How to Install Clothing Mods for Skyrim

14 Aug 2023

The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim has become the modern-day equivalent to classic DOOM in that it can seemingly run on just about any console or platform you can think of. Now, not every platform supports mods on their port of this particular game. Case-in-point would be the Nintendo Switch port, for obvious reasons related to potential hacking and piracy on their platform. It’s - on a related note - also one of the first titles I can think of that has the devs support player mods on their game.

One of these types of mods are the Clothing mods.

These are the mods that change your characters’ strengths, carrying weight, etc. They also provide some benefits. The Necromancer outfit increases efficiency in Destruction-based magic attacks, for example.

This guide will go over the following questions in detail and attempt to answer:

  1. What are clothing mods?
  2. How do you apply them in Skyrim/Skyrim Special Edition?
  3. What are the best clothing mods for this game?

For those not in the know by now, Skyrim and its’ Special Edition support mods on all consoles (except Nintendo Switch) officially.

Let’s start answering these questions in order. The first question we’re gonna answer is “What are clothing mods?”

What are Clothing Mods in Skyrim?

This is a Clothing Mod starring The Flash (Character).

Clothing mods are, generally speaking, simple to complex modifications that add new clothes, armors, rings, etc. into the world of Skyrim and its’ special edition. They can be found in the wide world of Skyrim, or be crafted at the tanning racks if one isn’t good at finding things. One example is Geralt, and another example is The Flash.

How to find the Tanning Racks in Skyrim

This resource ( has a list of all the locations in Skyrim that features a Tanning Rack. A Player character/NPC will do this by crouching and using a knife to scrape a hide.

How to apply clothing mods in Skyrim/Skyrim Special Edition?

Applying clothing mods to Skyrim or Skyrim Special Edition can enhance your gameplay experience by introducing new and exciting outfits for your characters. These mods can add variety, improve immersion, and let you customize your character's appearance. Below, I'll guide you through the process of installing and applying clothing mods step by step:

Choosing the Mods:

Start by browsing modding websites like Nexus Mods or the Steam Workshop for Skyrim. Look for clothing mods that suit your taste and are compatible with your game version (Skyrim or Skyrim Special Edition).

Creating a Backup:

Before installing any mods, it's essential to create a backup of your game files. This ensures that you can revert to the original state if any issues arise during the installation process.

Install a Mod Manager:

To make the process smoother, it's recommended to use a mod manager. The most popular one for Skyrim is "Nexus Mod Manager" (NMM) or "Vortex." For Skyrim Special Edition, "Vortex" is generally the go-to mod manager.

Install Skyrim Script Extender (SKSE) (Only for Skyrim, not for Special Edition):

Many advanced mods require SKSE to work correctly. Go to the official SKSE website and download the latest version for your game. Follow the installation instructions provided on their website.

Download the Clothing Mods:

Once you have your mod manager set up, download the clothing mods you want from the modding website of your choice. Usually, mods are downloaded in the form of ".zip" or ".7z" archives.

Installing Mods with Nexus Mod Manager (NMM) or Vortex:

In Nexus Mod Manager: Click on the "Mod Manager Download" button on the mod page. NMM will automatically handle the download and installation process.

In Vortex: Click on the "Mod Manager Download" button on the mod page. Vortex will manage the download and installation process.

Activating the Mods:

After the mod manager installs the mods, you'll find them listed in the manager's interface. Ensure the checkboxes next to the clothing mods are selected to activate them. The mod manager will take care of the load order and ensure that the mods are correctly placed in the game's data folder.

Load Order and Compatibility:

Managing load order is crucial, especially if you have multiple mods installed. Certain mods may conflict with each other, causing glitches or crashes. Mod managers usually help sort the load order, but it's good to double-check for compatibility patches if you encounter any issues.

Launching the Game:

Start the game through the mod manager to ensure that all the installed clothing mods are functioning correctly. If everything is working fine, proceed to the next step.

Finding the New Clothing in the Game:

After installing the clothing mods, you can find the new outfits in various ways. Some clothing may be added to existing merchants or chests, while others might require crafting at a forge. Refer to the mod's description or the mod author's instructions for information on how to acquire the new clothing in-game.

Enjoying the New Clothing:

With the mods successfully installed and activated, you can now enjoy the new clothing options for your character. Dress them up in stylish armor sets, elegant robes, or any other outfit you desire.


If you encounter any issues with the clothing mods, check the mod page for troubleshooting information. The mod author and the modding community often provide solutions to common problems. And Remember, modding is an ongoing process, and updates to both the game and the mods can always affect compatibility. Always check for updates and keep an eye on the modding community for the latest information and support. Enjoy your enhanced Skyrim experience with the new clothing mods!

Some of the Best Clothing Mods in Skyrim

The world of Skyrim Modding offers a vast array of possibilities to enhance and customize the gaming experience. Among the countless mods available, the best clothing mods for Skyrim truly stand out as they bring a whole new level of immersion, beauty, and practicality to the game.

Throughout this exploration of the top clothing mods for Skyrim, we have witnessed the ingenuity and creativity of the Modding community. From the elegant and regal designs of "Immersive Armors" to the weather-appropriate and realistic outfits of "Winter is Coming," these mods go beyond merely changing the appearance of characters. They add depth and authenticity to the game's atmosphere, making it feel more like a living, breathing world.

The introduction of advanced physics with mods like "HDT Physics Extensions" and "Cloaks of Skyrim" has revolutionized the way clothing behaves in the game. The realistic movement and interaction of garments with the environment make the characters feel more lifelike and believable. Players are now able to witness the swaying of capes in the wind or the flow of skirts as characters move, creating a more immersive and visually appealing experience.

Additionally, the inclusion of practical and functional clothing mods such as "Bandolier: Bags and Pouches" and "Warmonger Armory" not only adds to the realism but also enhances the gameplay. These mods provide the player with storage options, allowing them to carry more items, and offer a wider selection of gear, enabling more strategic approaches to combat and exploration.

Furthermore, the versatility and customization options that the "Apachii Divine Elegance Store" brings to the table are unmatched. With an extensive variety of outfits and accessories, players can truly define their characters' style and persona. This mod has expanded the role-playing aspect of Skyrim, allowing players to embody their characters fully and express their unique personalities.

The "UNP Female Armors" and "UNP Minidresses Collection" mods have addressed the long-standing issue of gender representation in Skyrim. These mods provide female characters with armor and clothing designs that are both practical and stylish, avoiding the impractical and sexualized portrayals that were prevalent in the base game. This focus on inclusivity and authenticity is an essential step forward for the modding community and the gaming industry as a whole.

However, it’s worth mentioning that mods do come with potential drawbacks. The installation and management of multiple mods can be a daunting task for less tech-savvy players, and conflicts between different mods can lead to crashes. Additionally, as the game continues to receive official updates from the developers, some mods may become incompatible or require constant updates to remain functional, which can be frustrating for players who heavily rely on them.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the best clothing mods for Skyrim have significantly enriched the game, pushing the boundaries of what players can experience in this epic fantasy world. From awe-inspiring armors to practical clothing options and diverse styles, these mods have transformed the way we perceive and engage with the game. The dedication and talent of the modding community continue to impress, making Skyrim a timeless masterpiece that evolves with the creative minds of its players.

Whether you seek a more immersive role-playing experience, enhanced aesthetics, or practical gear for your adventures, the world of Skyrim modding has something to offer every player. As we eagerly await future developments and expansions, the clothing mods discussed here will undoubtedly remain as some of the most outstanding contributions to the Skyrim modding community, leaving a lasting impact on the game's legacy for years to come.