For those who celebrate Halloween, deciding on a costume can feel like a monumental task. Luckily and just in time, Google released a review of the United State’s most-searched costume ideas in 2022; in its FrightGeist list, here are the most popular, interesting and pop-culturally relevant costume ideas to consider this Halloween.
Coming in at No. 1 on the FrightGeist list, the witch is a Halloween classic. There are seemingly an infinite amount of ways to dress up as a witch, and in this case, the more accessories, the better. There are also tons of popular witchy characters to draw inspiration from, such as Sabrina Spellman from the “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” (2018-2020), Elphaba from “Wicked” (2003) and the titular character from “Maleficent” (2014).
Following the summer release of season four of Netflix’s “Strangers Things,” eccentric social-outcast Eddie Munson, played by Joseph Quinn, took the Internet by storm as one of the show’s most beloved characters. This year, Google’s FrightGeist reports “Stranger Things” as the fourth most popular costume idea — no doubt at least partially influenced by Eddie Munson’s unique sense of style and attitude in the show. With such an iconic cast, dressing up as any one of the show’s characters is surely a fun way to impress friends this Halloween.
Fairies, like witches, are more versatile than other costume ideas. Traditional European mythology describes fairies as spiritual, supernatural beings that draw magic from the natural elements. In some depictions, they are helpful, protective creatures, and in others, they are mischievous and sinister. On the FrightGeist list, fairies ranked in at spot five — probably due in part to the September release of the popular Netflix show ‘Fate: The Winx Saga.” For a low effort look, throw on a pair of colorful wings, a matching dress and some lip gloss or eyeshadow. To enhance the costume, try incorporating flower- or plant-based accessories, glitter face paint and nature-themed, cottage core clothing.
Vampire was the 12th most-searched costume idea this year, and for good reason. Compiling a vampiric look is a low-effort, high-reward experience with no shortage of themes to base the costume concept around. Vampire costumes typically center around gothic, black and red garments, pale or undead-like face paint and fake blood, but more modern depictions can include black leather outfits and clean, dark makeup. In all, there are decades worth of iconic vampires to emulate this Halloween, whether from “Dracula” (1931), “The Lost Boys” (1987), “Twilight” (2008) or “What We Do in the Shadows” (2014).
The Sanderson Sisters
In light of the recent release of “Hocus Pocus 2,” many groups are choosing to dress up the Sanderson Sisters this Halloween. The antagonistic trio of witches, Winifred, Mary and Sarah, are dark magic users and are known for their hag-like appearance and satirically comedic attitudes throughout the films. With the sequel film released only a few weeks ago, “Hocus Pocus” secured a 14th place ranking on the FrightGeist list. The first film’s iconic zombie, Billy Butcherson, is also a popular costume choice.
Angel and Devil
Angel and devil costumes are a favorite for couples and best-friend pairs. Although there might not be a lot of variety in traditional depictions of these conflicting characters, they remain classics in the world of Halloween costumes. To add flare to the look, consider adding accessories, over-the-top makeup and mythological reference or context. On the FrightGeist list, angel ranked 18th and devil ranked 27th among this year’s most popular costume ideas.
Dressing up as a zombie is a great way to show off one’s make-up or art skills since most of the magic of this costume concept is in the undead details. Plus, with how easily recognizable it is, a zombie-esque spin can “spookify” any character. Unsurprisingly, zombies just barely missed the top 20 of the nation’s most-searched costume ideas this year. With “The Walking Dead” (2010-2022) consistently ranked among the most popular shows of the past few decades, zombies have garnered plenty of recent media attention and respect as a horror staple.
Superhero or villain
Superheroes and villains are among the most recognizable and popular Halloween costumes for all ages. Although costumes of this genre tend to be expensive or require a lot of effort, it is surely worth it to some people to spend a night as their favorite comic book character. Overall, superheroes and villains are consistently brought into mainstream media as new movies of this genre are released or remade every year. Recent movies “Thor: Love and Thunder” (2022), “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” (2022) and “Spider-Man: No Way Home” (2021) from Marvel Studios and “Black Adam” (2022), “The Batman” (2022) and “The Suicide Squad” (2021) from DC Films have superheroes and villains on many fans’ minds this Halloween. This year, Spider-man secured 2nd place on the FrightGeist list, followed by Harley Quinn in 10th, Batman in 19th and the general term “superhero” in 23rd place.
As an honorable mention, the sheet ghost costume is a last-minute go-to for those with a sense of humor. In all, the only thing needed for this look is a white sheet with eye holes cut out — glasses or a hat can be added to increase comedic value. A popular portrayal of this costume was in the horror-comedy “Beetlejuice” (1988) when ghosts Barbara and Adam unsuccessfully attempt to scare Lydia away. The general term “ghost” ranked 25th place in the FrightGeist list.
All photos are sourced from Unsplash or Flickr and are intended for non-commercial use with proper attribution, which is protected under the Unsplash License and Creative Commons.