Halloween Costumes on a Budget

With the approach of Halloween comes the approach of a fun holiday tradition: costumes. Halloween is the one time a year it’s socially acceptable to dress up in crazy costumes. Creativity is encouraged and humor is rewarded. With the exploding trend of Halloween super stores, it’s easier than ever to put a costume together. However, the price for a store-bought costume is soaring. If you don’t have $100 to spend on a costume, here are some ideas to help you avoid those pesky overdraft fees.


men and women's pirate costumes

With the release of the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean earlier this year, pirates will be a popular and relevant choice this year. This is a fairly easy costume if you already have a few simple pieces: boots and a solid colored button-down shirt. Girls can pair these with some leggings (if your boots are tall) or a thrifted solid colored skirt you can rip up and make a little bit ragged. Guys can also wear tights, if they’re bold enough to. If not, cut some old black slacks into below-the-knee shorts. A looser fit is better, and make sure to cut some triangles into the hem. You can get a yard of cheap fabric in white, black, red, or even a simple stripe. Rough it up a bit – you use sandpaper to rub some rough spots into it and fray the edges – then use it to create a wide waistband and headscarf. Complete the look with heavy black eye makeup, lots of gold jewelry, and of course a sword.


Kesha on the red carpet

This is a good one if you’re naturally blonde. Spray your hair with a light saltwater mixture and twist it around your fingers to create her big, beachy waves. Of course, you could always buy a wig as well – this would give you the freedom to make your hair into a Ke$ha-like ratty mess. Clothing is easy: something tight, black and/or neon, and as revealing as you feel comfortable being. When it comes to accessories, ignore the old rule that says you should take something one thing off before you leave the house. More is better in this case. Think big, clunky bangles, heavy necklaces, and oversized  rings. When it comes to makeup, more is still better. This is a fun excuse to go crazy with it because Ke$ha is known for having some sort of design around her right eye. Keep in mind that if you aren’t reflecting moonlight, you aren’t wearing enough glitter.

Mad Scientist

mad doctor costume

Okay guys, here’s a gory one for you. The main ingredients are simple: a cheap white lab coat, a few “research” tools (a fake knife, for example), and some fake blood. Start with some black slacks and shoes. Splatter the fake blood all over the front of your lab coat – bonus points if you can have somebody do it while you’re wearing it, for more realistic splatter. You may not want to be wearing your pants at the time. Either way, it is a good idea to do this outside. Make sure not to use all the fake blood, as you will also need to give your “surgery” tools a good covering as well. Some huge “coke bottle” glasses will give you a nerdy look. The final product will be enhanced if you spray your hair white and use gel to make it go a little crazy, and use black makeup to make your eyes look sunken and your skin an unhealthy palor. Remember, the idea is that you’re totally bonkers. You may also want to enforce the idea by smearing some fake blood on your arms, hands, neck, and face.

These are just three examples of the thousands of costumes that can be made very cheaply and easily, often using things you already have in your closet or home. The most important thing to remember is that there is no right or wrong way to put together a Halloween costume. The idea is to have fun and be creative.


One thought on “Halloween Costumes on a Budget

  1. For women going as a witch or a cat is always easy with Black outfits and a few accessories, men can easily go as vampires or even a mummy is very simple.

    Ebay is also cheap for complete fancy dress outfits or bits and pieces.

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