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Updated October 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Buying guide for best group Halloween costumes

Every year, millions of people have fun disguising themselves in the name of one holiday (you guessed it): Halloween. If you think solo or couples costumes are the only way to go, think again. Group Halloween costumes are more than double the fun, a great excuse for getting a friend group together, and ultimately not too difficult to assemble!

Halloween’s popularity means that there are quite a few choices for group costumes, but before you narrow your options, there are some factors to keep in mind. More people means more interests to consider, so you’ll definitely want to find a costume that everyone likes. You’ll also want to think about the gender makeup of the group, how complicated you want the costumes to be, and the price.

A good buying guide can help you make the best decision for your group, and some recommendations can give you different costume ideas to take to your friends.

a family of three in Halloween costumes
You can elevate your group’s Halloween costume with accessories you already own. Belts, jewelry, wigs, tights, boots, and other items can add a unique touch to each outfit.

How to buy the best group Halloween costume

A brief history of Halloween

Halloween is one of the world’s oldest holidays. Many cultures around the world celebrate the connection between the living and the dead and honor those who are gone. Halloween stems from the Gaelic holiday Samhain, which also marked the end of the harvest season and the start of winter. When Irish immigrants fled the potato famine and came to the United States in the mid-1800s, they brought their festivals and traditions with them. Over time, some of these festivals became part of American culture, and modern-day Halloween was one result. While truly terrifying costumes with masks and hoods were more popular in the early 1900s, the rise of television in the 1950s brought pop culture costumes to the forefront.

Group size

Group Halloween costumes are an opportunity to bond more closely with your friends or get closer to acquaintances. Coming up with a group costume idea isn’t much more difficult than coming up with a solo one. There are just a few extra factors to think about when you have multiple people getting together.

Group size certainly matters. Typically, the smaller the group, the easier it will be to reach a consensus. This is especially true if you want everyone to be dressed as a different character, person, or item.

Three: These group costumes can be versatile. The group can include three friends, three siblings, or two parents and a child. If you’re looking to go the pop culture route, trios are popular in fairy tales, film, and television. Think of the Three Blind Mice, Cinderella and her sisters, the Three Little Pigs, Powerpuff Girls, the Three Musketeers, the Three Stooges… you can probably think of more. What’s most important is that everyone agrees on the costume.

Four: Quartets are pretty common too, so these costumes offer plenty of options. Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, and the Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and the main characters from Mean Girls are just a few ideas.

Five: And if you’re planning a group of five, don’t fret. You can get in on the fun too. Fabulous fivesomes are everywhere, from the Scooby Doo gang, the Addams Family, the foursome from The Wizard of Oz plus Glinda the Good Witch, the cast of Queer Eye, the Spice Girls… you get the drift. 

Six or more: With a large group, it might be easier to choose a costume that’s set in a universe rather than linked to specific characters. Think of the Harry Potter books, Star Wars, The Handmaid's Tale, and other settings where there’s a recognizable outfit. It can simplify things for a larger group, assuming that everyone is interested in similar fictional worlds.

Diversity

Maybe your group includes a variety of genders. If so, that’s okay! The beauty of Halloween is that you can dress up however you want (as long as you’re respectful about it). With pop culture costumes, the guys can gender bend and so can the gals. If your group isn’t into that, though, it’s probably better to go for a group costume inspired by a fictional world.

Items vs. characters

Costumes of pop culture characters are popular for a reason: the characters are easy to recognize and can elicit strong reactions. For many Halloween celebrants, that’s the goal! But don’t feel as though your group has to dress as characters, because there are plenty of costumes based on objects that can be fun too. Are there foods or drinks that your group really likes? You can dress as a six-pack of beer or even a whole picnic spread, complete with hamburgers and hot dogs. You can be a set of playing cards, trees, or robots. It can be as simple as buying six of the same costume, in different colors if desired.

Material

Most Halloween costumes are made of latex, polyester, synthetic leather, cotton, or a blend of several materials.

Latex: Natural latex comes from rubber trees, but many Halloween costumes, especially the cheaper ones, are made of petroleum-based synthetic latex, a type of plastic. Stretchy latex costumes are popular for form-fitting outfits, but they don’t last a long time.

Polyester: This synthetic material is also a petroleum product. Durable polyester resists wrinkles, dries quickly, and is affordable, so it’s a popular costume material. On the downside, polyester is highly flammable and retains odors.

Synthetic leather: This is available in two main types: polyurethane (PU) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Synthetic leather mimics natural leather’s texture, but its production doesn’t harm animals and it doesn’t cost as much. It also requires less maintenance than animal leather and won’t crack or fade over time. Not all synthetic leathers are the same, however, and the quality largely correlates with cost.

Cotton: This is by far the most breathable of the common Halloween costume materials. It is all-natural and hypoallergenic. Costumes made of cotton are a better choice for anyone with skin sensitivities. Cotton is also more expensive. However, most Halloween costumes aren’t 100% cotton. Cotton blends with polyester and/or latex are more common.

a dog in costume
DID YOU KNOW?
If you want to include your pets in your group costume, research some ideas for cats and dogs. Those can give you a good starting point for your ensemble.
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Features to look for in group Halloween costumes

Complexity

Some people are more into Halloween than others. If you’re looking for Halloween costumes for a group, maybe your whole squad loves the holiday. Or maybe there are one or two folks who aren’t that thrilled by the prospect of dressing up. In that case, you can go for a low-effort costume, such as a special T-shirt, or a group costume where the less enthusiastic folks can keep it simple (like Uncle Fester in the Addams Family, for example).

Accessories

Depending on the group’s Halloween costume, there could be additional elements. Masks, eye and face makeup, fake fangs, and wigs are only a few of the possible extras. You might want to skip these elements if you don’t want your costume to be overly complicated, but a few extras can go a long way to make your costume unique.

Store Halloween costumes in a dark, cool place with adequate ventilation.

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How much do group Halloween costumes cost?

Inexpensive

Halloween costumes vary in terms of affordability. For group costumes for women, this is especially true. You can expect to pay $45 to $80 at least. Most of these group costumes are graphic T-shirts. It’s possible to find other costumes for more than three people at the higher end of this range, but there aren’t many.

Mid-range

For $80 to $150, your options include costumes with extra components. These include those made of latex, polyester, or synthetic leather. You might find a few cotton blends at this price too, not including T-shirt costumes.

Expensive

If your group has a larger budget, $150 or more, you can find group costumes with extra elements and accessories or the trendiest pop culture costumes.

three women in witch costumes
DID YOU KNOW?
If you’re trying to cut costs but want to give your costumes a little pizazz, make your own makeup or fake blood. You can find recipes online that use simple household items like corn syrup and food coloring.
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Tips

  • Get more bang for your buck. Taking care of your group's Halloween costumes will ensure that they last longer. Spot clean them as necessary and check the manufacturer’s label to be sure that the costumes can be machine washed before tossing them in the washer.
  • Plan ahead and save money. You can save quite a bit of money by buying Halloween costumes in the off-season. The best time to buy a costume is right after the holiday when it’s possible to find great costumes at 50% to 70% off.
  • Be mindful. Cultural appropriation isn’t hard to avoid. Steer clear of costumes that involve changing your skin color or stereotyping a culture or ethnic group.
a group in Halloween costumes
If you’ve accumulated costumes over the years, you can donate them or sell them online or through a garage sale. You’ll free up closet space and possibly make a few bucks to put toward your next costume.

FAQ

Q. Are group Halloween costumes corny?

A. They certainly don't have to be! Corny is subjective anyway. All that matters is that your friends have fun with what they’re wearing.

Q. Which Halloween costumes are the most popular?

A. Witches, rabbits, clowns, and pirates are among Halloween's most loved costumes. Since many of these are easy to find or create, any one of them would be a safe group Halloween costume choice.

Q. Can I return group Halloween costumes?

A. Check the retailer’s website for its return policy. Typically, most sellers only take items that are unworn and in their original packaging with the original receipt.