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10 Halloween Costumes Under $20

This weekend, do you have more Halloween plans than you can afford?  The Collegian provides you with cheap, creative costumes made out of everyday items that you can find laying around the house.

 1.     A bag of jellybeans


Embrace your sweet tooth – we both know that you have one. For this costume, gather a clear trash bag and colored balloons. Cut arm and leg holes in the trash bag, fill the bag with colored balloons for jelly beans and tie a ribbon around your neck to seal the bag. Then, write “nutritional facts” on the back of the bag with a sharpie.

Estimated price: $4

 2.     Silent film stars

Paint your face white and grey, wear black makeup (black lipstick available from the drugstore for $1)  and dress according to a black-and-white color scheme. Consider wearing lace, suit jackets, pearls or a knee-length dress.

Estimated price: $6

 3.     Where’s Waldo?

To dress like this classic childhood character, wear a red and white striped shirt (currently available on sale in the JC Penney’s men’s department for $6), jeans, knee-high socks and a pair of thick black glasses.

Estimated price: $14

 4.     Jellyfish


To dress like this innocent-looking sea creature with a deadly edge, buy a clear umbrella and attach “feelers” made out of white string, fabric and bubble wrap. Wear white, and carry the umbrella around all night!

Estimated price: $15

5.     Pippi Longstocking

Yet another childhood character comes to life. Stick bits of wire into two braids, create freckles with eyeliner and wear a flannel shirt and/or overalls.

Estimated price: $4

 6.     Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

This costume requires a trip to the thrift store, unless you haven’t cleaned out your closet since the late ‘90s (if that applies, please re-think your lifestyle choices). Wear a colorful baseball cap and the most hideously patterned sweater and pants that you can find. Enjoy “chillin’ out maxin’, relaxin’ all cool”.

Estimated price: $12

 7.     Miley Cyrus at the VMAs

Tired of seeing references to this half-naked popstar everywhere? So is everyone else. But no one will mind when you show up at a party in all-nude clothing, two small buns in your hair, and a teddy bear or foam finger as an accessory. Gold necklaces are also encouraged. Hint: Amazon and several other retailers sell a Miley-specific foam finger for $10.

Estimated price: $15

8.     The Orbit Girl

If you are known for your smile or fresh breath, consider dressing up as the Orbit girl – all it requires is an all-white outfit, a small blue ribbon or scarf to tie around your neck and the Orbit logo taped to your shirt.

Estimated price: $4

9. A Shower

To dress like a cute version of this common household utility, thread a shower curtain onto a hula hoop, creating straps across the hoop with clear bits of plastic. Underneath, wear a towel and a shower cap, and carry a rubber ducky!

Estimated price: $20

10.   Error message

If you are feeling particularly lazy, or are just too cool to look like you put effort into your costume, the “error message” costume might be for you. Buy a white t-shirt, and use a sharpie to write the much-hated Internet message “Error 404”, followed by “Costume not found”. It is easily recognizable and may award you a few laughs.

Estimated price: $4

Collegian Entertainment Staff Writer Ellie Mulder can be reached at

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