This year, you want your Halloween costume to scare the Squirtle costume right off your friends. But in an ever-expanding world of Instagram models and Netflix cosplay, it’s almost impossible to be original. Bride of Frankenstein: been done. Undead Ivanka Trump: Nobody’s going to get it. Haunted poop emoji: Harder to execute than one might think. T. Swift squad? Legitimately too scary.
Lucky for you, I have hunkered down and created a list of truly horrifying Halloween costumes that require minimal effort, and a lot of makeup. I know you have not a lot of the first thing, and tons of the second. They’ll appear even worse on camera!
Girl Who Contoured Her Cheeks to Such Hollowness That She Just Has Tuberculosis Now
In our vain efforts to create more triangular-shaped heads for ourselves, we’ve lost what’s important: rosy cheeks, TB vaccinations, clothes with zippers, the freedom to wear pants, the right to vote. This eerie look is easy to achieve. Just take your worst matte contour stick and bronzer and fill in the hollows of your cheeks until looking at them is like looking down a coal mine. A grey tinge can take this costume from kind of sad to oh my god, so if you’ve got any incense ash or soot lying around the apartment, overlay that with a gradient effect.
Girl Who Sweated Off Her Sexy French Maid Costume Makeup at the Pre-Game
This one is extra-sinister, and maybe just a bit too soon, which is fitting with the often thoughtless, appropriative nature of All Hallow’s Eve. Achieving this look is a cinch: Do whatever makeup you did last year (scroll through your phone to last October –– you took at least 50 pictures of yourself; you just don’t remember), break into a 24 hour health club and sit in the sauna for 10 minutes. For a hyper-realistic take on this witchy look, wear the Party City polyester French Maid costume straight from the bag into the sauna. Show up to the function with a Dasani bottle full of vodka.
Girl Who Felt Guilty After They Gave Her a Free Makeover at the MAC Counter So She Bought a Lip Thingy
A truly blood-curdling scenario! Who among us hasn’t been just browsing thanks, killing time before barre class in a major department store, when accosted by the devil hands of a sales representative, makeup tools jutting like talons from her hands? To achieve this look, wear no foundation (that’s not included in the free makeover), too much sparkly blush (that is) and mascara that makes your eyes red (also included). Wear a bold shade of lipstick you’d never have purchased if you didn’t feel guilty about the free makeover. I suggest one that’s a promotional tie-in with the Trolls movie.
Girl Who Keeps Talking With Her Hand Over Her Mouth Because She Has Hormonal Chin Acne Right Now
An easy costume to execute if you, like me, already have hormonal chin acne and are probably already talking with your hand over your mouth at least one week a month. That doesn’t make it any less spine-tingling of a costume, though! In fact, this one’s probably the most bone-chilling on the list.
Girl Whose Lips Are Too Thin, in General
You wake up from night terrors a few times a month thanks to the subliminal horror of either of these immutable realities: 1) You and everyone you love is going to die one day. 2) Your lips are going to stay like that your whole life. The ghastliest part of this costume is that it represents an existential terror. Overline, overline, overline, either with a shade that matches your flesh tone just a little bit too well. or with a bold red. You can always go wrong with a bold red.
Girl Who Woke Up with a Pimple on My Neck????? Howwww
Yet another nightmare come to life. This might be the hardest costume to put together considering we’re just a few weeks away from the big night. Gory makeup kits and amateur silicon prosthetics never look quite right. You’re going to want the real thing. Neck pimples are hard to grow, and yet, I managed to do it last night.
Girl Who Just Got Eyelash Extensions and Accidentally Already Scratched Her Cornea
There’s two ways to do this. Either buy a comedy eyepatch from a Spirit Halloween store or CVS, or go ahead and get yourself some eyelash extensions. I guarantee that within thirty-five minutes of owning these, you will have scratched your cornea. You’re like the modern iteration of Bloody Mary, the woman who lives in the mirror, now.
Girl Who Hopes Her Big Glasses Cover Her Lack of Eyebrow Filling In Today
What a thrill, to be anyone you want to be one night a year. Tonight, be a superhero: the girl who is able to leave the house without filling in or combing up her eyebrows. But don’t overdo it because kids might see you. Instead of going full nude, perch a pair of glasses on your nose and pray to the druid gods that nobody notices. Might be hard to pull this off if you plan on making out with anyone over the course of the evening.
Girl Who Is Applying Lip Balm from a Tube Even Though There’s Crust in its Ridges
Get a big tote bag and pour in some Chex Mix, graphite from a mechanical pencil, the coating of an everything bagel, little scraps of looseleaf paper and dead skin particles. Uncap an expensive lip balm (I suggest the $95 Clé de Peau serum), make sure its contents ooze down around the ridges of the applicator, and dip it in the bag. Get it all crumby. Walk around all night applying the balm in front of friends and strangers. You’ll shock them.
Claire Carusillo is a freelance and fiction writer in New York. She writes a weekly beauty newsletter offering off-label product usage advice; photos by Krista Anna Lewis; Creative direction by Emily Zirimis.