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It’s that time of year again; the leaves begin to turn bright orange and red, the air becomes crisp and you know Halloween is right around the corner. Find more about halloween costumes ideas!


DIY Halloween Costumes Ideas

written by Tara Simmons



Table Of Contents



You’ve always been known for having the most creative and fun costume with months of planning behind you, but this time you have found yourself half way around the world in a hostel during Halloween! You can still dress up for cheap and with the clothes you have brought with you; here are some tips to make the best do-it-yourself costumes while on the road.





By just adding easy accessories such as a pair of wings, a cape, or drawing on some eyeliner whiskers or mustache; you can achieve the most simple costume change while still wearing the clothes you already brought.

A cat costume is easy: add eyeliner whiskers, wear all black and mimic a kitty nose by putting a little lipstick on the end of yours. Check out the kids section in the local grocery store or supermarket for some cheap and creative accessories.







This costume idea is tried and true but always super easy and fun. If you brought a one-piece bathing suit all you need is some brightly colored tights and some trainers, add some over-the-top scrunchies for your hair and tacky make-up, and you’re set!

Talk to the other girls in your dorm – someone’s bound to have a bright eye shadow color deep in their makeup bag. Pile it on and tune into your inner Cindi Lauper!

Body Paint


If you are planning on wearing less clothing for your costume (more appropriate for warmer climates) body paint is the cheapest and easiest way to transform yourself.

Depending on your skills with a paintbrush, you can either paint your whole body or just your face and arms. Some body paint costume ideas: Avatar character, Smurf, Anime character, Pixilation (paint different colored squares on your face/body to appear as a low-resolution image), and Rainbow.

Check out a local craft shop to see if you can get your hands on a skin-friendly tube of paint. Popular options include tempra, markers, liquid latex, airbrush makeup, PAX makeup and textile acrylics.







This more frightening costume almost falls in the same category of body paint, but requires some clothes you don’t mind ripping up for the sake of the holiday.

Paint your white with dark circles around your eyes, and splash on some red over your face, chest, t-shirt and arms as if you were just finished eating the bloodiest meal ever. Don’t have access to paint or red lipstick? How about some ketchup for blood?




If you have about 50 cents to spend, one of the cheapest and most fun costumes you can make is a mummy. All you need is a friend and a roll of toilet paper and you’re ready to be mummified!

In consideration of post-drinking alcohol filled bladders, don’t use up the toilet paper in your hostel. It’s really cheap to buy your own roll.







Especially fun in a busy hostel, cross-dressing costumes always get a good laugh! Add some “facial hair” with a bit of eye liner or mascara and presto, you’re the newest and most eligible bachelor in town!

Swap clothes with your boyfriend or one of your new travel mates for a free and silly costume.


Tourist (because you probably already own everything you need for this one!)


All this costume requires is your most touristy items you have, so break out that horribly tacky screen printed or Hawaiian shirt, a tote-bag on your shoulder, some bermuda or cargo shorts, sunglasses, SLR around your neck, hat of any kind, and with a map in hand be sure to ask everyone for directions!

Also, talk with your fellow travelers to come up with group-themed or partner ideas (superheroes, movie casts, etc). It’s a great way to meet people and socialize in a foreign country!



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Author Bio: Tara is a native Californian and newbie world traveler, having just backpacked through Europe and continuing on throughout Southeast Asia.  Enthusiast of all things organic; she also loves to read, write, and bake in her spare time and currently keeps her own travel blog Traveling Days.