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12+ Nerdy Halloween Costume Ideas Already Designed to be Covid Safe

Safety and style.

Sister night, Sailor Mars, and Scorpion. (Image: Marvel/Disney, Toei Animation, and Warner Brothers.)

As long as you keep your mask on, come vaxxed, and eat your candy at home, Halloween is one of the safer holidays to celebrate with others in a pandemic. While the latex and heavy masks worn to portray Jason, Michael Myers and any number of other Halloween staples can work, they aren’t exactly breathable like the double-layered masks recommended by the CDC.

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Yes, it is just Oct. 1, but you are going to procrastinate picking and constructing/buying the costume, so take this as a reminder to start asap. Now vaxxed, it is time to start thinking about ways to safely engage in the best holiday season. So, we’ve compiled a list of some fun, nerdy Halloween costume ideas in which covering the lower half of your face is part of the assignment. Some may require a bit of tweaking, but it will be worth it in the end.

Sister Night (Watchmen

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Best first, we have Regina King’s Sister Night and one of the easiest costumes to put together on this list. Even double-layered (which is a must) neck gaiters aren’t the best option, so opt into wearing a regular black mask (a general rule throughout this list) and make sure you have a nice white or cream-colored turtleneck.

Kakashi (Naruto)

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One of the more popular characters from Naruto to cosplay or dress up as is Kakashi. While the top of your head won’t make or break the costume, I’ve gotta say, Kakashi also marks the first grey/white-haired entry on this list. You would be surprised how many people that wear masks have aged-looking hair.

Winter Soldier (Marvel)

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The broodiest character on this list is none other than Bucky Barnes, a.k.a. the Winter Solider. He has plenty of reasons to be silent and now even more reasons to wear a mask. If you are not going to commit to this attire by wearing smudgy eyeliner, just skip this one.

Octane (Apex Legends/Titanfall)

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Getting a mask is probably the easiest part of constructing this character. Octavio Silva a.k.a. Octane is a high-speed daredevil and one of the original legends available when Apex Legends launched. For those that don’t play this game, that needle is not a Covid treatment but a stim rumored to be the gamer drink of choice (Mountain Dew).

Zoidberg (Futurama)

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Earlier in the pandemic, an Austrian artist recreated several pop culture characters and references on masks, and his Futurama take was one of the best. Add some lightweight tentacles to a pinkish-reddish mask and voila! The rest is pretty straightforward considering he is a flip flop-wearing doctor.

Scorpion, Subzero or a number of other MK characters (Mortal Kombat)

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If you go with the more 16-bit style of Mortal Kombat, it totally looks like they are wearing masks. Therefore characters like Scorpion, SubZero, Katana, Mileena, and Reptile are pretty easy to put together. Even more recent masked characters like Jade, Skarlet, and Erron Black would work, though the latter two would require more effort.

Sick Sailor Mars (Sailor Moon)


In 1995, when all the other Sailor Scouts began to show flu-like symptoms, it was Raye Hino a.k.a. Sailor Mars who was ready to help, masked up. If you are a TMS reader, there is a sizable chance you already have a Sailor Scout costume or know someone who does. This is can be your year.

Adèle and Noémie (Portrait of a Lady on Fire)

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Or do you have late 1700s-esque period dress sitting in your closet waiting for another use? Bursting with pent-up sexual energy? Both Adèle and Noémie of Portrait of a Lady on Fire wear masks at the windy beach at some point in the film. While they are wearing more sheer veils in the film, you will have to adjust with a thicker scarf or (more likely) just mask up and make sure the veil is pinned securely over the mask. The mask should match the scarf, or mask your skin tone.

Ken Kaneki (Tokyo Ghoul)

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While not a ghoul in the way we think about them, still a solid anime costume to wear with a mask already incorporated. Like some others on this list, since Ken Kaneki’s mask is a bit more complicated, you might want to opt into supporting someone on Etsy. Or take a crack with a template online and some fabric markers.

Silk (Marvel)

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A Halloween list wouldn’t be complete without the inclusion of at least one Spidey person. The Korean-American Cindy Moon (Silk) is the perfect fit for a breathable, COVID-19-safe Halloween. The hockey star is getting her own film from Sony in the future, too.

Soldier 76 (Overwatch)


As one of the oldest members of Overwatch, Soldier 76 is in the vulnerable populations regarding COVID-19. Good thing he is already masked up. If his original skin is a little too complex or out of your budget, there is always the Grillmaster outfit.

Lorraine (Atomic Blonde)

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While the promotional images don’t show her masked up often, Lorraine (played by Charlize Theron) is another great fighting candidate to consider.

(image: Marvel/Disney, Toei Animation, and Warner Brothers.)

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Author

Alyssa Shotwell
(she/her) Award-winning artist and writer with professional experience and education in graphic design, art history, and museum studies. She began her career in journalism in October 2017 when she joined her student newspaper as the Online Editor. This resident of the yeeHaw land spends most of her time drawing, reading and playing the same handful of video games—even as the playtime on Steam reaches the quadruple digits. Currently playing: Baldur's Gate 3 & Oxygen Not Included.

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