Halloween Costumes

What’s the most fun part of All Hallows’ Eve? The Halloween costumes, of course. But figuring out where to start can be a challenge. That’s where we come in. First, decide whether you’re going to fly solo or go for a group costume. Then, choose a direction: Are you going to opt for an old-standby (a ghost, a cat, a skeleton), the pop culture costume of the moment (dare we guess Pokémon this year?), or something totally one-of-a-kind? No matter your choice, we have homemade Halloween costume ideas for the whole family—yes, even your pets. And you don’t even need to know how to sew. It’s easy to make Halloween costumes for kids (or adults) out of things you already have around the house—toilet paper rolls, yoga mats, yarn, and more. But, if that still sounds way too complicated, we’ve rounded up the best costumes to buy, too. Plus, masks you can throw together in minutes, realistic makeup tutorials, and simple ways to turn a T-shirt into a last-minute costume.

Group Halloween Costumes

These homemade Halloween costumes, suitable for adults and kids alike, are just right for couples, siblings, families, or friend groups. And you’ll have to do minimal shopping to throw each of these looks together—all of the costumes are made with items you can find around the house. So grab your craft supplies and get to work.

Halloween Makeup Ideas That Are Spooky, Sexy, and Fun

The best part? You can achieve most of them with what’s already in your makeup bag, plus a few small additions.

Futuristic Cyborg Makeup That’ll Really Up Your Halloween Game

This crazy cool sci-fi look is easy to achieve, yet makes a major impact (and will score you points at any parade or party). Pull it off in under 10 minutes using what’s already in your makeup bag (you’re welcome!), plus one key prop—which you can pick up at a craft store or buy online.

A Joker Makeup Tutorial for the Ultimate Halloween Look

This Halloween, skip the traditional clown costume and upgrade to the equally artsy—but way cooler—look: the Joker (no red nose or wig required). This also works as a great couple costume if your partner, friend, or child (cute!) is dressing up as Batman. Just grab a red lip liner and press play.

Halloween Cat Makeup So Easy You Can Do It Yourself

Yes, you might run into a few other black cats on the block while trick-or-treating, but none will look as purretty as you with our super-simple wild cat makeover. The best part: You only need black eyeliner, red lipstick, and a broomstick! #meow

How to Be The Queen of the Nile for Halloween

Going for a more glamorous, less ghoulish look this Halloween? Replicate this exotic idea using what’s in your makeup bag (plus a few easy drugstore finds).

18 Cool Halloween Costumes You Can Make Using Stuff Around the House

Ordinary items can easily transform into show-stopping DIY disguises for kids (and even adults, too!). Dare to dream.

Halloween Masks So Easy You’ll Be Ready in No Time

There’s no excuse for not dressing up this October. These clever, simple masks are all you need for a costume—just wear your regular clothes and you’ll be set for a festive gathering or trick-or-treating.

Crafts developed by Morgan Levine

9 Creative Halloween Costumes You Can Throw Together With Stuff In Your Closet

October 31 fast approaching and still no costume? Don’t despair: You’re guaranteed to have the makings of something spooktacular tucked in your closet. These nine Real Simple staffers did.

24 DIY Halloween Costumes for Kids

October 31 seems to creep up on us every single year. Still set on treating Junior to that one-of-a-kind disguise? Frightened by the idea of making your own costume from scratch? Don’t be. Get into the spirit with creative ideas that can pulled together with cupcake liners, coffee filets, and more household items. We know it’s tempting to just give up and head to the Halloween store for some packaged kid costumes, but just think about how unique your child’s outfit will be if you use one of these ideas as inspiration. These Halloween costumes for kids range from easy to more advanced, so you can pick your favorite based on your skill level. All of these can be completed during some free time over the weekend, so you won’t have to plan too far in advance. If your child is begging for a store-bought costume, there are plenty of options to get them to reconsider, including a race car driver, mermaid, aviator, and two kinds of peacock options. You can even sweeten the deal by bringing them with you when you buy the materials so they have a part in creating the disguise. When Halloween comes around, they’ll be happy to have a totally unique costume.

What Was the Best Halloween Costume You Ever Wore?

In anticipation of Halloween 2012, 11 readers reminisce about their most spooktacular past getups.