10 Best Halloween Costume Hacks (+ Bonus Vid)


Be an emoji, a class photo…or even a “cereal” killer! Here are our EASIEST and coolest costume hacks to get you to the party in a hurry. 

1. Emoji

Image: ink361.com
Image: ink361.com

Make fellow partygoers LOL, cry, or just give ’em a big old smiley by painting yourself as an emoticon. Buy a Halloween makeup kit (be sure to choose one with vibrant colors), or use makeup you already have to create your look. Have a friend help you if you’d like. Since the face is the main part of the emoji, dress in basic black to complete the look.

2. Gumball Machine

Image: teen.allwomenstalk.com
Image: teen.allwomenstalk.com


This is so much fun – and so easy! For the female version, use a tank top and a red skirt. For men, choose a t-shirt and wear red pants if you can find them (jeans will do if you can’t). Glue dollar-store pom-pom balls all over the shirt. Cut felt pieces and glue in gray and black to make the bottom portion of the machine. If you’ll be wearing jeans, cut this bottom portion in a long rectangle and tuck into the front of the pants.

3. Walking Dead

Image: pixabay.com
Image: pixabay.com

Here’s another idea that can be created from throwaways you have around the house – in fact, the less perfect-looking the elements, the better! Rip up some clothing, add red costume makeup or red paint for blood stains, and muss your hair (use gel or hairspray to keep the look authentically gruesome throughout the night). Use very light or white makeup on your face, “hollow out” your eyes with black or gray makeup, and dab on some blood stains. Check out more zombie costume ideas here.

4. Wind-Up Doll

Credit: Hot Topic

This is a great choice for either men or women. Cut a “wind-up key” out of stiff cardboard. If you’d like, spray-paint it in gold or silver. Now get together a dollish costume (haunt your local thrift shop for great finds). Hot-glue the cardboard key to the back of the outfit. For both men and women: paint your face white. Add lipstick (sorry, guys – but this really is the finishing “dollish” touch). Men can brush their hair down into a more solid Ken doll look. For women, wear pigtails or big sausage curls.  BONUS: Get a super-creepy “haunted doll” look using this jaw-dropping tutorial:

5. Cereal Killer

Image: wholesalehalloweencostumes.com
Image: wholesalehalloweencostumes.com

It’s gruesome, but it’s definitely “punny” – and sure to get laughs all around. Buy single-serving boxed cereals; empty. Cut out sharp-looking knives from cardboard, sizing them to fit the boxes; spray with silver spray paint. Cut a slit in each box and insert a “knife.” Paint red blood stains. Hot glue to the shirt. Be sure to complete the look by painting a milk mustache on with white makeup. If you want to give it all away, write “cereal killer” across the front of the shirt in magic marker. Otherwise, let guests guess what your hilariously grisly costume is.

6. Catwoman

Credit: Instagram / beautydesignsbydenise

What makes this a hack is that you probably have all the elements at home. Raid your drawers to find black felt or construction paper and an old headband. Cut out the ears and glue to the band. Go for a smoky eye with black liquid eyeliner. For a slinky Catwoman outfit, wear close-fitting black jeans and a black tank top. For a finishing touch, paint your fingernails midnight black. Make sure to create a sleek hairdo, like a kitten slinking at night-time on the prowl.

7. The Mayor (Nightmare Before Christmas)

Credit: Pinterest

This clever hack utilizes that old lampshade that you never got around to throwing out. (Come on, you know you have one.) Spray-paint the background face color onto the lampshade. Then paint or use magic markers to create the Mayor’s happy face on one side and distressed face on the other side. Fold some ribbon into loops and glue together. Glue on a white circle of cardboard and write “Mayor” on it; glue this on top of the ribbon. Add a black hat. Wear a suit with this costume with the ribbon pinned on with a safety pin to get the full effect.

8. Movie Theater Floor

Image: teen.allwomenstalk.com
Image: teen.allwomenstalk.com

Wear either a black or red shirt to imitate a movie theater carpet. Glue pop corn boxes, candy wrappers, empty cups, straws and old movie theater tickets to the shirt. Have fun having people guess what you are – you’re sure to get laughs with this clever costume.

If you want to get saucy about this (grown-ups only!), Write “now showing” on a piece of paper and tuck it into the waistband so it hangs over the front of your pants.

9. Crazy Cat Lady

Image: buzzfeed.com
Image: buzzfeed.com

This is such an easy hack because you probably have most of the components already – or can borrow them from friends. Wear a puffy robe and put your hair into curlers. Borrow your child’s (or someone else’s!) stuffed cats. Quick tip: if you won’t be giving the stuffed kitties back, glue a few to the robe so you won’t need to be carrying them around all night, leaving your hands free for eating, drinking and being merry on Halloween night.

10. High School Yearbook Photo

Image: buzzfeed.com
Image: buzzfeed.com

Raid your closet for an old prom or bridesmaid’s dress (or buy one on the cheap at the local Goodwill or consignment shop). Or borrow a cheerleading or jock outfit from a friend. Purchase an extra-large size construction paper rectangle and cut out the center so that it looks like a photo frame. Write your name if you wish or write “Best Dressed,” “Most Likely to Succeed,” etc. on the frame. This is even more fun if you go as friends, with each of you choosing a “type”: the jock, the nerd, the prom queen and so on.

A Ghastly Tour of America’s Most Haunted Cemeteries


Just in time for Halloween, here it is: the Halloween Alliance 10 MOST haunted cemeteries in the U.S list. Visit them, if you dare, but be warned: some guests say these ghostly graveyards are never fully at rest. 

Here are ten terrifying tales that will have you turning over in your own grave – and leave you scared to death.

No. 10: St. Louis Cemetery – New Orleans, LA

St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is set in the historic French Quarter of New Orleans.
St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is set in the historic French Quarter and houses the remains of the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans.

Dozens of different ghosts have been reported here over the years, but voodoo priestess Marie Laveaux is by far the most commonly spotted spook at this historic locale.

Called “the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans,” Ms. Laveaux is said to have left more than just her memory at this hauntingly beautiful graveyard: her presence, and even some of her voodoo magic, are said to live on (guests frequently leave offerings at her tombstone in hopes that some of her abilities will rub off).

When spotted, Ms. Laveaux’s ghostly image wears a red and white turban tied with seven knots and shrieks a chilling curse at passersby. 

No. 9: Stull Cemetery – Stull, KS

Legends state that Stull Cemetery is cursed and even houses a set of steps leading directly to hell. Image: toypyaps.com
Legend states that Stull Cemetery is cursed and that a set of hidden steps there leads directly to hell. Image: toypyaps.com

Stull Cemetery is legendary due to the claim that it hides a set of steps to the netherworld, giving the site the eerie nickname “the Gateway to Hell.”

According to the tale, the steps are nearly impossible to find and are only visible on Halloween Night. Other phenomena – including bone-chilling screams – are reported all year long.

The cemetery’s reputation for being cursed is supported by claims that a man accidentally burned his son to death near the area, and another poor soul hanged himself from one of the cemetery’s trees.

No. 8: Resurrection Cemetery – Justice, IL

Resurrection haunts cars, statues and male partygoers, witnesses say. Image: prairieghosts.com
Resurrection Mary haunts cars, statues and male partygoers, witnesses say. Image: prairieghosts.com

This mammoth 540-acre graveyard is the burial site of the famous Resurrection Mary, a blonde, blue-eyed figure who was killed walking up a nearby road following a fight with her beau.

Appearing in the ball gown and party shoes she was buried in by her grieving parents, Mary’s ghost is said to appear in front of cars and disappear just before they strike her. She also looks to hitchhike and then vanishes as the car approaches. She is even rumored to  dance with men at parties before fading from view.

Witnesses claim they have seen Mary hovering near a statue at Resurrection Cemetery (where she is said to have been buried).

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How to Make a Cat-o-Lantern


Adorbs! Make your own fun, spooky and frisky cat-o-lantern with this easy tutorial. Ready to get “familiar” with the technique?  Let’s get started!


  • Two pumpkins:  a large one for the head and smaller one for the bodycat o lantern supplies 2
  • Two mini-pumpkins (Jack Be Littles or Baby Boos) – pick a size that will be suitable as paws for your cat-o-lantern
  • A zucchini or cucumber for the tail
  • Black spray paint (flat, satin or gloss, per your preference)
  • A large knife
  • A fine cutting tool
  • One tea light candle
  • Black cardboard or posterboard
  • Pins
  • Paper
  • Scissors

spraying pumpkin

Step One: Paint

  1. In a well ventilated area (outdoors is best), with your mouth and nose covered with a mask, spray paint all four pumpkins/gourds and the zucchini (or cucumber).
  2. Allow to dry and then turn each vegetable over and spray the bottom to make sure it is completely covered. Allow again to dry.

Step Two: Carve

scooping out the head

  1. Cut out the TOP of the smaller pumpkin as you would to carve any pumpkin. This will be the BOTTOM of the cat’s head. Scoop out insides and scrape.
  2. Draw an eye shape onto your blank paper and cut it out to make a pattern.
  3. Using pins, create pin marks all around the eye shape as shown. This will be your cutting guide. Flip the eye shape cutout and do eye patternthe same for the second eye.
  4. Cut the eyes out using the pin marks as your guide. Re-scrape the inside if any pumpkin bits are hanging into the eyes and visible.

Step Three: Add Ears

  1. Touch up the outside of the head with spray paint if necessary. Allow to dry.
  2. Cut an ear shape out of your black posterboard, leaving a small square tab at the bottom. Use this cutout as a pattern to cut the other ear. Fold down the tab at the bottom of each ear and pin to the head.

Step Four: Arrange Body Parts and Display

finished cat o lantern

  1. Arrange the body, paw (mini pumpkins) and tail (zucchini) pieces the way you wish them to look.
  2. Place the tea light on top of the body. Light the wick.
  3. Arrange the head on top of the body, over the light, so that the eyes are glowing. (We placed the head off-center here so that Kitty is looking over her shoulder.)


  • To get a faux glow in the daytime, place an orange or yellow piece of paper behind the eyes. At nighttime, remove the paper and light the candle.
  • For a squatter, rounder cat, choose a round pumpkin body; for a leaner cat, choose a taller pumpkin body.
  • Touch-ups are easy to do; just squirt a quick spray of spray-paint.
  • Use gloss paint if preferred. The tutorial shown here was created using flat black spray paint.
  • Larger eyes are spookier. Experiment with ideas on a piece of paper before creating your patterns and carving.
  • Two or more cats make a great look. Use different pumpkin shapes for the bodies in order to get a varied and interesting look.
  • To avoid candle wax dripping onto the body, place the candle in a small, flat dish that fits under the head.
  • If the head won’t stay on top of the body or is wobbly, carefully break some wooden chop sticks or use thick toothpicks. Push the picks into the bottom of the head and push the head down onto the body. An alternative is to arrange your cat so its head rests against an outdoor wall, or use clay to attach the head to the body.