17 College Halloween Costume Ideas

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Trending Costumes | Classic Costumes | Last-Minute Costumes

Spooky season has arrived and it's time to start planning your Halloween outfit. Whether you're going to a Halloween party or heading home to pass out candy with your parents, donning a new persona is the best part of the holiday.

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Ready to Start Your Journey?

There are a lot of directions you can take for your college Halloween costume. You can choose something trending and culturally relevant or stick with a classic. We've even got some easy college Halloween costumes you can throw together the day of.

Trending College Halloween Costumes

TikTok users have likely seen some of these costume ideas already circulating. If you like your Halloween costume to reflect this year's trends, this list is for you.

Jennifer From "Jennifer's Body"

Megan Fox has reentered the cultural zeitgeist. Her possessed teen character from the 2009 horror comedy "Jennifer's Body" is trending this year as a feminsit horror icon. The film features several epic looks you can channel: that Devil's Kettle cheer uniform, a velour pink heart hoodie, and the bloody formal gown.

Britney Spears

While Britney Spears will always be a great college Halloween costume idea, the pop star sensation carries extra weight in 2021 after this year's #FreeBritney movement. With decades of Britney's looks to choose from, you may want to coordinate a group costume with friends, with each of you embodying a different Britney.

Y2K Aesthetic

Dressing for a decade is a common Halloween costume strategy, and this year the early aughts are trending. Channel your inner Spice Girl, break out some NSYNC ramen hair, or bring to life a favorite 2000s movie character like Shrek or Captain Jack Sparrow.

Nostalgic Cartoon Characters

In times of tragedy we often turn to nostalgia. Like the throwback to the 2000s, channeling your childhood is a popular trend this year. And because many classic cartoons featured ensembles, there's plenty of opportunity for group ideas and college couple Halloween costumes.

Trending characters include Danny Phantom, Shego and Kim Possible, the Space Jam crew, the Teen Titans, Sharkboy and Lava Girl, the Winx Club, Recess, and SpongeBob SquarePants.

Loki Delta Air Lines Variant

A punny play on the pandemic that the God of Mischief would approve of and a relevant twist for those who want to dress up like a variant from the hit Disney+ TV show "Loki." Wear Loki's famous headpiece while dressed as a Delta Air Lines flight attendant or pilot and you'll be the talk of the party.


This year, the Pentagon basically said aliens don't not exist. So what better time to replicate our friends from space?

Reality Show Contestant

Reality shows have really taken off these past few years. If you never heard back from Netflix after your "The Circle" audition, no worries — just pretend to be a contestant for Halloween. Or don a party outfit, mic belt, and British accent for a "Love Island" babe.

"Tiger King" costumes are still in fashion. And who wouldn't love a contestant from "The Great British Bake Off" showing up with some homemade baked goods and flour on their apron?

Classic College Halloween Costumes

Some costumes never go out of style. You can rewear them for years to come, which makes any purchases for the costume go further. This list is a collection of Halloween classics you can rock this year and rewear in the future.

The Mystery Gang

Dressing up as a Scooby-Doo character will always be a hit. The show is also spooky, which helps with the Halloween vibes. And it works no matter how many people are in your group. You can easily add a unique take on this costume — dress the characters for the '90s or replicate the 2002 live-action film.

The Addams Family

Spooky, funny, and plenty of characters to choose from — including the delightfully edgy Wednesday Addams — an Addams family character is foolproof.

The Sandlot

Characters from this movie are always a crowd pleaser. It's a childhood favorite and you likely already have the costume in your closet. You can also go as Squints and Wendy for a cute college couple Halloween costume.

Bob Ross or Guy Fieri

Embody one of these American icons this Halloween for a good laugh. All you need is a wig, some faux facial hair, and an iconic blouse. Throw in props like Bob's paint palette or Guy's sunglasses and you're set.

Reimagined Classic

Take a classic college Halloween costume and add a pop culture reference or fresh theme. For example, you could be a witch, clown, pirate, werewolf, or vampire in '80s style. Or you could give your costume a regional spin, like a Pacific Northwest pirate or a clown from Brooklyn.

You can choose a specific movie or TV show to emulate, too — the Sanderson sisters in "Hocus Pocus," Wanda the Scarlet Witch, Edward Cullen, or Dracula. Try reimagining the characters by dressing them for current style trends or a specific event, like Dracula's wedding or the Met Gala.

Last-Minute Easy College Halloween Costumes

Sometimes the best college Halloween costumes are the ones you throw together the night of. We've rounded up some fun last-minute ideas that shouldn't take too much effort to get right.

Adam Sandler

Dressing up as Adam Sandler is sure to win you a few laughs this Halloween. The comedian is known for a particularly casual style that would be easy to replicate at the last minute.

You'll need a baggy T-shirt, large basketball shorts, long white socks, and some chunky tennis shoes. Then throw on a pair of sports sunglasses or a baseball cap. If you don't already own these items, you can probably find them at a thrift store, the men's section at Walmart, or your dad's closet.


Old-school sheet ghost is a fun and spooky last-minute costume. All you need is a white or off-white bedsheet and a pair of scissors. Cut out some eye holes and throw the sheet on. Add accessories like sunglasses or a hat to give your ghost some pizzazz.

Literalize a Pun

Walk around your home and seek pun inspiration! Here are some low-key puns you can bring to life:

  • Iron Chef: Wear an apron or chef coat and carry around a clothes iron.
  • Maroon 5: Put on a maroon-colored outfit and tape a "5" to your shirt.
  • Candy Wrapper: Dress as a rapper and tape a bunch of candy to your body.
  • Fantasy Football: Wear your sports jersey and grab a wand.

Damian From "Mean Girls"

All you need is a blue hoodie and some sunglasses and, poof, you're Damian — the quick-witted BFF to Janis and school Santa Claus. Every time a new party guest arrives, you can shout the memorable line "She doesn't even go here!" This character is super easy to put together, and you'll definitely stay comfortable all night long.

And let's be real: His energy is so 2022.

Feature Image: Jodie Griggs / The Image Bank / Getty Images

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