15 good, great and terrible sci-tech Halloween costume ideas

29 Oct 2015

This is not one of our Halloween costume ideas. I’m not quite sure what this is. Photo via Eugenio Marongiu/Shutterstock

I asked the Silicon Republic team to brainstorm some Halloween costume ideas for science and technology fans. This is what we came up with. You’re welcome.


Don’t be just any STEM costume, be the ultimate STEM costume. Wear all green and paint yourself green – you are STEM.

2. Telepresence Edward Snowden

Print out a picture of Edward Snowden, the fuzzier the quality the better. Strap it to your head and glide around the whole night on a scooter. For added effect, intermittently blow a whistle.

3. Jellyfish

Get an umbrella – transparent ones are best, but any will do – and dangle string and battery-operated fairy lights from the edges. Glide around with elegance and maybe dole out a few sneaky pinches just so people really understand the danger lurking beneath your beauty. This can also be majestic and terrifying as a group costume.

4. World Wide Web

Dress up as a globe (a world map on a T-shirt is the lazy option, but the ambitious among you will be able to fashion something much more convincing) and add spider webs.

5. Cuddlefish

Acquire a soft toy of the sealife variety. Hug it all night.

6. Commodore 64

If you have 63 friends who also haven’t made a costume plan yet, you could all dress up as Lionel Richie.

7. Adele

Transform yourself into a Dell computer. Include lyrics to your favourite Adele track for added recognition.

8. Marty McFly on a hoverboard

2015 is set to be the year of Back to the Future Halloween costumes, because they’re fairly easy to assemble and totally topical right now. If you have all it takes to be Marty McFly but want to rise above the crowd, add black trousers, a wheel-free skateboard and some structural ingenuity to the mix and take it to the next level.

9. NSA or GCHQ spy

Wear a suit and persistently nosy in on other people’s phones. Don’t even make an ID badge to present when you’re inevitably asked what you’re up to. Deny everything, and keep clear of Telepresence Edward Snowden.

10. Marie Curie

For this, you can go as a regular early 20th-century woman or a zombie version, but the key is to accessorise with green glowsticks.

11. Prime number

Invested heavily in an incredible Optimus Prime costume that’s now lamenting in your wardrobe, waiting for its next big occasion? Add a number to the costume and transform from a powerful alien robot into a punning maths wizard.

12. Double Helix

As inspired by Leelee Sobieski and Giuseppe Andrews in 1999 movie Never Been Kissed, all this couple’s costume requires is white coveralls with DNA written on the breast. Best for couples who plan to spend the evening entwined.

Double helix costume

13. Return of the Mac (OS)

You have to hand it to Apple for making such group-costume-worthy operating systems for its computers. You can take your pick of animals – Mountain Lion, Lion, Snow Leopard, Leopard, Tiger, Panther, Jaguar, Puma, Cheetah ­– or have fun with the more modern updates, donning Tom Cruise’s cowboy-style for Mavericks or dressing as a Spanish sea captain for El Capitan.

14. 2Pacca

Every Star Wars fan and their Star Wars-loving mother will get an off-the-shelf Halloween costume of their favourite character for Halloween (note the lack of Jar-Jar Binks rig-outs in that mix), so you need to think outside the box to stand out. So, dust down your Chewbacca costume (I know you already have one), add a Thug Life T-shirt, some chunky gold chains and a bandana, and there you have it: 2Pacca.

Chewbacca 2pacca costume

15. An algorithm

Step 1: Acquire or fashion an Al Gore mask.

Step 2: Dance.

Get it? An Al Gore Rhythm. Boom.

Main Halloween costume image by Eugenio Marongiu via Shutterstock

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.