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10 music videos that can inspire your Halloween costume this year

Break out your flashiest outfits and best dance moves, and transform into your favourite artist.

Break out your flashiest outfits and best dance moves, and transform into your favourite artist

Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X all released viral music videos this year that can be easily replicated as Halloween costumes. (Lizzo/YouTube, Billie Eilish/YouTube, Lil Nas X/YouTube, Graphic by CBC)

Inspiration for Halloween costumes can come from a myriad of places: movies, TV, comics, everyday news, you name it. Another place people can look to are music videos. Artists such as Madonna, Missy Elliott, Björk, Elvis Presley, Prince and more have inspired some incredible costumes over the years. This year, a number of videos have not only captured the zeitgeist, sparking important conversations and silly memes alike, but they can also be transformed into some very timely costumes this October. 

If you're still trying to figure out what to wear this Halloween, scroll down for some music video inspiration. (Please note that, in no way, is it appropriate to alter the colour of your skin, such as wearing blackface or brownface, for these costumes.)


'Old Town Road,' Lil Nas X 

Arguably this year's biggest single also comes with a visually cinematic music video. Featuring cowboys, time travel and cameos from Chris Rock, Vince Staples, Diplo and more, this western-style fever dream is easy to replicate and will give you permission to shout quippy lines like, "Can't nobody tell me nothin'," all night long. 

What you'll need: a cowboy hat, a western-style shirt preferably with fringe, a bag with a money sign on it.


'Bad Guy,' Billie Eilish 

Pop star Billie Eilish's style is unmistakable and, thankfully, very comfortable for the chilly October weather. So grab a bottle of hair dye and prepare to whisper-sing everything you say. 

What you'll need: oversized hoodie, matching sweatpants, layers of jewelry, fake blood dripping out of your nose, dance moves that involve flailing your arms and legs a lot.


'Truth Hurts,' Lizzo

Although this track and music video technically came out two years ago, Lizzo's "Truth Hurts" had its breakout moment in 2019, topping the Billboard charts for several weeks. While its lyrics alone can inspire a number of costumes — a DNA test proving you're "100 per cent that bitch;" a Minnesota Vikings player — the bridal-themed video is also an evocative image that fans of the singer/rapper will recognize immediately. 

What you'll need: wedding dress, veil, bouquet, a flute named Sasha Flute (bonus).


'Señorita,' Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello 

An ideal option if you're searching for a couple's costume. Canadian pop star Shawn Mendes and girl-group-turned-solo-star Camila Cabello are one of music's biggest couples right now and their collaboration, "Senorita," is still burning up the charts. With more than 700 million views on YouTube, the video became a viral sensation when it first premiered in June, reigniting rumours of a romance between the duo. If you and your partner are ready to show off your chemistry, then do it with the flair of pop's newest It couple. 

What you'll need: a white tank top, skinny jeans, suspenders and a curly mop of hair for Mendes; a white dress with ruffles and long wavy hair for Cabello; steamy salsa moves for both. 


'Boy With Luv,' BTS

Transform yourself into a K-Pop idol this year by dressing up as your favourite group. (This is ideally a group costume, but can be done solo as well.) With such distinct styles and eye-catching visuals, the options are endless but our pick goes to BTS's colourful "Boy With Luv." With Halloween coming up fast, there may not be enough time to enroll in K-Pop dance classes, but it's a great way to connect with fellow fans while learning how to perfect intricate routines by your favourite acts.   

What you'll need: pastel hair, matching pink or white outfits, extensive choreography.


'Earfquake,' Tyler, the Creator 

For Tyler, the Creator's fifth solo album, Igor, the California rapper adopted a fresh alter-ego and look both onstage and in his videos. Sporting a blond bowl cut and a sharp suit, fans were introduced to a new era of the rapper's career. And to make it even easier for fans to dress up this year, Tyler, the Creator has released Igor costumes, available on his Golf Wang website. 

What you'll need: a short, blond wig, a baby blue suit, sunglasses, a microphone, a sweet falsetto.


'Motivation,' Normani

Former Fifth Harmony member Normani is still establishing her solo career, but when she dropped her music video for "Motivation" back in August, the internet went wild for her flirty anthem. Part of the buzz came from the music video, where Normani shows off her incredible dance moves while serving early 2000s J.Lo-inspired looks. In the two months since its release, "Motivation" has accumulated more than 60 million views on YouTube. 

What you'll need: a pink-and-white, spray-painted outfit, hoop earrings, a basketball (if you dare try the move she pulls off in the video).


'Thank U, Next,' Ariana Grande 

Ariana Grande's viral hit, "Thank U, Next," came out post-Halloween last year so if you've been waiting 10 months to recreate some of the video's best looks, now is the time. Even though all of the scenes are parodies of teen films — Mean Girls, 13 Going on 30, Bring it On, Legally Blonde — these are still classic costume ideas that Grande nails, and you can, too.  

What you'll need: red-and-white Santa-themed outfit (Mean Girls); a signature ponytail, a floral tank top and sweatpants (Bring it On); a floral shirt, jeans and a dollhouse (13 Going on 30); a patent and/or feathery pink ensemble and a pet chihuahua (Legally Blonde).


'You Need to Calm Down,' Taylor Swift

Lover-era Taylor Swift is filled with bright colours and standout looks. Whether you want to replicate the tulle-filled Parisan opening of "Me!" or the gorgeous monochrome outfits that populate the fantasy dollhouse in "Lover," fans will have a number of options to choose from. But our pick goes to the dramatic and playful style of her bright "You Need to Calm Down" video, perhaps the biggest style departure for the pop star yet. 

What you'll need: pink fur coat, baby pink bikini, bedazzled sunglasses, a cocktail and an IDGAF attitude. 


'On a Roll,' Ashley O (Miley Cyrus)

One of the most popular fictional pop music icons this year is Black Mirror's Ashley O, who was played by real-life singer Miley Cyrus. Her modern take on Nine Inch Nails' "Head Like a Hole" was even approved by the band, which is now selling a collaborative t-shirt. Live your best dystopian pop-star life this Halloween. 

What you'll need: a lavender wig, white patent leather outfit, a robotic doll that's sporting an identical lavender hairdo. 

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