We’ve all been THAT person – the one who leaves their Halloween costume prep ’til last minute and shows up at the party looking like an epic fail. So this year, we’re making it easier on you with some simple costume ideas you can create from items you already own.


Instead of A) completely bombing the costume thing or B) dropping $50 on fancy get-ups, try C) one of these super easy costume ideas – they’re so simple they’re brilliant and so clever you’re guaranteed to be the hit of the party. And best of all, they don’t require a trip to the store or the entire balance of your savings account. (In fact, why not DONATE the money you would have spent to one of our life-saving programs?)

“The Self Portrait”

For those of you really crunched for time, simply wear a large, empty frame around your head and say you’re a very realistic-looking self-portrait.


“Pumpkin Pi”

Wear an orange t-shirt. Draw or paint the “π“ symbol on it. It’s the perfect pun.


“Bag of Jellybeans”

Punch arm and leg holes in a clear garbage bag. Stand inside. Fill the bag with small blown-up balloons in all different colors. Watch out for those troublemakers who will inevitably spend the evening trying to pop you.


“The Piñata”

Wear bright colors and cover yourself in small strips of streamers/tissue paper. Tape on pieces of candy. Carry a bat. If you have two pointy party hats to wear on your head, even better.


“The Jellyfish”

Take an umbrella (white, if possible) and attach long, dangly strings or streamers from it. Balance the umbrella on your head and let them dangle around you. Walk around and pretend to sting people.


“Grumpy Cat”

All you need is white and brown makeup. Paint your face like this and start scowling:


“The Pineapple”

Wear all yellow clothing and make a green pointy hat out of whatever things you have on hand – green cardboard and markers, colored paper, streamers, felt, etc. Wear a lei and a pair of sunglasses for a beach-y, tropical vibe.


“Dexter Morgan”

For everyone’s favorite serial killer, wear a pair of cargo pants and a brown shirt, and add a black apron/gloves if you have them. Squirt on some ketchup to create fake blood stains. Carry a butcher’s knife (preferably a fake one). To make it a couple’s costume, wrap your partner in plastic wrap. Walk around with a twisted smile.


“Captain Underpants”

For this childhood icon, wear a pair of men’s underwear (over your clothes is fine) and tie a red shirt or sheet around your neck like a cape. Carry a plunger. Preferably a clean one.



Find 4 empty boxes and paint them your favorite color. Glue them together in the shape of a tetris figure and either stand inside them or hang them from your body. This also makes a fabulous group-costume.


“Cup O’ Noodles”

Decorate a long piece of white butcher paper like the popular soup container. Wrap it around yourself. Tape on some fake “noodles” (pieces of yellow yarn) and carry a wooden spoon. Bon appetite!


“The Fortune-Teller”

A Halloween classic. Wear a long dress or skirt and glittery shawl, hoop earrings, and dangly jewelry. Tie a headscarf around your hair. Add a pair of round glasses (Professor Trelawney-style) and predict morbid deaths for your friends.


“Error Code 404: Costume Not Found”

If costumes aren’t really your thing but cleverness and puns are, take a plain white T-shirt and write the following across it in black sharpie: ERROR 404 – COSTUME NOT FOUND. Hope that people appreciate the effort.


“The App”

All this costume requires is cardboard and markers or paint. Cut the cardboard in the shape of a large square and color it to look like any of the popular app symbols we all know and love. Then attach yarn and wear it around your neck. For Instagram, you can even cut a hole in the middle, poke your camera lens through, and take pictures throughout the night. For Facebook you can fill it in to look like your profile and put your head where your profile picture would normally be. You’ll be the coolest teeny-bopper at the party.



[Image credits: Kool-Aid, Self-Portrait, Pumpkin Pi, Jelly Beans, Pinata, Jellyfish, Grumpy Cat, Pineapple, Dexter, Captain Underpants, Tetris, Cup O’ Noodles, Fortune Teller, Error, App]

This Halloween, take a stand for child soldiers. Skip the fancy, expensive costumes and support one of our programs instead.