19 Pop Culture References That Make For Fantastic 2020 Halloween Costumes

This has been a truly wild year. It feels like so much has happened but also nothing has happened, and how are we even talking about 2020 Halloween costumes when it still feels like it's March? But time actually has progressed and we're now in Spooky Season.

Even in a year as strange as 2020, pop culture stops for no one. and there were some pretty major TV, music, and celebrity moments this year. They make for great Halloween costumes whether you're attending a Zoom party or just chilling with your roommates at home.


Because so much of 2020 has been dedicated to more serious news, it's easy to forget some of the more lighthearted celebrity and entertainment moments from 2020— especially anything that happened in the Before Times (a.k.a. January and February). Take a walk down memory lane through the fun parts of 2020 (I promise there are a few!), and get inspired for this year's Halloween — at home, most likely — with these fun pop culture-inspired costumes.

They all go well with masks, of course, and some even demand them. We may be in some ~unprecedented times~, but we can still celebrate the annual fall tradition of posting our carefully selected costume photos on Instagram.

Halloween is a time for frights, costumes, and fun, but this year is a little different. You can still do all of those things, but please make sure to practice proper social distancing measures, avoid large gatherings, and remember every costume is best paired with a mask. Refinery29 is your one-stop Halloween shop when it comes to ways to celebrate safely. Enjoy!

Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

Emily In Paris Costume

Love it or hate it, this show took Fall 2020 by storm. Everyone is talking about it, and about Emily's bucket hats. To make your costume the buzziest show of the season, you'll absolutely need a bucket hat, like this one. Next, grab the most mismatched, colorful outfit you can find: my suggestion would be a crop top with a mini skirt and a partially open button down over top it. The crop top is a non-negotiable. And top it off with Emily's signature camera phone case. If you're not a brunette, you could don this wavy brown wig.
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

Carole Baskin Costume

People came to know big cat activist Carole Baskin on Netflix's Tiger King, but now she's a bonafide reality contestant on the new season of Dancing with the Stars. For any Carole Baskin costume, you pretty much just want to do head-to-toe animal print. Try this pink leopard-print blouse, cheetah tunic, flowy cheetah-print pants, tiger-print shoes, and a flower crown, of course.

Indecisive Pilot Pete Costume

America watched as Peter Weber sent home Kelley Flanagan on The Bachelor, got dumped by Madi Prewett, and got engaged to Hannah Ann Sluss. Then he broke up with Hannah, started dating Madi, broke up with Madi, and started dating Kelly. To channel indecisive Pilot Pete, throw on a suit and pick up this pilot accessory pack. Then just look really confused all night. Don't forget to carry a bunch of roses!
Photo: Karwai Tang/WireImage.

Off-Duty Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Couples Costume

Now that they've split from the monarchy, Harry and Meghan can walk around in casual clothes, refuse to attend fancy parties, and generally just chill. There's no more fashion protocol for them to follow, so it's pretty easy to dress up like the duo even with stuff from your own closet. This makes a great couples' costume, but you can also channel just one ex-royal if you want.

For off-duty Meghan Markle, put on a pair of ripped jeans, flats, and a dress shirt with the sleeves rolled up. Add some sunnies and a dark wig if your hair isn't naturally brunette. For Harry, you'll need sunglasses, jeans, sneakers, and a polo shirt, because he's still figuring out how to dress down. Add a mask and go as the time Meghan and Harry helped deliver food to people in need in Los Angeles. Don't forget to smile! You're happy now!

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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

Nurse Ratched Costume

Sarah Paulson plays this sinister nurse on the new Netflix series Ratched. Her '40s style nursing outfit is relatively easy to replicate with this teal, collared dress, nurse's hat, and white kitten heels. Follow this tutorial to replicate Nurse Ratched's tucked hairstyle.

The bonus of this costume is you can easily wear a mask and not lose the integrity of the character. She's a nurse!

Crying Kim Kardashian Costume

Keeping Up With The Kardashians is ending, and we're all crying Kim Kardashian right now. This costume is once again relevant and also so easy. Put your hair in a braid, throw on a white silk robe, pull out your best waterproof mascara (hers doesn't budge!), and cry 2020 away.
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

The Baby-Sitters Club Costumes

Dressing up like Claudia, Stacey, Kristy, or Mary-Anne has been relevant since the late '80s, but even more so after Netflix dropped the new Baby-Sitters Club TV series this year.

For Stacey you'll need a black polka-dot dress, beige jacket, and a silver purse.

For Claudia, throw on a yellow jumpsuit, patchwork jacket, and funky jewelry.

Kristy is bringing back the bucket hat trend, and pairing that with a T-shirt and jeans. Hers is definitely one of the easiest looks to do if you're trying not to break the bank.

For Mary Anne, wear this plaid dress and braid your hair in pigtails.

"WAP" Costume

Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion wear so many amazing looks in this music video, but we're partial to the animal-print bodysuits that they and Kylie Jenner wear. Replicate the look in leopard or white tiger and then add some accessories like knee-high boots and gloves.

Fun (and incredibly awkward) fact: This costume can also double as Sexy Carole Baskin.
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

Fire Saga From Eurovision Costume

The Will Ferrell, Rachel McAdams Eurovision movie is filled with epic costumes. Recreate their dream sequence music video look with a viking outfit (ditch the beard) and Thor helmet for Lars. For Sigrit, throw on a flowy white dress, white faux fur jacket, and silver lipstick.
Photo: Courtesy of PopTV.

Moira Rose from Schitt's Creek Costume

With Schitt's Creek sadly ending earlier this year, now is the perfect time to dress up as matriarch Moira. You'll need a fluffy black hat, black and silver top, feather skirt, and tall black boots. Throw in a unique wig if you're feeling extra. Oh, and of course, her signature red lip.
Photo: Courtesy of Warner Bros Pictures.

Harley Quinn From Birds of Prey Costume

Margot Robbie was back this year as Harley Quinn in her spinoff movie Birds of Prey. You can snag a complete Harley costume on Amazon for $59.99. Or if you prefer to DIY it a bit, you need a pink crop top, suspenders, striped jean shorts, and some tinsel to glue onto a clear jacket.
Photo: Mike Powell/Allsport.

1990s Bulls Player Costume

The Michael Jordan documentary The Last Dance brought the epic '90s Chicago Bulls team back into the limelight. Throw on a Bulls jersey, shorts, and some snazzy sneakers to go as a Bulls player for Halloween.
Photo: Courtesy of Disney+.

Baby Yoda Costume

The Mandalorian returns to Disney+ the day before Halloween, making Baby Yoda (or The Child, as he — or she! — is called on the show) the perfect timely costume. You'll need some yoda ears and green face paint (here's a makeup tutorial), If you don't want to paint your face green, you can snag a face mask with Baby Yoda printed on it. Don't forget the cozy coat.

Harry Styles "Watermelon Sugar" Costume

The song of the summer can now be the costume of the fall. All you need is an orange patterned shirt (sweater vest optional), salmon dress pants, and heart-shaped glasses. Are you going as a hippie or as Harry Styles? Both?
Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images.

Shakira & Jennifer Lopez Super Bowl Costume

The Super Bowl Halftime Show feels like it happened one million years ago, but it was actually just a few months ago!

For Shakira: gold crop top, gold jacket, gold skirt, and gold sneakers.

For J. Lo: silver top and skirt, silver tights, and silver heels.

For both, you'll also need a mic.
Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

Billie Eilish At The Grammys Costume

Billie Eilish wore a mask to the Grammys in January, which makes her get-up the perfect costume to replicate now. Her mask was mesh, and not very protective (do not wear one of those), but it's extremely easy to swap that out for a functioning mask. You'll also need a black tracksuit, green long sleeve shirt to wear under, black and green wig, and fake green nails.
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.

To All The Boys' Lara Jean Costume

With the sequel of To All The Boys I've Loved Before dropping earlier this year, Lara Jean's (Lana Condor) outfits are easy and timely to replicate. You'll need a t-shirt, pleated skirt, and yellow polka-dot headband. Have your partner dress in jeans and a varsity jacket with a scrunchie on their hand to make this one a super easy couple's costume.
Photo: Courtesy of ABC.

Grey's Anatomy Doctor Costume

15 years after its premiere, Grey's Anatomy is still going strong — and it had some pretty major storylines in 2020, including a major character departure. Any of the doctors make for relevant costumes, and you can throw on a mask with your navy scrubs and doctor's coat to be on theme and super safe.
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