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Five Halloween Costumes That Are Really Just an Excuse to Shop

Get more bang for your Halloween buck.

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Rihanna walking around with a glass of wine Photo: Josiah Kamau/BuzzFoto via Getty Images

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You know what sucks? Spending your hard-earned dollars on a Halloween costume you can only wear for one night, that’s what! Sure, it’s easy enough to buy a plastic-bagged, ready-to-wear costume from your nearest party store, but that’s not exactly the most creative approach. And thanks to Instagram, you’re probably not planning to wear that kooky getup more than once anyway (unless you’re one of these people, of course). So why flush $50 or more of your seasonal shopping budget down the drain?

The obvious solution here is to stealthily incorporate stuff you want to buy anyway into your Halloween costume, and then fill in the rest with pieces you already own, can make yourself, or that cost only a couple of extra dollars. Not sure what I mean? Below, I’ve worked five key fall fashion and beauty purchases (several of which my fellow Racked staffers are currently considering) into simple, pop culture-inspired costumes that’ll let you say, “I had to buy it, because Halloween!”


Stuart Weitzman Tiemodel Boot, $885
Stuart Weitzman Tiemodel Boot, $885
Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images

If you want an excuse to buy: Red over-the-knee boots, aka 2017’s coolest shoes.

Dress up as: Wonder Woman. Sure, you could shell out for one of the many ready-made Diana Prince outfits floating around the internet... or you could use this as an opportunity to buy some boots you’ll actually wear past October 31st. Just fashion a headpiece, belt, lasso, and cuffs out of aluminum foil, pick up a cheap American flag-printed swimsuit, and you’re good to go.

Bonus: Now you’ve got next year’s Fourth of July pool party look sorted too.


Glossier You, $60
Glossier You, $60
Photo: Glossier

If you want an excuse to buy: Glossier’s new fragrance, You.

Dress up as: Glossier you (get it?!). First, stick those cutesy stickers all over your face and arms (just don’t overdo it on That Wet Look beforehand — a big ask for any Glossier diehard, I know — or they’ll all fall off immediately). Then, fill that bubble-wrap pouch with a few of your favorite products. Grab a long piece of string or yarn, staple the ends to the top two corners of the pouch, and wear it around your neck like a big ol’ pink pendant. For extra credit, pick up some extra pink bubble wrap to cover the rest of your body, too.

Bonus: If anyone needs lip balm throughout the night, you’re on it.


Warby Parker Laurel Eyeglasses, $95
Warby Parker Laurel Eyeglasses, $95
Taylor Swift in the “Look What You Made Me Do” music video Photo: YouTube

If you want an excuse to buy: A new pair of Warby Parkers.

Dress up as: Taylor Swift circa “You Belong With Me,” aka the old Taylor who can’t come to the phone right now (why? Oh! ’Cause she’s dead!). There is a DIY component to this outfit — you’ll need a plain white T-shirt and some fabric markers to make your own Junior Jewels tee — but you can wear your favorite pajama bottoms, so there’s that.

Bonus: At last, a Halloween costume that’s comfy enough to sleep in.


Levi’s Corduroy Sherpa Jacket, $148
Levi’s Corduroy Sherpa Jacket, $148
Caleb McLaughlin in Stranger Things Photo: Netflix

If you want an excuse to buy: A corduroy jacket.

Dress up as: Literally anyone from Stranger Things. All you need to complete the look are classic jeans (or cords), a solid or striped tee, a backpack, and a childlike sense of wonder.

Bonus: You’ll stand out from all the Elevens.


Brother Vellies Marabou Sandals, $285
Brother Vellies Marabou Sandals, $285
Rihanna walking around with a glass of wine Photo: Josiah Kamau/BuzzFoto via Getty Images

If you want an excuse to buy: Furry or feathery shoes.

Dress up as: Rihanna walking down the street with a glass of wine. Just add your favorite pair of silky PJs and you’re set.

Bonus: The built-in drink, duh.