Beyonce, George Santos and Troye Sivan

Our Favorite Pop Culture Costume Ideas for Halloween 2023

Andrea Marks Joseph READ TIME: 14 MIN.

We've got movie and music video-inspired looks to impress at this year's Halloween parties. Some of these costume ideas are more elaborate than others, but most are a simple DIY or quick craft store pop-in away from being party ready. If you attended the Renaissance and Eras tours, you've got a chance to re-wear your looks from the show. If you didn't, now's your chance to rock the outfit of your concert dreams. There's endless pop culture inspiration this year – from "Bottoms" and "Barbie" to the ludicrously capacious handbag from "Succession."

Taylor Swift's Eras Tour

Rocking an Eras Tour look means you can do anything from bedazzling or beading a pastel bodysuit (maybe even adding tassels!) and pairing it with a blow dry and faux bangs, to a casual shorts and bowler hat with an easily-DIYed "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" tee. If you can get hold of a fluffy purple coat, you've already got your "Lavender Haze" costume ready to go. A dark blue leotard, minidress, or even a skirt and top combo would pair perfectly with a matching garter band (your local craft store will have colored elastic lace and sequins to make this) on your thigh for a sexy "Vigilante Shit" look.

Beyoncé's Renaissance tour costumes

You're definitely gonna need shine, shimmer, and sparkle for this look. If you can't find a party-store silver cowboy hat, get some spray paint. If you've got enough silver clothing, now's your chance to obnoxiously combine them all. You'll either need black fabric paint or black fabric to create the hands from the iconic Loewe fit, to wear with a pair of long black gloves, and a glitter of your choice to cover it all in sparkle at the end. Use layers of skin-toned opaque tights and your preferred nude shapewear as a base on which to apply the black hands for the bodysuit DIY, then prepare for a night of perfect poses.

Troye Sivan in drag

Could there be a more perfect costume to rock while we've all still got "One Of Your Girls'" on repeat? A beach-wavy blonde wig and a slayed-to-the-gods smokey eye makeup look are the core for this costume, while any white dress and white lace sleeves (just buy cheap sheer knee-high socks and cut off the ends) you can get your hands on will complete it.

Drag queen George Santos

For this look you'll need a cheap, chunky diamanté choker and earrings; a dark brown wig, a bright red dress, and a big smile. Head to your local craft store and add a row of red feathers to the top of the dress to nail the flamboyant flair of this Brazilian drag look.

Padam Padam

Like the Beyoncé silver outfit look above, if you don't have time to order a full red bodysuit, for this look you can simply pair any and all of the tight red clothing you can find. If you've got a blonde wig, great, but it's not even necessary. Definitely do the red makeup for the full vibe, though. What matters most here is the big swathes of sheer red fabric you'll need as a cape for swirling around all night. This look will be great for photos and can be really simple to source at a craft or fabric store.

Weird Barbie

Everything about Kate McKinnon as Weird Barbie, the outsider in Greta Gerwig's Barbie Land, screamed queer. The character's dress is a simple enough style to make if you've got skills with a sewing machine, but it would be just as impactful with any basic bright pink dress (and even works with an oversized pink t-shirt worn as a dress). The magic touch is a fun combination of bright-colored paint splashes all the way down the dress, and matching childlike doodles on your face. You're gonna want a cheap or well-used blonde wig that you're happy to cut wildly for this look, or if you've already got short blonde hair, lots of gel to get your hair sticking up in all directions.

"Succession" characters, and the "ludicrously capricious bag"

We said goodbye to the Roy family and their employees this year, but we will always have the disturbing memories of the time we shared together. Now is your chance to go as your favorite Roy sibling or Waystar-Royco staff member of any season. The angled bob is a must for a Shiv costume, the depressing facial expression a must for Kendall, and in the final season, even a Walmart boy's t-shirt would make for a Roman costume. But why not go as the "ludicrously capacious bag?" You'll need beige plaid if you're doing the bag alone, and a black and white puffy-sleeved dress if you'll be going as the girl who brought it into Tom's eyeline.


This show is always the talk of the town for its playful attitude to fashion, and why shouldn't you get to enjoy some of that buzz? The latest viral AVAVAV fashion show starred Dorian Electra in a yellow post-it suit that you could absolutely make. We recommend a healthy dose of glue and gentle movements throughout the night, or an acceptance that you'll be leaving a Hansel and Gretel level of post-its trailing behind you. The brand also showed a silver duct tape dress for the boldest among us. If you use a layer of Saran wrap underneath to protect your skin, or have a clear PVC dress on hand, the brand has helpfully posted instructions for DIY-ing the silver tape dress.

"Bottoms" characters

There are so many costume options in the "Bottoms" cast and the best part is that they're all very accessible. The most complex of the lot is himbo footballer Jeff, who perpetually wears his sports uniform. A blue shirt with fabric-painted numbers and over-stuffed shoulder pads will do for a DIY. Make sure to pair it with the tight white shorts. Between Josie's combed-out afro, Brittany and Isabel's femme looks, PJ's overalls, rugby shirts, and fake-bruise makeup, dressing up as any of the girls is perfectly simple; It just depends on what you've got on hand. A quick trip to your local department store or lesbian friend's closet will have you ready in no time.

by Andrea Marks Joseph

Read These Next