Looking for a Halloween costume? Try these ideas

The Spectrum

As a kid, Halloween was about dressing up as our idols and getting paid in candy. Kids could be anything they dreamed of, from their favorite superhero to the beautiful Disney princess they've always admired; Party City was Halloween paradise with walls of endless costumes.

Many college students, however, do not embrace Halloween with the imagination or excitement that was once there.

With the seemingly infinite number of options for the ultimate costume, many revert to the traditional characters that have become more clich?(c) than fun. Americans are expected to spend $2.5 billion on Halloween costumes this year, according to a report released earlier this month by the National Retail Federation.

Pop culture already has the answers for the next identity you should take on for Halloween.

Movie-inspired costumes

The Great Gatsby

Most should be familiar with the novel The Great Gatsby, which many high school teachers assigned as reading. And those who have not read the book have probably seen the trailer or movie for this re-imagined classic. The Roaring Twenties featured ladies glitzed up in fabulous gowns and shimmery flapper dresses and gentlemen with creaseless suits.

Although the '20s-era flapper look has been done a few too many times by girls, Daisy's character can be achieved with a simple dress bedazzled with sequins or gems, a matching headband and hands decorated with pearls and rings. A last touch would be the blonde bob, whether it is a wig or, if you're daring enough, the real haircut.

To turn this into a couple's costume, the guy can take on Jay Gatsby's suave and sophisticated look with a suit finished with a perfectly knotted tie or bowtie and a handkerchief in the breast pocket.

Spring Breakers

Spring Breakers is about four college girls who rob a local business to party their spring break away. Along the way, they find themselves in jail, only to get bailed out by a local rapper and gangster. They are then exposed to a new world of crime and violence.

Who better to portray the main characters than actual college students? The crime and violence can and should be left out, of course.

A colorful neon two-piece paired with a bright pair of sneakers completes this look. The outfit can also include a pair of short shorts, a tank top tied up, a hoodie for cover-up, fun wayfarers and pink hair like Cotty, one of the characters, sports in the film.

Also, who can forget the pink ski mask with the unicorn plastered on the forehead?

Guys have Alien as an option. His outfit consists of a Hawaiian shirt, corn rows, fake grills and topped off with fake guns and tattoos.

Put it all together and it can be a perfect look for a group of four girls and a guy.

Despicable Me

One word: Minions.

It's fun, cute and really easy to put together.

Students can go out and purchase the suits or the costumes from the local costume store, but for the sake of keeping things under budget and being creative, making them is the way to go.

Simply pair a yellow top with denim overalls or your favorite blue jeans or shorts and suspenders. Lastly, throw on a pair of thick-rimmed glasses and a pair of work boots.

"I think minions are a really popular costume this year because they have become such beloved little characters," said Nicole Faerman, a junior communication major. "They're easy to recognize and even easier to make. I was able to put the costume together with things I already had in my closet."

TV-inspired costumes

Breaking Bad

I'm sure many UB students can relate to the explosion of Breaking Bad in their newsfeed a few weeks ago. The series finale incited dozens of Facebook statuses, tweets and blog posts all over various forms of social media, so it's no secret that the show will make its way into Halloween this year.

Walter White and Jesse Pinkman, two of the show's main characters, are sure to be major Halloween costumes this year. White, also known as "Heisenberg," can be easily recreated with a pair of glasses and some facial hair. As for clothing attire, there are a number of moments from the show that can be recreated - from the infamous poster of White in just a green button down and white briefs to the "meth cooking" look of white briefs again paired with a lab apron and gas mask. And if you're truly dedicated to the persona, a bald head is the way to go.

And for a two-person Halloween look, Pinkman cannot be forgotten. This look can be completed with some loose-fitting jeans, a hoodie, a baggy graphic tee, an overused beanie and distressed sneakers.


Dexter is a forensics expert who moonlights as a serial killer targeting criminals who he believes have not gotten what they deserve.

For the look of the main character, you need a button down and slacks. Afterward, his serial killer look is complete with a lab apron, rubber gloves and a blood splatter across the face.

For the couples, a victim can also be included, featuring some Saran wrap and open wounds to depict the killer-victim relationship between Dexter and his targets.

Orange is the New Black

It is the story of a woman in her 30s sentenced to prison for transporting her ex-girlfriend's drug money. The show follows her journey in an all-female correctional facility.

The complete inmate look requires the notorious orange scrubs, a white t-shirt to pair underneath, a pair of navy canvas shoes and, for a more exaggerated look of prison life, handcuffs and a shackle with a ball attached.

With a few girls in these outfits, the whole prison environment can be recreated.

Duck Dynasty

This reality TV show follows the Robertson family, which runs a family business that makes products for duck hunters and is known for their peculiar look.

To recreate the men's look, you need a long and ungroomed beard, a patriotic bandana slapped on around the head and the ultimate hunting outfit - you can't forget the camo.

Music video-inspired

Blurred Lines

This song came out on top this year, with everyone singing the lyrics and dancing to it while at parties despite the controversial lyrics. The video of Robin Thicke, T.I. and Pharrell suited up with three barely dressed girls dancing around sparked a lot of negative attention, but it is without a doubt one of the most iconic moments of 2013 and definitely costume worthy.

A nicely ironed shirt and pants finished with a shined pair of dress shoes and aviators make up the look for the guys while girls can slick on some red lipstick and all-white attire of shorts and crop tops.

The Fox

Millions have laughed over the absurd lyrics and ridiculous sounds, gaining the video millions of views since its September release.

Although the fox costume has been around, the Ylvis-inspired costume can be done with one person wearing the iconic fox suit and back-up dancers dressed up with fox masks.

Miley Cyrus

Her new image has been the talk since "We Can't Stop" first premiered. Miley drew plenty of backlash over her new rebellious, grown-up look. Controversy over this ex-Disney star increased after her VMA performance.

The new Miley is all about outrageous and skin-baring outfits - some highlighted ones are her "We Can't Stop" all-white look and her VMA outfits of a teddy bear one-piece followed by the nude latex two-piece. Top it off with some red lipstick and the blonde short hairdo. Oh, and don't forget to stick out your tongue.

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