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18 Cheap Halloween Costumes for Adults Basically Anyone Can DIY

You don't need a big budget to make these fun and original Halloween costumes.

14-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Studio DIY


Who would have guessed dressing up as a plant could be so fun? Transform into a cute cactus costume by hot-gluing white yarn on a green dress. Add some colorful pom-poms for flowers. Check out Studio DIY for more detailed instructions. These last-minute adult costume ideas are worth checking out, also.

06-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesvia ruby4reals/

Rosie the Riveter

You probably have everything you need to become Rosie the Riveter in your closet right now. Throw on some jeans, a denim top, and a red bandana, and voila! You’re a World War II-era cultural icon. These couples’ costume ideas will make your Halloween.

missy diy halloween costumevia beautifulsummer.s/


Big Mouth fans everywhere know that Missy is a truly iconic character onto herself. She’s unabashedly clever, funny, and living her best life. Check out Beautiful-Summer Spears‘ version on Instagram—grab your overalls, a yellow shirt and headband, a backpack, and you’re back on your puberty journey! Keep the momentum of these adult costume ideas going with these DIY Halloween decorations for a spooky holiday party!

17-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy The Joy of Fashion

Audrey Hepburn

Every woman owns a little black dress. Put it to use this Halloween for a DYI Audrey Hepburn costume. Complete the classic look with black gloves, pearls, sunglasses, and a long cigarette holder. (It’s worth stealing Audrey Hepburn’s style tips the other 364 days of the year too.)

15-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy SimplyWhisked


This homemade costume may take a bit longer to put together, but it’s worth it if you want a truly original creation. Cut fringe into colorful crepe paper streamers and glue them onto a cheap dress. Do the same on party hats for pinata ears. Get more detailed instructions from Simply Whisked. If you’re going back to work this fall, you might also want to consider these Halloween costumes for work.


Thing 1 and Thing 2

Grab a friend for this Seussian couple’s adult costume idea. You’ll need a red dress, red tights, and LOTS of blue fur. Get all the details from Need some DIY ideas for kids? Here are some cheap DIY costume ideas for children.

05-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesvia taylor_eckert/

Sara with No ‘H’

Tonight Show fans need no explanation for Sara with no “H,” a recurring sketch starring Jimmy Fallon as a teenage girl. Sara always wears a purple dress with purple tights, a heart-shaped necklace, and a pink bow in her hair. She also constantly reminds people that her name is spelled S-A-R-A with no H, because H’s are ew! Adult costume ideas can still be of younger (sort of) characters. These Halloween costumes will give you nightmares.

08-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy The Joy of Fashion

Gumball machine

For this sweet gumball machine costume, glue pom-poms to the top half of a red dress and a black headband. Use a rectangle of gray felt to draw the gum dispenser. Don’t forget to chew your own bubble gum! Don’t want to DIY a costume? Check out the most popular Halloween costumes on Amazon.

white rabbit diy halloween costumevia danamacdonald_/

The white rabbit

Classic tales like Alice in Wonderland can sometimes make the best last-minute, yet still easily-recognizable adult costume ideas. Take this classy version by Dana MacDonald: “It was actually quite simple to do! I tried to do my own spin on it to still make it look like a cute outfit…for the face I used eyeliner for the whiskers and lip liner for the nose.” Post-COVID life will be quite different, but you can still celebrate Halloween in fun ways!

02-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Victoria Viola


Halloween may be the only holiday on which you can celebrate multiple holidays. The English teachers of West Morris Mendham High School in New Jersey dressed up in different holiday gear to make this festive group costume. Here are some more clever group Halloween costumes.

09-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Kristen Lawler/Love Lipstick and Pearls


Flaunt your feathers as a fabulous flamingo. Pin pink boas together and wrap them around a leotard or tank top. Add pink tights or leggings and a beak (this one is a toucan beak painted black) and strut your stuff! Find out the most popular Halloween costume the year you were born.

diy fake new halloween costumevia ashley_mo/

Fake news

If you’re looking to make a statement this Halloween, what better way than coming down on the side of hard facts and reliable journalism! This costume is a perfect blend of political joke and fashion-forward attitude.

“This Halloween costume was super simple to complete with just a few items! I even finished the skirt with a lace-up closure in the back to get in and out with ease,” notes Ashely. Take a peek at Ashley Monique at Ashley_mo (outfit inspired by daniellesmodernlife) for more inspo on squashing fake news in style. Check out what Halloween might look like this year.

11-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Heather Mohr

Cat in the Hat

Another creative adult costume idea from the world of Dr. Seuss: Start with a black top and leggings. Glue on white felt for the stomach. Add a red scarf, striped hat and socks, and face paint to become the mischievous Cat in the Hat. Wanna really mess with your friends? Talk only in rhymes. Love Disney? Try one of these Disney costumes.

12-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesvia marcdevigne/

’50 Shades of Grey’

A totally G-rated take on the popular R-rated novel by E. L. James. Pick up some grey paint swatches, stick them on a grey shirt, and see who can guess your outfit on the first try.

04-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesvia Rclbeatuy101/

Snapchat filter

If you feel like getting creative with face paint, draw on your favorite Snapchat filter. The rainbow vomit is a favorite, but you can check out more ideas from DIY Youtuber Rclbeauty101. This fake blood recipe is useful for more creepy adult costume ideas.

velma diy halloween costumevia momokurumicosplay/


What’s one of the easiest and most iconic costumes out there? Velma and the Scooby-Doo gang, of course! Grab a group of friends or go it solo with this costume inspo from momokurumicosplay. You can’t go wrong with a thrifted orange turtleneck, red skirt and shoes, and a pair of orange high socks. Jinkies! We’re also loving these funny Halloween costumes.

16-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Nicole Fornabaio

Olaf from Frozen

Do you wanna build a snowman? How about dressing up as a snowman? This Reader’s Digest staffer decorated a white baseball hat with felt to make a DIY Olaf costume. Complete the look with a white top and black felt circles for buttons.

18-cheap-adult-halloween-costumesCourtesy Aww, Sam

Cotton candy

This cotton candy costume looks good enough to eat! (But don’t. It’s all polyester fiberfill stuffing.) Spray paint the stuffing pink and hot glue it to a shift dress. For the headpiece, roll a large sheet of paper for a cone hat, glue it to a separate pouf of fiberfill, and glue that to a headband. Next, check out the history of these Halloween traditions.

For more fun facts, costume ideas, traditions, candy inspiration, spooky entertainment, and updates on how October 31 will look different this year, check out our Halloween Guide.