Have you ever wanted to dress up as your favorite superhero? Iconic creepy clown? Princess (or villain)? Well, there's one time of year where it's socially acceptable to go out dressed as almost anything you want, and we're almost there.

If you're looking for a little inspiration on how to make a splash this Halloween, look no further. We've compiled a list of the Halloween costumes that have gotten the most Instagram likes in 2017 (and even in previous years) to help make sure your disguise is as trendy as it is timely. We've even added in the most popular political costumes, and you might not guess who came out on top (don't worry, we'll tweet about it later). Don't be scared – keep reading to see what we discovered about the spookiest and trendiest time of year.

Keeping It Fresh

If you want to keep it classic this Halloween – but still want to make sure your costume is relevant and exciting – then look no further than the fairy. Earning over 4,000 Instagram "likes" on average, there are endless options on how to dress up (or even spice up) your fairy look. You could go as everyone's favorite fairy (complete with a light-up skirt) or shake things up with a more fiendish approach. Men, don't despair. If you're in it for the likes, there's a fairy costume just for you.

The next most popular costume takes the spooky, frightful nature of Halloween to heart. If you want to make sure your costume is relevant but still gives off the best kind of creepy, Pennywise has just the look for you. You don't have to hide in the sewer to freak people out as the clown from "IT," but you might want to consider the appropriate props to help complete your look (red balloon, anyone?). There are no age limits on this delightfully terrifying costume, either. Just ask this 3-year-old haunting people's nightmares with basically the same look.

Other frightful classics like Freddy Krueger or a timeless zombie (including zombie schoolgirl or even zombie doctor) could each earn you more than a couple of hundred likes on average, followed by iconic looks like the cat, Ghostface, and even Harley Quinn.

Last Year's Looks

Looking back on the most popular Halloween costumes of 2016, you might see your getup on our list. In Florida, Pikachu was all the rage (potentially as a response to the growing "Pokemon Go" craze), and in New Mexico, another adorable yellow Minion costume came out on top, complete with goggles and overalls.

The Joker might have been the most popular look in Idaho, but his manic lover Harley Quinn was all the rage in Iowa, Illinois, Georgia, and West Virginia. Batman costumes were king in Alabama, and Wonder Woman debuted ahead of her critically acclaimed film as the most popular costume on Instagram in Maryland.

Not all great costumes have to be a pop culture reference, though. In Colorado, nothing was more popular than the witch, and vampire looks were sucking blood and taking names in Arizona and Montana. Cats aren't the only animals to get attention during Halloween, either. Dog costumes (think Snapchat filter) outranked everything else in states such as Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, and horses were the most popular costume in all of Kentucky and North Carolina.

A Little Retrospect

Almost every year, what's fresh and relevant in the world of Halloween costumes changes – even if some of the classics have stayed the same.

In 2015, Star Wars costumes made a huge comeback in states like Florida, Massachusetts, and Kansas, despite not having been one of the most popular looks in 2014. Despite not having been on the big screen for about a decade, Neo (from "The Matrix") earned hefty likes in 2012 (Alabama) and 2013 (Texas) and then disappeared back into the void.

E.T. was also a hit from 2012 through 2015, though he may have finally returned home in 2016 when he failed to rank as one of the most popular looks of the year. Everyone's favorite wizard, Harry Potter, showed up in 2012 (Nebraska) and 2015 (Oklahoma) but also didn't have enough magic to beat out the comic book heroes (and villains) who ruled the day in 2016.

Running short on time and need a classic go-to option that's still relevant? Monsters, jack-o'-lanterns, and (surprisingly) Christmas characters always seem to make a splash.

Going Political

Want to be powerful, conversational, and maybe even a little bit decisive? Well, get out your phone and prepare to start tweeting because this year Donald Trump is going to be the most popular political costume at the party. Everyone wants to imagine being POTUS for at least one night, and the photo opportunities could be endless with the right costume design. Getting the Trump look isn't hard, and it could earn you over 183 Instagram likes per post on average.

Want to be even more disruptive to the status quo? Go as your very own version of North Korea's Supreme Leader (or "Rocket Man") Kim Jong Un, and you might pull in almost 57 likes when you show the world your look.

Other popular political figures in 2017? Bernie Sanders (almost 15 likes), Barack Obama (over 10 likes), and Hillary Clinton (9 likes).

Complete the Look

No matter which direction you want to go for this year's Halloween – a classic look, a conversational pop culture reference, or even a political statement – you now have some idea as to which costumes might be overplayed and which ones could earn you the best in bragging rights.

Whether you're organizing a group look or going out on your own, Halloween Express has everything you need to pull together the perfect Halloween look. With complete costumes, accessories, decor, props, and makeup, we have everything you need to stand out from the crowd this Allhallows Eve – or even a few options if you prefer to blend in. Visit us online or in store to start browsing today.


Using the Instagram API, we looked at every post tagged #halloween from 2012 to 2017 and searched the captions for mentions of almost 500 costumes. We looked at the average number of likes per post and sorted them across the country in various years of posts to see the most liked costumes on Instagram in every state.

Fair Use Statement

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