, and it was replaced by black and white.
He lived up the rocker gimmick by utilizing a belt — either a championship belt or weightlifting belt — as an air guitar when he strolled to the ring. But the best part of Hogan’s look was his facial hair. He kept the blonde Fu Manchu mustache but dyed the rest of his beard black.
The contrast of the look and his overall costume gave Hogan perhaps the greatest second career in pro wrestling.
4. The Fiend Bray Wyatt
Famous words: "Let me in."
Bottom line: The Mr. Rogers-esque side of Bray Wyatt wouldn’t be enough to warrant a spot on this list, but The Fiend certainly does.
He wears a sinister mask and sometimes even carries severed heads with him to the ring, including one of his former cult-leader persona.
The Fiend character is among the most out-of-the-box that WWE has had in years and that’s probably why so many fans find it so interesting.
Famous words: "And you will NEVER forget the name of ... Goldust."
Bottom line: Many have wondered what the official starting point of the Attitude Era was, and Vince Russo, WWE’s head writer during that period, points to the debut of Goldust as the launching point.
He was an androgynous character that confused the hell out of wrestling fans in the mid-1990s. He wore a gold bodysuit, a platinum wig and had gold and black face paint.
Dustin Runnels, the wrestler who portrayed Goldust, admitted that the gimmick was uncomfortable to him at first, but he then decided to have fun with it, and it became one of the most memorable in wrestling history.
2. Ric Flair
Famous words: "To be the man, you gotta beat the man!"
Bottom line: From his signature "Wooo!" to his stylish robes and extravagant lifestyle, Ric Flair transcended pro wrestling and became a part of hip-hop culture.
His classic promos in which he described himself as a "limousine-ridin', jet-flyin', kiss stealin', wheelin' dealin', son-of-a-gun" sounds like something you would hear in any rap song.
Many rappers have since paid homage to Flair by name-dropping him in songs such as Offset’s "Ric Flair Drip."
1. The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase
Famous words: "Everybody has a price for The Million Dollar Man. ... HaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa!"
Bottom line: In a 2009 biography about Ted DiBiase, it’s stated that the Million Dollar Man character is exactly the type of gimmick Vince McMahon wanted if he ever became a full-time wrestler.
With that in mind, Ted DiBiase had the full backing of McMahon with his character, and WWE didn’t cut corners when it came to his wardrobe. He had a gold-studded suit covered in dollar signs and was accompanied by a self-awarded Million Dollar Championship that was encrusted in diamonds.
Also, he always had a couple of hundred dollars with him at any time and would often stuff that in the mouth of opponents after he defeated them.
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