Halloween is a few weeks away, so it’s time to ask yourself what you’re going to wear this year. This is a deeply revelatory question because Halloween is the one day a year when you can (almost) wear exactly what you want and no one will judge you.
There are three schools of thought for Halloween (according to me). The first is made up of lazy people who don’t care and just throw some bullshit together at the last minute. I won’t be discussing them. The other two groups are folks who wear something original and self-defining — my wife and I will be dressing as secret satanists Minnie and Roman Castavets from Rosemary’s Baby, for instance — and the opposite: people who seek out the most popular, low stress costume to hide in. No matter which group you fall into, it’s good to know what other people are likely to be wearing, either to avoid it, or to identify the most cliché way to make yourself virtually invisible this Halloween.
What will be the hottest Halloween costume in 2022?
The research on costume prevalence isn’t exactly scientific, especially when we’re more than three weeks away from the magical night, but I’ve got two predictive lists of 2022’s most popular Halloween costumes for adults. The first is from retailer costumes.com, by way of Marketplace, who base their list on their sales numbers. The second list is from Pinterest: The site used internal search data to identify the costume ideas people are most searching for. So costume.com’s is nuts-and-bolts sales data, where Pinterest’s list is more aspirational.
2022 best-selling costumes (via costumes.com)
Here are the best-selling, off-the-shelf costumes from Halloween 2022:
- Inflatable T-Rex
- Wonder Woman 1984
- Buddy the Elf
- The Dark Knight: Batman
- The Wizard of Oz: Dorothy
- Captain Marvel
- The Force Awakens: Rey
- Harley Quinn
- Ride a Beer Buddy
- Elvis (Deluxe)
That is one boring arse group of costumes. Although I’m encouraged by the lack of political outfits — there’s not a single “Sexy Mitch McConnell” or “Trump-Eating-a-Baby” costume to be seen. Instead, just classic Halloween-from-the-store outfits are based on popular, easily identifiable TV shows and movie characters. There are a couple exceptions, though.
Driven by exposure on TikTok, inflatable T-Rex costumes tops the list. These suits were very cool and funny when they came out like 10 years ago, but they’re going to be everywhere this halloween. You could potentially rescue them from basicness through repetition, though. I suggest getting as many friends as possible to all wear the same dinosaur suit — a crew of 14 T-Rexes stepping through the door is impressive.
The other unique costume here, Ride a Beer Buddy gives the illusion that you’re riding on the back of a German stereotype. Sort of funny, but only to someone who hasn’t seen it before. You could choose to ride a pink ostrich, a dragon, or a toilet instead.
The most searched Halloween costumes (via Pinterest)
Pinterest’s list is a little more eclectic. It’s not a list of ready-made products, but of the costumes people are searching for inspiration on Pinterest. Plus, it’s a list of increase in searches, so it’s more of snapshot of a hot trend indicator.
Here are the top Pinterest costumes, in order:
- Stranger Things costume ideas
- Elvis and Priscilla costume
- Patrick Bateman costume
- Top Gun costume
- Anna Delvey costume
- Harley Quinn halloween costume
- Avril Lavigne halloween costume
- Dani Hocus Pocus costume
- Maddie and Cassie Euphoria costumes
- Lord of the Rings halloween costumes
It’s interesting how there are so few horror oriented costumes this year on either list. No Michael Myers or Pinhead, even though both monsters have new flicks coming out. Instead, we just have Patrick Bateman from American Psycho. I would have expected maybe the smiley woman from Smile, but maybe we’re all horrored-out.
And Avril Lavigne? Seriously? There’s nothing wrong with the bubble-gum-punk diva, but the seventh most trendy costume in America? Weird.
Like the off-the-shelf costumes, Pinteresters are mostly searching for movie and TV characters, but unlike costume.com’s list, these are mainly mundane characters who wear something like normal clothing. You can cobble together most of the kit needed for these looks without buying a packaged costume, either by getting lucky at a thrift shop or ordering pieces on Amazon. Here’s a detailed breakdown of how to make a Top Gun costume, for instance.
What do you plan to wear this Halloween? Tell us below in the comments.
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