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Halloween is approaching fast, so if you have yet to think about what you might want to dress as this year, now is the time to start planning. Yes, you could always default to a classic like Tom Cruise in Risky Business or a generic “scary” face mask you pick up at CVS. But pulling together a pop culture costume that works for this year and this year only is infinitely more fun and is sure to ring in many more compliments than a repeat of last year’s simple witch hat. Best of all, there are plenty of 2021-specific costumes you can pull together at the very last minute with pieces you already have tucked in your closet or stowed somewhere in the house.

Here, the 16 best pop culture Halloween costumes to wear in 2021.

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katie thurston the bachelorette best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

1. Katie Thurstron from The Bachelorette

What you need: A fancy dress and a rose

Dust off that old prom dress and beach waver, baby. If you want to go for an edgier Thurston moment, swap the rose for a glow-in-the-dark vibrator as a callback to her unforgettable introduction on Matt James’ season of The Bachelor.

Get the look: Faux rose ($14); ASOS dress ($213); Mac Duggal dress ($398)

wandavision best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Walt Disney Pictures

2. Wanda Maximoff from WandaVision

What you need: Red one-piece bathing suit, pink tights, red shoes, cape, gloves and Wanda’s signature headpiece

There are tons of fun Wanda looks you can recreate from this time-hopping series, but if you don’t want to be confused for Lucy Ricardo or a generic ’60s babe, opt for Wanda’s very meta Scarlet Witch costume from the show’s Halloween episode. (P.S. If you want to make the headpiece yourself, here’s an easy tutorial using cardboard.)

Get the look: Sea Level bathing suit ($100); Sheertex tights ($119); Ninety Union boots ($90); cape ($9); headpiece ($17); gloves ($10)

deborah vance from hacks best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

3. Deborah Vance from Hacks

What you need: Sequin everything and a microphone

Be sure to work on your tight five before hitting up any parties...or at the very least prepare a few quippy comebacks that would make a legend like Deborah Vance proud.

Get the look: Anthropologie sequin duster ($148); Prop microphone ($6)

harry styles 2021 grammys best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Anthony Pham via Getty Images

4. Harry Styles at the 2021 Grammys

What you need: Black leather jacket and pants, and a green feather boa

Harry Styles is our fashion inspiration for pretty much every other day of the year, so why not use him to craft your Halloween costume too? Besides, how often does one find an excuse to wrap oneself in a feather boa for the evening?

Get the look: BB Dakota jacket ($129); Blank NYC pants ($98); Feather boa ($11)

beth harmon from the queens gambit best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

5. Beth Harmon from The Queen’s Gambit

What you need: Red wig, ’60s staples and a portable chess board

Feel free to rock just about any Mod-inspired pieces you have in your wardrobe—so long as you have Beth’s signature flippy red hair-do down everyone will know exactly who you’re supposed to be.

Get the look: Red wig ($24); Chess set ($17); ModCloth dress ($69; $35)

betty best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

6. Anyone from Betty

What you need: Skateboard, crop top, loose shorts, lots of vibrant colors and Vans sneakers

This HBO hit is worth the watch for the clothes alone and definitely makes for one of the most fun costume inspirations, as well as a great group costume idea. Pile on the checkerboard prints, crop tops and eclectic prints. Clip a portable speaker onto a chain necklace to incorporate Honeybear’s signature piece.

Get the look: Retrospec skateboard ($50); Bershka shirt ($20); Nike Jordan shorts ($70); Vans sneakers ($55)

bernie sanders 2021 inauguration best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

7. Bernie Sanders and his mittens

What you need: Blue medical face mask, gray parka, black pants and hand-knit mittens

So, you want a fun pop culture costume that prioritizes comfort over everything else? Look no further than Bernie’s iconic inauguration getup. It’ll keep you warm, cozy and safe from spreading disease, all with a hilarious pop culture twist.

Get the look: Etsy mittens ($26); BYD Care face masks ($10); ASOS coat ($50); Bailey 44 pants ($198)

mare of easttown best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

8. Mare from Mare of Easttown

What you need: Circle scarf, comfy layers, jeans and a messy bun

Another comfortable costume idea, this one leaves your hands free to search for clues gobble up some Halloween-theme snacks at the party.

Get the look: Lululemon scarf ($48); Vero Moda jacket ($59); O’Neill sweater ($99); Levi’s jeans ($98)

hopper stranger things
courtesy of netflix

9. Hopper from Stranger Things

What you need: A Hawaiian shirt, light-wash jeans and a mustache

While we wait to find out if Hopper will return for season four, we might as well channel his laid-back, Hawaiian shirt-ed style. Simple, comfortable and can also pass as someone’s dad on vacation in the ‘80s in case people aren’t familiar with Stranger Things.

Get the look: Fake mustache ($11); ASOS shirt ($36); Levi’s jeans ($98)

armond from white lotus best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

10. Armond from The White Lotus

What you need: Pink suit, Hawaiian shirt and a bottle of pills

All you need to transform your Hopper getup into Armond from The White Lotus is to swap those jeans for a pink (or other pastel-hued) suit and slip a bottle of pills into the breast pocket.

Get the look: Tahari ASL jacket ($149; $90) and pants ($99; $60); Only shirt ($35)

daphne bridgeron best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

11. Daphne Bridgerton from Bridgerton

What you need: Empire-waist gown, long gloves and a dainty tiara

If you’re looking for a more elegant costume this year you’d be hard pressed to find better inspiration than Daphne Bridgerton. If you want to add a special extra touch, tote around a pamphlet from Lady Whistledown with all the hottest gossip from the year.

Get the look: ASOS tiara ($23); Lace gloves ($11); Fourteenth Place dress ($69; $42)

fran lebowitz best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Netflix

12. Fran Lebowitz

What you need: Round glasses, oversize button-down shirt and blazer, loose jeans and practical boots

Martin Scorsese’s Pretend It’s a City made us fall in love with Lebowitz all over again and introduced the writer to a whole new group of fans ready to embrace her signature no-fuss style.

Get the look: Diff glasses ($85); Topshop blazer ($130); Alex Mill shirt ($115); Lucky Brand jeans ($129); Timberland boots ($135)

britney spears best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Lester Cohen/BBMA2016/Getty Images for dcp

13. Free Britney

What you need: Long blonde wig, sparkly minidress and handcuffs

The Free Britney movement really came to a head this year with Spears’s father finally agreeing to step down as her conservator and allow her to regain control of her life and assets. If you have an old Britney costume (like her Oops!... I Did It Again red catsuit, her Hit Me Baby One More Time schoolgirl ensemble or her 2001 VMAs look complete with boa constrictor) you can simply add a pair of handcuffs and a sign reading “Free Britney”, or you can slip into any sparkly minidress you own to embody red carpet Brit.

Get the look: Blonde wig ($21); Lovers + Friends dress ($155); Handcuffs ($18)

ted lasso best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Apple TV+

14. Anyone from Ted Lasso

What you need: ’70s sunglasses, mustache, coach’s jacket and a whistle

We can’t get enough of Ted Lasso’s infectious positivity, or his comfy coaching outfit. Etsy has great options if you want to buy a realistic looking team jacket or uniform, or you can use colorful washi tape and a printed out Richmond logo to transform any navy zip-up into a coach Lasso’s jacket.

Get the look: Fake mustache ($10); Whistle ($7); Le Specs sunglasses ($89); All in Motion jacket ($30)

barb and star best pop culture halloween costumes 2021

15. Star and Barb from Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar

What you need: Tropical tops, elastic-waist capri pants, leis and a tropical cocktail

The brighter and tackier the clothing, the better. You can also add a visor or large sunhat and oversize sunglasses, or opt for a one-piece bathing suit and coordinating sarong. And don’t forget to blow your hair into voluminous mid-western curls for the perfect finishing touch.

Get the look: King Kameha shirt ($25); L.L.Bean capris ($70); Pack of 12 leis ($10); South Beach straw hat ($13)

emma stone as cruella best pop culture halloween costumes 2021
Walt Disney Pictures

16. Cruella de Vil from Cruella

What you need: Black-and-white wig, red lipstick, an edgy black jacket or dress, or a red gown

There are multiple looks you can recreate from this fashionable film—Cruella’s stunning red gown, her black leather jacket with checkerboard sleeves (above), her bold-shouldered fashion show ensemble—but as long as you’ve got the hair you can sport just about any wild black-and-white getup you’d like.

Get the look: Black-and-white wig ($20); Fenty Beauty by Rihanna lipstick ($18); BP + Wildfang jacket ($69); BB Dakota skirt ($79); Katie May gown ($298)

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