10 Halloween Costumes to Show Off Your Bisexuality
By Siobhan Ball
October 01, 2021
Photo credit: Pexels/cottonbro
With Halloween coming up it's a good opportunity to embrace your bi fabulousness and dress up as a famous bisexual figure, real or imagined. Here are some suggestions to get you started.
With the current fad for Regency dress and royalcore why not come as everyone's favorite swashbuckling opera singer. Julie D'Aubigny fought and bedded her way across France, burning down a nunnery to rescue her girlfriend in the process, before embarking on an operatic career — where she kept dueling disrespectful men who harassed her female colleagues. To nail that Julie look, invest in a poet shirt and a pair of very tight trousers, or, if you're feeling elaborate, a fully-fledged 17th-century ball gown replica, but don't forget the bright colors and flashy gems if you do to really pull off those opera diva vibes.
Percy and Mary Shelley (and Lord Byron)
For a fun couple's, or even throuple's, set of costumes the three most bisexual disasters among the Romantics can never go amiss. Though it's only Mary we have actual literary evidence for on the bi front, ironic as she's the one of the three most often overlooked, I dare anyone to read Byron and Shelley's letters and poetry to and about each other and tell me with a straight face that the two of them weren't at least something. For Percy and Byron ruffled shirts, with cravats or waistcoats if you're feeling fancy, while all Mary needs is a white regency style dress and a deeply sarcastic expression.
Or you could skip the real people and go right to the character based on Lord Byron, and the origin of "all vampires are bisexual" trope Lord Ruthven. Created by his former friend Dr. Polidori, Ruthven is a barely allegorical expose on how Byron ruined lives with his penis (and how Polidori may have had some suppressed longings going on), and, like all the best vampires, is an elegant, seductive monster.
Take the Byron costume and add a red satin waistcoat, some eyeliner and plastic fangs. For a touch of the terrible humor, our people seem to be cursed with the habit of carrying about a wine glass of red liquid while making comments about how you don't drink wine (I know, I know that's Legosi's Dracula but hush, the pun adjacent nature of it makes it an appropriate touch).
Other options here include Dracula and Jonathon Harker, who, while not canonically bi, have some real subtext going on there.
Or really, any vampire will do. All vampires are bi after all.
The iconic Hollywood bad boy who described his sexuality as "No, I’m not homosexual. But I am also not going through life with one hand tied behind my back." Dean created a Look that's been inspiring queers of all genders for decades. Incredibly easy to pull off, especially for a certain sort of bi, all you need is a leather jacket, jeans and a white t-shirt. Slick back your hair and you're ready to go!
Anne Bonny and Mary Reade
As if pirates weren't already bi culture enough on their own (check out the #birates on TikTok and the three-way marriages known as matelotage) we have Anne Bonny, bi pirate queen, and her girlfriend Mary Reade. Prone to cross-dressing and occasionally passing in drag to get by, the two women marauded around the Caribbean with their surprisingly useless boyfriend Calico Jack, building a reputation for themselves as fierce and terrifying. Featured, with a lot of creative licenses, in Black Sails, you can't go wrong looking there for costume inspiration.
Otherwise, pirate fashion is broad and wild, featuring everything from brightly colored scarves to corsets to leather trousers. So similar to how some of us already dress when it's not Halloween then…
Everyone's favorite bi slacker with a heart of gold, Eleanor went from being selfish enough for the Bad Place (in the hit comedy The Good Place) to utterly revolutionizing the entire afterlife and basically saving the universe (along with her gang of extremely attractive co sinners). One for the lazy bi's. All you need is a plaid shirt, jeans and a smirk. Maybe a sash that says "best person" or a martini glass full of plastic shrimp if you're feeling fancy. Eleanor, during her pre-Bad Place Arizona Dirtbag days would support you. It's doing the least for the most after all. Plus, if you've got a tall, hot, bi girlfriend you can always turn it into a couples costume by getting her to go as Tahani.
Any man from Greek mythology
The bi-normative nature of the Ancient Greek construction of masculinity opens up pretty much every male character in their mythology. We have some fine examples recorded in the index of bi characters here on bi.org already; Why not try Zeus, king of the gods and all-around toxic frat boy of a person? Or Achilles, pretty boy warrior (and also kind of a toxic frat boy). Then there's Apollo, God of music, poetry and medicine (less a toxic frat boy and more an immortal Nice Guy with godlike powers), or Hercules, a violent demi-god who gets a much cuddlier wrap in pop culture than he deserves (one of his epithets was literally woman-hater).
Greek myths had a bit of a theme going on when it came to men, alright? We stan the binormativity but would really love to leave the toxicity and violence at the door. If you are going to go as one of them just wrap yourself in a bedsheet, add a leafy green wreath crown for one of the gods and a terrifying murder scowl if you're going as Achilles.
Dionysus (not necessarily a man)
If you're looking for a break from toxic frat boys wrapped in bed sheet togas (which, there's something very meta about that if you think about it) why not try Dionysus? The god of wine, drunkenness, and behaving badly under the influence he does tend towards hideously vengeful behavior, but on the other hand doesn't tend to pursue random women in animal form until they're too tired to keep on refusing to have sex with him, so. He's also not subject to a strictly cis male interpretation, as many scholars believe the original divinity who became Dionysus was a trans feminine goddess, of which there are several examples in the ancient Near East. Lady or nonbinary Dionysus is a valid interpretation is what we're saying.
A fake leopard-skin cloak, a high glamour ancient Greek drag outfit (one of the ways the officially masc Dionysus of recorded myth tended to dress) or a bed sheet wrapped loosely around your waist while you cart about one of those vintage Italian restaurant-style wine bottles are all great takes on the god of drunken chaos, hedonism and tearing terrible men into literal bloody shreds.
Princess Bubblegum and Marceline
Another, this time adorable, couples costume featuring everyone's OTP from Adventure Time. Snag a lab coat and a tiara for the Bubblegum Princess, leader of the Candy Kingdom, plus a pink wig and dress combo (unless you're planning to go all out and dye your hair). For Marceline, all you need is a classic rock tee and jeans with two penciled in dots on your neck for the fang marks. If you're really going to commit as Marceline you might want to consider carrying a guitar around or painting an apple white (she drinks the red color out of things rather than blood).
Oh Loki. So many options. You could go with the real, actual, mythological Loki, the trickster god who seduced giants and gave birth to an eight-legged horse, while also having some interesting subtext going on with Odin (another god who, though never shown sleeping with a man in the texts, is absolutely coded as not just bi but vers, and in a socially stigmatized way). All you need to pull off mythic Loki is some green-toned Ren Faire garb, which has the added bonus of being weather appropriate for those of us in the Northern hemisphere.
Then there's the Marvel Lokis, and, what with all the variants running around in the recent TV series, the possibilities are endless. Crocodile Loki, Lady Loki from the comics run, original classic comics Loki with the silly horned helmet, or any of the variants featured in the show. Hell, make up your own variant Loki, there's room for that! You become the Loki you want to see in the world!
That wraps up our list of great bi costumes for this season. Any of these would be a great way to show your bi pride this October.