Official artwork for Good Omens season 2 featuring Michael Sheen as Aziraphale and David Tennant as Crowley, with their angel and demon wings unfurled behind them
(Prime Video)

Affordable Halloween Costume Ideas Inspired by Our Favorite Shows & Movies of the Last Year

Halloween is creeping up on us like a mischievous ghost, ready to unleash our inner fashionistas and transform us into the swoon-worthy characters we obsessively stream on Netflix and all those other streaming platforms we keep promising to cancel but somehow never quite manage to do so. Let’s be real, who wouldn’t secretly yearn to flaunt their fabulousness as the dashing hero, the villain with enviable locks, or even that eccentric side character with an unexplainable fashion sense, all for the sake of a delightfully entertaining evening (or a cozy night in—whichever floats your boat)? 

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But embodying one’s favorite character shouldn’t demand a Hollywood budget. Affordable glamour is just a thrift store away. Those forgotten corners of second-hand shops? A goldmine for retro-fab and near-miss fashions begging for a comeback. And don’t forget online marketplaces or even that old prom dress that could double up as regal attire with a bit of clever tweaking. Remember, the most Instagram-worthy costumes aren’t about the price tag but the flair and panache you bring to it. After all, when it comes to Halloween fashion, it’s not just about wearing the character but being the character. 

Step into those impossibly high heels as Barbie from the Barbie movie

In a scene from Barbie, Barbie is seen from behind, waving to Barbieland from her balcony.
(Warner Bros.)

Since the Barbie movie was a billion-dollar hit this year, dressing up as Barbie is a surefire way to turn heads at any Halloween party. But dressing up as the iconic dame who has changed professions more times than most of us have changed hairstyles doesn’t require a trip to Mattel headquarters or a maxed-out credit card. It simply demands a sprinkle of creativity and perhaps a dash of that childhood naiveté.

Got anything pink in your closet? Congratulations, you’re basically there. A bit of glitter here, a high ponytail there, and you’ve nailed that “Life in the Dreamhouse” look. You can get more specific with a pink flare cowgirl outfit or a pink gingham swing dress.

Need help finding the perfect shoe? Remember, Barbie’s feet are permanently on tiptoes, so really, any heel will do. (The flatfooted “Weird Barbie” is also an option if you want to prioritize comfort.) Complete the look with accessories like heart-shaped sunglasses or a pink hair bow and you’ll be a total doll.

Embrace the gloom like Wednesday Addams from Wednesday

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams in Netflix's Wednesday

Why not channel your inner angsty teen and dress like Wednesday Addams, the gloomy sweetheart of the macabre manor? (And yes, this technically came out last year but after Halloween, so we’re including it here.) You can capture her delightfully deadpan demeanor without spending a treasure trove; after all, becoming the “princess of darkness” doesn’t require a royal budget. Firstly, the dress – the linchpin of the ensemble. Seek a simple black, collared dress. The internet is full of tutorials for making your own version. If you want to go pre-made and are willing to spend a bit more, Etsy also has some cute options.

If you want to go all-out, a wig might be in order for the iconic braids if you aren’t blessed with raven-black hair. Shoes? A pair of no-nonsense black Mary Janes. Not too high, not too flashy. Just brooding enough. The trick is to find a pair that promises to walk the line between solemnity and style. Lastly, remember the dark knee-high socks; they give that finishing touch of melancholy prep. And makeup can be minimal; it’s less about looking the part and more about that dry wit and ever-present sigh. 

Pair up as the clever dynamic duo, Oppenheimer and Einstein

Albert Einstein (Tom Conti) and J. Robert Oppenheimer (Cillian Murphy) in Oppenheimer
(Universal Pictures)

Dressing up as Oppenheimer and Einstein, the dynamic duo of the atomic age, is undoubtedly one for the books. Not every day you pay homage to the minds that altered the course of history. And as you will come to learn, diving into the quantum realm of historical costumes doesn’t require an Einstein-sized wallet or an Oppenheimer-level explosion of your savings. First, let’s tackle Oppenheimer’s easily thriftable scholarly attire. You’ll want a classic professor’s blazer with a tweed option that says, “I might just split an atom today.” Pair it with a crisp white shirt and wire-rimmed glasses; voila, you’re channeling the “father of the atomic bomb” without detonating your budget.

Now, onto Einstein. That iconic wild white mane is crucial. Before considering a run-in with a socket (don’t), any Spirit Halloween will have what you’re looking for, or even consider making your own. As for attire, think rumpled genius. A sweater vest is non-negotiable; wear it over a basic white shirt. And those must-have baggy trousers? Your local thrift shop might be a goldmine. Finally, remember the quintessential accessory for both outfits: an air of mystery and a penchant for absentmindedly scribbling equations. 

Join the unholy (and holy) angel and demon forces from Good Omens

Michael Sheen and David Tennant in a scene from Amazon Prime's 'Good Omens." They are in a bookshop. Sheen is sitting in an armchair holding a cup of tea while Tennant sits on the arm of the chair. Both are white men. Sheen has white, shaggy hair and is wearing a light-colored three-piece suit with a plaid bow tie. Tennant is wearing all black, including sunglasses, and has short red hair in a pompadour.
(Amazon Prime)

Before you sell your soul for the perfect ensemble, let’s journey through the realms of online and offline deals. Crowley, our impeccably dressed demon, is first. And while those snake eyes might be a bit tricky to emulate, for his iconic sunglasses, find a pair that looks devilishly close to the original. As for the all-black attire? A tailored black blazer and slim trousers from your closet or a thrift store can make do. If you crave that serpentine touch (and happen to have access to a 3D printer), check out this snakehead belt buckle pattern.

Now, onto Aziraphale. A vintage waistcoat is essential. You might find heavenly options in your closet or neighborhood thrift store. Layer it over a white shirt, preferably one that looks like it has witnessed several millennia. Add a bow tie and an old book for that air of celestial nonchalance. Speaking of which, you’ll need his silver hair. No need for divine intervention—many online shops will have a wig for you. The DIY Einstein option could also work decently here.

Become Ahsoka Tano, the Togruta Jedi who made “Snips” sound endearing 


Fancy stepping into the galaxy far, far away without the far, far away prices? Consider the most iconic part of Ahsoka: those magnificent montrals and lekku. Crafting them might require a night on Endor but it can be done! There are also a number of patterns available online that are more than passable for our former Jedi-in-training (as well as some more expensive pre-made headpieces for sale). They won’t give you her memories, but they’ll turn heads just the same.

Now, for that Togruta tunic. You can harness the essence of her attire with a basic sleeveless tunic or long tank top. Pair it with a faux leather belt or corset—and leggings. Earth might not have been in that galaxy, but leggings indeed were. Facepaint is a must and if you don’t trust yourself to eyeball the markings, you can find helpful patterns online.

(Featured Image: Prime Video)

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Faith Katunga
Faith is a freelance journalist with an insatiable curiosity for all aspects of current events, from the global economy and fashion to pop culture and travel. She watches an absurd number of cat videos on Instagram when not reading or writing about what is going on in the world. Faith has written for several publications, including We Got This Covered, Italy Magazine, TheTravel, etc., and holds a master's degree in Fashion Culture and Management.