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Picking the Perfect Halloween Costume

Updated on July 18, 2015
Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannie has been writing online for over 8 years. She covers a wide variety of topics—anything from hamsters to office work.


Choose the Perfect Costume... For YOU!

Halloween costumes come in all shapes and sizes. Some are scary. Others are lighthearted. Some Halloween costumes are simply meant to be hilarious. With so many options, it could be difficult to pick just one. Maybe you are lucky enough to go to more than one Halloween event, so you can wear more than one Halloween costume. If you are not that lucky, here are some tips to help you narrow down your search for the perfect costume.

Some factors you'll want to consider when choosing a Halloween costume are:

  • Price
  • Comfort
  • Your personal style
  • Occasion
  • Time and effort


When picking a Halloween costume, I always consider the price. I am willing to pay about $20 for a costume (makeup and accessories included). Sometimes that means I am making most of the costume myself. Other times that means I am bargain hunting in the clearance section of Halloween costume shops. Going to the thrift store is always a possibility, too.

Every now and then, I may be willing to pay a higher price for a product I can somehow use more than once. For instance, I love 50's style and 20's style attire and accessories. I am willing to pay more for a poodle skirt I know I will wear more than once. I can wear it to a party with a sock hop theme. I can also wear it more than once for Halloween. To be perfectly frank, there could even be a day I just feel like wearing it for no reason. I just really like that type of thing! So if you are likely to put the costume to good use, it seems reasonable to spend more money on it.

Makeup that may be hard to keep on all day.
Makeup that may be hard to keep on all day. | Source
Way too much bronzer was used when I was Snooki.
Way too much bronzer was used when I was Snooki. | Source


I think one of the major considerations for picking out a Halloween costume is comfort. I see so many Halloween costumes that are amazing. You could be a giant hot dog, a walking slice of pizza, or even a gorilla for Halloween. However, you need to consider how long you are going to wear it and how comfortable it will be if you are wearing it for hours.

Another consideration is the temperature. Do you know how hot it will be to wear a gorilla suit all night? Honestly, I don't know the exact answer either, but I can't imagine it is pleasant, especially if you live in a warmer climate. If you are staying inside in an air-conditioned building, or you will be outside and it is chilly, you could be OK. Otherwise I would reconsider wearing any costume that will cover your entire body.

You will also want to consider whether you are willing to wear a mask or makeup. Both have their positives and negatives. A mask is easy to put on, but can be expensive. Also, it can be difficult to see out of a mask. You may sweat in the mask, too. Wearing makeup could be a better option, but it can also start to wear off. If you work really hard on makeup, yet it starts to wipe off on napkins when you eat food, it could be impractical. Also, if you go a little crazy with bronzer, it could start to stink after a few hours. I learned that the hard way one time.

Your Style

Everyone has their own flair and Halloween is the perfect time to show it. Do you like My Little Ponies? Well, you can be a pony this Halloween or dress up like Rainbow Dash. I happen to love My Little Ponies and know for a fact there are many Rainbow Dash costumes.

Many Halloween costumes are completely silly. You could be a can of beer or a piece of toast. Sometimes you will find a couples costume, like peanut butter and jelly. If you want to be hilarious this Halloween, go right ahead! Halloween does not have to be a scary holiday. You could very well be funny this year. If you don't mind humiliating yourself, a wacky Halloween costume could be just the right idea for you.

Some people believe Halloween is a time to wear something they would never normally have the nerve to wear. If that is the case, go ahead and be a Naughty Nurse or Studly Fireman this Halloween. If you are single, you might just find a date when you go out dressed that way.

Perhaps you enjoy pop culture and you want to dress like whatever is in style for this year. In Halloweens past, I have dressed like Snooki from Jersey Shore and the Sun Drop Girl, so I am no stranger to pop culture costumes. This year, you could dress like the Wendy's Girl or maybe someone from Duck Dynasty. I would, however, avoid dressing in a Hazmat Suit this Halloween due to the Ebola virus outbreaks. Offensive Halloween costumes are not such a great idea.

Since Halloween is intended to be scary, it is certainly a good idea to be something ghoulish. If you like to explore the dark side for Halloween, there is no limit to what you can be: vampire, witch, zombie, grim reaper, ghost, demon, etc. It is easy to combine costumes, too. If you really want to be a mouse, but yet you like zombies, why not be a zombie mouse? A little makeup, fake blood, mouse ears and tail, and you will be all set. I used to have a professor that enjoyed being a Vampirate every Halloween; he combined a vampire costume and pirate costume each year. Both costumes are very popular right now, so you could give that a try if you wanted.

I don't mind "bee"ing silly for Halloween.
I don't mind "bee"ing silly for Halloween. | Source


I do realize we are dressing for one major occasion: Halloween. However, there are many different types of events one might attend for Halloween. For instance, you may want to keep your Sexy Cop outfit at home if you are attending a child's Halloween party. A pink bunny suit might be best. If you are living in a warm climate and walking around for hours to Trick or Treat, that bunny suit with the attached footies might be a really bad idea. You could opt to be a witch or vampire instead.

Before deciding on a costume for Halloween, learn all about important factors like weather, temperature, length of event, etc. If you are Trick or Treating, consider wearing a costume that has some type of bright feature so cars can see you. If you costume is entirely black, consider getting some glow bracelets or necklaces, or carrying a flashlight. If it is appropriate for your costume, carrying a lantern can add a creepy effect and it makes wandering around in the dark much safer.

A scary doll costume takes very little effort and can be worn to practically any event.
A scary doll costume takes very little effort and can be worn to practically any event. | Source

Time and Effort

The next topic I would like to explore is the time and effort spent on a Halloween costume. That will no doubt factor into your decision. If you are working all day on Halloween and then attending an event that night, I am sure you would like to keep it simple. In that case, you probably do not want to wear anything with elaborate makeup involved.

If you are going to a big event with a Halloween costume contest, it is likely you will want to set aside hours to get ready. After all, you want to impress everyone and win that contest, right? In this case, you may want to sacrifice some comfort to look awesome, but beware, dancing might not be in your future if you are wearing an uncomfortable costume. As a matter of fact, you could dress like a flower and lean against the wall, because you might be a wallflower all night.

Basically, we all have priorities when creating the best Halloween costume. Make sure to consider where you going, what you will be doing, and what type of weather you will experience on Halloween. You can easily come up with great costume ideas by just looking in your own closet sometimes. Halloween costumes can be as elaborate or as simple as you'd like. Halloween only comes around once a year, so you may as well make the most of it. Happy Halloween!

Copyright ©2014 Jeannieinabottle

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Submit a Comment
  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I do love the Dollar Tree, but unfortunately, there is no Christmas Tree Shop anywhere near by. My mother assures me they are great though.

  • no body profile image

    Robert E Smith 

    6 years ago from Rochester, New York

    Positives and negatives to everything. A seasonal store is a hard way to go and almost depressing when it is finished, if you really love it. Another store that looks good to me is The Dollar Tree and The Christmas Tree Shops. Dollar tree is always full of things that I have use for and at that all time cheap price of one dollar. As far as the Christmas Tree Shop, it is great for Thanksgiving gifts and other holidays and the year round. It is big so there are so many things that they can have in stock. Almost like a Walmart for general things but not organized in the same way and no food. Don't know if you have either of these stores around where you live but when they come, you will see what I mean. Bob.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    no body, that is good to know. I might need to work at a different retail job soon, so now I know Hallmark is an option.

    FlourishAnyway, I love dressing up, too. I also don't mind looking ridiculous, as you can see. Don't envy me about the Halloween store. I thought it would be a lot of fun and sometimes it is, but in some ways it is worse than other stores. Since it is temporary, we had to scramble and work crazy hours just to set the store up and we make minimum wage. It is a first job for a lot of people, so you can imagine that means a lot of confused workers, people not showing up, theft, etc. I am glad I got to do it once, but I won't do it again.

  • FlourishAnyway profile image


    6 years ago from USA

    I love dressing up -- the wigs, the makeup, the costumes. One year I went as Medusa with green skin and rubber snakes in my hair. Another year I was Sarah Palin. But I mostly prefer the wicked witch because I have the hair for it and have perfected the cackling laugh ("I'll get you, my little pretties!"). I love your photos and envy your working in a Halloween store.

  • no body profile image

    Robert E Smith 

    6 years ago from Rochester, New York

    No not really. You are busy helping customers and visiting with them. I hardly heard it at all. It was one of the best cashier jobs I ever had.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    I always wondered what it would be like to work at Hallmark. Do all the holiday songs constantly play start to get annoying? What about the singing and dancing stuffed animals?

  • no body profile image

    Robert E Smith 

    6 years ago from Rochester, New York

    I used to work at a Hallmark Card Shop and they would get all kinds of funny things at Halloween and Thanksgiving and Christmas, New Year's so I would have some kind of thing to dress in to work the register. Then the summer came and there was nothing. It was the most boring thing to be just me. So I guess I do know a little of how it feels to partake of the season's cheer. hahaha.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    sheilamyers, I am glad you enjoyed the hub. You should try dressing up one time; it is a good time.

    no body, it is a shame you've never been to a Halloween party. I myself am not a big partier and I hate hosting parties, but I don't mind having a reason to dress in a funny or scary costume. I work at a Halloween shop right now, so I have extra costumes now. I am bound to wear a couple of them. :-) Thanks for dropping by!

  • no body profile image

    Robert E Smith 

    6 years ago from Rochester, New York

    Never once have I been to a Halloween party. Nor have I held one in my home. Since I left my parents home (where Halloween wasn't allowed). But it's not that I think anything is wrong with it, per say. I just have never been invited or have I had any imagination for it. My beautiful wife now is not a party person either. Since our wedding was a Halloween wedding, you would think we would have but nope. I do struggle with how we could have some new experience for our Anni-Ween, maybe we could laugh a while with our friends dressed up this year. Or not... Probably not.

  • profile image


    6 years ago

    I don't dress up on Halloween, but I enjoyed reading your great tips.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thanks, Jodah. It is a shame you don't celebrate Halloween, it can be lots of fun.

  • Jodah profile image

    John Hansen 

    6 years ago from Queensland Australia

    Interesting hub and fun read Jeannie. We don't really celebrate Halloween but I'm sure it's fun choosing a costume and dressing up. I enjoyed the photos.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thanks, Bill. I have been told I can make any trip to Target an adventure.

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 

    6 years ago from Olympia, WA

    I don't think you would ever be boring to be around, Jeannie. I was laughing throughout this hub at the pictures of you.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile imageAUTHOR

    Jeannie Marie 

    6 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thanks, AliciaC! The photos are from the last 5 years... some of my most embarrassing stuff.

  • AliciaC profile image

    Linda Crampton 

    6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    This is an entertaining hub that also contains some very good advice. I love the photos!


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