Common Female Types

Due to the history of male dominance in cartooning, the portrayal of women has been disturbingly limited. Thankfully, this is changing, with more and more female cartoonists adding their voices every year. But for now, there are about five recognizable female types. It's up to you to broaden this spectrum.

Some common female types

Sex Kitten

This is, by far, the most common portrayal of women in cartooning. She is drawn to idealistic — if not heroic — proportions. The bustline and hips are amplified. Hair is long and luxurious. Clothing is usually based on current fashion, but always provocative.

Utility Woman

This is the antithesis to the sex kitten. She is not as attractive. She usually exists as a utility to the plot, either through her intelligence or some other talent. Her clothing is much more conservative.

Mother Figure

This older woman is often either very heavy or very slender. She is typically drawn at a four-to five-head proportion. Her hairstyle is about ten or more years out of date.


This is usually an older woman. She is typically very svelte — to the point of being uncomfortably thin. Her hairstyle and clothing are conservative and her facial features are petite and narrow. This character type can also be modified very slightly to present a schoolmarm or a spinster character, but both of these are somewhat dated references.

The Hag

The hag is often very short and stout. Her facial features are grotesquely distorted — with blemishes such as warts and scars thrown in for good measure. With some slight modifications in costume, this type can also be modified to represent the type of witch seen on Halloween.

What about child types?

Child types are even more limited than female types. Almost every cartoon child is a small version of an adult type. They think adult thoughts and share grown-up concerns.

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