Top Unique Categories for Halloween Costume Contest 2023

Want to create some unique categories for Halloween costume contest 2023? You are at the right place. Simply, you can organize the party in the costume or participants category. I will explain each category in detail with some amazing ideas for the Halloween costume contest.

categories for halloween costume contest

Unique Categories for Halloween Costume Contest 2023

You can categorize your Halloween costume contest into two sections.

  1. Costume Category.
  2. Participant Category.

Each category has some subcategories. And now, I will discuss them one by one.

Costume category for Halloween costume contest 2023

A Halloween costume contest can be organized under the costume category. In this category, there are different subcategories to consider:

#1. Scariest

In the scariest category, I’m talking about costumes that make your heart skip a beat. Think Grim Reaper, vampires, ghosts, devils, zombies, wolves, witches, mummies, and skeletons, all things that go bump in the night. You want to look like you’ve just walked off a horror movie set!

#2. Cutest

Cuteness overload, here we come! This category is all about aww-worthy costumes that make everyone go, “Awww!” It’s a haven for bunnies, kittens, and even adorable unicorns.

#3. Funniest

In the funniest category, it’s all about cracking people up. Your costume might be a play on words, a funny meme, or even a hilarious take on a current event. Here, you may choose to be a clown, a banana, or a famous comedian.

#4. Horror Movie Character

This one’s for all the cinephiles out there! Dress up as your favorite horror movie character and steal the spotlight. From Freddy Krueger to Pennywise, the options are endless. You can also choose one from the movies released in 2023. For example, you can dress up as a character from the recently released “Pet Sematary: Bloodlines” movie.

#5. Most Creative

Let your imagination run wild in the most creative category. The more out-of-the-box, the better. You could dress up as a painting, furniture, or even a social media app. 

#6. Most Realistic

The most realistic category is where you pull out all the stops. Think high-quality materials and impeccable attention to detail. Realism is king here, whether you’re a stormtrooper or a historical figure. For instance, you can top the charts with your most realistic “Marilyn Monroe” costume. 

#7. Coolest Handmade Costume

For those who love to DIY, this is your moment to shine. Show off your hand-crafted costumes that have that extra touch of personality. For example, you could make a dress made entirely out of candy wrappers or a costume that lights up. The more unique, the better!

Participant category for Halloween costume contest 2023

If you want to steer away from costume categories, you can organize your Halloween costume contest based on participants. Here are some ideas

#1. Groups

Group categories are fantastic for families, friends, or coworkers. Choose a theme and go all-in. How about “The Avengers” or “The Addams Family”?

#2. Adult Couple

Adult couples can really steal the show with some imaginative and well-thought-out costumes. Think Bonnie and Clyde or Peanut Butter and Jelly!

#3. Adult Single

Flying solo this Halloween? No worries! Adult singles can opt for elaborate costumes that make a big impact. Consider going as a famous celebrity or historical figure.

#4. Kids

Kids’ costumes are always a hit. Superheroes, princesses, or little monsters—you name it!

#5. Toddler

For toddlers, comfort is key. Stick to simple yet captivating outfits like baby animals or miniature superheroes.

#6. Teenager

Teenagers often go for trendy and current costumes. Social media memes, pop stars, or even viral video characters could be the way to go.

#7. Only Men

In this category, it’s all about masculine themes. Think lumberjacks, knights, or even famous male actors.

#8. Only Ladies

The ladies’ category can range from elegant to sassy. Iconic female figures or timeless beauty looks are always a hit here.

#9. Pets

Don’t forget about your furry friends! Pets can also participate in the Halloween costume contest. Dress them up as superheroes, food items, or even celebrities.

How to Host a Halloween Costume Contest Under Different Categories? 

Hosting a Halloween Costume Contest is no small feat, especially when you’ve got a bunch of diverse categories. But hey, don’t sweat it! With the right steps and a sprinkle of planning, you can host an unforgettable contest that has everyone raving. Let’s get the ball rolling, shall we?

Step 1: Brainstorm Categories

First off, you need to decide on your categories. Remember, variety is the spice of life! Use the Costume and Participant Categories we discussed earlier. Think about your audience—what will appeal to them the most? You may also consider creating a mix of popular and unique categories to keep things interesting. For example, you could have “Best Duo Costume” or “Funniest Group Costume.”

Step 2: Nail Down the Rules

Once you’ve got your categories, it’s time to set some ground rules. Be clear about what each category entails. For example, in the “Most Creative” category, let people know that the more unconventional, the better! Moreover, establish guidelines for the judging process, such as how winners will be selected and what criteria they’ll be judged on.

Step 3: Gather Your Judges

You will need a panel of judges who know what they’re doing. Opt for a mix of people who can objectively evaluate different aspects of a costume, from creativity to realism. You could also invite some special guests, like local celebrities or costume designers. Plus, having a diverse panel of judges adds to the credibility and excitement of the contest.

Step 4: Choose the Venue and Time

Location, location, location! Pick a venue that’s accessible and has enough space for participants and spectators. Also, choose a time that works for most people. Evenings are usually a safe bet for Halloween parties. If you’re hosting a virtual contest, make sure to provide clear instructions and links for participants to join.

Step 5: Advertise Like There’s No Tomorrow

Now that the basics are set, it’s time to get the word out. Use social media, flyers, or even good ol’ word of mouth. Make sure to highlight the categories to pique interest. Encourage people to come in costume, whether they’re participating or not. This will add to the overall Halloween vibe and make for a great photo op!

Step 6: Prep the Scorecards

Before the big day:

  • Prepare scorecards for the judges.
  • Divide them according to the categories and criteria such as originality, effort, and overall impact.
  • In addition, create a system to keep track of the scores and determine winners.

Step 7: Set Up the Stage

On the event day, arrive early to set up the stage. Create different sections for each category so participants know where to go. Also, ensure enough lighting and sound equipment for the judges to communicate their scores effectively.

Step 8: Let the Contest Begin!

Kick things off with a bang! Have a charismatic host to engage the audience and guide the proceedings. As participants show off their costumes, judges can use their scorecards to rate them. You may also want to have fun activities between categories, like a dance-off or a pumpkin carving competition.

Step 9: Tally the Scores and Announce Winners

Once all participants have had their moment in the spotlight, it’s time to tally the scores. Announce the winners and hand out some killer prizes. But do you know how to pick the winner? Here are some tips:

  • Don’t be swayed by popular opinions—stick to the criteria.
  • Judge by the spirit of Halloween, not just the craftsmanship.
  • Be mindful of cultural or offensive costumes—have clear guidelines on what is and isn’t acceptable.
  • Be fair and consistent with your scoring.
  • Have a tiebreaker round, or let the audience vote if there’s a tie.

If you are a participant and want to learn how to win any Halloween costume contest, check out the video content below.

Step 10: Capture the Moments

Don’t forget to capture the highlights! Photos and videos are a great way to immortalize this spooktacular event. Plus, you can use them to promote future contests!

FAQs on Halloween Costume Contest Categories

What kind of party is Halloween?

Halloween is a celebration that occurs on the evening of October 31st. It is associated with dressing up in costumes, trick-or-treating, and other spooky traditions. Moreover, it is also known as All Hallows’ Eve or All Saints’ Eve.

How do I choose a costume for Halloween?

Choosing a Halloween costume depends on your personal preferences and creativity. You can go for popular characters, current trends, or classic costumes. The key is to have fun and be comfortable with what you wear.

Can I participate in multiple categories in a Halloween costume contest? 

Yes, typically, you can participate in multiple categories as long as they are not exclusive. However, check the rules and guidelines of the contest beforehand. Remember that you can only win one category, so choose your strongest costume for each category.

What should be the prizes for Halloween costume costumes?

The prizes for Halloween costume contests can vary depending on the budget and scale of the event. Some ideas include gift cards, themed merchandise, or a grand prize like a weekend getaway. Whatever the prize, make sure it will excite and motivate participants to put their best foot forward in their costumes. 

What are the best costumes for the Halloween costume contest?

The best costume for a Halloween contest fits the category, stands out in creativity and execution, and showcases the individual’s style. The best costumes also have a clear concept and make me say, “Wow, I’ve never seen that before!” 

A well-crafted and unique villain costume would be perfect for the “Most Evil” category. At the same time, a group outfit that showcases humor and coordination would be great for the “Funniest Group Costume” category. Ultimately, the best costume is subjective and may vary from person to person. 

Last words:

Now you know about all the categories of a Halloween Costume Contest, including all details on how to host! Remember, the key is in brainstorming creative categories, setting clear rules, and choosing the right judges. With these tips, your contest will surely be a hit for all ages and genders.

Julia Nancy
Julia Nancy

I have vast experience arranging online voting contests for hundreds of clients worldwide in the last 8 years. I also helped countless clients to win their online competitions. Here, on, I am just sharing knowledge from my experiences. If you need any help regarding the online contest, email me at