Halloween is coming up, and in my opinion having the perfect costume is essential for a fantastic night of candy-fueled debauchery. Figuring out what to dress up as can be difficult, especially if you need multiple costumes, but I’m here to help. If midterms have gotten the best of you and you still haven’t decided what to wear on Saturday, check out my list.
First things first, do not — I repeat — do not wear a costume that is racially charged. Cultural appropriation isn’t cute. If you even have to ask yourself if the costume you’re wearing is insensitive, ditch it for something else.
“In Girl World, Halloween is the one night a year when a girl can dress like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it.” While our resident mean girl Cady Heron may be right, wearing a sexy kitten costume is banal-AF. There will be plenty of other opportunities and theme parties for you to dress up as “Sexy [insert literally any animal, occupation, inanimate object].” Take Halloween as an opportunity to let your freak flag fly.
Okay so now on to some DIY costume ideas that I have curated from the Internet:
The Sim costume is simple, hilarious and easy to execute. All you’ll need to go out on the town dressed as a simulation from that strange and beloved computer game from your childhood, is make a headband with the green diamond thing (apparently the technical term is plumbob). You could also accessorize any costume with the plumbob, to create a costume within a costume inception effect.
CRTL + SHIFT + C rosebud amiright?
2. Ms. Frizzle
“Seat belts, everyone!” Dress as everyone’s favorite animated teacher this Halloween. You can easily make this a couple’s costume by coercing a friend into agreeing to dress as the Magic School bus.
3. 1994 Olympic figure skaters Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding
I’m a huge fan of highly specific references. Context: Nancy Kerrigan was clubbed in the knee after a practice session before the U.S. figuring skating championship. The attack was plotted by Tonya Harding’s ex-husband and some other dude so that she wouldn’t be able to compete.
*Warning — going with a reference costume may make you feel inclined to provide background when people ask the unbearable, “What are YOU suppose to be question.” However, do not satisfy their inquiry, shhh it’s Halloween, you don’t need to explain.
4. Captain Planet and the Planeteers
While I love Scooby-Doo and the rest of the gang, shake it up and let your “powers combine” by going as the 90s, eco-conscious, magical ring-bearing teens, “The Planeteers” and superhero Captain Planet (the green mullet is a must).
5. Bob Ross
For those who don’t know, Bob Ross was an art instructor who had his own PBS show entitled “The Joy of Painting.” His soothing voice borders on unsettling, and this costume is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Similar to the Ms. Frizzle costume, this can easily be made into a group costume if you find friends willing to dress as Bob’s landscape paintings.
You will definitely get likes and comments on this costume. Make yourself a walking Instagram post and facilitate an opportunity for a super-meta post.
7. Commercialize yourself
I would advertise these costumes (yup, that pun was totally intentional) ensure your night of fun by going as Progressive Insurance’s Flo, Jake from State Farm, Allstate’s Mayhem, Dos Equis’ Most Interesting Man in the World, or the Sundrop soda girl.
8. Board Game
You can’t go wrong with dressing as the board games of your childhood. To complete this throwback look you can dress as Operation man, inappropriate Twister or if you need a group costume idea you can be the characters from Clue.
9. Life Imitates Art
You don’t have to be an art history major to dress up as a famous work of art. Dress up as the Girl With The Pearl Earing or even Mona Lisa.
10. Carrie Mathison
Ladies, dust off those Ann Taylor Loft pants suits that have been buried deep within your closets since last year’s career fair and go out as protagonist and ex-CIA agent, Carrie Mathison from Showtime’s “Homeland.” To get the full effect, forge some CIA credentials, carry around empty pill bottles and run around the party asking where Saul and Quinn are — all while imitating the signature Claire Danes cry-face.
11. Ariana Grande’s Donut Scandal
Wear an oversized grey sweatshirt and carry around a box of donuts that you can occasionally lick throughout the night. To really channel your inner-Ariana Grande, you can make disparaging remarks about America and fat people all night long.
12. Shame Bell Nun
Add a layer of pop cultural context to the classic nun and friar costume. Accessorize those habits with an added cowbell to complete the “shame nun” look featured in the last season of Game of Thrones.
13. Soul Cycle Instructor
This costume is relatively easy to pull-off; pull on some Lycra, and get one of those 90s pop star headsets. If you want to fully commit to this costume, don’t forget to scream mantras of positivity, love and acceptance at fellow partygoers.
14. Uber / Lyft
Want to be the personification of Uber? Print out the Uber logo, and put on a suit or simplify the costume by just wearing black. Convey the aesthetic of the international car service by carrying around a messenger bag filled with mint gum, water bottles, an auxiliary cord, and a portable charger for people’s phones.
To complete the Lyft look wear a pink wig, pink mustache and green clothes. Convey that friendly ride-share vibe by carrying around candy and offering fist bumps. Remember to asking fellow partiers if the level you set the air conditioning is okay.
— Brit Morin (@brit) October 8, 2014