Whether it’s for Halloween or your next costume party, putting together the perfect 80s women’s costume may seem like a daunting task, but fear not we’ve come to help!
The 1980s were loaded with fun and nostalgia, all from which you can draw inspiration from when creating your next 80s costume. Women in particular have quite a few choices if they wish to create a costume based on 80s nostalgia. From music stars, actresses, cartoon characters, and even the political figures who rocked the world during the 1980s, with a little creativity on your end, the sky really is the limit!
80s Costumes For Women
With Halloween just around the corner, or perhaps your next party in the near future, now is the time to start exploring if you want to put together that perfect women’s 80s costume.
Here are 9 fun 80s costume ideas for women that we think will help get your creative juices flowing:
Of course we had to kick off our list with “The Material Girl” as our first suggestion for a great 80s women’s costume. When it came to the 1980s, no one can dey that Madonna’s fashion and music really defined the era.
Madonna was one of many female artists who wore revealing costumes and created a rebellious image in music videos during the 1980s. The most popular costume was probably her performing as her alter ego, Like a Virgin, which consisted of a wedding dress and lingerie with white fishnets.
Another great look you can emulate of hers is her black 1985 AMA ensemble. We outlined what it takes here to get that epic look, but no matter which Madonna costume you choose, you can’t really go wrong with this 80s music icon!
2. Cyndi Lauper
The other music icon of the 1980s was of course Cyndi Lauper. The “True Colors” singer makes a great choice for your next 80s costume as her fashion and style embodied what the 1980s was all about. It was big, bright, and bold, all attributes that make for a great costume!
To get her look you’re going to need some bright hair dye (or a wig), bold makeup, fishnet stockings, and a layered dress. We outlined a great Cyndi Lauper costume here if you want to go as the “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” singer.
3. Molly Ringwald
When it came to 1980s teen movies, Molly Ringwald is hands down the queen. She also makes a great 80s costume if you were a fan of her hit movies.
Most women should be able to recreate her looks from hit movies like “The Breakfast Club” and “Sixteen Candles” with items they already have in their wardrobe. A pink shirt and long brown skirt is a great start for Claire Standish from “The Breakfast Club”, or put on a pink outfit and a black brim hat to get Andie’s look from “Pretty In Pink”. It also definitely helps if you’re a redhead, if not definitely consider getting a wig to finish off a great 80s Molly Ringwald costume.
4. Diana Ross
Diana Ross is known for her extravagant outfits and clothing style, and she is a great star to imitate when creating your next 80s costume. If you want to dress up as Diana Ross, you can wear a white long-sleeved blouse, big earrings, and bright red lipstick for one of her standard looks.
Additionally, don’t forget to put on some black pants or jeans to go with it as well as some red high heels! To complete your Diana Ross costume, make sure you curl your hair so it resembles her trademark flowing hairstyle. Don’t forget about putting on some eye shadow that matches your lipstick, and also bring along some fan music, such as “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor or “My Destiny” by Donna Summer.
5. Jane Fonda
If you want something more casual, consider an 80s Jane Fonda costume for your next event. During the 1980s Fonda was a fitness icon, and putting together the perfect 80s aerobics outfit is both a fun and comfortable costume that everyone will remember!
A neon colored leotard, leg warmers, and sweatbands is a costume that can be put together pretty quickly. Don’t forget 80s workout clothes were also about expressing who you were, so don’t forget to add your own personal touch to the outfit!
6. Stevie Nicks
Nicks is a classic choice, and her signature style is simple to replicate. All you’ll need are an A-line dress with white lace sleeves and shoes, old-fashioned jewelry (think earrings, necklaces, bracelets), clove cigarettes (which can be found at smoke shops or Amazon), and maybe a jean jacket. Finish it off with dark mascara and red lipstick for that quintessential ‘80s rocker look. Oh, and don’t forget your black eyeliner. You’ll look like Fleetwood Mac’s iconic singer—and just as stylish!
7. 80s Cartoon Characters
The 1980s gave us some great Saturday morning cartoons, and many of them have characters that would make great choices for your next 80s costume.
For women particularly “Jem and the Holograms”, “The Care Bears”, and “The Smurfs” all have characters that you could create a costume out of.
If you have a favorite 80s cartoon, definitely consider some of the characters as a path to a great 80s costume. Also chances are if you pick a character that is fairly well-known, you could probably buy a pre-made costume off Amazon that could save you a lot of time and hassle.
8. 80s Movie Characters
The 1980s also was a golden era for movies, and besides the aforementioned Molly Ringwald, there are many great characters from 80s cinema that you can choose for your next costume.
Some picks that come to mind are Princess Leia from “Star Wars”, Baby Houseman from “Dirty Dancing”, or Sloane Peterson from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”. Often you’ll already have some of these clothing items in your wardrobe and may just have to get one or two things online to complete that epic 80s costume.
Again pick one of your favorite 80s movies and go from there. And as always, be sure to add your own personal touch to really make your costume stand out from the crowd!
9. 80s Political Figures
When it comes to 80s political figures, the two that immediately come to mind are Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher. If you’re looking for something American, definitely consider Nancy Reagan or Barbara Bush.
These are the political figures that immediately come to mind when we think of women in the 1980s, though of course there are others as well like Indira Gandhi and Geraldine Ferraro.
So hopefully the above got you thinking about putting together a great 80s women’s costume for your next big event. The 1980s was a decade to remember, and it is a great era for women to draw inspiration from when it comes to creating your next great costume.
Just remember to have fun with your costume, and also do your best to personalize it and really make it your own. And as always, a little preparation goes a long way, so make sure you give yourself enough time to create your next great 80s women’s costume.