15 amazing last-minute queer costume ideas for Halloween 2023

With something to cater to everyone's budget and creative skills, this list is sure to provide some spooky inspiration!

Split screen of three queer Halloween costumes. On the left is Ryan Gosling as Ken, middle is Emma Stone as Cruella, and right is Velma from Scooby Doo.

With Halloween creeping up on us, time is of the essence to decide on your DIY queer costume and take the fear out of the preparation! Do you still have no idea what to wear? Well, this last-minute list may be just what you need.

The compilation has something for everyone’s budget and creative skills, from timeless classics to pop culture moments – here are 15 costume ideas for celebrating a frightfully good Halloween this year:

Velma from Scooby Doo

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Hayley Kiyoko appearing as Velma from Scooby Doo, dressed in an orange jumper and wearing black glasses.

For this look, rummage through your closet and find as much orange as possible – a jumper or a turtleneck (or both!) should do the job, along with knee-high orange socks, a red skirt, dark shoes and some thick-rimmed black glasses. If your hair is not the same colour or length, then a brown bob wig will be the ultimate finish. 

Zoolander or Hansel from Zoolander

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson appearing as their characters – Zoolander and Hansel from the film Zoolander. Stiller is wearing shades, a sparkly all black suit and also a black glove on his right hand. Hansel is wearing black leather trousers, a bright blue long sleeved top, sunglasses and a large necklace. Both are walking side-to-side.

Evoke main character energy or transform into his rival from this cult classic. For Zoolander – spike out your hair, contour the cheekbones, have a sparkly outfit and remember to strike certain poses throughout the night – such as the ‘Magnum’, ‘Le Tigre’, and the iconic ‘Blue Steel’. If people turn their heads, you’ve been successful.

For Hansel, just simply grab a blonde wig, a flashy top, some leather trousers, a pair of sunglasses and a striking big necklace.

Classic Cowboy

Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger starring in Brokeback Mountain.

This year, gay cowboys have seen a resurgence on the screen and stage, bringing joy to LGBTQ+ enthusiasts. Whether it’s Pedro Pascal and Ethan Hawke in A Strange Way of Life or Jack and Ennis in the theatre rendition of Brokeback Mountain, there’s plenty of costume inspiration!

To capture the style, just don a cowboy hat, neckerchief, boots, and your favourite shirt tucked into some snug denim jeans.

Tanya from White Lotus

A queer costume idea for Halloween 2023. The image shows Jennifer Coolidge from the shoulders up as Tanya in White Lotus. She has blonde curled hair and a concerned expression on her face.

This list wouldn’t be complete without Jennifer Coolidge’s White Lotus character. To dress up as Tanya, you’ll need some oversized sunglasses, a blonde wig, and an extravagant summery dress and shawl. To really make this one convincing, be sure to scream, “These gays are trying to kill me!” at any given opportunity.


Elvira releases her special with a publicity photo featuring a gothic woman holding a cleaver sitting on a couch beside a skeleton

Embracing the timeless allure of the Mistress of the Dark, Elvira’s iconic look is not beyond the reach of last-minute panic-induced costume preparation.

Capturing her essence requires nothing more than slipping into a long, bewitching black dress and throwing on a styled black wig. The magic truly happens with the artful application of makeup and the confidence you exude. And, of course, perfect the look with those jet-black nails and that seductive, blood-red lip!

Carol Aird from Carol 

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image Cate Blanchett, who appears as a lesbian character, Carol Aird. She is in a department store, pictured from the shoulders up and wearing a red fascinator hat.

Get ready to sashay into the room like the fabulous icon you are with the ultimate Carol costume! Start with a striking red fascinator hat perched atop your head, exuding a sense of timeless glamour. Add a plush faux fur coat and match your fiery red nails and lips, because who says matching your lipstick to your life’s drama isn’t a fashion statement?

Tie it all together with a scarf and slip on some elegant gloves, while making sure to add a cocktail of confidence and mystery. You’ll have people thinking Carol isn’t just a character; she’s your spirit animal.

Damian from Mean Girls 

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Damien in Mean Girls. He wears a baby blue hoodie with the hood up and tied tight around his face. He also wears sunglasses and has a straight face.

Ah, let’s talk about iconic characters – and here’s one that’s a timeless classic and oh-so-easy to pull off!

To transform into Damian from Mean Girls, all you need is a cosy oversized blue hoodie and a pair of sunglasses. But wait, feeling a bit extra? Throw in a sign that proudly declares, “She doesn’t even go here!” – and voila! Your costume is not just a hoodie and glasses; it’s practically a comedy masterpiece. Perfect for the minimalist Halloween type.

Megan Broomfield from But I’m a Cheerleader! 

DIY Halloween costume ideas:Young blond girl wearing a pink shirt and cardigan with long blond hair looks to her right

Oh, the irony! When Megan got shipped off to a therapy camp to ‘straighten out,’ it was like sending a cat to fetch water – utterly futile! And guess what? The camp’s attempt to change her just made her more gloriously queer!

Now, about her camp look – grab a pink shirt and skirt, while also tossing in some hair clips. Get out there and show the world that you can’t “cure” fabulous!

David Bowie 

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows David Bowie from the waist up with bright red hair and a tight striped jumpsuit.

Dressing up as David Bowie for Halloween is like channelling the essence of glam rock royalty! To embody his iconic style, start with Ziggy Stardust’s legendary lightning bolt across your face, using vibrant colours to make it pop. Next, focus on Bowie’s flamboyant fashion – think a skin-tight jumpsuit in bold metallic shades, or perhaps recreate his Thin White Duke era with a sleek suit and a crisp dress shirt.

But remember, Bowie wasn’t just about clothes – it’s the attitude!


A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Emma Stone as Cruella, with a newspaper background. The photo is from the shoulders up, with a woman who has white and black hair, bright red lipstick and black smudges on her face and with writing that reads – the future.

Once you’ve rocked the half-and-half hair, let your imagination run riot with her costumes! Dive into the Emma Stone vibe with smudged soot and ‘The Future’ boldly declared on your face, paired with fierce red glitter lips for maximum drama.

Oh, and attention to detail is key! Don’t miss the cigarette holder – it’s the finishing touch for your last-minute queer-inspired, devilishly chic Halloween costume.

 Willow Rosenberg from Buffy the Vampire Slayer 

Alyson Hannigan is pictured, who portrayed Buffy in the popular series.

The basics of transforming into Willow start with a scoop neck shirt paired with a long flowing maxi skirt. Also, get a vibrant short red wig to capture Willow’s signature hair colour, and complete the look with a ’90s choker necklace for that nostalgic touch.

For makeup, focus on Willow’s natural yet alluring appearance. Keep the base light and fresh, adding a touch of rosy blush to the cheeks. Define your eyes with soft eyeliner and mascara, and opt for a natural lip colour to complete the look.

Ellie from The Last of Us 

A scene from episode 7 of The Last of Us, which contained a queer storyline, showing the two characters Ellie and Riley wandering in a dark mall.

Dressing as Ellie from The Last of Us allows you to embody a resilient and fierce queer character. To capture the iconic look, simply grab a maroon zipped hoodie, a long-sleeved baseball shirt and some jeans or cargo pants. You could even add rips for a post-apocalyptic vibe. Also, don’t forget a prop knife for the zombie-slaying spirit!

Wednesday Addams

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams. The photo is from the shoulders up, with a girl wearing a school uniform, long black plaits and a fringe. There is a severed hand perched on her shoulder.

While the idea of dressing up as Wednesday Addams isn’t exactly niche, thanks to the huge success of the 2022 Netflix series, it’s like the queer Halloween costume universe is giving you a nudge and saying, “Hey, now’s your time to shine… in black!”

To nail her iconic look, grab a black outfit, preferably a dress with that classic white collar, and don’t forget the long braids. And, of course, wear your best serious expression.

The Barbie Universe

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Kate McKinnon as Wierd Barbie. The photo is from the waist up, with a woman wearing a pink dress and short, blonde messy hair. She is holding a pink high heel in her right hand and a brown Birkenstock shoe in her left.

The popular movie release this year makes this Halloween costume quite timely. Join the fabulous queer tribe of people dressing up as a Barbie character this year, and the hardest part of this look is just deciding on who to be! You’ll have to choose between classic stereotypical Barbie or go a little more niche with these other characters:

  • Weird Barbie
  • Rollerblading Barbie
  • Western Barbie
  • Mermaid Barbie

A queer Halloween costume for 2023. The image shows Ryan Gosling as Ken. The photo is from the waist up, with a man wearing a bright outfit, smiling in a mug shot and holding a sign that says LAPD and Ken.

And don’t forget about Ken! There will be plenty of bright queer-coloured chaps roaming the streets this Halloween. There’ll be lots of room for creativity with this costume. For the Ryan Gosling look, a platinum blonde wig may be preferable if you don’t want to resort to a risky bleach box dye situation…but maybe it’s the time to try out a new look – potentially rope in a friend to avoid disaster.

And there you have it, our last-minute queer-inspired Halloween costume list all wrapped up. For more inspiration, take a peek at our past suggestions. Don’t freak out, and let the DIY creativity begin!

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