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Buying guide for Best Halloween costumes for women

When it comes to Halloween costumes for women, the choices are nearly limitless. Whatever your spooky style, you can find a Halloween costume you’ll love. But finding a costume in time for the holiday can be stressful, especially if you’re on a budget. Before committing to a Halloween costume for women, you should keep a few considerations in mind.

Are you looking for a statement costume, or would you prefer something classic like a witch? How often do you plan to wear the costume? If you want to be cost-effective, consider a costume that’s versatile enough to use year after year. Other things to keep in mind include whether or not the costume has a makeup component, durability of the materials, and, of course, price.

 Halloween Costumes for Women
When looking for Halloween costumes for women, try to avoid those that are 100% polyester. They won’t hold up well after a few washes in your machine.

How to buy the best Halloween costume for women

Halloween celebrations date back centuries. Halloween as we know it originated from Samhain, a Celtic pagan holiday that marked the end of the harvest season. Traditionally, Samhain was a celebration deeply tied to the spiritual world. Observers would wear scary costumes to ward off ghosts. These costumes were intended to be frightening, and people often concealed their faces with masks. Bonfires, pranks, and general mischief were a part of the festivities as well. 

Halloween was largely celebrated by adults until the 1940s or so. The post-war baby boom and television propelled the popularity of Halloween and Halloween costumes. Costumes evolved from ghouls and goblins into those inspired by superheroes and cowboys. Today, Halloween costumes for women also tend to be inspired by current pop culture.


Halloween is a hit for adults and children alike. The costume you choose may vary depending on whether you’re taking a child trick-or-treating, for example, or going to a grown-up party. Quite a few Halloween costumes for women have a sultry style, with form-fitting garments that reveal a lot of skin. While a great choice for an adult gathering, if you’re spending the holiday with children it’s best to stick with a Halloween costume for women that’s less on the revealing side.


Halloween costumes for women come in a wide variety of materials. Polyester is a common material for Halloween costumes for women. Polyester refers to a family of synthetic, water-resistant fabrics. Polyester is popular because it’s inexpensive to produce and is a strong, durable material. Another benefit of polyester is that it’s wrinkle-resistant. On the downside, polyester fabrics generate a lot of static. It’s also a less breathable fabric and tends to retain odors more. Polyester fabrics won’t last long unless they’re very well cared for. Another synthetic material to consider is latex. Latex is a stretchy rubber material that’s commonly found in boots, gloves, masks, and pants.

Halloween costumes for women that are made from natural fabrics are much more breathable and will last longer after washing. Cotton allows sweat to evaporate more easily. Cotton, unlike polyester, is a hypoallergenic material, which means it’s great for those with sensitive skin.


Buying a new Halloween costume every year can get expensive. Some people may balk at the thought of buying an outfit that’s only worn once a year. Get cost-effective by choosing a versatile costume. A versatile Halloween costume for women is one that can be repurposed for multiple occasions.

It might be more helpful to shop for costume items separately rather than an all-in-one costume. You can purchase a black cloak, a witch’s hat, cat ears, and a jumpsuit. Then you can mix and match to make the costume of your choice. You might even wear the separate costume components for different events down the line. Cosplay conventions, themed birthday parties, concerts, and festivals are all potential occasions for costume recycling.

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Staff Tip
You can choose a great Halloween costume without being offensive. Avoid costumes that involve makeup for changing skin color and costumes that are appropriative of other cultures or play off of stereotypes and tropes.

Features of Halloween costumes for women

Costume accessories

It’s not uncommon for Halloween costumes for women to include a plethora of accessories. Many costumes incorporate wigs or hairpieces, makeup, jewelry, or other accessories that fit the costume’s character. If you have particularly sensitive skin, you may want to verify any makeup ingredients before applying. Note that costume accessories will also need to be well maintained and ideally kept together with the costume so that the extra pieces don’t get lost.


Most of us care about looking good, and Halloween is no exception. While certain costumes, such as those inspired by particular characters, remain true to the era they’re from, versatile Halloween costumes for women, such as witches and vampires, are a different story.

Retro-inspired styles have always been appealing. Gothic styles fit into this category. Gothic-era clothing is usually associated with the Victorian era, which spanned roughly from the early 1800s to the early 1900s. Some signature Gothic styles for women include dark colors, floor-length dresses and skirts, crinoline underskirts, and corsets.

Another common option is Halloween costumes for women that nod to a specific decade. Hippie Halloween costumes for women pull from ‘60s styling, with short skirts, tall boots, fringe hems, and headbands. A ‘70s “disco queen” outfit may include bold floral patterns, that signature wide collar, and bell-bottom pants or a jumpsuit.


A well-made Halloween costume for women, like all well-made clothing, will incorporate finished hems, a secure zipper, and a good fit. That means the armpits shouldn’t be too tight to raise your arms over your head while dancing, for example. You should be able to wash your costume without worrying about it shrinking. Because many Halloween costumes for women are designed to be worn only once, they tend not to be of the best quality. But meticulous care of a low-quality costume can help it retain its shape longer than expected.

If you’re still stuck on a Halloween costume idea, historical figures are an excellent choice. So are beloved fictional characters. And don’t forget that you don’t have to choose a female figure or character.


How much do Halloween costumes for women cost?


When it comes to Halloween costumes for women, you get what you pay for. That being said, you can absolutely secure a costume for $30 or less. Halloween costumes for women at this price will often consist of a singular clothing item (like a dress or jumpsuit) and limited accessories. These costumes are more likely to be made from polyester blends.


If you have a bit more to spend, the $30 to $60 range opens up your options immensely. At this price point, more Halloween costumes for women include wigs, makeup, jewelry, and other accessories. These costumes may have multiple components, such as a top and pants with a jacket. You’re more likely to find costumes that incorporate natural materials in addition to synthetic ones in this range.


Some people really love Halloween. If this is you, then perhaps you’re willing to splurge on a Halloween costume for women that’s $60 and more. Quite often these are elaborate costumes, such as those inspired by science fiction characters that are half-human, half-woman. They’ll usually have several accessory components and be made from higher-quality materials.

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Staff Tip
Pay close attention to the cleaning instructions included with your Halloween costume. Some costumes and accessories can be cleaned with a mild soapy solution, while others require a bit more attention.


  • Buy your Halloween costume for women early. Don’t wait until fall to purchase your Halloween costume. In fact, if you look during the offseason you’ll have far more choices.
  • Keep your costume clean. Even if you’ll only wear it once a year, a well-maintained costume can last for years. Check the costume label to verify washing instructions. When in doubt, gently hand wash in warm water with a mild detergent and hang to dry.
  • Search far and wide. Search on a number of different websites to find the best Halloween costume for you. To make your costume more unique, you can enhance your look with some thoughtful thrifted or secondhand accessories. And don’t overlook the transformative power of makeup.
Halloween Costume for Women
The most popular costumes tend to reference current pop culture. But consider sticking with classic Halloween costumes for women that can be reused year after year.


Q. Can adults still dress up for Halloween?

A. Of course! In its early days, the holiday was primarily celebrated by adults. Even if you’ll skip the trick-or-treating, costumes are great for greeting trick-or-treaters. And you’ll certainly need a costume for any grown-up Halloween festivities.

Q. Do Halloween costumes for women have to be sexy?

A. Absolutely not. Women’s costumes do tend to be much more revealing than men’s Halloween costumes, but there are plenty of costumes for women available that aren’t overly sexualized.

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