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7 stress-free costumes to try out this Halloween

(Graphic Illustration by Lee Billiot | The Collegian)

Halloween comes around way too fast to pull off the extravagant costume you likely came up with the day after Halloween last year. With the stress of courses and work (or just life), it can feel impossible to keep up. Additionally, extravagant costumes often feel like a strain on your wallet, especially if you’re living off your part-time job income or student loans. 

Here are some easy costumes to ensure you’re participating in the holiday with minimal stress. 


1. Ghost 

An obvious go-to for Halloween is to repurpose those sheets. Get some scissors, cut out some holes and go as a ghost this Halloween. You can even make it a throwback to last year’s ghost photo shoot trend by adding some black sunglasses to the ensemble. 

2. Toga time

If you’re not willing to cut into your sheet, you can simply throw it over your shoulder and tie it around your waist with rope or even shoelaces to form the perfect base for any Greek/Roman inspired outfit. Whether it’s a Greek god, fallen hero or Julius Caesar, you can turn your toga into a fantastic costume. (I recommend Dionysus. Who doesn’t want to be the god of wine and general partying?) 

3. Trashy tourists

Another simply hysterical and easy costume is trashy tourists. Run over to the nearest thrift store and gather any abandoned tourist T-shirts you can find, cut off those sleeves, wear tacky shorts and grab a Hawaiian shirt. Boom! You are officially posing as every Disneyland Park employee’s worst nightmare. You can even take it to another level by adding a suitcase to the look. Tip: This can double as the carrier of all goodies for the evening or even a motel minibar because, really, what’s trashier?

4. Caught in a tornado 

Gather some hairspray, wire and sewing materials and you can easily make yourself appear as if you’re caught in a storm. A tie-wired back to look like it’s blowing in the wind, leaves on the clothes and in the hair and hair sprayed in wacky directions will create the perfect illusion. This makes an excellent group costume and for photoshoots.

5. Witch

Get your best-looking black attire: dress, skirt, cute top, formal button-up — whatever makes you feel bewitching. Add dark eyeliner and spooky makeup, plus a witch hat (easily found in Target, Claire’s, Walmart and drug store costume sections), and there you have a classic and flattering costume.

6. Risky business

While this one may feel a little overdone, it’s so much fun to do, and really, who cares about being basic anymore? Sacrificing your comfort for trends is so pre-pandemic. Go get some black undergarments, a white button-up and some sunglasses, and be a little risky. 

7. Fairy 

Connect with your inner child; get your favorite fancy, sparkly outfit and add some fairy wings. You can make wings at home with cardboard or grab some from the nearest superstore. The beauty of this simple costume is you can be the fairy of anything. A nature fairy, a water fairy — think of a friend of Tinker Bell and run with it. Magic-inspired makeup and flower crowns also add to the ‘fit. 

If all else fails and nothing on this list appeals to you, pick your favorite item in your wardrobe and build off it. The most important part of Halloween is feeling good in your own skin, so pick something you feel good in and get creative.

Reach Ivy Secrest at or on Twitter @IvySecrest.


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About the Contributor
Ivy Secrest
Ivy Secrest, Content Managing Editor
Ivy Secrest is The Collegian's content managing editor. Secrest uses she/her/hers pronouns and has worked for The Collegian previously as a reporter and as life and culture director for the 2022-23 academic year. As a senior in the journalism and media communications department, Secrest enjoys reporting on environmental and social issues with a special interest in science communication. She is president of the Science Communication Club and is pursuing a minor in global environmental sustainability with hopes of utilizing her education in her career. Growing up in Denver, Secrest developed a deep love for the outdoors. She could happily spend the rest of her life hiking alpine environments, jumping into lakes, taking photos of the wildflowers and listening to folk music. She's passionate about skiing, hiking, dancing, painting, writing poetry and camping. Secrest's passions spurred her career in journalism, helping her reach out to her community and get involved in topics that students and residents of Fort Collins truly care about. She has taken every opportunity to connect with the communities she has reported in and has written for several of the desks at The Collegian, including news, life and culture, cannabis, arts and entertainment and opinion. She uses her connections with the community to inform both managerial and editorial decisions with hopes that the publication serves as a true reflection of the student body's interests and concerns. Secrest is an advocate of community-centered journalism, believing in the importance of fostering meaningful dialogue between press and community.

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