Cheap Halloween Costumes Don’t Have to Suck


Every year, about two weeks before Halloween, I start to panic. Although I was practically a Halloween baby (October 29 if you want to make sure to write ‘HBD” on my Facebook wall), the best holiday of the year seems to always slip my mind. I also tend to struggle until the last possible minute to come up with a costume that is both witty and flattering.

Regardless, in the end it always works out. As of this writing, I’m not 100% sure what I’m going to be.

If you’re just like me, here’s a guide to finding cheap halloween costumes that don’t suck.

Cheap Halloween Costumes

  1. Pick a costume that can be easily assembled from thrift store finds
    cheap halloween costumes
    Whether you have a costume in mind or not is practically irrelevant, because you’re sure to find some excellent costume possibilities at a thrift store or Goodwill. For super-specific costume parts, add on to your thrift finds by going to a Halloween store.To give you an example, last year my boyfriend and I did Fight Club Halloween costumes. He was Tyler Durden and I was Marla Singer. His costume basically required a crazy shirt, aviators, and leather jacket – most pieces of which he already had. Mine was a crazy curly black wig and black dress. Pretty simple! And the costumes really came together.
  2. Make a costume out of accessories or makeup
    cheap halloween costumes
    Do you have animal ears? Maybe a tail? Boom, you have a costume.Some costumes can be put together almost entirely from how your face is made up. Or in the case of being a zombie, it’s also about the makeup wounds you create. Either way, you can use clothing you already have and just go heavy on the makeup.
    You may want to buy some clothes that support the costume better than jeans and a tshirt, but you don’t have to go crazy to make this work. Which leads me to my next idea for cheap halloween costumes…
  3. Buy clothing you can re-wear
    cheap halloween costumes
    One year, I decided I wanted to be a devil. So using a combination of the idea of using accessories to make a costume, plus the idea of buying clothing you can re-wear, I created a cheap and resuable halloween costume. To complete the look, I bought a hot red dress from Express that’s gotten plenty of use since and doesn’t look out of place!Whether you’re buying clothes you can re-wear for a costume, or are looking for specific basic pieces, Target and Walmart tend to be best bets for basics like plain colored tshirts and pants. I also like Express and Forever 21 for nicer pieces that you’ll re-wear.
  4. Use Mean Girls as inspiration
    As Caty so rightly stated in Mean Girls, “Halloween is the one day a year when a girl can dress up like a total slut and no other girls can say anything else about it.” I’m all about empowering women, but if you just want to let loose, to hell with the haters.One option for cheap Halloween costumes that will make you look hot on Halloween is Adore Me. Adore Me has sexy Halloween costumes for $20! It’s getting late in the game to order them, but is worth considering for the future!
  5. For next year – Buy your Halloween costume the day after Halloween
    One of my best friends used to work at Party City and I happened to visit her one year right after Halloween. I couldn’t believe my eyes. Costumes that were retailing for $40+ before Halloween were well under $10 as soon as the holiday was over. I picked up my costume for next year, saved it, and didn’t have to give Halloween a further thought afterwards.Besides stores like Party City, check out seasonal Halloween stores that pop up for a few months and need to liquidate their remaining merchandise after the Halloween season is over.

Here are just a few ideas for keeping costs down when it’s time for Halloween.

What are some good tips I missed? Are you doing anything thrifty for Halloween this year? Share in the comments!

By Maddy Osman

Maddy is the founder of Chicago Cheap Ass. She loves to read, travel, cook, and play with her adorable dog Leonidas.

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