Character outfits, commonly known as skins, are the blood of life in Fortnite Battle Royale.
Since 2017, Epic Games has built a proverbial money printing database with unique concepts and unfathomable collaborations in the form of in-game cosmetics. Fast forward four years, and the same feeling applies to an even greater extent. Epic brokered connections to popular video games, films, and TV shows in 2021, making Fortnite one of the most comprehensive games in history.
Even though we're only five months out of the year, the developers have come up with tons of new options for players to choose from. Some include characters with ties to Hollywood's most notable action films and expanded the ICON series. There's a lot to analyze, and ESTNN has compiled a list of the best skins for 2021 based on our preferences and player reception. Let's dive into the list and see what outfits made the cut.
Harley Quinn Rebirth
 Fortnite's documented history with DC Comics dates back to Season X, and the collaboration hasn't entirely stopped. Given the popularity of Batman super villain Harley Quinn, it made sense when Fortnite created and distributed an in-game character outfit with their likeness. The first appearance of ditzy Villainess took place in February with two styles that were very similar to their appearance in the "Birds of Prey" of 2020.
Epic Games and DC soon followed with a Harley Quinn outfit "Rebirth" as part of Fortnite / Batman: Start of the Zero Point comic series. Fortnite and Harley Quinn fans rushed to get their hands on a redeemable code. It's a portrayal of Harley Quinn that is pretty similar to the source material. Those who miss the boat will have another chance to acquire the Rebirth style later this summer.
Fortnite's Season 15, called Zero Point, gave Epic a clever way to get more crossovers and exposure. Chapter 2 – The Season Five Plot sent Fortnite mascot John "Jonesy" Jones on a multi-universe journey for help that includes the ever-unstable Zero Point. One of those many trips brought Jonesy into the world of Street Fighter, where he caught the legendary characters Ryu and Chun Li.
The choice between one and the other was difficult, but Chun-Li seemed to be more popular across the board. Your cosmetics came to the Item Shop on February 21st with two models, lots of accessories and a built-in "Lightning Kick!" emote. The character outfit itself stayed true to shape and surreal for anyone who knows Street Fighter.
 Fortnite's rarest skin – Renegade Raider – was one of the first to go on sale in the game's inaugural season. To unlock it, players had to go through the “Season Shop” and then fork over 1,200 V-Bucks. Those who missed it are undoubtedly kicking themselves as the skin hasn't popped up in more than three years.
Epic Games instead created a new character that bears a remarkable resemblance. While Blaze took first place in June 2020, the late 2020 Gingerbread Raider gets the nod on that list. Yes, we've been bending the rules a little since the gingerbread version was first available in the Item Shop last year. However, this happened after our list Best Fortnite Skins of 2020 was published. The creativity put into the Gingerbread Raider deserves credit on any list, and it's the closest thing to Fortnite's rarest commodity.
Fortnite's ICON series paved the way for famous artists and influencers to leave their mark on the game for the ages. This series originally started with American DJ Marshmello before others like Tyler "Ninja" Blevins, Kathleen "Loserfruit" Belsten, and others joined the fun. 2020 continued this growing streak with another Australian personality mostly recognized for her Fortnite content on YouTube.
Lannan "LazarBeam" Eacott rode the wave of popularity from Fortnite to superstar. His efforts paid off when Epic Games partnered with the Aussie to make him an exclusive member of the ICON series. The LazarBeam skin featured construction worker apparel and several other unique, selectable styles. It's one for the ages and well worth it to grab whenever it comes back up in the Item Shop, especially for LazarBeam fans.
LazarBeam wasn't the only creator to receive the ICON series treatment. Spanish content creator David "TheGrefg" Cánovas Martínez also joined Ninja, Travis Scott and Loserfruit in this category. Like LazarBeam in Australia, TheGrefg has a loyal Spanish-speaking audience and a fan base. He also used Fortnite's popularity to make a name for himself, which he turned into an in-game character outfit.
In front of a record 2.5 million viewers, TheGrefg unveiled his skin for the ICON series in all its glory. It shows a shirtless, superhero-like figure with a "G" logo on the chest and a striking color scheme in gold and red. The Grefg outfit is breathtaking and has historical significance that cannot be ignored. There is no debate about TheGrefg's presence on this list.
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Innovation is a word that describes Fortnite through and through. Chapter 2 – Season 5 allowed Epic Games to continue to find ways to bring characters into the universe that no one could have imagined. Fresh from the destruction of humanity by Judgment Day, the T-800, a cybernetic assassin most of the Terminator film franchise will recognize, arrived in Fortnite Battle Royale to the horror of fans around the world.
Epic Games tends to follow a similar character model and schema, so the T-800 likely got developers out of their comfort zone. Fortunately, Epic lived up to the legendary Terminator in its Fortnite appearance. The look of the T-800 mirrors that of its moviemate, and there is no more apt character to use in compiling eliminations and channeling your inner SkyNet.
There have long been rumors about a female "Midas" skin. Concept art floated shortly after players saw the golden Midas character in Season 2 Chapter 2 – Battle Pass. Over a year later, Epic Games used concept art by Kitsunexkitsu to eventually produce a female midas known as marigold.
Despite the long wait, the players finally had the chance to represent Marigold on March 9th. "Golden Touch Set", as Epic called it, cost the players 1,500 V-Bucks. Marigold came with two outstanding styles to choose from and a few other in-game cosmetics. It brought the fans of Chapter 2 – Season 2 back to a happy place and became an instant classic.
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Grimey is a Marioesque character that was first leaked before patch v16.20. This new cosmetic outfit hit the item shop on April 25th with a number of other cosmetics. Unlike various Fortnite skins, Grimey has an original concept that completely relies on a player's eliminations.
The more eliminations are achieved, the more ghostly little friends appear in Grimey's gelatinous upper body. This unique trait is remarkable and immediately put Grimey at the top of our list. Epic should create more skins like this one.