I've been reading up on League of Legends stuff, and there seems to be a lot of people clamoring for this skin or the other on their forums. From their suggestions, I can't tell if the skins are purely cosmetic or do they actually perform some kind of function in the game?

Also, are skins only purchasable by riot points or can you earn them using some other methods?

3 Answers 3


Skins are diffident looks for you champion, some are given out as promotion or reward from events but most of them are bought with Riot points (the points you need to spend real money on to get). There are two skins that are unlocked from the referrals program and if you reach 5000 referrals you permanently unlock all skins that re not exclusive award from tournaments.

For the most part it is just a cosmetic thing but there is atleast 1 exception, any skin that has sunglasses takes reduced damage(1 less damage) from Leona's Sunlight ability, this is one of the hidden passives in the game.

The free promotional skins that I know of is:

enter image description here Unchained Alistar from Youtube promotion enter image description here Riot girl Tristana from Facebook promotion

(If the log in doesn't work make sure the link directs you to the correct region for your account)


Skins are completely cosmetic items. While they have no effect on your ingame effectiveness, there are some skins called "Legendary Skins" which are complete reskins of champions, which have custom animations and particle effects.

In general, they are only purchaseable by using Riot Points, and are not available to be purchased with IP. There are two free skins available that let you open up their respective champions, Riot Girl Tristana from "Liking" Riot's Facebook page, and Unchained Alistar from subscribing to their youtube channel.

  • do the custom animations/particle effects change cast duration or anything of substance?
    – l I
    Commented Mar 24, 2012 at 14:07
  • No, base things like channeling time and such remain the same, they're just "extra fancy" skins.
    – FAE
    Commented Mar 24, 2012 at 14:11

Skins only have aesthetic value and serve no other purpose.

And yes skins can only be bought with riot points.

The only skin which you can get for free at this time is Riot Girl Tristana. you can get her by going to depending on your location:

https://na.leagueoflegends.com/facebook https://euw.leagueoflegends.com/facebook https://eune.leagueoflegends.com/facebook

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